This is our last fashion post before tomorrow’s costume reveal. Today we will cover 18th Century Provencal Accessories.
18th Century Provencal Accessories
With any historic costuming era I believe it is the accessories that can make or break an outfit. In this case, they truly add a certain je ne sais quoi.
The traditional bergère hat is truly synonymous with French Provencal historic costuming.
I have previously written about the history of the bergère HERE.
The hats come in natural and black color. They are typically made from straw or wool felt.
I have a natural straw colored bergère hat that I still wear. For this costume, I wanted a black bergère but all of the various sites that sell them were sold out.
It was time to get creative. I had read this tutorial and knew it was possible to transform this lovely Goodwill gem I found for $2.
Since my hat was actually constructed with sewn strips of braided straw I just used a seam ripper to take a section off of the top of the hat and then glued the top piece back on.
With a little spray paint and a bit of ribbon, it will work until I can purchase one.
Total cost: 5.00.
All classes of women wore caps on their head in public during the 18th century. There were several reasons for this. It primarily helped to keep long hair out of the way while working. It also protected the hair from everyday dust and dirt so that the hair did not need not be washed as frequently.
There were and are many styles of caps. One’s provenance can determine what style of cap you would wear.
I found the lace cap at a lovely store, Francine’s, in L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, France. If you love vintage and antique linens, lace, and other textiles this is the store for you.
It is from the 19th century and made from Marseilles lace.
Of course, it didn’t look quite this good when I first brought it home.
I had also purchased an antique linen apron and this was the water after the first soaking of the two items.
I also had to make a few repairs to the seams and replace the drawstring on the back of the cap.
Historically France has been a Catholic nation. Pious women of all ages would wear crosses at their neck.
The crosses could be traditional, Camargue, or Maltese in shape.
I spied this painting Portrait d’une Arlésienne aux oeillets, by Antoine Raspal and loved the soft colors.
I wondered if this modern day costumer had also been inspired when creating her look?
I actually found this cross on my last visit to France at a flea market for €1.
I am keeping an eye out for a real silk ribbon. Until then I had this piece in my stash.
Women would add a scarf for modesty, decoration, and warmth. Again the scarves can vary in style and color based on the region where you are from.
I selected one yard of French General fabric Pondicherry print in the French Blue colorway. It was $12.00.
It went well with the Dutch chintz fabric used on the bodice.
The scarf measures 36″square, has a 1/4″ hem and features mitered corners.
The apron is a perfect beginner sewing project. It doesn’t even require a pattern. I had purchased the vintage cotton fabric at an estate sale a few months ago for $3. As luck would have it the blue matched the lighter blue in the bodice and scarf perfectly. It is a full length apron.
Provencal women would often tuck their apron (or even their skirts) up into the waistband while working.
I opted to do the same to show off more of my quilted petticoat.
Tomorrow is reveal day! Until then here is a sneak peek.