El Salon De La Moda 1880 – 1890

The Library Archives contain samples of historic fashion from all over the world – and from many different eras.  While Harper’s Bazar and La Mode de Illustree are two of the more well known publications that catered to women who wanted to make their own garments – there were many, many others that mirrored their form and format.  (If not quite often stealing their designs!)

La Salon De La Moda was such a publication, that featured a 11 X 17 format folio and an over size pattern sheet from which the pattern were traced.   While there is not a broad depth of information on this magazine, the publishers were Montaner & Simon – one of the most important publishers in Spain.   The magazine was published from about 1884 through 1913.

The mast head reads (in my not so good Spainsh!) – “A biweekly journal, indispensable for families, with a profusion of black and white illustrations of the latest fashions from Paris.”

The issues contained in the archive are noted as follows:

Volume 5 – no date

Volume 6 – Jan. 14, 1889

Volume 6 – Feb. 25, 1889

Volume 8 – July 14, 1890

Volume 9 – July 13, 1891

And one mystery issue which is noted as Volume 5 – but with no publication date.  If it follows the system as above – volume 5 would be from 1888.

The pattern sheets are of an interesting type of paper.  Rather than the same newsprint as the magazines (which Harper’s and La Mode used) the paper is a semi-transparent red – with a waxy or glossy finish on it.  Heavier than onion skin – but not as heavy as newsprint.

The pattern sheet is printed both sides as is usual with these sort of publications – with a cutting guide to the pieces, but no instructions for sewing.  A template of all the pieces on the sheet is provided.  Pieces for bodices are given but no patterns or diagrams for skirts are included.

In general the art work and fashions depicted are not as elegant or as well defined as those in La Mode Illustree from the same period – though it is clear that the target audience for this publication would have been the same as that of La Mode or Harper’s.

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