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This is the desciption of the dresses published alongside the image:


Fig. 40. White satin petticoat trimmed with fur. 

The hair dressed in easy curls, combed straight upon the forehead, and the hind hair in ringlets. Turban- cap à la polonaise of white satin, trimmed with two fur bandeaux, and tied behind with a purple satin riband. Five white ostrich feathers, two of which edged with purple, placed at the front. White satin petticoat trimmed with fur. Robe of purple coloured satin, embroidered in gold, with long sleeves, and short full sleeves of spotted crape. Tiffany handkerchief. Black silk and gold twisted cord round the waist, tied on the right side in a bow, the ends trimmed with tassels. Isabella bare skinned tippet. Two strings of beads round the neck. Gold earrings. Purple satin- shoes.


Fig. 41. The hair frizzed and thrown into large curls; Chignon turned up plain, and the ends returned in ringlets, Cap of coquelicot satin, trimmed with sable. One white, edged with coquelicot, and two coquelicot coloured ostrich feathers placed in the front. White satin petticoat, trimmed with a white satin riband plaited. Polonoise of coquelicot yellow coloured satin with short sleeves, trimmed with sable, and long sleeves of white satin. Prussian tucker trimmed with lace. Large muslin handkerchief. Sash of white satin riband. Pearl ear-rings. Two strings of beads round the neck. Coquelicot coloured shoes. Barbary goat skin muff.


Fig 42. The hair dressed in small curls, combed straight upon the forehead, and the hind hair in ringlets. Chiffonet of white satin, spotted with chenilles, crossed in two parts with black silk net, and the end trimmed with black lace. Two white ostrich feathers placed on the right side, and two diamond pins in the front. Petticoat of fine muslin embroidered in gold. Polonaise of black and yellow figured silk velvet; short sleeves, the whole trimmed with a broad stripe of white satin, and a broad black lace. Handkerchief within the belt. Diamond necklace and earrings, Isabella bare skin tippett and muff.Published February 1st 1795 by Nicolas Heideloff at the Gallery of Fashion Office, No. 90 Wardour Street. 


The Gallery of Fashion was a record of existing costumes worn at the time in elite circles in Britain , rather than fashion plates.  It was the first periodical in Britain to focus on the changing taste in dress and illustrates the difference between French and English taste.


In the introduction Heideloff proclaims: "A Gallery of Fashion is a work long wanted, and long wished for, and now makes its appearance upon a very extensive plan. It is a collection of the most fashionable and elegant Dresses in vogue. This work, so necessary to point out the superior elegance of the English taste, is the first and only ever published in this country; it surpasses any thing of the kind formerly published at Paris, and shews at once the different fashions invented at different periods... 


The Publisher will make it his particular study to select those magnificent dresses, in which the Ladies appear at the routs, the opera, the play-houses, and the concert-rooms; as well as those elegant morning dresses for Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens.


This Gallery will not only be interesting to Ladies of the highest fashion, but must be deemed absolutely necessary to every person concerned in the fashions of the day. It is likewise submitted to the admirers of the fine arts, as an agreeable series of objects, for the imitation of those Ladies who wish to mix entertainment with improvement." (Advertisement, at front of vol.I)


The list of subscribers was impressive and included: including daughters of George III, along with members of the aristocracy. Some of these women allowed  Heideloff to draw them int their dresses which were then etched and hand-coloured in the magazine thus representing them as leaders and inovators in the world of fashionable Britian. Heideloff claims: 'they will find the Publisher always ready to represent their dresses in that style of elegance, and that original taste, which is so peculiar to the British Ladies."


According to Heideloff contemporary English fashions emulate the simplicity of Ancient Greek dress...." it was reserved for the Graces of Great Britain to take the lead in Fashion, and to show that, if they do not surpass, they certainly equal the elegance of the most celebrated Grecian dresses. In short, beauty, shape and taste are nowhere more general, nor anywhere better united, than in England …"


Artist, etcher and publisher: Nicolaus Heideloff (1761-1837).

Nicolaus Innocentius Wilhelm Clemens von Heideloff was born in Stuttgart, where he trained as an engraver and was court engraver to the Duke of Württemberg.  In the 1780s he moved to Paris where he made a living painting miniatures. During the first years of the French Revolution he fled to London where he spent the next 30 years. He started by working for the publisher Rudolph Ackermann but in 1794 started his own publication. In 1815, he was appointed to the directorship of the national paintings gallery in The Hague, now the Mauritshuis. 



Evening Dresses, Nicolaus Heideloff - Framed Antique Print

SKU: 1257
  • Image Number: 1257
    Publisher: Nicolaus Heideloff
    Medium: Aquatint and etching with hand-colouring

    Date: 1794

    Framed size (h x w): 

  • If you would like to come and see a print or have any questions please get in touch by emailing

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