Monday, April 30, 2012

18th Century Fashion Screensavers for NOOK Simple Touch

I'm an avid reader of historical romances and decided it was time to create some fun screensavers
for my NOOK Simple Touch that reflected my love of vintage fashion plates.
(What is a NOOK? - NOOK is an electronic reader made by Barnes & Noble, so instead of purchasing a paperback you purchase a downloadable book file and read it on this portable device.  NOOK readers can be seen HERE.
I know there are all kinds of e-readers out there and many of them will allow you to add in customized screensavers and wallpapers to your device.  I personally own a NOOK Simple Touch which is a black and white reader and requires screensavers to be grayscale images saved at 600x800 pixels.

When I was creating my blog artwork pieces this month; I kept all this in mind so I could also 
have a series of 18th Century "Georgian Era" inspired screensavers for my NOOK.
I read every day and get a real kick out of seeing these images on a daily basis.

I hope some of you can use these on your NOOK Simple Touch as well or that the idea
inspires you to create some fun screensavers of your own for whatever e-reader you own.

One of my digital  creations as a screensaver on my NOOK simple touch

These are the 6 EKDuncan digital images I currently have running in
rotation as screensavers on my NOOK Simple Touch e-reader.

There are various web instructions on how to create and install screensaver/wallpaper
images onto the NOOK Simple Touch and other e-readers.

The instructions I used came from the Barnes and Noble site - HERE

from the B&N section - "Beyond eBooks" 
              Question #6 - Can I customize the screensavers on NOOK Simple Touch?
Answer: Yes. Your NOOK Simple Touch lets you save your personal digital photos
                              as screensavers. Just connect your NOOK Simple Touch to your computer 
                              using the provided microUSB cable. Create and name a sub-folder within the  
                              Screensavers folder found in the NOOK Simple Touch directory. 
                              Then drag-and-drop your pictures into the sub-folder you created. 
                              Once your photos are in the new folder, (eject your Nook from the computer;
                              then from your Nook) go to  Settings --> Screen --> Screensaver
and then select your new folder.

For best results:
Include a few images in your (new screensaver) subfolder as NOOK Simple Touch will 
cycle through the folder using a new image each time the device goes into sleep mode.

Images should be in Portrait orientation. Crop your images to 600 x 800 pixels.
Save the images as PNG (*.png) or JPEG (*.jpg) files.
Images should be optimized for viewing in 16-level grayscale.


I found the above instructions from the B&N site easy to follow and have had fun
creating customized screensavers that have a romantic "Georgian" feel to them.

The files I have posted  below are already correctly sized and in the proper grayscale mode 
to use as screensavers on the  NOOK Simple Touch by Barnes & Noble. 
Just save them to your computer - create your new "Georgian" Screensaver file on the e-device via connection with your computer - drop the images into that new folder; then eject your NOOK from your computer. 
From you NOOK go to Settings - Screen - Screensaver - and select the new "Georgian" 
screensaver folder you created that contains these new images.


 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #1
 Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #2
 Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #3
 Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #4
Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #5
Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

 NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver #6
Based on original color artwork as seen HERE


Here are two more of my creations that can be used as screensavers 
on the NOOK Simple Touch e-reader.

NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver - bonus 1
 Based on original color artwork as seen HERE

NOOK Simple Touch B&W Georgian Screensaver - bonus 2
Based on original color artwork as seen HERE


I've spent the past few months posting vintage French Fashion Plates from the time of Marie Antoinette mainly from the 1770's and 1780's. This same time period in England would have been refered to as "Georgian" so, since most of the Romances I read take place in England; I've dubbed these images as from the "Georgian Era".

Most of the historical romances I read take place during the "Regency Period", which is roughly the 1800 - 1830 portion within the Georgian Era; however I've also have a small collection of romances from the earlier time period of 1730 - 1790 and would like to share those titles with you now since this is a post about my NOOK and the fashions from the 1700's.

I've found the following romances to be highly enjoyable. Several I've read multiple times
and will continue to re-read them time and again so I hope you give them a try too.

