Archive for the ‘18th century’ Category

Pitching the 18th Century to HBO

Wow, I hope HBO listens to The Onion’s open letter pitching an 18th century TV show!  (Via the good Comtesse Olympe!)


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Fed up of boring shoes?  Looking for the ideal 18th century footwear for a Lady of Fashion?  Want to bring a bit of elegance to 21st century footwear?

Now you can!  I am rather excited at the prospect of American Duchess’s Georgiana shoes – today pre-orders open for these pretties:

(And, no, it’s not an April Fool’s!)

They’re silk satin, which means they’re completely dyeable to whatever colour you fancy, and they look quite divine.  I am pining for a pair … let’s see if I can scrape some pennies together!

I don’t get to do reenactments or the like, but I would quite happily wear these for special occassions of the non-historical variety.  LOVE them!


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I’ve mentioned bits and pieces that I’ve ordered and a something special for the Lady Luck Outfit, and at last it’s time for show and tell, with some things less exciting than others:

Fray-stop glue (wooo, exciiiiitiiiiing  ;P  ) and spray-on fabric stiffener – that’s a little more exciting as you can build up the stiffness the more you spray it and it washes out.  I think that’ll be useful for all sorts of things, like pleats/ruffs, hat decorations and perhaps even kanzashi.  I also suspect that it’ll be useful to keep bows in shape and for using fabric strips for cockades.

Ostrich feathers – fluffy!  Now I’ve seen them, I’ve decided they aren’t long enough for wearing in the hair (~10″), but they’ll be great for decorating a mini-tricorne or …

… masks!  These two are for moulds for papier mache – they’ve got pretty good shapes, though the black one (which I love!) needs eye-hole adjusting, but with that, it’ll be FAB!

Yay for the Tamina slippers!  I thought they were lovely when I saw them online, but they’re even prettier in reality – very pleased with them, indeed!  I’ve worn them around the house a bit, but I think I need to stretch the front very slightly as they dig in a little, but that’s no big deal.

And, finally – my super-awesome-special-pretty-surprise for the sash of the Lady Luck Pierrot:

I found this lovely on ebay – it’s an 18th century silver and paste shoe buckle that was at some point turned into a brooch.  I slipped a scarf through it to give an idea of how it’s going to look as the buckle at the front of the Pierrot sash.  I really love it rather a lot and am so pleased – it’s my first 18th century antique!

Wow, I really am too obsessed with that century.

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Happy Bastille Day?

It’s that time of year – Bastille Day.  I know many people celebrate today, but I feel torn.

On the one hand I am no monarchist: much as I enjoy reading about the lives of historical Queens and researching and making clothes of the nobility, I’m not into that kind of class system.  (Especially when aristos are wasting flour on powdering their hair while normal people starve!)  So, huzzah for liberté, égalité, fraternité! 

But – and I’m sure you knew there would be a but – going around murdering people left, right and centre, well, that’s not really the way to go about it!  So, less of a huzzah for liberté, égalité, fraternité ou la mort.

Liberty, equality, brotherhood or death? Hmm... tough choice.

The violence of the French Revolution may seem like some story from 200 years ago, but I can’t help but remember that it was real life for thousands of people – there was blood, tears and cheers, sweat, muck and lies.  Lives ended, some perhaps justly, others less so, all violently and horribly; people like you and I suffered.

And that is why I find it slightly harder to say ‘Happy Bastille Day’ – for today was the start of it all and however dashing that Pimpernell was or however dastardly Robspierre, there was death and cruelty and misery on both sides.

The Scarlet Pimpernel (BBC)

On a lighter note – liberty, equality, fraternity or death does remind me of the Eddie Izzard sketch: Cake or Death?  Alternatively, you may prefer Blackadder’s le Pimpernelle Scarlett.  Enjoy:

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Ok, so I know I must be massively behind any Americans reading this, but I have just found this fabulous fop (via Gail Carriger) and I quite frankly love him!

Vive la Fop; Vive la Rococo!

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All I will say is: weeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!

Regency ebony writing box.

Or should I say, the Regency ebony writing box that will soon be in the post to me?

A triple-folder with secret drawers - yay, wewt and huzzah, I say!!


Edit: I will be doing a more detailed post with more pictures when it arrives!

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In an effort to do some exercise (gasp!), I’ve just treated myself to these:

So, watch out streets of Nottingham, I now come with wheels!  (And probably not very good balance or speed control!)

But did you know that the first pair of rollerskates was patented in 1760?  They weren’t very popular, apparently, though I don’t think I’m surprised – I doubt they’d be safe with all those petticoats and lack of ankle support!

Unfortunately, their lack of popularity is probably the reason there don’t seem to be any surviving 18th century examples.  Instead you’ll have to satisfy yourself with this pair from circa 1880:

I wonder what the 18th century pair looked like, whether they were strap-ons like the 19th century ones (which will always remind me of the blue, yellow and orange Fisher Price Velcro-on skates I had as a kid)

Or were they were like normal 18th century boots or shoes with wheels on the bottom… Or, how about bucket top boot skates, anyone?

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