Sunday, 16 October 2016

The Gentleman's Art of Dressing with Economy

This week I came across a book on Pinterest, The Gentleman's Art of Dressing with Economy, by a Lounger at the Clubs, 1876.

While I have found books on the patterns, construction techniques and the styles of mens 19th century clothing, it's been much harder to find books about how they wore and cared for their clothing.

Etiquette books of the period don't often mention mens clothing or wardrobe and when they do usually only give a few pages on the subject. The Gentleman's Art of Dressing is an entire book on mens wardrobe. In this book, the author mentions how and where a gentleman should buy his clothes, what clothing he needs and how to care for his clothing. I've gained many useful bits of information on shirts, coats, boots, waistcoats, and trousers from this book.

It's very interesting to see a 19th century gentleman's opinion of the clothing of his time. I'm curious how much of the book is the general opinion of how a gentleman should dress and how much is the author's personal opinion.

In the book, I was happy to run across a reference to Punch magazine. I'm a big fan of Punch. I've always thought that Punch show's a very accurate depiction of clothing and fashion of the time. So when I read the footnote that I've quoted below, I was very pleased to have my opinion of Punch confirmed by a gentleman of the 1870s
* "Mentioning "Punch" reminds me to remark that if you have been absent from the world of fashion for a time, and wish to know the style of dress in vogue, you cannot do better than consult the pages of our ficetious old friend. Therein you will see the exact costume of the day, in all detail, from hat down to the very boots. There is no more truthful indicator of fashion published; and when Mr. Punch's artists depict a gentleman of the period, you will not be wrong in following suit.

Here's a link to the Google book copy The Gentleman's Art of Dressing with Economy, by a Lounger at the Clubs.

1 comment:

  1. i love you to read your post thanks you so very much