A Question for the Living Historians and Re-enactors

Posted by muhammad nasrudin

You probably all know by now that I love to do research and write (but mostly do research), and lately I've been working on turning that blog post, Fashion vs. Feminism, into an article, with citations and five times as much text and things. You probably also know that I haven't made very many ensembles, and that I haven't experientially explored many different eras (by which I mean my only full outfits that I've worn have been from the eighteenth century).  So I need a little bit of help.

When it comes to the cage crinoline/hoop-skirt, there is only so much satires, fashion plates, and photographs can tell me.  There are a lot of accounts out there of the regular use of corsetry, but I don't find many regarding skirt supports.  I'm hoping that some of you ladies can answer a few questions:

- Did figuring out how to sit down take a lot of practice, and does it take you much effort to control the hoop when you do?

- Do you find that you have much trouble with it in the wind, or with unexpected movements in general?  When wearing it for an extended period of time, how is your sense of place - do you tend to lose track of its "footprint" or knock it into things?

- Doors and staircases: difficult or simple?  Any special maneuvers necessary?