white-cotton-dress

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Ensemble

1875-1900 

Romania 

Romanian folk costume has remained relatively unchanged and continues to be worn for festival occasions. The basic model for women consists of an embroidered blouse and skirt, belt, head scarf, and often a vest or jacket. As in many cultures, embroidery is placed at “vulnerable” areas of the body: the neck, cuffs, and hem, but also at the shoulders and sleeves as a symbol of strength. This example of a full festival costume is striking in the variation of blue tones and abundant embroidery. The coordination of the various components is symbolic of the pride and care given to folk traditions in Romanian culture.

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The Tan Suit

Considered by many as one of the essential Summer must-haves, the tan suit is often left out of the equation by most men. A great alternative to natural or white linen, a tan suit in lightweight cotton gabardine fabric is the perfect choice for warmer days. It shows that your style adapts to seasonal changes, straying from traditional navy and grey, without compromising any sharpness whatsoever. This look bears a special meaning for me, as most elements were passed down to me by my dad…the suit, loafers and cufflinks were all part of his wardrobe at a given time. 

As a more conservative gentleman, the color and fit of the suit didn’t quite suit his style and I was lucky enough to “inherit” it. Despite its more traditional aesthetic, with 3 buttons and slightly structured shoulder, all it took were a couple of alterations at my tailor to give it an updated feel and new found life. The leather loafers by Tods have been around for about 15 years and a quick refurbishment at my cobbler was enough to get them looking brand new… just goes to prove that investing in quality pieces is worth it. A crisp white shirt and the right choice of accessories, such as the royal blue hand-rolled silk tie, paisley pocket square, tortoise shades, white panama and bracelets convey an added panache to the whole ensemble.

Details: suit by Prada, dress shirt by Cremieux, loafers by Tods, panama by Original Panama, shades by Linda Farrow Luxe, silk tie by Exquisite Trimmings, pocket square by Add-On, cufflinks by Givenchy and bracelets by Viola Milano.

Model and Styling: Miguel Amaral Vieira

Ph: Filipa Alves

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Evening Dress

1804-1805

France

On December 24, 1803, Jerome Bonaparte (1784—1860), brother of Napoleon, wed Elizabeth Patterson (1785—1879) of Baltimore. The beautiful and fashionable young American was married in a dress of muslin and lace that, according to a contemporary, “would fit easily into a gentleman’s pocket.” This description evokes the sheer, narrow dresses that caused a sensation at the beginning of the nineteenth century, more because of their contrast with the elaborate hooped costumes of previous decades than for any real immodesty. 

Although originally thought to have been Patterson’s wedding dress, the formal gown illustrated here probably dates from 1804, when this type of vertical white embroidery became fashionable. The very sheer cotton mull from which the dress is made was probably imported from India already embroidered with heavy white cotton thread in transparent mull. Only a daring few had briefly abandoned these items of clothing, in imitation of “Grecian” drapery—the first of many fanciful nineteenth-century allusions to details of costume in earlier historic periods.

As for the Patterson-Bonaparte union: Napoleon had the marriage annulled in 1805 and made Jerome the king of Westphalia in 1807. That year, Jerome married the princess of Wurttemberg. Elizabeth, banned from France by the emperor, remained in Baltimore with her son, Jerome Napoleon Bonaparte (1805—1870).

MET