3 August 2016

A Little History

Some delightful insights here into the fashions of other times. Plus ├ža change. My apologies for the quality of some of these images, and also for the imperfect credits- they were just too good to pass up.

One use for the new-style skirts, by Honore Daumier in Le Charivari April16, 1856

More unorthodox but charming use of an item of wear; these bonnets were apparently equally useful for a clandestine embrace, or for rendering the lady unobtainable.

Fashion caricature from Punch, 1870. Punch printed a lot of this sort of thing, and beautifully rendered.

             This was apparently a Victorian invention, from 1887, rather than a joke, or perhaps both.

The London Charivari, 1871. The Burdens of Fashion: 'What we must come to before Love!'

Regrettably, I have no idea where these came from, but they're very much to my taste. Note the matching headgear.

6 July 2016

More Arabian Nights

Back after a long break. Almost two years after I first wrote about Helen Stratton, more of her illustrations from the same book. Her work is not in the same league as Edmund Dulac or Arthur Rackham, but sentimentality wins out every time for me. I look at these and I'm right back on the steps of the porch of my grandparents'  house, all cool tiles, deep shade and loitering lizards. More fabulous costumes and decor. More exotic names (Noureddin, Camaralzaman and Badouri, Beder and Giauhara, Princess Parizade). More rather bad printing. I would like to know how much of this (both stories and pictures) is based on original sources and how much is Victorian/Edwardian fantasy. Time to re-read the original book, perhaps, over the summer.

31 May 2015

Ladies Must Wear Heels

No surprise to read that women have apparently been banned from parading on the 'red carpet' at Cannes because they were not wearing Birkenstocks. Sorry- that should have read, banned because they were not wearing high heels, and preferably, very high heels. 

Plus ca change. Above is a little illustration accompanying a 70's catalogue ad for an escape ladder that can be tipped out of a window for use in emergencies- such as unforeseen fires. But ladies should note, high heels must be donned before embarking on evacuation. Women will be banned from rescue if they do not follow the proscribed dress code. 

13 May 2015


Another drawing that hasn't quite worked out as I hoped. Enough time wasted; nailing my colours to the mast, so to speak.

8 May 2015

Hill Fold, Valley Fold

One of my sons just started a job that involves wearing a suit. He is not exactly happy about it, but I, on the other hand, can see that the possibilities of a pinstripe are endless.

8 April 2015

Feeling the Pinch

Another picture from my files. This one accompanied an article about weight loss for the summer. The wariness with which both weighing scales and crabs are generally approached makes up, I think, for the tenuous visual link between the two.
I'm currently feeling the pinch in more ways than one, so preparations for the summer and possible holidays aren't high on my 'to-do' list at the moment.