Clothes during the Shakespearean time period reflected the energy and high points of the period. Even though the upper classes and merchants of earlier time periods had dressed in rich and colorful fabrics, greater elaboration in dress was seen in the 16 th century. The names of the Elizabethan wardrobe indicated what their foreign origins were: French hose, French hood, Spanish bonnet, and Venetians.
Upper class men and women dressed more for display than for comfort in the Elizabethan era and even their undergarments were designed to contribute to their appearance. The garment worn next to the skin by both women and men was a shirt, though in the case of the women it was called a ‘smock’ and went to the persons ankles. Men also wore ‘trousers’.
The main feminine garment usually consisted of at least two parts: a bodice and a skirt, which were called a kirtle or petticoat. Clothing in this time period were very intricate and the amount of time that it took to get dressed took forever, because there were so many ties, hooks, and pins.
A large variety in materials, ornaments and color characterized women’s outer garments. Women and men alike were decorated with braids, embroidery, pearls, jewels, or pieces of lace. Men’s hair styles varied dramatically. Sometimes their hair was cut closely at the sides and was sometimes held with gum. The costumes and sets of the Shakespearean era influenced the production of the plays. Below are some examples of costumes of the period.
Taking a Spin on Shakespeare
|Much Ado About Nothing Summary||
|Our Spin on Shakespeare|
|Shakespeare's Infulences on the Public|