Saturday, September 13, 2008

This month's sewing project - 1830s


The Greater Bay Area Costumers Guild is hosting a Wives & Daughter's Picnic at the end of September, and I am excited to be going up to the San Francisco area to attend. Plus it's another good excuse to make something new!

So my current project is a new day dress in apple green silk taffeta. I know, not a great picnic fabric, but the fabric is so fabulous and I (1) wanted a silk dress and (2) needed a color to go with both my 1830s bonnets.

I bought two hats this year from Atelier Mela at Costume College. One was a tall 1830s bonnet made from brown and mauve straws. Let me tell you: it was hard to find a matching (in historical clothes matching way) fabric color for a gown. But this is what I found:

Apple Green Silk Taffeta -

I pulled out my French Fashions of the Romantic Era (Dover) to find a design.

I have a white straw bonnet just like this one in the plate but with pink and blue plaid ribbons. I can wear it with the green silk dress but will wear the newer brown and pink straw to the Picnic.

Here is an early 1830s silhouette of my corded petticoat, plain petticoat and corset cover with sleeve supports. The sleeve is from Jean Hunnisett's Period Costume for Stage & Screen.


My mentor, Michelle, did a quick fit of my bodice that I mocked-up from the Truly Victorian Romantic Era Dress pattern. I first used the TV sleeve pattern and adjusted it for the fashion plate design.

This is my pattern and mock-up of that first attempt.


The band was too wide, and the top puff is just not "puffy" enough for my taste and to match the plate. So I scrapped the TV beret sleeve and went with the one from Jean Hunnisett.

More photos will be posted as I finish the sewing on this dress. Now to figure out my hair...

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