Victorians in togas


Ladies and gents, I’ve fallen for John William Godward‘s lovely ladies. The Victorian Neo-classicist lived from 1861-1922, and was widely acclaimed until the works of painters such as Picasso grew in favor. Godward painstakingly studied the details in the architecture and dress of Greek and Roman antiquity, his favored time period, and most of his work depicts beautiful women in classical dress. In the stunning, colorfully rendered, romanticized world Godward produced in his paintings  he was often criticized for creating a world of ‘Victorians in togas’.

Some may consider it a criticism, but frankly, I like them that way. Considering the prevalence of modern mash-ups of, well, everything, I find the works gorgeous (hell, in fashion the past has always been an influence). The sumptuous beautiful draping of fabric we all associate with the Greeks and Romans along with an unexpected degree of color and color combos (especially considering how often we see clothing from this period depicted in white), mixed with ladies who do feel, to me, rather “Victorian” is most definitely eye-candy to this fashion/costume history/color lover.

It’s not hard to spot a great deal of draping, wrapping and other sorts of Greek and Roman influences in fashion right now. And these colors, to me, just feel so right. I’ve been into these colors. I’ve always been a bright colored kind of girl, but I love how these are chilled out and grayed down a bit, but they still pop in their unique and unexpected color combinations. They’re very rich, and romantic, and dreamy, and spicy and bold and delicate in the most perfect kinds of ways.

So, I picked a few of his works, and plucked some colors out from them hoping to give some color inspiration. And also, hoping to inspire you to take your fashion into your own hands. It’s pretty easy and fun to take a piece of fabric and just wrap and knot it it around yourself. It’s not too difficult and you can get a lot of use out of a single piece of fabric.

Also, I freaking love their hair. It’s a look I always sort of go for. Pretty pretty pretty (all of it).

It really is a terrible pity that Godward committed suicide after proclaiming that “the world was not big enough” for him and a Picasso.

All images from here. Do check out more if you like them.

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