Little Boys in Frilly Dresses – Part Two

Carrying on from where i left off, like forever-a-go; at the beginning of the 19th century little boys dresses were still focused on the  practicality of the late 18th century.

They still resemble the style of adult fashion, as little William Scott-elliott’s tunic shows, yet the shorts begin to separate him from his female siblings and give him access to the free and easy spirit every child should have.

Yet it didn’t take long before the child was old enough to dress as an adult, a practice going back as long as they can document fashion.

As the century went along, the fashion for young boys and girls began to merge again with it becoming very difficult to be able to tell fashions apart. This dress above was worn by Prince Edward, Queen Victoria first son and the future king as a baby in the early 1840’s. You can tell this because Edward is painted in a portrait wearing it, an outfit that would have suited a boy or a girl.

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Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 8 – Finale

There’s going to be a game of cricket, everyone is very excited and the men are all very competitive about it. Downstairs the end is nigh for Thomas, hes rather a broken man at the fought of all hes losing and to add insult to injury, O’Brien convinces Jimmy it would be best if he told the police, god forbid Thomas should attack again! :/.

There’s a new visitor to Downton, lady Rose, or rather the dowager Countess’s house as the young, naive 18 year old will be staying with her auntie.

Anna and Bates meanwhile finally begin to enjoy there marital bliss with there own, rather dingy house, which they soon make up to shape. As a wife, Anna can no longer work at the great house and is replaced by a new maid, yet shes so unimportant we never get to see her. Mr Bates in all his martial bliss doesn’t forget what he has so recently left and can’t help but feel bad for Thomas as he watches him go further down hill, and soon sets himself to task to find out what is really going on.

Edith meanwhile is blossoming in to the perfect journalist and is attracting the attentions of her editor, yet perhaps secretly enjoying these, like the shrewd detective goes on a mission to find out all about his life. Alongside her trampling’s through London, Lady Rose decides she wants to come as well, to create a “surprise” or something along that line for her Mother. Edith isn’t so convinced that she is the sweet and innocent girl she makes herself out to be and is glad when Matthew wishes to come as well on his own business for a bit of support. So they all go happily trotting off to Aunt Rosemond’s and leave Lady Rose to her own devices.

In the meantime Matthew visits a doctor as he is still convinced that he is the reason the they are not conceiving, however, surprising bumps in to Mary there, who admits all her secret excursions to him. Turns out she is the problem and after a small operation should be perfectly fine to conceive, to the great relief of Matthew. However on another, much seedier part of town, Lady Rose is rumbled after leaving her scarf in a cab with a married man in a jazz club by Edith, Matthew and Rosemond. Matthew demands that she return or he will tell all, so Lady Rose leaves as swiftly as she came leaving her lover to his “horrid wife”.

Back at Downton Bates convinces Thomas that they can take down O’Brien together, Thomas stunned that Bates would want to help him discovers help comes from a man who also knows what it is like to be out of control of your life. Thomas tells Bates a secret, and if you have been watching since season One you will instantly remember one particularly terrible thing O’Brien did will her ladyships soap. O’Brien of course horrified, returns and convinces Jimmy that to ring the police would be the wrong thing, however Alfred is listening and decides to take matters into his own hands.

At the all important game of cricket, Robert has convinced Tom to play, only in exchange for agreement in the updating of Downton’s house management and all goes swimmingly on the lovely summers day. Mosley has been boasting all episode of his knowledge of cricket, yet sadly it turns out that that is the end of his experience of cricket as he is a terrible player. Thomas, Matthew and Tom all do very well everything looks to be going perfectly until the police show up. Alfred has rung them and Robert has to save the day, agreeing that Thomas should stay and having a very cavalier attitude to something of a hot topic pre-1960’s. Alfred is convinced in the end, Thomas becomes under butler, Jimmy 1st footman and Bates is back in his position of valet; Tom has confided that he wants to stay at Downton and let his daughter grow up there, to the great delight of the Countess.

It all ended on such a lovely, happy note that i am sure there will be dumps along the Xmas special, i soooooo hope Edith gets it on with the Editor and will get to see little Sybil a bit older. But for the meantime i am just have to content myself with the season three box-set and screen capturing all the lovely costumes.

Little Boys in Frilly Dresses! – Part One

I don’t know if anybody else has noticed that little boys before the first world war always wore little frilly dresses, just like the ones their sisters were wearing. I collected loads of photo’s of the Russian royal family from the internet after reading about them and bought several books (The Camera and the Tsars: The Romanov Family in Photographs and Queen Victoria’s Family, both by Charlotte Zeepvat) which had loads of photos like this.

After researching these little boys fashions i found that before the first world war its has always been like this.

 

The above are picture of boys, the little boy in the pink dress is American and would have continued to wear dresses until he was breeched, which i guess has something to do with boys in earlier times wearing breeches when they were considered a child and not a toddler anymore. Also in this photo, the young boy’s bodice has no point going down as a young girls would (which would have been following the line of the corset underneath) which is something that would have made the two sexes distinguishable.

You can also see this here with the three eldest children of the Prince of Wales, the two children sitting are the future George III and his brother Edward. Edward is wearing a similar dress to the boy above while George’s dress is very similar to his sister’s Augusta’s, yet they are distinguishable by the cut in George’s Bodice which the pointed edge is atached to his apron, while his sisters bodice has a pointed edge with no cut.

 

 

Later on the fashions became more blurred, with practicality taking precedence over rules and symbols as children were becoming more playful and free in there portraits. Above is two boys playing with each other and animals, unrestricted by lace and stiff bodices. While young girls were portrayed in similar scenes and demonstrating that fashion had inevitably moved on, they still had the stiff pointed bodices over their restricting corsets, perhaps predicting the strict fashion code and social codes they would have to follow later in their lives.

Above is George III youngest daughters Mary, Sophia and Amelia.

 

 

Victorian Thieves

I seem to have an addiction to The Daily Mail, which is very annoying because i am sick of their spelling mistakes, but on the plus side they do come up with some randomly interesting articles. I came across this article about Victorian children who were caught thieving and stealing and sent to prison or hard labor. What they are wearing is interesting, even the poor children are wearing miniature adult outfits.