I recommend the following Georgian Era Romance Novels

The Maiden Lane Series by Elizabeth Hoyt
this series takes place in England in the 1730's and is the newest Elizabeth Hoyt Series

(book 4 is coming July  2012 and I can't wait to read it)  

Legend of the Four Soldiers Series by Elizabeth Hoyt
 takes place in England in the 1760's

 To Taste Temptation - Book 1
(Book 4 was my favorite and it concludes the mystery
 that is woven through the entire series.)

The Prince Trilogy by Elizabeth Hoyt
takes place in England in the 1760's
This was the very first Elizabeth Hoyt Series and I was hooked on her 
books after reading "The Raven Prince".

The Raven Prince - Book 1
The Ice Princess - a Novella tied to the series
(The Raven Prince is still my very favorite Elizabeth Hoyt book to date) 

The Desperate Duchess Series by Eloisa James
these take place in England in the 1780's

Desperate Duchess - Book 1
An Affair Before Christmas - Book 2
Duchess by Night - Book 3
When the Duke Returns - Book 4
This Duchess of Mine - Book 5
A Duke of Her Own - Book 6
(This Georgian series is great and her Regency Era and the Fairytale Series are also very enjoyable reads.  I love how her books usually have 2 story lines in them at the same time and how interactive all her characters are from one book to the other in a series.)

A few years ago Eloisa James had a Design a Duchess contest to go along with this series. You were to download a special paper doll template, design a costume for her and submit your entry. I did not come close to winning however I had fun creating my beauty and here she is.
(Oh, Eloisa James was kind enough to send me an autographed copy of a
Duchess book as a consolation prize so that was a very special treat.)

This was my entry in the Design a Duchess contest by Eloisa James several years ago.
 The winning doll and runners up along with the original doll template can be found on her web site in the special Registered Readers section, so sigh up, take a look and create a doll of your own.

Go to  and sign up to be a registered reader to gain access
to the "special pages".  Then you can select Extras - Design a Duchess Paper Doll
to get to that section.  There is also a lot of other cool things to see so I hope you give it a go.

The Pleasure Trilogy - by Eloisa James
The first book in this series takes opens in 1798

Potent Pleasures - Book 1
Midnight Pleasures - Book 2
Enchanting Pleasures - Book 3
(The first book opens in  1798 but the majority of the series happens in the early 1800's)
 So this would be a transitional Georgian/Regency Series and a very good read.

It's been a years since I've read this series but I still remember the premise of
each book and I'm now stirred up to read them again.

The Promise in a Kiss by Stephanie Laurens
This book is actually the Prequel to the Cynster Series
(I have this on in paperback, ebook as well audio book)

 The Prologue takes place in 1776 and then Jumps forward to 1783.
(It is the story or the Parents of the current Duke from the first book in the
Cynster series "The Devil's Bride" which takes place much later in 1818)

I love all the early Cynster books and can highly recommend This book;
along withthe first 7 books in the Cynster series.
(that would be the original older cousins and then their the story of their nemesis)

The Devil's Bride (Cynster #1) is one of my all time favorite books
and I've read it a number of times.
I also have it as an ebook and audio book. - That's how much I Love it.

I've read other books in the Cynster series but it's the books from the beginning of the series
that in my opinion are the best and ones that I've chosen to read over and over again.

Adam's Promise by Julianne Maclean
this book takes place in 1775 and crosses the ocean to Colonial Nova Scotia

This one is a smaller Harlequin Historical from 2003 and another of my all time favorite reads.
It's a heart wrenching story that grabs me every time I pick it up. It's been out of print a long time but I was fortunate enough to pick it up at a second hand book store years ago.

Now that it's  available as a NOOK book and I will probably be buying it
once I save up some "Nookie Money" - Grins.


I've got a few more Georgian Era romances on my "to be read shelf" so
I do not yet know how good they are yet.

Please leave me a comment and let me know if you have read any of them and what you think.

