Blue Beads

Circa 1820-1830


The 1820s saw the introduction of gigot (also known as leg-of-mutton) sleeves on ladies’ dresses, so termed because they resembled the hind leg of a sheep! Although flamboyant, the fashion was far from practical not only making it difficult to balance but also tricky to go in and out of doorways.

To have her silhouette taken, this lady wanted to be the height of fashion and so she is wearing her wide-shouldered evening dress with extravagant gigot sleeves off set by a beaded necklace and a watch and fob on a gold chain. Her hair has been swept up in a knot and secured with a large decorative comb with ringlets framing her face.

The silhouette is painted on card in black and shades of grey with gold and Chinese white highlights and gilding in the hair. It is housed in the original bird’s eye maple veneer frame with a gilt slip.

Item Ref. 6256

Size: framed, 180 x 156mm (7 x 6")