10 thoughts on “Orlando in the Mid-18th Century

  1. It amuses me that they put the hoops and petticoat under the stays…I guess to look prettier on film.

    For my big court paniers I had to add pant hooks to the stays to keep the weight of the hoop and skirts from bruising my hipbones…

  2. The “1750” section of this always struck me as a bit jarring – especially when everything else seems so well done, the 1750 bit is sort ot – well – a bit saccharine/synthetic-gloss/pastel/twee and pantomime-y, in a way that seems like it comes from something else – The Company of Wolves maybe. But on the other hand, that blue dress, even if it’s hard to pin to a particular era is rather a spectacular mood-piece (it really does evove Pompadour et al, even if stylistically it’s more Edwardian-does-Georgian…), and the labyrinth transition is just an amazing scene.

    1. Agreed, especially the flowery set-design struck me as over-the-top and a bit cheap as opposed to the rest of the film.

      (This is the first time I comment here but I’ve been following your site for a while now, love it :) )

  3. Actually, I wonder whether Sandy Powell was consciously going for a 1920s-does-historical take with the costuming for this – therefore, 18th century as imagined by 1928 costume designers….?

  4. Similarly I do not greatly love the 18th century stuff in Orlando (unlike my great fondness for the 17th c kit). The gowns (and the giant wigs in particular) seem very discordant and rather chocolate-box coverish, especially since it has to be the early 1740s at the very latest to have Pope and Swift turn up for tea….

  5. “Pope is wearing a turban that, I am dead serious, is out of the same fabric as my mother’s couches c. 1988.”

    *Everyone* had furniture with that fabric in 1988!

  6. Although jarring as clothes since the costumes seem a hodgepodge of 18th century dress without really setting a date, they are beautiful. Especially the blue dress.
    But the Elizabethan-Jacobean costumes are my favourite if I had to choose between this and the first set.

  7. Actually, I think I know why they trimmed the male costumes with the ruched stuff…because they couldnt afford to have all those costumes embroidered… Literally would have cost upwards of 40k dollars more for that scene alone probably and that is why. At the same time, they needed them to be elaborate and that treatment gave the effect…albeit wrongly but it certainly gave a court vibe as opposed to an American colonial vibe which I am sure she wanted to avoid since this was going to be shown in America and most Americans and people in general know nothing about historic clothing but the effect works for the purpose.

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