|My new bonnet.|
My response, "Yes."
"Really? It looks like something from a BBC Jane Austen series. Are you sure it's right for your era?"
I knew of two primary sources off the top of my head:
1) Remember that runaway impression I created earlier this summer? The January 1773 ad called for "a black bonnet." But there's no picture.
2) The other source is this example from Colonial Williamsburg's collections:
|Woman's hat, black silk, 1770-1780 |
(Colonial Williamsburg accession number 1993-335)
|...this print from the V&A. True to '80s fashion, she's wearing a poofy bonnet that's surely black silk.|
The Flower Girl, London, December 9, 1784
(V&A accession number E.678-1959)
|The Beautiful Fruit Gatherer, a print from antique dealer Grosvenor Prints|
Dated c.1790, her bonnet is also very full. It looks like a lot of fun to wear, but she's a little overdressed for my research and a tad later than my era.
What about something earlier? The Lewis Walpole Library has prints that better fit my era...
The Lover's Disguise (c.1776, call number 776.00.00.05) shows a fabulous black bonnet sitting on the table.
For something less formal, there's A Ladies Maid Purchasing a Leek (1772, call number 772.03.01.01.2).
Then there's The Pretty Mantua Maker (1772, call number 7184.108.40.206.1). She's wearing a fab black bonnet trimmed with white ribbon that's similar to mine. C'est parfait!
My research here skims the surface of bonnets in 18th century prints but I think these examples help me confidently say, "No, it's not a Jane Austen bonnet."
Craving more bonnets? For more comprehensive bonnet research than I have offered, check out this link from 18th Century Notebook. There's also this bonnet blog post from Dames a la Mode, which shows a great collection of bonnets from 1797 fashion plates.
I also wanted to share a French bonnet print that I stumbled upon since it falls within my era...
(V&A accession number E.1008-1959)
I couldn't imagine wearing it, but those are some fun poofs!