18th century, 18th century clothes, 18th century clothing, authenticity, common dress, common people, fashion, living history, Making Things, menswear, Reenacting, Research, resources, style, Watson and the Shark
I’ve been thinking a lot about Watson and the Shark, at least when I am not thinking about the Raft of the Medusa, make of that what you will.
Here’s why: Waistcoats. Shirts. Open Jackets.
As you would expect from recent reports, the Young Mr has outgrown almost everything he owns, with the exception of his shirt. I put a lot of time into that blue wool jacket, so I’m not ready to sell it on Etsy yet, but I do have to replace it. Sewing new things means I get a chance to look again at sources for inspiration, and to do better this time around.
Since we’re in summer, I’m thinking blue linen, since I have access to very local inspiration in the form of Oliver Hazard Perry’s short jacket. But for earlier ideas, there’s Copley. I particularly like the horizontal stripe on the waistcoat, and what seems to be a striped shirt. Striped shirt! How exciting is that?
I’m thinking striped trousers, based on a Massachusetts letter, but we’ll see how far I get with that. The final deciding factor in wearing, of course, could be striped trousers are better than no trousers.
This is such an interesting painting! I’ve never looked at the conspicuous clothing in it, though… is that sailor wearing slops over knee-breeches? Was that common? In my cursory research I assumed that a person would wear one or the other.
Abigael, thanks for your comment!
My understanding was that slops were worn over breeches to protect them, but I will confess that it was an unresearched understanding. I did a quick search of British Tars, and here are the posts labeled slops:
You’ll see in one engraving that slops/petticoat trousers over blue breeches.
I also looked at the trouser tag:
Perhaps it is not either-or, but all of the above– slops or breeches or slops over breeches? It’s a great question!
Thanks so much for the references! I think I will follow this rabbit-trail a ways…