Thursday, July 27, 2017

Do you see RED? Color, fashion in historicals and accuracy! Talking Regency Reds!

This charming number is dated approximately 1810
 and sits in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London
Creating fashion in our novels, we authors like to give stunning visuals. Sometimes, those require more research than we’d hope!

Recently on the Beau Monde RWA writers loop, we discussed the color red, the dyes and fabrics that could have existed at the time.

Here from one of my large references on fashion (let that read TOME), I thought it fun to list for you the very limited number of shades of red for that period! Note, too, that many come from the latter part of the period which is not officially the Regency, but indeed the late reign of George IV, once that notorious man, the Prince of Wales.

So this table reads as: the title of the color, the year the term was first used, the modern color description/name as per the British Color Council! (In alpha order!)

Aurora, 1809. Chilli.
Aurora, 1829.  Shell-Pink.
Eminence, 1829.  Crushed Strawberry.
Japanese Rose, 1826.  Crushed Strawberry.
Marsh Mallow, 1829. Crocus or Old Rose.
Morone, 1811. Peony Red.
Naccarat, 1800. Tangerine.
Terre D’Egypt, 1824. Brick Red.

What does this imply? That blood red, ruby red, cherry red and many more were not possible in this period. So when you read that your heroine wears a bright red gown to the ball, beware, she may not have been at all!


Tina Donahue said...

Gawd, it must have been hard - and expensive - to live in those days. Thank God for jeans and tees or I'd go broke.

Love your posts, Cerise! :)

KateM said...

I love color names and always have. The big box of crayons was a great treat! Fun to see from your post how names changed. One question I have--did fabric matter? What about velvets and heavier fabrics--was it easier to do red? Thinking of those scarlet-coated Regency soldiers.

jean hart stewart said...

Love tidbits of knowledge like this...thanks....