Valencia, specifically. So, I am forcing myself to Stay On Target and am starting the Maja dress! What, you may be asking, is this? Oh, only a costume that I’ve been saying I’m going to make for about three years.
To recap: it’s a mid-1770s (c. 1773? 1775? I’ve seen conflicting dates, gotta look into that more) portrait of the Marquese de Llano wearing a masquerade costume of a Maja. Majas/Majos were working class people who lived in Madrid in the late 18th and 19th centuries. They spoke “pure” Castilian, wore elaborate outfits, and had a general swagger and bravado that captured the imagination of Spain. In time, their clothing became adopted as the national traditional dress of Spain.
So in doing all this research on the style, I found a ton of cool resources, and then stumbled across Las Fallas, which is a big annual festival held in Valencia. Why is this exciting? Because they wear E-LAB-ORATE “traditional Spanish dress”… which is based on late 18th century Maja costumes. Of course, it’s morphed over time, but it is totally gorgeous. To wit:
I mean seriously, where do I sign up??? The hair! The jewelry! The fabrics! The 18th c. silhouette! Aiee!!!
There is, of course, a whole industry in Valencia around these costumes… but a whole lot of searching later, and it looks like not much of it is online. Bah – I had gotten all excited about buying some shoes, like these (and I think Trystan needs these!).