Search - Quix
Search - Content
Search - News Feeds
Search - Easy Blog
Search - Tags

Homeschool High School: Pemberly Ball

I've written in the past about our son's experience with a "Pemberly Ball." If you're wondering what that might be, check out these blog posts!

Can't Get Enough Jane Austen?
The Down-Side of Literature-Based Education
I Hate Literary Analysis - Part 4

Now is a great time of year to start planning events for the winter and spring. If you are considering a “Pemberly Ball” for your own homeschool literary studies, you might be interested in how to find the costumes!  Here is the email from my son’s Pemberly Society Vice-President, describing the process.

Have fun!
Hello everyone,

Although costumes for the Pemberley ball are not required, I’m sure some of you would like to come in one anyway and are wondering how to put one together on a student’s budget. As someone who has bought, constructed, and altered several Regency costumes before (five ladies’ gowns, and two gentlemen’s including our illustrious president, to be precise), I’d like to give you some tips for putting together a fabulous look without using up your life savings.
For the ladies, really all you need is the gown. That’s all anyone will see. A basic starting point for that can be found courtesy of the Jane Austen Centre here.  If you want to buy your own, my best suggestion to you is to look on E-bay. One particularly reasonable vendor is Wendy’s Doll closet: most dresses run between $40-80. They ship very quickly, usually within a week, and are of excellent quality even though the pictures online are not particularly impressive. The only drawback is that are completely unadorned, but all they really need is a sash, which you don’t even have to sew on, and that only costs a few dollars for ribbon. If you’re more ambitious you can also add beading and trim to suit your fancy. Really, all you have to do is put your hair up in a bun. If you want to leave out your bangs, be sure to part them down the center if you really want to be period-correct.

For you gentlemen, there is a really good guides for MacGuyver-ing a look together from secondhand items. It can be found here.   There are also good instructions for tying a cravat here.  Do this so that you will not face the scorn of Sir Percy Blakney, the Scarlet Pimpernel, “Odd’s Fish, m’dear! The man can’t even tie his own cravat!” Remember that most tasteful cravats in Jane Austen’s time were white.For those of you looking for a tailcoat and a waistcoat, I got tailcoats for two of my gentlemen friends from an E-bay vendor called Monkeysuits. In both cases I was able to get them used tailcoats in their exact sizes and in excellent condition for only $20, and waistcoats run about $10, and recieved both items within three days of ordering them. For the waistcoats, the higher they button, the more period-correct they will look. One last word about tailcoats: darker colors were more fashionable for that time period, so given the choice between black or gray, the two most common colors you can find, go with the black. For pants, long pants will work in a pinch, but if you want to go for knee breeches, a good trick is to get a pair of women’s capris or petal-pushers as long as they’re relatively plain and not denim. Then you just stick a pair of white knee socks with them, and you’re done.

Well, that’s about it. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop me a line.

Take care and God bless,

The Pemberley Society

If you have any suggestions or experiences with Pemberly Balls I've love to hear about it!


Our monthly newsletter comes out on the first of every month.  Sign up for your free monthly newsletter here.

Homeschooling High School: Course Descriptions for...
Playing the Name Game!


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Sunday, 11 April 2021

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to

More Encouraging Posts

  • How to Make the Final College Decision

    Let's talk about how to make that final decision about what college to attend.

    Sometimes it's REALLY easy to make a decision. It's easy when the teen loves the college, and the parent has figured out a way to make it affordable. Other times it can be EXTREMELY difficult! When the cost is similar, and the universities both have compelling

    Read More
  • From Freaked Out to Complete Confidence in One Step

    Let's talk about real feelings. How do you feel when you think about homeschooling high school? Do any of these words sound familiar?

    freaked out - terrified - hyperventilating - procrastinating - confused - stressed - overwhelmed - immobilized with fear - panicky - ready to run - obsessed - worried - lost hope.  

    If any of these words describe what you are feeling, I have a perfect free class just

    Read More
  • 3 Reasons to Write Course Descriptions

     Why write  course  descriptions ? Many people will tell you they aren't necessary, but here are three important reasons not to shirk on that job.

    1. The College May Need Them

    Course descriptions are best written each year, as you complete each class. Waiting until the last minute, when your child decides which college to attend and  you find out they are required

    Read More
  • [Free Class] Planning High School Courses

    Do you ever wonder if you have everything you need to plan high school courses for your child? Well, wonder no more! In my free class, I'll teach you all you need to know to get you through high school planning. 

    When they were young, my boys would sometimes argue silly questions with all the passion of television political commentators.

    Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
  • 31
  • 32
  • 33
  • 34
  • 35
  • 36
  • 37
  • 38
  • 39
  • 40
  • 41
  • 42
  • 43
  • 44
  • 45
  • 46
  • 47
  • 48