Thursday, 14 February 2013

Regency Gown and Blouse Ensembles

A few weeks back I watched 'Emma' - the version with Romola Garai and Jonny Lee Miller for the BBC mini-series in 2009, and remembered how much I loved the blouse and gown combo that she wore:

Regency Jumper Dress and Blouse

I had forgotten that we also see 'Harriet Smith' played by Louis Dylan in one too, fabulous!:

Regency Jumper Dress Heaven

There is also a yellow gown that she wears, with what I think is a blouse with detachable long sleeves?:



These ensembles reminded me of a similar, though slightly later combination that I liked from 'Wives & Daughters', again from the BBC but back in 1999, set in the late 1820s/1830s, although dear Molly never really wears the high fashion outfits that you see Hyacinth and Cynthia wear (her step mother and step sister):

Wives & Daughters Blue Gown and Blouse Combo

Late 1820s/Early 1830s Gown & Blouse Ensemble
I LOVE jumper dresses, of any description. Now I am pretty sure that 'jumper dress' was not a term used in the early 19th century. The blouses here are soooo pretty, and they would certainly save the gown from regular washing.

I was wondering where these two costume designers (Deirdre Clancy for 'Wives & Daughters', and Rosalind Ebbutt for 'Emma') had found their inspiration for these. A while ago I wandered across this dress:

Princess Charlotte's Gown c.1817, The Museum of London

The blue gown in 'Emma' is certainly extremely similar, minus the fringe though, of course. I found the gown on Pinterest (thank you to 'The Ornamented Being' via, Pinterest and Tumblr).

Here is their link, with much more info:
The Ornamented Being

Also, there is a post here from Jenny La Fleur - here she explains her views and research, which is very interesting indeed.

I wonder if the 'blouse' is a long blouse, or simply a chemisette type garment, which reaches down to only just below the bust? Was the blouse removed for the evening? I would think so, but I also think that Princess Charlotte would have changed again into a more sumptuous gown!

19th Feb Update:
Here is a link to a little information about the exhibition which featured the dress, http://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/archive/exhibits/royal/index.htm which was held between May to November, 1997, at The Museum of London.

Happy Valentine's Day!
with love,
Naomi