Georgian Era Romances - On my To Be Read Shelf

Kalen Huges - Georgian Series
"Lord Sin" (takes place in 1788)
"Lord Scandal" (tales place in 1789)
Something Wicked (takes place in 1782) Free e-short Story
I really enjoyed "Something Wicked" it was an entertaining "quicky"

Sylvia Day - Georgian Series
Ask for It - Georgian I
Passion for the Game - Georgian II
A Passion for Him - Georgian III
Don't Tempt Me - Georgian IV

Lucinda Brant - Georgian Romance and Crimance
Salt Bride - Prologue 1759 / Chapter One 1763
(This is a limited time ebook download freebie - so get it while you can)

Happy Reading everyone!

I'll be back with more artwork and Fashion Plates later in the week

Till then...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

1783-1787 French Fashion Plates

I love vintage fashion plates; however I have a special fondness for those that are in something other than the traditional frontal view.  Previously I've shown many that exhibit the "back side" of the garment or the character is in motion such as pulling up one's stockings.
Occasionally, I come across a fashion plate where the figure is sitting down and comes with a complete set of accompanying furnishings.  Sadly many of the vintage fashion plates I have that show a seated figure only shows part of the furniture; which limits how that image can be used in a new digital scene.

Today I get to showcase a piece of digital art using one of the rarer "furniture intact" seated, fashion plate images along; with a nice variety of French fashion plates from the years 1784-1787.
These plates recap many of the styles I've previously posted about as well as one new one
"The Pierrot"; and then at the end of the post I have a lovely assortment of PNG for the "Tea Lady".


"Taking Time for Tea" - using an altered French fashion plate lady from 1784
It is so much fun to create digitally when using a furniture intact, fashion image; and I've created a "Tea Time" vignette using one such French fashion plate from the 1780's.  The original version of this image had her in a very lovely pink ensemble; however I choose to use one of my color adaptations for my finished scene. This spring green gown gave the final scene a peaceful appearance as it coordinated so well with the greenery seen through the windows.

French Fashion Plates from 1783-1787

1783 Grand Domino French Fashion Plate from the 1912 re printed edition of Galleria des Modes
French fashion plates known as the Galleria des Modes collection have been printed and re-printed several times over their history.  There are even black and white uncolored versions of these plates.

The above fashion plate #170 is from a 1912 reprinted version of the original plate where the below plate 252 is an earlier printing from the 1700's showing the original color scheme.

To find out more about duplicate versions see my post on

1783 Grand Domino French Fashion plate from Galleria des Modes
 Personally I prefer this older version when comparing the two but it is interesting to see
how much the colors on the fashion plate were altered in the later 1912 rendition.

Considering it is unusual to come across a fashion plate of a Domino; I wanted to show both versions here.  Another "Domino" can be seen HERE (she is the seated lady in yellow).

A Domino was a large hooded cloak worn with an eye masque.
This allowed a person's identity to remain private and were often worn to 
masquerades or any place a lady would not wish to be recognized.
1783 Grand Robe a la Francoise - French Fashion Plate
In the style of "Robe à la Française" or Sack-Back dress.
(Francaise = French version with the wide Pannier hoops and the long draped back)
 This particular fashion plate states it is "Grand" so this would be 
a more elaborate version of this style

 For more on 18th century fashion styles - click HERE 

1784 Robe a l'Anglaise - French Fashion Plate
 This dress is in the style of "Robe à l'Anglaise
(Anglaise = English/American version with a bustle rather than pannier hoops and a draped 
back that begins at the lower "v" portion on the back of the bodice where the skirt begins )   

The a l'Anglaise style was rarely worn with pannier hoops; however I believe this
fashion plate may be an exception to that rule based on how wide it is.

For more information on this and other late 18th century styles click HERE 

1784 Robe a l'Anglaise - French Fashion Plate (Back and side view)
 This dress is in the style of "Robe à l'Anglaise" as seen from the side and back.
(Anglaise = English/American version with a bustle rather than pannier hoops and a draped 
back that begins at the lower "v" portion on the back of the bodice where the skirt begins )   

I like this fashion plate since we get to see the garment from the back and we get 
the added interest of the model holding her dog.  How cute is that?

1785 Walking Dress and Siberian Sheepskin Muff - French Fashion Plate - 1912 version
This is another example of two fashion plates printed at different times.
The above plate is a 1912 reprint version from Galleria des modes and
the below plate is a much earlier 1700 version of the same.

