Plate No.6 "Chapeau de Levantine. Canezou de Velour. Robe de Perkale."
Translation: "Silk hat. Velvet Canezou(a style of Spencer popular in 1811.) Perkale(a densely woven cotton similar to bed sheets) gown."
You've already seen the details, so this post is devoted to my fashion shoot, and the ensemble as a whole.
Let me begin by saying that the chapeau and canezou are both uncomfortable to wear. The hat is stiff, and the canezou, in order to mimic the fashion plate, is skin tight...not to mention the height of the collar (plus the fact that it is boned to help it stand) made me feel like I was wearing a neck brace. There was definitely very little range of movement, and this outfit will feel hellish during the Summer months.
That being said, the ensemble as a whole is quite luxurious. The cotton/silk velvet...the crisp perkale...the silk and the ostrich feathers as light as air...the swish of the fringe and ruffles...the high hem, showing off the little thin soled, silk boots...I felt like a doll come to life. Imagine wearing an evening gown from a top designer today, and you get the picture. High fashion it certainly was!
The whole process was a journey that I would gladly take again (but maybe not this year!) What a treat it was to work along side so many knowledgeable historical seamstresses, and to become friends with people that live in several different countries. Were there frustrations? Yes. Were there expenses that I wouldn't normally have put into an outfit? Yes. But these annoyances were nothing compared to a year of learning by experience.
My least favorite part of this head-to-toe experience...making the hat. Milliner, I am not!
My favorite part about this ensemble...learning how to make the boots! Maybe I'll become a cobbler?!
One unanswered question though...what is she looking at?!...what is she reading?!