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Sunday, July 15, 2012

Bastille Day - Post Revolutionary Fashion

Did you think Gothic style was an invention of recent generations?   Citizens of post-revolutionary France had us beat.  Following the executions of Marie Antoinette, Louis XVI and then the Reign of Terror, the bourgeois population worked out their death issues in fashion, hairstyles and nightlife.

In a radical 180 from powdered wigs, men and women cropped their hair short and exposed their necks to emulate the preparation ritual for a trip to the guillotine.   Jewelry was made in guillotine shapes and other morbid motifs along with mourning arm bands.  Red ribbons tied around the throat became a popular accessory to symbolize cut throats.  

Victim's Balls became the new hotspot, allegedly for those who were mourning friends and family who lost their heads.  Dark colored ensembles could also be scandalously brief, where looks may include only the ribbons themselves.  Gourmand Grimod de la Reyni√®re (one of the first popular food critics) held mock funeral banquets serving multiple courses of black colored dishes on top of a coffin.  

Vive la France!
Image from Dreadful DrearyWitch is me other sources include Supersizer Go - French Revolution

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