Here's a little collection of 18th century paintings that depicts clothes that are a bit unusual and interesting. First of is this wonderful portrait. Isn't it amazing? An old woman portrayed with dignity and beauty. I also find her cap interesting. I can't recall any other 18th century portrait with such a peak down the forehead.
|Portrait of An Old Woman |
by Balthasar Denner (or possibly Christian Seybold),
probably the first half of the 18th century
Plaid isn't all that common on 18th century portraits, but they crop up from time to time. I really like the kitchen maid's plaid apron, but her spotted caracao even more. Not to mention the colour combination. I think I need this outfit!
|Plucking the Turkey by Henry Walton, 1776|
This girl was a member of the Moravian church. Click on the link for more paintings of Moravian women, they have a rather distinct front-laced bodice that you can't see here because of the neckerchief. This girl is the only one in plaid, though.
|Young Moravian Girl |
by Johann Valentin Haidt , painted before 1780
A Scottish lady of a Jacobite inclination, so her choice of fabric for her riding habit is not so surprising.
|Portrait of a Jacobite Lady |
by Cosmo Alexander, 1745-50s
This fabric in her brunswick is just gorgeous! I wouldn't mind getting my mitts on something like that.
|Princess Frederika Sophia Wilhelmina of Orange by Johann Georg Ziesenis, 1768-69|
|Maria Luisa de Parma, later Queen of Spain by Laurent Pecheux, 1765|
A very clever use of the fabric here, I think.
|Infanta Maria Josefa de Borbon by Giusseppe Bonito, 1758-59|
|Victoire of France by Jean-Marc Nattier, mid-18th century|
|Brita Christina Appelbom by Georg Desmarées, painted before 1757|
|La Belle Strasbourgeoise by Nicolas de Largillière, 1703|
Does anyone know anything more about this rather curious layering? To me it looks like a chemise, probably stays, a (padded?) jacket with another jacket, or gown, laced over it. I think it is pretty and it ought to add warmth. I know I have seen more paintings than the two here and I think all have been French. Seems to me to be a bit too practical to be just an artist's imaginatiopn so I am apt to think it was an actual fashion, but perhaps a rather regional one.
|Portrait of Mlle Lavergne, the niece of the artist|
by Jean-Etienne Liotard, 1746
|Portrait of a young lady with a courtly letter in hand |
by Jean-Baptiste Mallet
|The Broken Mirror by Jean-Baptiste Greuze, 1763|
There are several extant examples of stays with tie-on sleeves. Here is a somewhat rarer example on them in a painting.
|Detail from Women Working on Pillow Lace by Giacomo Ceruti, 1720s|