Sunday, August 30, 2009

Yay or Nay? Juliana Maria of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel

I believe we have had a Yay or Nay first! Everyone approved of Sarah Rodbard's simple white ensemble. However, I know how picky this crowd gets so I am curious to see how this week's fashion selection will do.


The former queen of Denmark, painted by Vigilius Eriksen, (1778) shows us around her apartment wearing her favorite color, white. Her majesty seems very conscious of ruffles being the latest trend.

28 comments:

  1. Nay. Although I find elements of her dress quite lovely, there is just too much ruffle for my taste. If the piles of lace at her collar and the valance-like trim at the bottom of her skirt were to magically disappear I might have given it a yay, but sadly it was not to be.

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  2. As a costumer, I love it, because the construction details are so clear, but as a fashionista, I say Nay, because it just isn't that attractive.

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  3. I love the ruffles at the sleeves and the trim at the hem but I would like it even better without the panel on the skirt which looks like an apron to me! :O) Even so, I give it a YAY. I think she looks elegant despite her age (was this done during her advanced years?). The aristocracy must have been thankful for artistic licence..... 18th century answer to photo editing! :D

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  4. a nay from me, i'm afraid...my instant reaction upon seeing the picture was to think of Miss Haversham.

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  5. I'm not sure, but on the balance I'll give it a yay, though I could do without the lace apron-type thing in the front.

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  6. Overdone and the lace apron bit is quite ugly. If it had been simpler with ruffled sleeves minus the lace, then she would've looked elegant and charming. But like this, too fussy.

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  7. Yay, she was a queen and needed to dress with the times and her rank. The ivory color simplifies and brings elegance.

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  8. I really wish we had a better angle on this gown, but perhaps that was her best view. Far too many ruffles, though I love the white, in any other color it would be worse. I am still compelled to give it a Nay though.

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  9. Nay overall with little bits of yay here and there. I think the most charming thing about this painting IS the painting. What makes it is her elegant posture, the really expert rendering of the details, and the sense that we are getting a candid insight into a moment of her life. The lace at the bottom of the skirt should just go in the same scrap heap as the hat and I think I'd then give it a yay.

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  10. I like it. Although I agree the ruffles are quite heavy, I find them elegant compared to many other extravagant features of the period. The dress it self is really rather simple, I guess it's a robe à la française...?
    I'll give it a yay!

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  11. Yay. I like that, despite the heaviness of the ruffles, the gown is rather simple and age-appropriate (True, she's only 49, but that's like 79 for those days), while also maintaining an elegant and fashionable look. Plus, if you do some research on her, you can see that white and ruffles are her thing, so why not make the most of it?

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  12. 49?! Oh that's interesting Meghan. I hadn't thought of how the hazards of living in an earlier age could affect one's health and looks.

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  13. Yep, Lesley, 49; gotta hand it to her though: she passed away at the ripe old age of 67 - merely 10 years shy of the current United States life expectancy!

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  14. Nay! It's too busy, too much laces and ruffles and the trim on the skirt ruins it completely.

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  15. YAY!!! Beautiful! Although by today's standards this gown would be considerd over the top, in the 18th century that amount of ornementation was quite normal.

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  16. I give it approval because if she's a queen, she ought to look like one, no? Why did you all agree to the king's golden monstrosity and not this? I think she looks very regal. The hat is, admittedly, very ugly. But, still a yay from me!

    Oh, and as a side note, have you ever read Deanna Raybourn's series? (Silent in the Grave, Silent in the Sanctuary, Silent on the Moor?) She mentioned Georgiana, Bess, and the Duke! :)

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  17. I'm not going to give it a standing ovation because it does have its drawbacks, but I think she carries it off well. As an artwork however I love it, masterfully rendered, and such a good choice of background colour.

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  18. HEATHER!
    I love you for putting that poll of the most opulent court up like you said you would.
    Your amazing!

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  19. Yay. I find the white a bit odd for someone that age--was she ever married? And if so, would it be considered odd to wear so much white after the wedding? But at any rate, it suits her.

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  20. To Eliza Ward; white as a color of wedding and virginity didn't take really wind until half 19th century and even then white was considered a proper color for young ladies for grande parties. So I have read.
    White was bit decadent and luxurious in previous centuries to maintain as dye and looking pictures of virginal saints and Mary in catholic art before 19th c. they are not often clad in "virgin white" but in red etc.

    Dyes for fabric developed into better and more artificial in 19th century when it was possible to really dye even middle-class clothes in all black and white and in vibrant colors.
    So an older woman wearing all-white in 18th c. would not have been "mutton-dressed-as-lamb" but seen as rich and maybe bit frivolous.

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  21. and oh:I say Yay. Kudos for brave effort even though not perfect ten.

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  22. Nay, I like the lace ruffled sleeves but I agree with others that the panel on the skirt is tacky.

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  23. Yay! One can never have enough ruffles...

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  24. Perhaps a bit too many ruffles on a woman of her age. Ruffles just seem youthful to me.

    nay

    yay if it was on someone younger.

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  25. her real name was: Juliane Marie of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel.

    And this portrait of her was painted by the danish artist: Vigilius Eriksen.(who also painted for the russian court at the time).
    the details of the painting,especially her dress of course is just stunning in person!

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  26. Thank you!! I know he did many portraits of Catherine II but this painting is truly stunning. That's why I couldn't resist posting it.

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