Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Plans for a Pink Caraco

With my new stays nearly finished, I've started looking ahead to my next projects.  I've decided to elevate my impression slightly, and that means a wardrobe revamp.  The more research I do on who I claim to be in the 18th century--an officer's wife from Philadelphia--the more I realize that urban, non-poor women dressed much better than I do.

I am making a linen work gown (work is unavoidable in camp) but for times I can, I plan to take things up a notch to show the full range of 18th century clothing.

I plan to make a fairly simple but well-trimmed caraco my first project.  Unlike my current caraco, I'd like to do a shorter jacket, probably hip-length, probably closing in the front.

Like this lovely fashion plate:

And like these, I'd like to make them in pink:

(Links to A Most Beguiling Accomplishment, with more information on these prints and translations.)

A couple of extants:

Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1175

KCI 1780s

I love the ruffle along the skirts of the second, and will probably work something closer to the length of the first (as the very short length in the second seems to be a bit late for my impression).

I plan on a pink taffeta for the caraco, and am undecided on the petticoats to match.  On one hand, matching seems to be common in most fashion plates.  However, I think white petticoats would look lovely and fresh--ruffled on the hems and diaphanous (and bleachable...).  I ran across a print of a maid with this kind of ensemble recently, and can't seem to find it again--if anyone has come across it, let me know! (It was one of those "The country girl after a month in Paris as a maid" kind of commentaries, but her outfit was delicious.)


Pat Davis said...

I really want to see you pull off that hair style in camp :)

Rowenna said...

You know, I do have a ginormous wig somewhere...

Evie said...

Can't wait to see what you come up with!!