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Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger


Went to the Degas exhibit a little while ago, Fashionable Reader. Here's a retrospective on some of the straw hats of the 1890s that I saw there. These may, or may not, show up on Primrose in the forthcoming Custard Protocol book.

Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger
Image taken by Gail Carriger, do not share without attribution
Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger

Made me think of Ivy...

Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger

Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger
Image taken by Gail Carriger, do not share without attribution
Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger

Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail Carriger
Image taken by Gail Carriger, do not share without attribution
 
Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can shop my recommendations via the following lists:
Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle


Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I get a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger


I had an interesting encounter the other weekend, Fashionable Reader.

I was at a barbecue. You know, that thing, in the back yard, where you burn the meat?

This was no a high fashion event ~ suburban in location, and 30-something anti-hipsters in attendance. These were not my friends, I should add.

Now, where was I? Oh yes . . . the encounter.

Also in attendance was a Very Fresh Girlfriend of one of the fringe members of said group. Clearly nervous, she enters stage right, a lovely fashionable young thing.

Now, to set the scene, I am wearing a cute white dress, tights, and riding boots ~ very de mode. However, it is cold and damp, so over it all I have my favorite black double-breasted rain cape (I happen to own three capes total).

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger
black double breasted & belted from Max Studio, $130, thrifted vintage cream wool, no label, $25, faux fur from H&M $15

Now this new girl, either in an awkward attempt to make conversation, or just because she is, well, a bitch, says,

"Oh, is that a cape? Not everyone can wear a cape. I should never even attempt it."

It was the tone that threw me. It was said in that way of catty southern ladies,

"Oh, she has put on a few pounds, bless her little heart."

I simply drifted away and on to a far more interesting conversation on the relative merits of DC versus Marvel comic books. (Marvel baby, all the way.)

To the meat of the matter. 


I disagree with the principle of the statement made by Very Fresh Girlfriend as well as the execution. I think anyone can wear a cape. They are delightful fun, one feels rather comic-book-ish (Marvel, I hope, not DC). The belted cape is a good option to prevent loss of shape.

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger




On the practical side the cape allows you to layer in fun and flattering ways. You can wear full or puffy sleeved jackets and then throw the cape on for extra warmth or rain protection. On the impractical side it is difficult to carry a shoulder bag with a cape. (You'll notice most of the street shots bellow have clutches or handbags.)

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger

If you are slightly shorter of stature, a short cape is probably a better option. Regardless, if cut in the right way in can disguise rather than enhance the chest.


And they come for a long and distinguished tradition:
The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger  
1895 Emile Pingat cape via The Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1905 Jean-Phillipe Worth evening wrap via The Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1933-1934 Elsa Sciaparelli cape via The Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art

"A mackintosh cape, one of the thinnest and lightest possible to procure. should always be carried to protect the shoulders in case of a sudden shower, and a fur cape for chilly evenings or east wind will be found a most comfortable addition."

~ Lillias Campbell Davidson, 1889

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger  
2011 RT Convention ~ Richelle Mead, Jeanne Stein, Nicole Peeler, and Gail Carriger (in a cape)

For the Characters! 


For Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series



For Felicity in the Parasol Protectorate Series 

The Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger

Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can shop my recommendations via the following lists:
Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle


Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I get a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)



The third book in my Custard Protocol series is out now!  This book is set in the mid 1890s and I have concocted a pictorial guide to a possible outfit that a young lady of Prim's rank might wear during this time period.

The images run with what she would need to put on, in order. Ready? Here we go...

On the bottom half:


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
1. 1890  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
2. 1890s Stockings The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
3. 1899 Garters  1899  The Chicago History Museum

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
4. 1895-1905 Oxfords   The Metropolitan Museum of Art

 Note that shoes have to go on early? Well before the corset and also the rest of the dress for bending and hemming reasons.


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Combination  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Ar

Combinations are a hard one for me, as an author. Because they were totally UBIQUITOUS undergarments at the time of the Custard Protocol books. They were the most common form of underwear. However, the name and the concept is entirely lost to the modern mind set. Most of my readers would have no basis for comparison should I drop the word "combination" into, for example, a shape change or a nookie scene. I must, therefore, use the word in correct context so as to make it clear that is what the character is wearing. Or have it described to another foriegn character. And yet, it's not something that would be described. So I have to have said foreigner describe it and everyone else get embarrassed. Oh! I like that. Forget I said anything, OK?

On the upper half:


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Bust Improvers  1890s  Whitaker Auction

Prim wouldn't need these, but I include them because I think its so fun that they exist at all!

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
5. Camisol  1895-1905  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
6. 1893  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
7. Sleeve Supports  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

And over the top:

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
8. 1895  The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
9. 1894 Evening Dress  Charles Fredrick Worth, 1894  The Kyoto Costume Institute

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
10. 1890s  The Goldstein Museum of Design

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
11. 1895-1905  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
12. Muff and Hat  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Alternatively, here's a look at more sporty options...


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Stockings  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Combinations undergarment, England, 1875 - 1900

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Corset 1890s Summer Corset   The Victoria & Albert Museu

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Corset Cover  1895-1900  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

And sportswear on the outside:


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Gym Suit  1895-1899  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Cycling Ensemble  1895  The Kyoto Costume Institute

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Shirtwaist 1894 The Museum at FIT _ OMG that dress!

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
1890s Under The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Travel Suit  Jacques Doucet, 1895  The Victoria & Albert Museum

You don't have to take the pictures as proof. Here's some research to back it up...

Gwen Raverat at the end of the century describes the modest dress of a respectable female.

"Women were incredibly modest . . .  even with each other. You could see a friend in her petticoat, but nothing below that was considered decent. At school, the sidht of a person in her white frilly drawers caused shrieks of outraged virtue; and I should have thought it impossible to be seen downstairs in my dressing-gown."

~ Judith Flanders The Victorian House (pg. 269)

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
americangothgirl-tumblr Catalog Photographs, Front and Back Views of Woman In Corset, c. 1880s. Albumen Prints

"This is what a young lady wore, with whom I shared a room one night...

  1. Thick, long-legged woolen combinations.
  2. Over them, white cotton combinations, with plenty of buttons and frills.
  3. Very serious, bony, grey stays, with suspenders.
  4. Black woolen stockings.
  5. White cotton drawers, with buttons and frills.
  6. White cotton 'petticoat-bodice', with embroidery, buttons and frills.
  7. Rather short, white flannel, petticoat.
  8. Long alpaca petticoat, with a flounce round the bottom.
  9. Pink flannel blouse.
  10. High, starched, white collar, fastened on with studs.
  11. Navy blue tie.
  12. Blue skirt, touching the ground, and fastened tightly to the blouse with a safety-pin behind.
  13. Leather belt, very tight.
  14. High button boots."
  ~ Judith Flanders The Victorian House (pg. 269)

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
Undergarments ca. 1900-03  From the FIDM Museum


Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)
 1898 Walking Suit, House of Worth, French, Made of silk and lace


Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

You can shop my recommendations via the following lists:
Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle


Product links on this blog are usually to Amazon using my associate code. At no additional cost to you this means I get a slight kick back if you make a purchase. Thank you! This allows me to continue to produce this blog without sponsors.
Reticence Extras: CP3 Straw Hats of the 1890s for Primrose in the Custard Protocol Series by Gail CarrigerThe Courage to Wear a Cape from Gail Carriger Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)

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