La Belle Assemblée is now best known for its fashion plates of Regency era styles, and until the 1820s it also published original poetry, fiction and non-fiction stories, articles on science and politics, and book and theatre reviews. Contributions from authors and readers were encouraged, and included those from Mary Shelley.
While each number of La Belle Assemblée typically contained five plates. One showing a member from fashionable society, two showing the latest fashions, and a further two providing sheet music and a sewing pattern. The magazine separated the fashion from the remainder of the publication. These two parts could be purchased separately, either with the magazine and two plates or just the fashion plates with the lsewing pattern together (‘La Belle Assemblée’).
As well as general information about fashions for the coming month, this section included detailed descriptions of the dress worn by the social elite at important events, such as the king’s birthday celebrations.
The magazine was originally printed in black and white for ladies to crayon themselves, however, from 1807 it was available shaded in.
It also included a needlework pattern. The periodical finished with a section of promotional ads, which included a list of the latest novels.
La Belle Assemblée was published monthly and ladies were expected to keep their copies and have them bound at the end of each volume which covered six months. A title page and index were given in the final number of each volume for this purpose.
It also included novels and short stories and novels, poetry and sheet music which made it a must have periodical for ladies of a certain class.
You can find the links to many Regency Plates at Regency Fashion