Frederica's Wardrobe

At the beginning of Masking Enemies, Frederica is just putting off the mourning clothes she has worn since the death of her beloved father. For practical purposes, this means most of her clothes have been dyed black and she has little time to replace them before the trip. For the one new dress she has time to get made, she chooses an impractical white. Her other choices from the back of her closet, are an older muslin that did not get thrown into the die vat and an old blue wool that hardly fits any more. I modeled her dresses on the pieces below.   

white dress.jpg

I     I found this lovely day dress of simple white cotton, in of all places, a military museum in Richmond, Yorkshire, UK.  I knew immediately that I wanted my heroine to have it in her wardrobe.

     White was such a ubiquitous color for young women, that I thought a novice traveler like Frederica might not realize how difficult it would be to keep clean. This is the dress, I imagine, she is wearing when she and Clive are running for their lives.  

     Muslin was very popular for day wear. 

     Since Frederica did not have time to get a new wardrobe for the trip, she has to take an older gown. This sprigged muslin is a good example of a dress almost every young woman owned.  

     I think the neckline is little low for day wear, so Frederica's dress, as a young woman that is not 'out' yet,  would have a higher neckline. 

     The skirt and the bodice are joined under the band beneath the breasts. When the dress is ruined from the blood from Dr. Chadwick's wound, this is the seam that the women from Wolverton unpick, so the skirt can be recut.

sprigged muslin cicrca 1800a.jpg

     Spencers, such as the red stripped one in the picture to the left,  were short jackets modeled on a military uniform. They were very popular in1803.

     Frederica only owns a shawl and a long cape but yearns to have a fashionable spencer of her own. Finally in Bath, she gets to go shopping for a spencer that I think looks just like this one. 

From Clive's Travel Trunk
Clive is traveling light on this trip also. For everyday he has a claw hammer coat with buckskin trousers. His trunk probably contains several shirts, another pair of trousers, dress shoes and a lot of cravats. Of course, his shaving gear and gloves are included. He has a beaver hat but like Frederica, doesn't wear headgear too often. 
claw hammer coat.jpg