Silk Flowers and Feathers: Reimagining a Regency Bonnet

how to make a regency bonnet

My regency headpiece was a university project under the mentoring of the milliner Claire Strickland. I based my research on a visit to Sands Films library at Rotherhithe in London which is an incredibly valuable resource. One could spend days going through all of the fashion plates they have! Eventually I decided to construct the bonnet … Read more

The “False Adornments” of 18th Century Women’s Dress

The false adornemnts of 18th century women's dress

Late-18th Century fashion was so elaborate that a law was proposed to prevent men being taken in by a pretty face. The 1770 an amendment against “false adornments” was proposed to the Witchcraft act “to protect men from being beguiled into marriage by false adornments,” it said. “All women, of whatever rank, age, profession or … Read more

This Rose-Water Fountain Stunned 18thC Dinner Guests

Of all surviving works of 18th-Century opulence this is one of the most difficult to even imagine in its former glory. On January 11, 1747, the Prime Minister of Saxony and director of the Meissen porcelain factory hosted a grand dinner in his Dresden Palace when the dessert course arrived with an incredible centrepiece. Count … Read more

Step Inside Long Island’s Own Versailles Palace

Versailles mansion palace long island

Shortly after the turn of the millennium, a 25-year-old college drop out had an idea to create the first blue liqueur on the market. Raphael Yakoby sold his flat and moved back into his parents’ house to sell his product Hypnotiq vodka by approaching restaurants door to door. When the brand took off his choice of millionaire … Read more

Should Museums Allow Costumes?

http://tidd.ly/b85aa4d9 robe a la francaise by royal tailor

Is it right that some major museums forbid patrons from wearing elaborate outfits? A New Jersey woman has made headlines around the world because she was turned away from New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art for wearing an 18th Century dress. Nevertheless despite many commentators criticising museum dress codes the debate inspired by this and … Read more

Meet the Jeweller Behind #GeorgianJanuary

dames a la mode, jewellery, georgian, #Georgianjanuary, 18th century, fashion, dress, historical, costume

The Costume Rag meets Dames a la Mode, the maker of exquisite historical jewellery who started the phenomenal #GeorgianJanuary trend on Instagram.  What Inspired #GeorgianJanuary? “Three years ago I started #GeorgianJanuary because I wanted some cheering up during January, which is always a bleak month for me.  I thought it would be a great way … Read more

A Dangerous Liaison with Gwen Russell

Dangerous Liasons

Christine Yoo Millar meets the prolific costumier Gwen Russell in New York who is best-known for being part of the team that dressed Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Liaisons. “Russell and her partner Janette Haslam were in the Oscar-winning costume teams behind both Dangerous Liaisons and Kenneth Brannagh’s Henry V. Her other movies include Interview with … Read more

This “Amateur” Digitised an 18th Century Court Coat

digitise

Christine Yoo Millar saw the Costume Rag’s image of a luxuriously-embroidered French court coat at the V&A in London and felt immediately inspired. Having learned to digitise historical embroidery at Costume College – an annual three-day costuming arts conference in California – she undertook an incredible project that would see her recreate by machine what … Read more

The Best Books on 18th Century Costume

18th Century

Some of the best books on 18th Century costume are out of print which makes them hard to get hold of and expensive when you do. But some are circulating around the second-hand market for a greatly reduced price in return for putting up with a few worn edges. These titles have been recommended by … Read more

Top Made-to-Measure Regency Breeches

regency breeches

“There are moments, Jeeves, when one asks oneself, ‘Do trousers matter?’” P.G. Wodehouse’s Bertie Wooster once remarked and his reliable manservant responded, “The mood will pass, sir.” Without a doubt breeches represent a key part of any pre-Victorian outfit and indeed have not been unknown in following decades since. Fortunately the reenactment world is filled … Read more