sunnuntai 28. lokakuuta 2012

Burgundy drop front dress

Today I finally finished a dress that has been lying around for quite some time. Before the Bath trip I found nice burgundy cotton with a black print pattern and I made a drop front gown out of it. Then I got distracted, had stuff to finish for Bath and... But now it's ready! I really like it, the hem has massive amount of fabric pleated, so it's maybe more of an early 19th century fashion than anything else. I used my basic bodice pattern, the same as for the white embroidered dress, but with drop front adjustments. I also found The Hungarican Chick's tutorial on bib front gowns(aka drop front gowns) very helpful. As always, everything is handsewn, and the fabric worked like a dream, it's stiff enough to hold its shape and pleats nicely, but so thin that pleating doesn't make the dress look bulky. I might add some ribbons to tie the cuffs a bit tighter, but I ran out of ribbon for now.

First, pin the front flaps closed...

Then tie the ribbons of the drop front bit. I chose to hide the knot/bow under the bib.

The ribbons cross at the back and pass through little loops that help hold the ribbons in place.

All pinned.

I love the hem!

I made me a "Marianne Dashwood" hat :)

Works with the bonnet too.

The pleats

Some posing with my harp.

tiistai 23. lokakuuta 2012

Swallow tail jacket

Last weekend I started sewing the Costume Close-up (Baumgarten) swallow tail jacket and so far it's been a lovely project. My local library very obligingly added the Baumgarten book to their collection after my suggestion and I recently got it on loan, so I enlarged the pattern and was good to go. In an earlier post I mentioned the great tutorial written by Rebecca at A Fashionable Frolick and it really has helped me a lot. For once it was nice to have clear and structured instructions, rather than just winging it on the go.
Preparing to cut the pieces. I only had to lengthen the sleeve cap and the shoulder piece a bit, otherwise the pattern fits me fine.

Trying on the jacket. I whipped up a red cotton petticoat to go with it, too.

I really like the tails!

I need to tidy off the strange corners on the neck edge, make the stomacher and the lace holes.

The sleeves, just pinned on.
As said, I made a red cotton petticoat to go with the jacket. I also was thinking of making a green one, but a proper green fabric (aka. a shade I'd actually like) is very difficult to find here, so red is a good choice. I seem to have misplaced my cap, so maybe this calls for a new one. I'd like to do some proper whitework embroidery. Also, I need to make an apron. I've been toying with the idea of a black apron, but I'm not sure if that's period accurate. I know that black fabric was used for so-called better clothes, especially with the more rural folk, but I need to research a bit more. I just think that black would go better with the jacket and the petticoat than white.

tiistai 9. lokakuuta 2012

The Sari Gown

When I was in Bath in September for the Jane Austen festival, I met Megan who had used saris to make gorgeous Regency gowns. Inspired by that I decided to look for a sari of my own when I returned to London for a few days after the festival. This is what I bought:

The sari itself is about 5,5 m long and 107cm wide, half turquoise gold-spotted crepe-type fabric (I think), half golden yellow, sequined organza with a sequin border running around the edges. There's also a sari blouse, which I have made into the gown's bodice. Before cutting up the sari I decided to wear it in its original form, you know, just because :) I looked up for some sari wrapping tutorials in Youtube and here's the result:

The blouse needed (and still does, as I found out after attaching the hem :P) some serious taking in at the back. I intend to make a drop-front gown with an open robe on top of it, the turquoise part being the gown and the organza part the robe. The gown itself came together very nicely, though, as said the bodice still needs tweaking; I should open the neckline some more and take the whole thing in at the back, again. I didn't really need to cut the hem at all, only to separate it from the organza part and sew the shorter ends together. The hem piece was already edged with the sequin border, so that worked out well, too.

The sari blouse is slightly large on me.

Here the hem is just pinned on, I lifted it higher when I actually attached it.

The fabric is fairly thin and here I have no petticoats on, just the shift. The hem is a bit wonky as it was only pinned on.

The organza part of the hem. This becomes an open robe.

Close-up of the sequin border
I'm making the open robe after Janet Arnold's pattern, though I decided to make the back piece of the robe bodice separately, because the sari is narrower than needed for the pattern to work (i.e. I haven't got enough for the pleats to work right at the back). It still needs adjusting; maybe I should press it a bit so that the pleats would fall better and not poof out so much.

Preparing to cut the open robe. I drew the bodice pattern after Janet Arnold, but decided to make the back bodice separately.

This is the wrong side of the organza, but it's embroidered with turquoise, sequined flowers and little pin-wheels.

Trying on the gown and the robe with a belt cut from the left-over scraps of the border.

This still needs some work, somehow I look like I was pregnant or about 10kg heavier than what I am. Also the gown needs a bib front and the neckline just isn't working.

torstai 4. lokakuuta 2012

Past 18th century projects revisited

Last weekend I finally had time and energy to take a look at the 18th c. garments I have made so far. I decided to take some proper photos of them all to see how they look and fit. Here are the results.

Pockets, embroidery pattern from Eggiman's Yllebroderier

Yellow stays

Will. Not. Laugh... The silliest piece of clothing I've ever made, the pocket hoops. After the pattern in Waugh's Corsets and Crinolines.

Not much of a bum roll, I think I need to fill this up a bit or make a new one.

A smug expression is essential.
Eeek! Legs! I knitted the stockings; a very plain toe-up model, the yarn is silk-merino blend.

Green taffeta petticoat. Very lightweight, very nice to wear.

The petticoat with a caraco, fichu and ha hat made out of paper yarn. I like this ensemble the best.

Embroidered buttons with a different flower on each of them.

Working that politely disdainful expression. "Out of my way, peasant." I threw on the paniers under the petticoat even though it wasn't cut and measured for them. Still, it kind of works.

Hope my bum looks big enough.

These aren't that wide.

An anglaise-type gown. The taffeta is maybe a wee bit too shiny.

Robe retroussée dans les poches.

The sleeves were inspired by that blue caraco in KCI collection.