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Clothes Make the Man

 802081. New York Public Library 802126. New York Public Library The 1830s were a time when men’s clothing was affected by the tug and pull of Brummell’s austere dandy elegance and the more ornate flair of D’Orsay’s early dandyism. Men in general didn’t think of themselves as dandies, but the philosophy of men’s dress was heading for an identity crisis. Tailors still reigned supreme at this time, but fashion cycles made for conflicting modes of wear. Men were more and more inclined to move away from the frills and furbelows of earlier phases of dandyism.

While women’s dress grew more elaborate, men’s clothing wavered between hugging and enveloping the masculine figure. The cut of some clothes in this time couldn’t have been comfortable for the wearer. While the dandy would never completely disappear, his representation was subject to some revisionism.


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