O, For A Draught Of Vintage

Way back in the day when I was brainstorming over what I would like my blog name to be, one of the titles on the list was "The Fashion Plate." Why? Like "clothes horse," the term is antiquated with multiple meanings; used figuratively it references a person who conforms to the latest fashions. The literal phrase comes from hand-engraved plates introduced in the beginning of the 1800s to promote the clothing style of the time. The illustrations of the plates would be published in the popular newspapers and magazines of the day. Today they give us a detailed, if idealistic, depiction of the style of bygone eras.

These fashion plates are from the 1870s and Hungary. Detailed and rich in color, they epitomize what fashion plates became at the peak of their popularity in the mid-1800s.
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Hungarian Fashion Plates from the 1870s via BibliOdyssey

CONVERSATION

66 comments:

  1. ooh, wow! gorgeous fashion plates! :)

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  2. wow - i never actually knew what a fashion plate was (blush) - they are fabulous!

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  3. u always find awesome images! thanks for sharing!

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  4. These 'fashion plates' are really interesting to look at. I think the last one is my favorite. While 'The Fashion Plate' is a really cool name for a blog, I'm glad you picked Clothes Horse. :D

    Thanks for sharing these! ~

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  5. Those are gorgeous. I am very much a fan of vintage art/drawying!

    Thank you for sharing,

    -Coco from Our Paper Moon

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  6. These are amazing. It's hard to find images as beautiful as these nowadays. Thanks for sharing!

    And as I just discovered your blog recently, I never cease to find something beautiful on your blog. Thanks again for all the inspiration.

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  7. So lovely. I love how the background/settings are quite muted or black and white (even some of the faces), and that the clothes/hair are so vibrant and colourful.
    Jen xx

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  8. When I see these gorgeously detailed fashion plates (yay for learning a new thing!), I couldn't help but be reminded of Little Women and how Meg would bemoan how she was too poor to afford the latest fashions.

    I agree though, I'm glad you went with 'The Clothes Horse.' :)

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  9. awww these are great! and i think that your blogname now is awesome, but this one would also have been so clever!

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  10. personally I love your current name, but these drawings are wonderfully rich and colorful

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  11. YOur blog name is perfect! lovely images!

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  12. As a printmaker, these kinds of things are always really interesting to me. A lot of people don't even know what printmaking is, even less the historical significance of prints. Fashion and printmaking certainly have quite the history.

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  13. Oh my gosh those fashion plates are so beautiful! I love the colors and those lovely dresses! Thanks for posting them!

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  14. These are lovely! I took a costume history course last semester and fashion plates were a great resource, and so beautiful.

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  15. Brilliant. I just did an essay on Victorian Clothing reform, I had to look at hundreds of these!

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  16. I actually knew what a fashion plate was. I did a project on them in marketing. These are beautiful. I love to look at these fashions. i cant believe people wore all that fabric!

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  17. these pictures are wonderful, I'm so excited I'm taking the history of fashion this semester and I can't wait to learn about all of this!

    lovelove, M.
    http://marissaexplains.blogspot.com

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  18. i love the historical significance! beautiful pictures!

    the last one is my favorite.

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  19. i admire fashion plates for the same reason i admire flora and fauna art drawn for the sciences. attention to detail is pertinent, and creates a really lovely piece of art that doesn't necessarily have a deeper meaning or is trying to say something. it is simply capturing the beauty in the world. thank you for sharing!

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  20. Thanks for the history lesson!I like the name you eventually chose, my blog name Rosemud comes from a childhood nickname. I loved to play in the mud, so somebody combined the word with my name Rosemary et voila!

    p.s. Thanks for all your lovely comments!

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  21. The examples you chose are just stunning! Thank you for sharing.

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  22. Oh my goodness! I have the second one as an embroidery on paper from my grandmother! How strange!

    Sarah Louise
    http://www.tzipporit.blogspot.com

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  23. That is so interesting! I love looking at fashion history :)

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  24. Hey! I'm making jewelry since more than a year, it's cheap trendy and colourful so perhaps you would like it. I also ship internationally.
    Thanks!

    http://annkathrinkuhn.com

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  25. Those are beautiful. I sometimes wish we still dressed like that, until I realize how heavy those dresses must have been.

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  26. I remember that everyday of my childhood I was dreaming about that age,about the epoch dresses.Even if now I love the simplicity ,I still appreciate the clothes complexity.

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  27. I used to be obsessed with corsets and bustles. Looking at these fashion plates reminds me of why I was so into that period. Lovely.

