Artist Makes Accurate Historical Dresses from Paper

Belgian contemporary artist Isabelle de Borchgrave is a painter who creates stunning replicas of historical dresses in paper. The late designer Hubert de Givenchy called her “one of a kind; with a single sheet of paper, she creates the most beautiful dresses, the finest costumes, or, simply, a chain of white roses…Whether it becomes a shoe, … Read more

Keeping up with the Bourbons: Dressing Louis XIV in Versailles

Dressing George Blagden as Louis XIV in Versailles

The steamy and elaborate £21m series Versailles caused controversy in the UK when it first aired in 2016 with Sam Burnett of Mediawatch UK commenting “Dressing up pornography and violence in a cravat and tights doesn’t make it cultural.” Unfortunately for Burnett “dressing up” fails to do any justice to the massive effort of costume designer Madeline … Read more

First Glimpse of Poldark’s New Costume (And Without It…)

Poldark series 4 first look image reveals Aidan Turner’s smart new costume

Ross Poldark has smartened up as the famously-rugged star of the late 18th Century has opted for a buttoned-up coat with wide lapels and the addition of a waistcoat draped over the top. The look is sealed by a resplendent white cravat and classic bicorn. Nevertheless the opening of series four will see Poldark stepping out of … Read more

Free Historical Patterns from LACMA

LACMA free historical sewing patterns

A man’s 1770s suit, 1940s zoot suit and some women’s early 1900s lounging pajamas are just some of the incredible patterns taken from the collection of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art that have been made available online for free by the museum. 1770s Man’s Suit “Influenced by continental styles, the macaroni—named after the … 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

Nelson Wore the Sweetest Promise Ring at Trafalgar

Fede promise ring of Horatio Nelson and Emma Hamilton

If you thought promise rings and pre-engagement tokens were a new fad for Millennials unwilling to commit, think again. Shortly before Horatio Nelson embarked on his final and fatal campaign he had an informal wedding ceremony with his mistress Emma Hamilton in which they exchanged this fede ring that seems uncannily modern. The gold band … 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

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