1785 Walking Dress and Siberian Sheepskin Muff - French Fashion Plate - Original
It's just fun to compare different versions of the same fashion plate when available.
Once again, I believe I like this older version of this Galleria des Modes fashion plate.

This style also depicts a shorter hemline with a bit of ankles showing.
Another of my posts with other shorter skirts can be seen HERE and my 
post on Stockings can be seen HERE

1786 Robe a l'Anglaise - French Fashion Plate with an extremely low bodice
  Yes, your eyes do not deceive you; this lady's "charms" are on display with this gown.
Many fashionable women of this time period wore dresses that exposed 
a great deal of their breasts up to and including their nipples.  
Some women even had their portraits painted wearing such attire.
If you find this style "titillating" I have a whole post dedicated to them - HERE

1786 1786 Robe a l'Anglaise - French Fashion Plate (back view)
I thought this plate was interesting in that we see a dress from the back but in a
seated position and since the furniture piece appears in its entirety this image would
be a good candidate for becoming a PNG to use in a scene. 

1786 French Fashion Plate

I choose to show this plate since I loved the funky shoes she is wearing. It's a bit of an 
odd outfit as if dutch girl meets peasant Irish lass; however I believe she is wearing a "caraco".

Caraco - A bodice style with the look of a fitted jacket that has a peplum skirting effect to it.

Visit - American Duchess blog HERE  to see a few examples of this style and if you notice one of them is so low a ladies breasts would have been exposed, as some like to do during this time.
(this blog is also a great place to visit and see all the historical costume posts)

1787 Pierrot French Fashion Plate - back view

The Pierrot style has a shaped bodice/jacket with a flared peplum or ruffled "tail".
This style of jacket became popular in the 1780's and 1790's.

I loved the whimsy of this garment and since it is a back view that was just a bonus for me.

1787 Pierrot French Fashion Plate - front and side view
Another look at the Pierrot style from the front with a cat and dog bonus.
An example of this style can be seen at the Met - HERE

The Dreamstress has a nice article on the Pierrot at her blog that can be seen HERE
Her blog looks quite interesting and I look forward to
"browsing around" it when I get the chance.

1784 Robe a l'Anglaise - French Fashion Plate (front/side seated view)
Robe a l'Anglaise - (English/American version with a bustle rather than pannier hoops and a 
draped back that begins at the lower "v" portion on the back of the bodice where the skirt begins ) 

For more information on this style click HERE 


 This "Tea Time Lady" is the image I used to create the  PNG for my artpiece at the beginning of the post. I've created her in several color combinations for your crafting pleasure.

Tea Lady PNGs

PNG in the original color scheme

Lilac Version

Periwinkle Version

Green Version - used in artpiece

Aqua Version

Gold Version

Rose Version

It must have been something to sit around in a pretty frock enjoying a cup of tea.
For a lady of quality "Tea Time" was an event unlike today where we grab a cup on the run.
How much more relaxing and enjoyable not to mention elegant was having tea years ago.

I wonder what she might be thinking about as she enjoys her tea?
I know it's not about the state of the economy or finding a job.
Maybe she is trying to figure out what new fashion fun Marie Antoinette will be up to next.

What to you think she is contemplating over her perfect brew?

"Taking Time for Tea" - using an altered French fashion plate lady from 1784
 I used my altered "green" version of the pretty lady for this Photoshop created scene.
The background was created by inserting a few interesting photos.
(a wall of windows in an old house showing a wooded lot and another photo of an oriental carpet).
I liked the reflection that was in the "window photo" I used; and by adjusting the opacity just right
in Photoshop I was able to get the dappled sunlight to appear on the carpet.
This was a really fun project for me and I love the way it came out.


I've got a high tech project using some of my "framed scenes" coming up next time;
 so I hope you'll drop back by and see what I've been up too.
I get to enjoy the results every day and I hope some of you will be able to enjoy using them too.

till next time...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

1780-1782 French Fashion Plates

I have a lovely assortment of French fashion plates from the years 1780-1782 
for today's post and a new digital scene depicting one of those beauties.

