This fashion plate and accompanying description come from La Belle Assemblée Or, Bell’s Court Fashionable Magazine, August 1807, Volume III edition. The descriptions about dress are directly from the magazine. The publication featured quality engravings and advice about women’s fashions that became an essential part of the magazine, and also offered a special supplement of advertisements in the back that became a permanent record of commerce and fashion of the time. – A Magazine of Her Own, Margaret Beetham, p. 32. By the 1830′s, La Belle Assemblee, which had been such a force during the mid-18th to early 19th centuries, had merged with Lady’s Magazine before quietly dropping out of sight.
We scarcely ever witnessed a period when taste and fashion were more perfectly in unison, nor any season when elegance and grace shone with such unrivalled fascination. Not only amidst the ranks of assemblies and opulence, but in those simple unobtrusive adornments appropriated to the intermediate station — in those chaste habits becoming such as move in a more domesticated sphere, have our fair country women exhibited testimonies of their advancement in taste and the graces of life.
The era is long since past when the daughters of our Isle condescended to turn copyists; and the females of a neighbouring kingdom are now happy to aid their exhausted inventions by adopting the correct graces of English style.
Frocks of coloured muslin or Italian crape with a painted border of shells in Mosaic worn over white sarsnet slip, are a new and elegant article; and French veils of coloured gauze forming at once the head dress and drapery are considered as most graceful ornaments. They are usually worn with a plain white sarsnet or muslin gown, with flowers or wreaths in front of the hair, placed towards the left side so as nearly obscure the eyebrow. La Belle Assemblée Or, Bell’s Court and Fashionable Magazine, 1807