For my third Item I chose an Elizabethan dress.

Although Elizabeth wasn’t considered to be very beautiful she adored her clothes, apparently when she died she had 3000 outfits and accessorise. Her style  was admired and mimicked by everyone.

Queen Elizabeth enforced laws on dressing to determine peoples status and class,these laws passed by the parlament in 1574 decided the type of outfits an individual would wear.

The limitation of what colours and fabrics people could wear led to the development of a new fashion trend called slashing, both women and men would slash the outer surfaces of their garments like sleeves and gowns so that the contrasting colors of the undergarments would show. They even pulled the fabric through the slashes and puff it out,to create contrast of colors and fabrics adding more texture and drama (source: costume supercenter)

Fashion  period 1550-1600

Nobel women wore richly decorated clothes as they had access to fine fabrics and materials.They were still confined to certain styles and anyone who didn’t stick to clothing rules was subject to punishment.

The fabric they wore were; velvet, silk, sable, satin, and fur. Their clothes were trimmed with fox and otter.

Colours: a Queen and her immediate family wore purple. Lesser noblewomen wore gold, silver, grey, black and crimson.

The Elizabethan noble women had to wear many layers of clothing.

Underclothes: Linen smock or shirt, stockings, corset, hooped skirt called farthingale, rowle or  bumroll (to make skirt sit further out), petticoat, kirtle (a skirt that fitted over the farthingale), forepart (a piece of fabric ussually ritchly embroided), parlet (a joke-like collar that fits under ruff.)

Overclothes: Gowns, sleeves, ruff.

Shoes: flats or low healed.

Embellishments: Elizabethan women adored jewellery and wore broaches and pins on everything.

Nobel and royalty women had an assistant to help them get dressed and undressed. They could change their sleeves depending of their mood as these had to be sewn or tied on to the dress.

 Working class women.

Fashion in this period was determined by the persons rank and social position it would have dictated their diet living arrangements and dress.

Materials: wool, leather, linen and sheep skin. They were aloud trimmings made of silk and taffeta.

Colors :Browns, ruset, dull blue, grey or beige.

Dresses: lower class women didn’t have an assistant so their style  was simpler, she wore an apron and an unboned bodice that laced at the front.

The shoes were the same as the noble women but with cheaper materials. Lower class women didn’t wear jellewery.

 This Elizabethan dress belonged to a girl I dont know who as that imformation is not available to me but we can asume that it was a noble girl by the colour and nature of the fabric. I can only imagine the weight that girls in that period had to wear and how restricted they must of felt, it’s no wonder that they used to faint so much. Considering how old the dress is it’s in very good condition showing us how strong the fabric is. The fabric of the dress is woven with a pattern. The sleeve has embroidery , brown leaves and white and red flowers. I think the sleeves are made of silk. I like the embroidery on the sleeve.

I like the woven fabric of the dress but I really dislike the feeling that this era brings to my mind. Being so restricted and weighed down by so many layers of clothing but most disterving being told what you must wear otherwise you would get punished is unthinkable to us. So I am very greatful I was born in the seventies and not in Elizabethan times although we were probably a bit smelly for different reasons! They would of had to wear the same dress over and over again and hygiene wasn’t on the top of their list and those of us who were born in the seventies had to wear synthetic fibres like polyester but that is a completely different story.