Regency Romance: Dressing In The Regency

Does Regency romance speak to your imagination?

In many ways the decades before the Regency marked the end of the human age, and ushered in the age of machines.

The 1783 Vigée Le Brun portrait, Marie Antoinette en Chemise set a fashion for cotton among the upper classes, and:

… flipped the textile industry on its head, lighting the fuse laid out by a fast-changing world of exploration, Enlightenment, and rebellion. It caused cotton, and the institution of slavery it stood on, to explode.

The Regency period itself, just a decade from 1811 to 1820, changed male attire for the next 200 years. Beau Brummell introduced the suit:

Exceptionally well-fitting and hand-tailored bespoke suits, to be precise. He rejected the use of breeches and stockings and instead introduced full-length formal trousers with both matching and contrasting jackets.

Regency romance: dressing in the Regency

The Youtube video, Why I dress as a Regency gentleman… every day of my life, shows a Regency gentleman walking through the modern world.

From the video description:

Zack MacLeod Pinsent dresses as a British Regency gentleman every day, saying that the clothing is a “huge confidence builder”.

Mary Shelley gets dressed in 1816

This video shows why ladies needed maids and dressers to help them to dress and maintain their wardrobe in the Regency.

Clothes were handmade, and expensive, so they weren’t discarded. A ladies’ silk dress, or a man’s topcoat, had many owners over its lifetime.

If you no longer wanted a garment you passed it on to others, or sold it. Eventually, when the garment became too ragged to wear, the material that could be salvaged was incorporated into other items of dress, or into furnishings.

You can dress in Regency style

If you love Regency era clothing, and like to sew, you can create your own Regency garments.

Many YouTube videos will show you how to make a Regency dress and other garments.

For example, here’s a video tutorial for a Regency chemise.

You can be the heroine of your own Regency romance. 🙂

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