Dressing up like a Victorian lady, Part 2: Acccessories
Dressing properly isn’t just the clothes; the accessories must be right to make a correct historical presence. I have a few more things to prepare for my Victorian costume to be ready for the Baltimore Book Festival.
Anyone and everyone going out of the house in Victorian times wore a hat. During the time The Unraveling is set, men wore top hats, boys and working people might wear caps. Women had more choices in head wear, from ruffle-, ribbon- and bead-decorated silk, cotton or felt, to plain straw and cloth bonnets. I took a few liberties with hats in my more casual hidden realm, but decided my costume would be incomplete without a hat. Along with my blouse and split riding skirt, I bought my hat from Historical Emporium. A riding hat.
I figured that fit, but I’m worried how that trailing veil will hold up.
No properly-dressed Victorian adult went out without gloves. Again, because my characters live and work on a farm, I took liberties and forgo gloves except when they are in the Derby. However, like the hat, I decided I needed them…unfortunately after I had placed my order. It’s darned hard to find plain leather dress gloves these days. I considered using my lace fingerless gloves from my steampunk costume.
I could wear a ring with these, but frankly, they don’t look right. Another option is cutting down a thin pair I found in the Halloween section, or wear a fleece lined pigskin pair I have from long ago.
Not quite the right color since most of my outfit is black. Tomorrow I’m calling around to try to borrow a pair.
I needed stockings to wear with my boots. But what kind? A search of Victorian stockings turned up Kate Tattersall‘s (Victorian Adventuress Extraordinaire!) fabulous website. In addition to Kate’s adventures (due out in January 2016), author R.S. Fleming has posted many well-researched articles, including on silk hose, colourful stockings & socks. From this essay, I learned stockings are the longer ones–up to the thighs–and socks the shorter. I decided knee length would be appropriate, a knit style in wool. I was dreading spending too much more money at REI, where I know knee high wool socks are plentiful, but Target is closer and I found both thin and thick versions for half the price.
I’m leaning more toward wearing the brown boots, but need to have a trial period of walking around the house now that I have the socks!
Posted on September 21, 2015, in Conferences, My non-writing life, Steampunk fantasy romance, Writing and tagged Baltimore Book Festival, Kate Tattersall, Maryland Romance Writers, speculative new adult, steampunk fantasy romance, The Luminated Threads, The Unraveling, Victorian costume, Victorian dress, Victorian gloves, Victorian riding hat, Victorian stockings. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.