Yesterday I announced the beginning of a new project. My main source of inspiration is the portrait of Monsieur Seriziat by J L David, but this gallery develops the project a little bit further. Since I am not a trained tailor I dread the thought of sewing a coat from scratch. But I´m prepared to try this coat from the years around 1800, late Georgian to early Regency. This style doesn´t have the wide lapels and is cut with a soft curve from center front into the tail. Mr Darcy (“fake Darcy” to some, centre image in the gallery) in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice wore a coat of linen or cotton in this style. So did Mr Ferrars in the 2008 Sense and Sensibility (last image). Both versions set the story a little earlier, somewhere around 1795. The local store has a soft green medium weight and reasonably priced wool. Not the best quality but good enough for this project. The colour is perhaps a bit too light – looks better inrl. I could also imagine navy, should they order some. Either version work well with the existing waistcoat in cream-coloured silk (with the buttons on the wrong side, remember!). Years ago I found the sturdy yellow cotton (a real bargain at a closing down sale) and my immediate thought was breeches. The right side of the fabric has a very soft surface, reminiscent of “moleskin”, and gives the feeling of buckskin or perhaps nankeen. (Cotton from Nanjing in China.) I will of course use the pattern from last year. (Just realized that the gentlemen in the pictures above wear long pantaloons, but I still prefer breeches.) Boots. I found these tall riding boots online for really no money (£40 – a fraction of what new ones cost). They are well made quality boots from Koenig. I´am hesitating a little by the thought of cutting in the precious leather. However I tried them on twice now and they are very tall. I mean really tall. I can´t bend my legs, and can definitely not reach the ground. Attending a simple picnic shouldn´t be that challenging! I understand that you are supposed to “brake in” new boots but no way I can do that unless I wear them constantly for a month. Will I go Hessian (b/w image) or hunting boot (bottom row in the middle)?
Spring is here and we have set a date for a Regency picnic. I can´t go in full dress, so I need to create something appropriate for this and upcoming outings. First, inspiration for this project.
This gentleman´s outfit is in the sporty Style Anglais and can be regarded as the prototype for the Regency gentleman. We have all seen this before: dark tailcoat, high collared waistcoat, yellow breeches, top hat and riding boots. He is still wearing a wig (or his own hair coiffed and powdered?) but it was going out of fashion these years. This transitional style is particularily interesting.
Can I do it? Well I´m ready to try. Stay tuned for more details in the next post!