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  28. These are so beautiful, I can now see the origin of the fashion editorial.

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  29. These are so gorgeous! It brings me back to being a little girl... my grandmother had pictures like these everywhere in her house :)

    ♥ Aya
    http://strawberrykoi.blogspot.com/

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  30. These fashion plates are beautiful! Oh, how I'd love to stroll around in one of those gowns, with a parasol...

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  31. I'm pretty sure I've used a few of those plates as research in my costume design classes. Fashion was so intricate and beautiful back then.

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  32. Wow! Absolutely stunningly beautiful.

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  33. Must have been hard to move around in. Do I see a resurgence of a few trends from centuries ago? I can see some military detailing on a woman's dress. These plates are so elegant, with backgrounds and such.

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  34. fashion plate would have been a cool name..I like yours though. These photo's are beautiful. Ah, I wish I was around then. Hope you're having a great weekend! x

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  35. AWESOME!

    P.S.: ♥Please don't forget to join the Three Birds Designs giveaway!♥

    Good luck!


    X♥X♥

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  36. LOVE these! Gah, everything was so fabulous back then. I wish everyone still dressed like that. Or that I was alive back then.

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  37. Stunning stunning photos!

    Those times the ladies would pull in a whole lot effort into dolling up and they look so beautiful:)

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  38. i would love to have these framed and hanging on my walls!

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  39. beautifuls pictures.
    www.whatdialike.com

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  40. Gorgeous pictures, and I just learned something new :)

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  41. I always learn something from your blog. So interesting!

    I'm glad you went for Clothes Horse. I can't imagine your blog being called anything else!

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  42. i am SO for the rehabilitation of old clothes in our daily lives !

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  43. love love love these :)
    where did you find them?

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  44. I also have some french fashion plates from the early 1900's, these are beautiful too I love to collect them too.

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  45. Wow, these are so detailed and I love the colours!

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  46. The details and colors in these are so lovely. Thanks for sharing!

    So glad to see you're on facebook - I'm a fan.

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  47. this post is amazing.
    xxxxx


    www.miucciahadalittlelamb.blogspot.com

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  48. These are so beautfiul! I'm tempted to print some out and dot them around my room!
    I love your blog, with your very 1950's 2nd world war type style, but with colour and the modern patterns.
    I would love it if you took at look at my blog, its only new.
    http://wearenotsnowflakes.blogspot.com/
    Thank you!

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  49. I'm a fashion plate junkie my self though most of the ones I've seen are french/english. I read several books on pre-french revolution fashion, etc. It's very interesting how trends and fashions managed to get around even with out internet and air travel!

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  50. My mother-in-law always finds prints like these for me at estate sales and yard sales -- we have five or six of them now and I adore them. I've always treasured my history of costume books; flipping through them is one of my first book-memories. I especially love 19th century fashion. I love watching the skirt shapes shift and the bustle become more and more exaggerated. Beautiful pictures!

    xx

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  51. Love this! I've always been fascinated in my academic work by the impact of material goods upon the style identities of their consumers. Annie.

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  52. I actually own a collection of fashion plates and they are some of my most prized possessions! Thanks for sharing these beautiful images!

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  53. These are stunning!

    They also make me so aware of what ready access we now have to fashion images and how much we take for granted. On any given day, we can look at thousands of fashion images on tv, in magazines, and online.

    Back when these images were produced, one might see pictures like these very infrequently. As a result, fashions would evolve much more slowly.

    Thanks for sharing!

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  54. Ooh! How interesting. I was not at all familiar with the etymology behind the phrase.

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  55. Beautiful photos! Congratulations on your glamour feature! Your blog is fabulous! How have you been? Sorry I haven't been around as of late. Japan has been crazy! Congratulations again and Happy New Year!

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  56. I love fashion plates! this are delightful :)

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  57. Fashion plates? Never heard of them, but I love them! How I'd wish to have lived in those days to be able to wear those dresses.

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  58. Beautiful. Such beautiful layering and textures. The plates exhibit such fine detail; so thankful these styles were captured in this way. I often wonder what the ladies of the 1800s would think of the modern girls of our time?

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  59. they are so ornate and beautiful!

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  60. I love these! I have a whole book reproduction of an 1860s Harper's Bazaar catalog! The illustrations are so great. The scenes too, especially the beach and outdoor scenes.

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  61. how strange yet very cool that bows are classed as so kitchy and childish today, but then were obviously a mark of high class and wealth! i also like the comment above about how fashion must have evolved more slowly because of the access to prints and images, so true. today we are so overfed with fashion!

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