Sack back gown Place of origin: France (woven) UK (made) Date: ca. 1760 (made) Artist/Maker: unknown (production) Materials and Techniques: Chine woven silk, lined with linen, trimmed with fly fringe, hand-sewn
This gown demonstrates the fashionable styles in women’s formal dress of the 1780s. The hoop has changed from the square shape of earlier decades to a round profile. A stomacher is no longer needed, because the gown now meets in the front. The cream silk is adorned only at the edges with an embroidered band, ribbon and a stencilled fringe. This restraint in decoration illustrates the growing influence of the Neo-classical style in textile design.
Mantua, England,1735-1740 (made) Brocaded silk, hand-sewn with spun silk and spun threads, lined with linen, brown paper lining for cuffs, brass, canvas & pleated silk. One of the mantua’s characteristics was a long train, sewn as a flat piece of silk & arranged with each wearing. The train was folded up, then folded in & draped over a loop of thread on either side of the waist. Pinning up & draping a train successfully was an art & required the help of maids to achieve the perfect effect.