Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Examining Changes in French Women’s Fashion during the Late 18th and Early 19th Centuries

My thesis research was covered in WP Magazine, which called for a photoshoot in historic Hobart Manor!

Hello, dear Pour La Victoire readers! I apologize for my absence, but it's been a busy year! Although I didn't keep up with the Historical Sew Monthly, I sewed up more items this year than ever before, which I'm excited to finally share with you all on my blog!

The first half of my 2016 was occupied with my thesis research for my Honors Humanities thesis, titled--wait for it!--Examining Changes in French Women’s Fashion during the Late 18th and Early 19th Centuries. Yes, dear readers, I got the thumbs up from my thesis advisor to research, write about, and recreate garments from this remarkable period in fashion (and cultural, social, and political) history! With my research, I wasn't trying to reinvent the wheel--it is quite well known in the historical fashion community the significance of the French Revolution on fashion--but I was trying to explore in great depth a concept I was curious about. My 70-page thesis included a glossary of terms, in-text images to illustrate points, and a discussion of the technological, social, and political influences on fashion. This project was immensely fun (if an overwhelming amount of work, considering I was simultaneously working on another thesis project, working 2 part-time jobs, and taking 6 courses). You can read more about my thesis research here, which was featured in William Paterson University's magazine!

For my thesis, I decided to create both a c. 1770s garment and a c. 1790s garment. I didn't try to recreate a particular fashion plate or portrait, but I analyzed the details in hundreds of extant gowns, fashion plates, and portraits to determine what the most common details of these dress styles were, to present an aggregate of the norm. I will post about my 1790s dress soon, but you can already read all about the c. 1770s ensemble (on a poupée de mode, no less) here!

Thank you to all my loyal blog readers! It took me a while to get back into the blogging groove, but I am exceptionally happy to be once again part of the vibrant, intelligent, and helpful historical fashion community!