Friday, December 2, 2011

Let's Talk Gloves ~ Dahling, With Gail Carriger

I admit it, yes, I'm one of them. I'm one of those girls that always has cold hands. Always. This has resulted in a love affair with gloves.

Martin Margiela, 2001 via

The affair began when I moved to Ohio, persisted when I lived in England, escalated when I excavated in the Andes, and has never stopped.

Self at FenCon
My obsession has encompassed every material and type of glove from woolen mitties to fingerless lace to kid elbow length to satin opera gloves to plaid driving gloves.

 Gail's event collection (as opposed to every day wear)

Fortunately for me, I have rather small hands which means many vintage gloves fit me. Also freinds and family have learned of my love for gloves and so I have inherited many a particularly special pair. For example, of the ones above the red opera, and sage lace, and the cobalt are all from my grandmother from the 1920s. Also, I am less inclined to purge gloves as they take up so little room. And then my friends who knit get in on the action.

Here are some great shots from the runway on modern fingerless gloves.

It's amazing how the addition of gloves to an outfit can render it instantly punk, or retro, or ladylike, or edgy. I will say I tend to prefer lined leather for my everyday jaunts about town, cloth is so slippery.

The ones that seem to garner the most attention, however, are my little net gloves.  There is something about them that seems to be universally appealing.

You don't have to take my word for it, Tuppence Hapenny covers the same subject for those who are after vintage.

Of course, white is the classic choice. But they do get dirty easily, so tip number one, avoid white kid. It feels wonderful and wears great but is impossible to clean and very few professional cleaners know who to do properly it anymore.

You can go for the retro without being too vintage derivative by picking a glove color that doesn't perfectly match your purse, or by going for something that coordinates with the pattern of the outfit rather than fitting in perfectly.

But there are ways to make even your vintage gloves work with a modern street look too. Just plain old black works wonders in a high glamor context, but a pop of color can be ultra modern in a street chic look, see the catwalks this Fall and various style bloggers.

The other cool things about gloves is if you have boney little wrists (like me) that don't fit most bangles, puting the bracelet on over the glove makes it fit properly and not bruise your wrist bone!

How about a pair for Sophronia? She's my new main character in the Finishing School series.

1840s mitts via The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

And you know what the best thing is about gloves on the convention circuit? They protect you from Con Crud! It's fantastic. Of course, keeping a low intake of alcohol and sugar and getting plenty of rest are also helpful.


  1. I adore the look of gloves but find having the fabric between my fingers and the lack of sensation very odd/uncomfortable/inconvenient...not quite sure how to describe it but it's a problem. This is where the current fad for sleeves and fingerless mits is a godsend. Of course, a little discomfort never stopped me wearing a corset either. ;)

  2. Gloves also prevent sweaty hands whilst learning the basics of the tango, as I found out a few weeks ago...

  3. See, I'm weird. I have cold hands but like hats, I absolutely despise gloves. I'd rather have cold hands then wear them. I've even been known to shed them when playing in snow.

    However, odd for you to post this today. My boss was wearing these knitted fingerless gloves at work today and declared her wrists were cold. No other part. Not her hands, fingers, or the rest of her body. Just her wrists. Guess it's my gloves by proxy day.

  4. I love them, but find it hard to fit my long fingers. The sizes don't take into account finger length. I especially love the 'bangle solution'. I just bought some rather steampunk long gloves today. My hands are almost never cold, but I love wearing gloves.


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