I've stated before that I'm drawn to fashion plates that show the back of a garment.  
I especially liked this 1780 dress in the "Robe à l'Anglaise" style, so today's digital scene 
was created using that lovely fashion plate but in a new teal color I created.

On a previous post,  I created a digital scene using another fashion plate showing 
the back of a gown; however that garment was in the style of  "Robe à la Française" 
or Sack-Back. Since both scenes show the lady from the back you can check both to see 
the differences in these two styles.  For more information on these styles click HERE

"Garden Dreams" created using an altered 1780 French Fashion Plate
I enjoy altering the colors on fashion plates and at the bottom of this post you 
will find a nice selection of the above lady in a nice variety of colors.


1780 French Fashion Plate - Style: Habit en Levite
Some vintage styles like the Levite are a bit difficult to find information on.
The best I can tell is that for it to be considered Levite the lines are straight 
(no poofs and swags in the skirt or overskirt), a sash at the waist and a
shawl style collar with a bit of ruffle trim on it. 

For a glossary of French Fashion Terms - click HERE 
The blog "A Most Beguiling Accomplishment", has a nice post showing a variety of
French fashion plates in the Levite style along with Cassidy's personal research on this style.

1780 French Fashion Plate - Style: Cirassienne
"Robe a la Cirassienne" which is a version of the "Robe à la Polonaise".

"Cirassienne" is a specific looking version of the "Polonaise".
The Cirassienne has more elaborate decorations; specifically trim such as
fur or tassels, which distinguish it from the typical Polonaise.  

1780 French Fashion Plate - Style: Levite
Note the lack of poofs and swags on this style and then the tied sash at the waist.
The shawl style collar edged with lace also seems to denote the Levite style.

1781 French Fashion Plate - Style: Levite
A Levite Pelisse trimmed with ermine fur - how luxurious.
I believe this to be a mourning costume.

1781 French Fashion Plate - Style: Polonaise
This plate description states the pelisse is grey and bordered in swan.
I believe this also to be a mourning costume

1781 French Fashion Plate - Style: Grand Court (Mourning Dress)
I previously posted this low bodice, mourning dress HERE
"The Naughty Side of French Fashions"; but have included it once more since it is 
a mourning dress and I thought it  should be shown with the other two pictured above.

1782 French Fashion Plate - Style: Robe a l'Anglaise
Robe a l'Anglaise - (English/American version with a bustle rather than pannier hoops and a draped back that begins at the lower "v" portion on the back of the bodice where the skirt begins ) 

For more information on this style click HERE 

1782 French Fashion Plate - Style: Levite
Again we see straight lines with a lack of poofs and swags on this style.  Their is an interesting twist in that the sash drapes across the bodice before being tied at the waist.
The shawl style collar edged with lace also seems to denote the Levite style.

1780 French Fashion Plate - Style: Robe a la Turque
"Robe a la Turque" or in the Turkish style
I'd like to reference the blog "A Most Beguiling Accomplishment"
once more; however this time Cassidy's post is on the style "Robe a la Turque"


I took the above 1780 "Robe a la Turque" fashion plate, created a PNG and 
made several new color versions of her. 

PNG of Fashion Plate in the Original Color Scheme

Rose Version

Sapphire and Gold Version

Emerald and Gold Version

Mulberry & Teal Version

Pink and Plum Version

Violet Version

Blue and Teal Version

Green and Teal Version

Teal Version

Sable and Olive Version

Pistachio Version

Desert Rose Version

I created my digital artwork using the Teal version of this lovely lady.

"Garden Dreams" by EKDuncan 2012
The altered Teal fashion plate is the focus of my piece and the background was created by merging several photos together. I added a variety of filters and textures in Photoshop to the background images to give it that "dreamy" fairytale look.  

The above artpiece is the second part of a two part garden scene.
Below is the first garden scene I created earlier this month - HERE.
I chose to use the same background in a slightly different way so I could use
together as a set of "paintings" for another digital project I'm thinking about.

Garden Scene #1 from earlier this month
I really have enjoyed creating these little framed gems and soon 
I'll be sharing another fun project of mine using them.

I'll be back later with more late 18th Century French Fashions 
from the time of Marie Antoinette.

till next time...