Forensic Fashion
(c) 2006-present R. Macaraeg


>Costume Studies
>>1811 English dandy
>>>>primary sources
Subject: 'jack-a-dandy' gentleman / aristocrat
Culture: English
Setting: Regency / later Georgian period, England early 19thc

​Manchester Art Gallery > Dandy Style: 250 Years of British Men's Fashion *
​"Miniatures and silhouettes  Miniature portraits were popular from the 16th century and despite their small size, details of fashionable clothing can be clearly seen.  Often very accurate, they provided small keepsakes of family members.
    "Fashionable from the late 18th century, silhouettes were cleverly cut from paper to show a striking details of cut and accessories.
"Miniature  1824  William Forbes Gibbon by L B East ...  Silhouette 1820-30" ...

* Manchester Art Gallery > Dandy Style: 250 Years of British Men's Fashion
"Thomas Fitzherbert  1805  Mather Brown (1761-1831)  Oil on canvas  Brummell might well have been this young man's style icon.  Sixteen-year-old Fitzherbert epitomises the care and attention given to dress by the famous Regency dancy who as at his height of influence in 1805.  This is reflected in the artist's skilful [SIC] painting of the fine linen cravat and shirt ruffle with its folds and pleating pinned by a gold and red stone tie pin.
    "The outward simplicity of Fitzherbert's outfit hides a wealth of complexity.  The woollen coat was made from fine woollen cloth, cut into specific pieces from a pattern and then moulded to the figure for the perfect fit.  The shirt had a tall collar to accommodate the neckcloth, which was complex to tie.  Instructional guidebooks were written to help men perfect the art as seen in the examples in the case below." ...

​* Manchester Art Gallery > Dandy Style: 250 Years of British Men's Fashion
"Prince of Wales, future George IV  1800-05  Edmund Scott (1746-1810)  
Watercolour and pencil on paper  The Prince of Wales (1762-1830) is shown following a style of dress advised by his friend, Beau Brummell.  He wears a fitted, blue cloth coat (with his star of the Order of the Garter), a carefully tied cravat and his hairstyle is curled high.  However, after 1811, he famously became estranged from Brummell, who called him fat to his face.  This portrait, by the Brighton-based artist Edmund Scott, is very unlike the popular debauched and overweight caricatures of the older George IV.  It was published as an engraving in the 1820s to try to present a more youthful image to the public."​

​* Manchester Art Gallery > Dandy Style: 250 Years of British Men's Fashion
"Humphry Davy  c.1821  Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830)  Oil on canvas
Painted when scientist and inventor Davy (1778-1829) was in his early 40s and President of The Royal Society, Lawrence's portrait captures the fashionable monochromatic style of the early 19th century.  Central to this was a figure hugging, dark tailcoat cut away at the front.  This garment conveyed elegant simplicity but required complex and precise tailoring.  A similar coat to Davy's is shown nearby.
    "Davy also wears a black overcoat which falls open nonchalantly, adding swagger to a man known for his showmanship.  Fashion and pose combine here with bold colours, expressive brushwork and artful composition to construct a glamorous image of the romantic hero.  His famous invention of an efficient miner's safety lamp is displayed prominently on the adjacent table."