As Miss Elizabeth Bennet is hosting the Period Drama Fashion Week at Elegance of Fashion the costumes of my favorite period dramas have been circulating in my mind this week.
There are so many period dramas that have gorgeous costumes that it's often difficult to pick favorites. But my favorite eras for literature and history as well as fashion are the Regency and Victorian eras so that narrows it down a bit.
For this post I asked myself this question:
"If I could own any period drama character's wardrobe which character's wardrobe would I choose?"
That in itself is a very difficult question to answer and proved to be one that was easier answered by making a list of my top 10 favorites, which of course stretched into my top 12 favorites, and I still feel like I'm missing a few! heehee :P
Without further ado, here the top 12 Period Drama Wardrobes I'd Love To Own!
#12. Ladies from Cranford 2007 & Return to Cranford 2009 - Coming in at 12th on my favorite costumes list are not one lady but rather a group of ladies - those "amazons", as their authoress described them, the ladies of Cranford! I really enjoy seeing all of the dresses worn in this miniseries from the fashionable and youthful styles worn by the young ladies to the slightly "outdated" styles worn by the more mature characters the costumes of Cranford are just gorgeous! If I had to choose one character from the series it would probably be a toss-up between Peggy Bell, Sophy Hutton and Mary Smith but I also really like Miss Matty's dresses too!
#11. Emma Woodhouse from Emma 1997 - Although this 1997 adaptation of Jane Austen's Emma doesn't capture the complete story there are many things I still love about it and one of those is the costumes. The dresses worn by Kate Beckinsale as Emma are such elegant Regency styles and a lovely array of rich fabrics are used. I'm also a fan of the hairstyles she wears in the film and during the summer you can often find me imitating her looks.
#10. Catherine Morland from Northanger Abbey 2007 - Though not always modest the dresses worn by Felicity Jones as Catherine Morland are so delightfully pretty! I really love all the fabrics and details that were put into Catherine, Isabella and Eleanor's dresses for this film. My favorite is Catherine's drop-front gown (far left) because the fabric is just exquisite!
#9. Bella Wilfur from Our Mutual Friend 1998 - I've come to like Bella quite a bit and a lot of that has to do with how pretty Anna Friel as Bella looks in the gorgeous Victorian dresses used in the miniseries! Though most of her evening gowns are rather low cut her day dresses are so sweet! My favorite is her yellow dress with the ribbon at the waist (far right), it is just such lovely fabric and the cut is so lovely!
#8. Marianne Dashwood in Sense & Sensibility 2008 - Most of the costumes in this miniseries are stunning and though I like both Elinor and Marianne Dashwood's dresses in the film I like Marianne's more. Perhaps it's the gorgeous fabrics, sweet feminine styles or maybe just how adorable Charity Wakefield looks as Marianne Dashwood when wearing them. My favorite of her dresses is the yellow one with the blue sash (far left) and by the way have you ever noticed how similar the fabric is to Bella Wilfur's yellow dress above?
#7. Elizabeth Bennet from Pride & Prejudice 1995 - The costumes from the BBC's 1995 adaptation of Pride & Prejudice are in an of themselves an exquisite masterpiece and Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth Bennet has the prettiest gowns of all! I'm particularly fond of the sleeves used on her dresses, some are rather sheer fabric while many of her day dresses have sweet ties at the cuffs! Her spencers and pelisses are also to dies for!
#6. Anne Shirley of Anne of Green Gables 1986 & The Sequel 1987 - When I think of period drama costumes I'd want to wear every day I usually think of the styles worn in Anne of Green Gables because the lower dress waistlines, pinafores, skirts & blouses and cardigans of Avonlea not only look delightful but also look very comfortable! And Megan Followes as Anne looked so charming in whatever she was wearing. Oh to live in Avonlea and wear the late Victorian / early Edwardian styles Anne Shirley and Diana Barry would have worn!
#5. Esther Summerson from Bleak House 2005 - The colors and styles worn by Anna Maxwell Martin as Esther Summerson so perfectly suit her character's modesty and meekness while combining her natural elegance. My favorite is her green dress with the buttons down the front (far left) that she more towards the start of the miniseries and I loved the hairstyles she wore in the beginning of the film too. The fabrics used for Esther's and Ada Clare's dresses are just gorgeous and no less gorgeous are the gowns worn by the elegant Lady Dedlock.
#4. Margaret Hale from North & South 2004 - I love Margaret Hale, she's stays so strong during all of the hard circumstances in her life, and in the miniseries she also stays particularly well dressed! I love the color palate they used for the dresses as worn by Daniela Denby-Ashe as Margaret - the darker shakes of greens and maroons being well balanced with the pale blues and whites. The cut of her clothes is always very elegant and (with the exception of the gown she wears to the Thornton's dinner) very modest. I also like the mixture of dresses with skirt and blouse sets.
#3. Molly Gibson from Wives & Daughters 1999 - From her charming "tartan" evening gown to her iconic blue "jumper" dress the comstumes worn by Justin Waddell as Molly Gibson are gorgeous! It was hard to choose just four dresses for the collage above because all of her gowns are so detailed and pretty! In fact all of the dresses in Wives & Daughters 1999 were spectacular and I like some of Cynthia's dresses almost as much as Molly's! Wearing Molly's dresses would be so much fun!
#2. Anne Elliot from Persuasion 1995 - This film is my favorite Jane Austen adaptation for several reasons and one of those is that the costumes so perfectly reflect the Regency time period and suit the characters so well. The dresses worn by Amanda Root as Anne Elliot are simple but elegant just like the character herself. They are is pretty pastel tones that reflect Anne's sweet, gentle nature and really make her beauty shine. My favorite is Anne's pale blue drop-front dress, so lovely!
#1. Emma Woodhouse from Emma 2009 - After careful consideration my favorite period drama wardrobe would have to be the dresses worn by Romola Garai as Emma Woodhouse in Emma 2009. I love the Regency styles, the fabrics are gorgeous and the cuts of her gowns are mostly quite modest. Even the less pretty dresses are so pretty and colorful! I definitely would love it if I could wear Emma's dresses all the time! :)
Which of these wardrobes are you favorite?
Are there any of these character's clothes that you dislike?
If you could own any period drama character's wardrobe which would you choose?