Costume and Textiles
Woman's Dress (Robe à l'anglaise) with Zone FrontMade in United States, North and Central America
Artist/maker unknown, American?
Indian export fine cotton plain weave with silver foil embroidery in stem and satin stitches; silk satin; sized fine cotton plain weave
Currently not on view
1955-98-9Gift of Thomas Francis Cadwalader, 1955
LabelThis dress beautifully illustrates the relaxation of fashion between the American and French revolutions. With wide hoops now reserved for formal occasions, hips were still padded but the silhouette was bouncier and new emphasis was placed on the bosom. To accentuate this shape, dresses with tight-fitting backs, called robes à l'anglaise, were preferred; often made of lightweight cotton, these could be delicately embroidered, as in this open-skirted, trained robe. On the front bodice, satin forms an inverted stomacher called a "zone." Long, tight, shaped sleeves reflect the latest style; the short oversleeves were seen as an exotic reference to the East.