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Sociology 161: Gender Socialization & Fashion

Resources on fashion, gender, and social norms.

Tea Gown

Tea Gown

From an 1890 issue of Beauty & Fashion:

The first important item with a hostess in regard to afternoon tea is the selection of a becoming gown. The tea will taste sweeter, and the cups will look prettier, if she is robed in some gauze-like fabric of artistic make, and a dainty tea-gown is just as much consequence to her as the beverage itself, and adds considerably to her good humour. If she knows that she is well-clad, and that the pretty, flimsy lace and soft silk will bear the closest inspection of her particular friends, there is sure to be a charming air of satisfaction pervading her whole conversation, and her manner will be more than usually affable and gracious. 

Source: Bissonette, p. 17

Getting Dressed: Gilded Age Tea Dress (2:23)

Tea Gown

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