Le Moniteur de la Mode
French Fashion Prints, 1877

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Moniteur 1 detail Moniteur 1 Moniteur 2 Moniteur 2 detail
Moniteur 3 Moniteur 4 Moniteur 5 Moniteur 6
Jules David (1808-1892), M. Body, J. Bonnard, G. Gonin,
A. Nirondeau. E. Cailland (artists and engravers)
Fashion Studies
from Le Moniteur de la Mode
Rue de Quatre, Paris: 1877
A. Leroy R des Marais, 66: Paris; Gouboud & Fils, Paris;
H. Lefevre, Paris et al. (publishers and printers)
Hand-colored engravings
11.5 x 9 inches each
$250 each
Some examples shown here, many others available on request.

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Hand-colored fashion prints from the 1877 issues of Le Moniteur de la Mode , the celebrated Parisian women's fashion publication of the Victorian era. The fashions are modeled in naturalistic parlor or outdoor settings by women portraying everyday activities of the bourgeoisie. Chic dresses are accessorized with hats and hairdos. In the lower margin are names and addresses of the fashion houses that produced or sold the garments and accessories depicted. Each plate also is numbered lower right.

These images demonstrate the importance of France as a fashion center in the 19th Century and document the creative range of the designers of that era.

Le Moniteur de la Mode presented the latest developments in fashion and style, including coiffure and home furnishings, from 1843 to 1913. This series was part of the boom in French fashion periodicals beginning in the second quarter of the 19th Century, facilitated by advances in printing technology enabling larger production of plates. Such publications disseminated influential French fashions to provincial and foreign readers. France at the time dominated the market for luxury items, including fine clothes and accessories.

Jules David, a French painter and lithographer, was a principal contributor to the publication. David was an accomplished watercolorist who made his Salon debut in 1834. (The Salons were prestigious annual fine art exhibitions in Paris.) He helped to introduce naturalistic situations to fashion illustration -- instead of stiffly posed and isolated figures, the clothes were shown worn by women engaged in daily activities in fully realized environments. British and American fashion publications also imported plates by Jules David and others.

References:

Bénézit, E. Dictionnaire critique et documentaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs. France: Librairie Gründ, 1966. Vol. 3, p. 70.

Valérie, Guillaume. "La Mode." Anneau des Ressources Francophone de l'Education. 2000-2001. http://www.arfe-cursus.com/mode2.htm (26 February 2004).

"Victorian Fashion Plates." Earth Antiques & Appraisals. http://www.1earth.com.au/collectible/fashion/victorian_fashion_plates.html (26 February 2004).

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