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Ladies who a few years ago would have considered the idea appalling, calmly array themselves in the glorified dressing-robe known as a " tea gown," and proceed to display themselves to the eyes of their admirers. The reason, perhaps, is not very far to seek. Certain adventurous damef, who determined some years siuce on the invasion of man's last stronghold, the smoking-room, arrayed themselves for conquest in bewitching robes de chambre. Their less enterprising sisters, not quite desiring to follow them to nocturnal extremities, were unwilling to be defrauded of the opportunity of adding another weapon to the arsenal of the toilet, hence the origin of the tea gown, Of course it in no way resembles" the dressing-gown o£ utility. It is of elaborate design and infinite cost. It is worn for about an hour in the day, and yet, in a country house visit of a week, the same must on no account be exhibited more than twice, if, indeed, so much may be allowed. It is absolutely useless, and utterly ridiculous ; but this is not the worst that may be said about it. It is, to all intents and purposes, a deshabille ; and so great is the force of association that the conversation is exceedingly apt, nay, almost certain, to become dexhabitie aa welL The gentlemen in house 3 where tea gowns prevaU relieve themselves of their shooting attire and re-appear very frequently in gorgeous smoking suits ; there is an ease and sans Jacon about the whole proceeding that favours laxity of discourse, and advantage is generally taken of the latitude afforded At their first beginning tea gowns only put in an appearance when the beverage from whioh they take their name was dispensed in the hostess's boudoir, and only a rare and favoured specimen of the opposite sex was admitted on suffrance. But such old-fashioned prudery has long been thrown aside in the eager desire for more admirers of such becoming raiment ; the tea gowns have d-scended to the drawingroom and the hall, and have become moro marvellous and more voyant in the transit. With the graceful neglige" toilet there has come in a habit of louaging, which is certainly of most doubtful grace. Hands are not unfrequently to be seen, clasped above or behind the head, thus often liberally exhibiting the arm by the falling back of the loose sleeve ; feet and ankleti are lavishly displayed aa dainty slippers are rested on the fender ; more ardent spirits recline in ostentatious repose on various sofas. It is considered the thing to suit the action to the attire, and exhibit it in the supremaoy of ease. In some very Bohemiaa establishments it is voted a bore to dress again for dinner.

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Bibliographic details

FREE AND EASY MANNERS IN LONDON SOCIETY. (London World.), Evening Post, Volume XVII, Issue 387, 5 April 1879

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FREE AND EASY MANNERS IN LONDON SOCIETY. (London World.) Evening Post, Volume XVII, Issue 387, 5 April 1879