I went to a ball! It was lovely! Then I spent all day travelling and am totally exhausted, so my plans to come home and tell you all about it immediately aren't going to happen. In the meantime, though, here is a brief update: I finished my tartan ballgown and wore it to Returning Heroes, along with my SCARLET TARTAN DRAWERS!
oh, the scandal
You can read more about this here, but the important thing is that one of Queen Victoria's lady's maids wrote in a letter about a picnic in 1859 at which the Duchess of Manchester "caught a hoop of her cage in [a turnstile] and went regularly head over heels lighting on her feet with her cage and whole petticoats remaining above, above her head. They say there was never such a thing seen--and the other ladies hardly knew whether to be thankful or not that a part of her underclothing consisted of in a pair of scarlet tartan knickerbockers...which were revealed to the view of all the world in general and the Duc de Malakoff in particular" (C. Cunningham, English Women's Clothing in the 19th Century p21).
Oh my goodness! Naturally, I needed a pair.
More to come tomorrow--in the meantime, I need to rest my very tired legs and brain and toes...and then practice the mazurka step I learned.