V52: 1770s Pannier Experiments – Style 1

In poking around the 1770s it becomes obvious that panniers are the thing to wear.  I’ve never made panniers before – I usually land in the 1780s and 90s, when I visit the 18th century, and so big rumps and super-poof round skirts are my thing, but who doesn’t fancy the look of side-hoops?

I’ve decided to try out a couple different styles of pannier, with the caveat that they *must* pack down for air travel.  That leaves out the grand panniers, the full-length panniers, any that don’t collapse into a standard-sized suitcase.

Here is my first try:

Panniers in “low hoop” position.  Yeah, they’re not even, but this doesn’t seem to effect the overall silhouette once the skirt is on.

These are a rough-n-ready pair, which just means I had no idea what I was doing when I started building them.  They’re a split version of this:

I’m really quite tickled by them for a couple reason – one, they collapse down flat; two, one can be used for a Victorian bustle; three, my favorite, they can be adjusted for “high hoop” or “low hoop,” with a system of ties and hooks I put in on the cross-pieces that hold the “U” shape of each basket.

Ties, and in that cross piece there are sewn a set of 3 hook n’ eyes (not visible, but you can see the stitch lines on either side of the ties)

On the left is the “low hoop” and on the right is the “high hoop.”

<— Low hoop  |  High Hoop —>

These things are springy when there’s nothing resting on them, but with the weight of the petticoats on top, they sit down in a very nice position.

With the whole things dressed – panniers, Ugly Puffer, and petticoat – it looks great.  The finished silhouette here is in “high hoop” position.

I go nowhere without this thing.  Makes all the difference in the world.
All dressed, ready for the gown and petticoat to go on top.  This is “high hoop.”

I’m curious to also try hip pads, but I can’t imagine they’ll pack down in the suitcase any better.  I’d like to see the difference in silhouette, though, so these are my next, far simpler experiment:



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