Friday, March 1, 2019

Dressing 18th Century - An Encore Presentation at Historic Annapolis

     We were asked again by Historic Annapolis to present on 18th century clothing for their Winter Lecture Series.  This year, our focus was the same as we wanted to help those who dress up with tips, tricks, and techniques.  We also showed everyone how they dressed in the time for the lower sorts, middling, and gentry ladies and gentlemen.  So many similarities and yet also very different between the social classes.

From Left to Right - Kerry McClure, Gema Gonzalez, Nicole Foronda, and myself

     This year we had a few extra besides Kerry McClure and Nicole Foronda.  We added Gema Gonzalez and Jane Pease to our years of expertise into the mix.

     The first up were the men.  Jane provided a presentation on clothing in the colonies - Mid-Atlantic area was the focus - from the early 18th century up into the 1790's.  The difference was surely noticeable!  We were fortunate to have Mr. Paca welcome the guests into his home.

Left to Right - Chuck Aldridge, Matt West (Mr. Paca), Jane Pease, Dan McMahon, Bob, and Shane Kippenhan

     Then it was time for the ladies.  I was first up with going through clothing, fabric, the social classes, and the basics of dress.  Then I provided the audience - up to 43 signed up for our presentation - with the lower sorts basic clothing.  I showed off my half-boned jumps as an undergarment to give me structure and warmth, and I showed everyone how to properly put on their hat (over the cap).  My jumps were made by The Silly Sisters (actually my entire outfit including cap was made by Sarah Haynes Cowan).

Here I am talking about jackets and riding habits or travelling clothes

Showing off how to put on a hat properly

     We then had Nicole and Gema present on the middling sort from the lowest to those aspiring, and the range of dress that we see in portraits and prints of that social class.

Nicole talking about the middling class - we are all enthralled!

     We then dressed Gema in her upper middling clothing from stays, panniers (pocket hoops), to finished jacket and petticoat!

Nicole helping Gema dress

     Then it was time for Gentry!  Kerry provided a wonderful example of a Gentry lady in all of her finery.  She also spoke about age and dress - even in the time we would not have put "mutton in lambs clothing" which essentially means that those of us who age tend to stick with clothing that we feel is age appropriate.  Her example was Mrs. Martha Washington shown in portraits of the time in clothing that doesn't tend to go past a certain point - she was not wearing the latest clothing past the turn of the century as an example.

Kerry and I

Kerry discussing her gown - you can see her original etui and
 watch chain hanging from her petticoat.  Her earrings are available in my shop.

     Overall, we were told the presentation was excellent. The audience feedback was that they absolutely loved it!

     If you are interested in a presentation like this, please let me know.