All of us here at Frock Flicks are fully aware that people making costumes for movies and TV are dealing with budget and time constraints. We’ve written about this before — costumes are typically a very small part of a film or TV series’ budget, and the costume team may get a six weeks or less to create the whole wardrobe for a production. We get it! But we exist as an alternative to the unknowing mass media that gushes over “lavish” period costumes which bear only the faintest relation to historical imagery. This is our specialized beat. So we notice how onscreen costumes are constructed and how that differs from period evidence.
One biggie is stomachers. It’s really easy to gloss over this part of women’s fashion, which existed from the late 16th century off and on through the end of the 18th. You can fake stomachers in a million ways, it seems, or at least, it seems like frock flicks have faked it forever. In our upcoming Snark Week, I’ll point out a whole lot of those cheats, but I thought that first, it’s only fair to explain what the frock a stomacher is. Then let’s see if any movies and TV shows have gotten that right.
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