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...


  1. These images are beautiful...thank you for sharing!

    1. You are so welcome Debi,

      Thanks for letting me know you like them.
      I hope you get a chance to use them in some of your great projects too.


  2. Love your sweet little tea scene Eveylyn, especially how your light shines through the windows. Remarkable!

    1. Thanks so much Ira - I got lucky with the photo of the windows I used since the shining light and shadows are part of that picture. I was able to superimpose the entire effect onto the carpet in my scene. I almost made the mistake of cropping out that lower portion of the image till I realized what would be lost if it were removed.

      It just goes to show when you take pictures, think outside of the box and try and capture textures, reflections, casted light and other little details that can bring new life to a digital scene. Now when I go on vacation I take tons of pictures to make sure I get the usual family pictures as well as a good supply of digital elements, textures and oddities to use in my digital art.


  3. Oooooh! You did it again Evelyn!
    Wonderful, as always!
    Now I know you, I won't miss one of your post if I can...
    I'm still enjoying your blog!
    Thank you so very much for sharing!
    You're such a sweet heart (-tist)!

    1. Hi again Sim!

      Ya, I just can't help myself; I love vintage fashion plates.
      I have so much fun playing with them and wanted to share these great old images so others could have them too.

      I'm glad you are enjoying them and hope you are able to use more of them in your art. It's thrilling to see old images like these in modern art. It's as if we have the opportunity to give them a second life.


  4. Hello,

    Very interesting post for the styles and the differences between prints and also... sooooooooooooooo gorgeous png ladies!!! I will make a birthday card with one of these png for a friend in France who loves, too, the history of fashion.

    Many thanks!!!

    1. Hi Sylvie - I'm fascinated by "duplicates" so I'm glad you found them interesting as well.

      This png lady is one of my favorites and I'm sure your friend will love the card you make using it.

      Wishing you all my best,