Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Spencer...The Latest Fashion Statement?

Spencers became popular about 1810. These short jackets were well suited to the high-waisted styles of the Regency, and had the advantage of flattering many figures, both svelte and not-so-slender.

Over spring break, while I was searching jacket and sweater patterns to decide on my next big knitting project, I found a pattern for this knitted spencer. The Sideways Spencer, as it is called, was designed by Annie Modesitt, a costumer and clothing historian. The jacket is knit sideways---that is, from cuff to cuff---in a cable pattern that appears to add body to the garment.

I plan to knit this spencer, although it is not my next big project. I can't quite imagine myself wearing such a short jacket, and I wonder if, during the Regency, spencers were worn by not-so-svelte women on the shady side of 50. If I decide against making it for myself, I have a 30-year-old niece who looks great in just about anything. She may be the recipient of this old, yet new jacket.

What is your favorite old-yet-new fashion?