Thursday, January 22, 2009

Staring Wigs

Bless me Ladies Is this I or My Brother. Mezzotint published by H. Bryer, typical of the many prints ridiculing Staring Wigs worn by Macaroni

Legal Habits: A Brief Sartorial History of Wig, Robe and Gown (pdf):

As with all fashion trends, styles of wig-coiffure tended, during the 150 years of their vogue, to oscillate between extremes. Just as Fullbottoms had ballooned to waist-length at the end of the seventeenth century, only to be superseded by shorter, more stylised wigs in the 1710s; so in the mid-1760s, as the trimmer buckle-style of wig became standard, a group of young men took to wearing exaggeratedly large wigs, called Staring Wigs, together with tightly fitting, multi-coloured clothes and spying glasses. They became known as Macaroni after the club they formed in London in 1764 devoted to Italianate designs of food and fashion, which lasted till 1772. The powdered wigs they wore accentuated the effect of the Toupet Wigs of the 1730s, and were brushed up from the forehead into a single great peak, with an immense folded knot of hair worn behind. Within a generation, however, the fashion had once again reversed, this time terminally.


thanks to gimcrack hospital

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