I was sitting in HTM today thinking about who I would place as my style icons. History of costume is a highly interesting subject for me and I could honestly study it and never get tired. I will add my icons as I think of them, but one has to be noted. Certainly, one of my favorite periods of costume was during the 18th Century, especially the Robe à la française, or the sack back gown, of the mid-1770’s to almost 1800. Marie Antoinette comes to mind during this time period as one of the most iconic fashion leaders during this period, probably because of the endless paintings that took place and her stance.
I love the elaborate details and satire of fashion that comes to play during this period. Men were often considered “dandies” or the “macaroni’s” in their attire, so women had to take it to the next level. Embellished fabrics, sack-back gowns, heavy petticoats, square hoops and panniers to the extreme hairstyles of wigs of high curls, powdered, frizzy hair, and even adornments such as the famous ship to celebrate naval victory. I love this period. I suggest all watch Sophia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette to get a glimpse of such extremes. Some may not enjoy the movie as it lacks the political aspect, but really, Marie became the Dauphine de France at the age of 14 and her innocence and immature adolescence was captured perfectly.