This site contains information based on the following:
- descriptions of Welsh costume written by and for tourists to Wales 1700- 1900, from manuscript and published sources. These are arranged by subject and date where possible. So far, this comprises over 100,000 words from over 300 different sources. For more on what tourists wrote about Wales and the people of Wales, see my other web site, Early Tourists in Wales
- information about images of Welsh costumes in drawing volumes in the National Library of Wales; the National Museum of Wales and the Cardiff Central Library collection and other public collections;
- a study of Welsh costumes in most of the museums in Wales (and some in England);
- references to Welsh costume in Welsh Newspapers on Line, using search terms in both Welsh and English
- a study, funded by CyMAL (Museums Archives and Libraries Wales a policy division of the Welsh Government) which analised the fabrics of nearly 40 19th century dolls in Welsh costume.
- a study of 18th and 19th century Welsh, Welsh-English and English-Welsh dictionaries for Welsh costume terminology
- a study of over 200 Welsh hats.
See the panel on the right for links to 400 separate pages on the subject.
The site includes over 1,000 images including many detailed photographs of Welsh costumes and fabrics. It does not contain as many prints, paintings and drawings of Welsh costumes as I would like owing to copyright restrictions and costs, but it contains links to other web sites, especially the People’s Collection Wales which contains many images of Welsh costume, including all of the core collection of Welsh costume images in the National Library of Wales, which, with their co-operation, I uploaded and fully catalogued.
Wikipedia has a page on Traditional Welsh costume (most of which I wrote)
The tall and glossy beaver hats, the bob-tailed gowns, the clogs and the granny cloaks are doomed, as the old English costume was in years gone by, and the day will come when the Welsh woman’s wardrobe of the past will be exhibited with other relics of a bygone age when women openly avowed their nationality by wearing the garments of which their foremothers were justly proud.
Marie Trevelyan, Glimpses of Welsh Life and Character (1893), pp. 170-171