fashion in 1700 – cosa indossavano le signore

In the early decades of the new century, formal dress consisted of the stiff-bodiced (= corpetto rigido) mantua.

The mantua was a large gown (= abito) or  overgown. Ladies wore it over stays (=corsetto), stomachers (= pettorina)and petticoats (= sottogonna).

For informal occasional the fashion was a  closed (or “round”) petticoat, and an apron (= grembiule)

The sack-back gown was a gown with pleats (= pieghe) which fell loose (= libere)  from the shoulder to the floor with a slight train (= strascico).  On  less formal occasions, these gowns had a pleated (= con pieghe) back, but the pleats were sewn down (= cucite)  to fit (= adattarsi) the bodice to the body to the waist.

Either gown could be closed in front (a “round gown”) or open to reveal a petticoat.

Open-fronted bodices could be filled in with a decorative stomacher
Sleeves (= maniche)  were bell- or trumpet-shaped, and caught up (= strette) at the elbow to show the frilled (= voulant) or lace-trimmed (=con merletti e stringhe) ) sleeves of the shift (chemise; = camicetta) ) beneath. Sleeves became narrower (= più strette) as the period progressed.

Strings of pearls (= perle), ribbons (= fiocchi)  or lace frills (= voulant merlettati) were tied high (= legati) on the neck.