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Not currently on display at the V&A

Riding Coat

1750-1759 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Women’s riding outfits, known as ‘riding habits’, of the 18th century adapted elements of men’s dress. This riding coat of the 1750s is styled after a man’s coat, although it has been modified with a dart or 'fish' and a waist seam to fit over stays and a wide petticoat. Another masculine element is the mariner’s cuff, with a scalloped flap running parallel to the length of the sleeve. It was a style first seen on the coats of naval officers, although their uniform was not officially defined until 1748. The mariner’s cuff became a fashionable feature of civilian coats in the 1750s and soon began to appear on women’s riding habits.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Wool, silk, linen; hand-woven, hand-sewn
Brief Description
Women’s coat for a riding habit of medium brown worsted, 1750s, British; lined with yellow sarsenet
Physical Description
Woman’s coat for a riding habit of medium-brown worsted. It has a round neckline, long, curving, 2-piece sleeves with vertical ‘mariner’s’ cuffs. There are wide skirts below the waist seam with a horizontal pocket and shaped pocket flap on each front. The fronts have a deep point below the waist at centre front. The backs are cut in 1 piece with its skirts. The sleeves and bodice of the coat are lined with yellow linen; the skirts and cuffs with yellow silk sarsenet. There is a ‘fish’ [dart] in each front edge at the level of the 3rd buttonhole to shape over the edge of the stays that would be worn underneath. The coat fastens at centre front 9 worked buttonholes on the left front and 6 brown silk-covered buttons (3 missing) on the right front. There are 3 buttonholes on each pocket flap and 3 3 buttons below; each cuff fastens with 3 worked buttonholes and 3 buttons.
Dimensions
  • Overall length: 70.0cm (approx)
  • Bust under armholes circumference: 85.5cm (approx)
Summary
Women’s riding outfits, known as ‘riding habits’, of the 18th century adapted elements of men’s dress. This riding coat of the 1750s is styled after a man’s coat, although it has been modified with a dart or 'fish' and a waist seam to fit over stays and a wide petticoat. Another masculine element is the mariner’s cuff, with a scalloped flap running parallel to the length of the sleeve. It was a style first seen on the coats of naval officers, although their uniform was not officially defined until 1748. The mariner’s cuff became a fashionable feature of civilian coats in the 1750s and soon began to appear on women’s riding habits.
Collection
Accession Number
T.197-1984

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record createdAugust 25, 2005
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