The Girl with the 19th Century Curl: Hot Tongs, Setting Lotions, and False Hair

Il Bazar, 1869.
(Met Museum)

During much of the 1860s and 1870s, hair arranged in artfully placed curls and ringlets was all the rage. But for ladies with naturally straight hair, those curls weren’t always easy to achieve. Who can forget the scene in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women when Jo burns off her sister Meg’s hair with a pair of hot tongs?[…]Continue Reading

Ice Skating Fashions of the Nineteenth Century

Women Skating by Jean-Georges Béraud, n.d.

For most mid-nineteenth century ladies, fashionable outdoor sport consisted of little more than horseback riding, or a spirited game of croquet. But with the winter came yet another option for outdoor activity. In her 1877 book The Ladies’ and Gentlemen’s Etiquette, Eliza Duffey states that ice skating “is to winter what croquet is to summer.”[…]Continue Reading

Victorian Advice on DIY Christmas Decorations

Hanging the Mistletoe by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 1860.
(Private Collection)

For many Victorians, homemade Christmas decorations were far preferable to those bought in a store. Why spend good money on glittery trinkets when you could make something much more meaningful yourself? An article in the 1887 edition of Household Words advocates for doing just that, declaring:[…]Continue Reading

A Convenient Fiction is a USA Today Bestseller!!

The Reader by Charles Baugniet, n.d.
Dear Readers,

My new Victorian romance novel A Convenient Fiction is a USA Today Bestseller!! This is my third book—and the third of the Parish Orphans of Devon books—to have made the USA Today bestseller list this year as a single title. I wasn’t expecting it. My illness and surgery last month resulted in the launch of this novel being a little less robust than with my previous books. What a surprise to find A Convenient Fiction squeaking onto the list! […]Continue Reading

A Convenient Fiction Release Day: Blog Tour, Giveaway, & More!

It’s release day for my new Victorian romance A Convenient Fiction (Parish Orphan of Devon, Book 3)! To celebrate, I’m over at Frolic today with an exclusive excerpt. I’ll also be embarking on a virtual book tour this week, complete with reviews and a special giveaway. To top it all off, the eBook price of A Convenient Fiction is reduced to just $2.99 for the entire week!

[…]Continue Reading

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