Fashion

Fashion In Jane Austen’s Era – Part One
Guest Post by Mairi Gairns McCloud: Historian, archaeologist & all round well dress Lady.

I thought it would be interesting to explore the difference, if any, between when Jane Austen penned her novels and when they were published. I thought we could look at extant dresses from the period, and some examples from Jane Austen films we all know and love.

In some of the novels, there is more of a  discrepancy than others. Northanger Abbey and Sense and Sensibility seem to have been written in the late 1790s. It seems that Pride and Prejudice may have been written earlier as well, but was worked on and not published until 1813. 

For the most part, it seems as though the costuming in the film adaptations focusses mostly on the 1810s. Let’s take a look at the transition that takes place from the late 1790s to about 1815. 

Transition stays from the 1890s.

A lovely dress from the late 1790s, moving away from full-skirted frocks of the 18th century, and towards the slimmer silhouette seen in the “Regency” era.

A lovely dress from the late 1790s, moving away from full-skirted frocks of the 18th century, and towards the slimmer silhouette seen in the “Regency” era.

A simple muslin frock from about 1805.

A simple muslin frock from about 1805.

An evening dress from about 1805.

An evening dress from about 1805.

 

Check out my next post for more beautiful examples…