Monthly Archives: July 2010

MAKING A COAT AND BREECHES

The 18th Century tailor did not use a tape measure marked in inches, although this was apparently invented by George Atkinson in 1799. He used a ‘measure’ – a long strip of paper or parchment, to measure his client, marking each dimension on… Continue reading

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PRINCELY ANECDOTES

George, Prince of Wales, at about the time when Louis first became his tailor. Painting by Richard Cosway.There are of course many anecdotes about the prince and his self-indulgence, particularly in the matter of dress.”… if any doubt survived as … Continue reading

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THE PHANTOM TAILOR

I had done a great deal of genealogical research on my families before I started to concentrate on my gggggfr Louis Bazalgette. I was intrigued, because he was regarded in the family as a mysterious figure, the commonest question about him being: … Continue reading

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LOUIS’ HOUSES

Section of Richard Horwood’s London map of 1792-99, showing 22, Grosvenor Street at the bottom with Brooks Mews and Brook Street above it. Top centre is the location of 18, South Molton Street.We do not yet know in what ‘obscure street of Lond… Continue reading

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INJURY TO INSULT: THE REVOLTING TAILORS

Tailors were often maligned at the time, and this was partly because their craft, highly skilled though it was, was regarded as ‘unmanly’. They were portrayed in political cartoons as spare, mean and grasping. There are two obvious reasons for thi… Continue reading

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MECHANICS OF TAILORING IN THE 1780’S

This cartoon shows four of the tailor’s tools: the goose, the yard, the ‘banger’ and the needle. I’m at pains to find out as much real technical detail as I can of how tailors worked in the 1780’s. What their hours were, how they worked together, … Continue reading

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LOUIS THE PATRIARCH

If you should happen to bump into any anglophone Bazalgette on your course through life, it is almost certain that this fine specimen will be a descendant of Louis Bazalgette. If he/she happens to be French, he/she may still be a relative, because… Continue reading

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