Thursday, 23 April 2015

Corsets, Crinolines and Codpieces 7 Women in Action

Womens fashion in action....Making a Splash

From historical records we know that humans were no strangers to water but it wasn't until the Victorian era in England that women were allowed to enjoy swimming in public.
This photograph ( thanks to Roland Unger)  comes from a 10,000-year-old rock painting of people swimming and was discovered in the Cave of the swimmers near Wadi Sura in Southwestern Egypt.

In Europe sea water was regarded as therapeutic rather than a place to enjoy a swim.

It seems we had to wait until the 1800 in England before woman started bathing in the sea.
The introduction of the railways made it possible for many more people to travel to the seaside.

It was still unfashionable to have a tanned skin or to expose too much of the female body in public
At the beginning of the 1800's walking dresses for the sea side were designed. These were usually of light cotton with a high neck and long sleeves and worn with cotton trousers, gloves, scarf, bonnet and sandals or light shoes.

By mid 19th century dresses were being designed for bathing, these were made of heavy flannel worn over bloomers to the ankle in the same fabric .The ensemble included stockings, shoes and a hat or turban.
At first they were made to completely cover the whole body and were cumbersome to wear and extremely heavy when wet and often were worn with a special corset designed for swimming.

From American Harper's Magazine 1858

Bathing Dresses 1864

Corset for swimming, American
 Bathing machines were also invented , these were changing huts on wheels that were dragged into the sea by horses and later included a hood over the front so that the bather could leave and return to the machine without being in the public eye.

By the late 1800 the costume design had changed to allow more freedom but were still made of wool. The sleeves of the dresses were short and puffed worn with knee length bloomers and often black stockings.

 Shoes were a necessary addition to protect the feet from pebbles, rocks and glass. Shoes for the beach could be purchased near by, usually made from canvas or toweling with straw or rope soles. They were often embellished by the wearer.

By the end of the century mixed bathing was permitted and with it less restricting fashions, the bathing machines became redundant.

In 1912 swimming became a recognized sport for women and they were allowed to compete in the Olympics for the first time.

in 1920 figure hugging jersey suits with no sleeves lower necks and short legs.

 In 1926 Gertrude Ederle, an American, was the first woman to swim the English Channel

  More Women in Action fashions to follow


Friday, 17 April 2015

Treasury on Etsy

My Favorites for April

Etsy treasury by Mouflon Wearable Art

 These are just one item from these wonderful shops on Etsy
click each photo to visit them

Monday, 13 April 2015

Wearable Art - New Design - complete and ready for sale!

Wearable Art Necklace and Earrings 'RUSTIC'

...At last they are finished...If you were following my blog about this set...there were several features I was uncertain about!
The first was the basic necklace

The original design was too unbalanced back to the drawing board..I redid some of it

I was much happier with that arrangement

The next problem was how to decorate it...I chose the leaves and added wooden beads and more finer wrapped wire

 ..and then I attached it to the basic necklace

Now for some earrings to compliment the necklace
I couldn't decide so I made two pairs!


All these will be for Sale in My ETSY Shop soon

Friday, 3 April 2015

Wearable design!

I have begun another piece of wearable art jewellery.....

I chose some stone white coloured silk and wool yarn with a slight slub and used as a base white cotton jersey material.

As always it took ages to do the wrapping, the design gradually evolving as I worked.

...added more 'ropes'....not sure if its too busy now?


I have made the fixing at the back of the neck.

...and now I am trying to decide how to finish it
I have two ideas

The first is another stone from Morocco.

 attached with yarn covered wire

 or perhaps brown oak leaves and wooden beads and seeds?