Year 1800-1804



Coat Fitted knee-length, single or double-breasted, worn open or closed, high stand collars, wide revers , tight sleaves with or without cuffs, wool cloths.
Waistcoat Fitted, Single breasted, high fastenings, stand collar, embroidered or striped silks.
Pantaloons Fitted, ankle-length or long with stirrups, cotton.
Shirt Stand collars, full sleaves, not visible.
Colour Dark colours, Black, blue, green, grey, brown; pale colours for waistcoat and pantaloons.
Accessories Hats with tall crowns and narrow or wide brims, linin stocks, leather gloves, flat pumps, short boots, walking canes.


1800 - 1805 Classical/ empire period

Skirts: Gored at front and sides, straight panel at back. Joined to bodice. Flat front, gathered at the back, or pleated from sides to back. Hem clears the ground. Some trains for day, definitely for court or evening wear. Skirt appears straight. Opening at side front. Generally plain.

Bodices: Above natural waist. Drop front or wrap front. Wide, round neckline, often filled with a matching or white chemisette or fichu. Front bodice cut on cross, while back cut on the straight. Very narrow back esp. c. 1805. Corset used to pull shoulders back to create narrowness. Single dart each side below bust, unless gathered.

Sleeves: Short, puff sleeves, flat at front, fullness towards back. Also long straight sleeves.

Deborah V. McKeown 1997


Where marked (JP) the text is by John Peacock from his book Men's Fashion: The Complete Sourcebook, 1996 Thames & Hudson Ltd, London. Reproduced by kind permission of Thames & Hudson Ltd, London.

Where marked * Picture and notes are based on notes from Dover Publications.