Sunday, October 5, 2008

Wives & Daughters Picnic review

The Picnic was very delightful, albeit very warm for the first couple of hours.

Everyone was dressed so charming. What a pleasure to picnic and visit and taste vintage apple varieties while wearing clothing from an era not frequently done!
Most everyone was in 1830s with a few in 1840s costumes. The 1830s can be quite silly, but with a large group (30-ish) it looks fabulous.

While Lynn and Lily were discussing petticoats,

I caught them up and quite a few others to take a scandalous photo of us displaying the hard work that went into our individual corded petticoats. To find out more how to make your own, please see the Corded Petticoat report.

What a collection!

I managed to finish my dress (the closing hooks/eyes and neckline lace) Friday night exactly as Lily arrived at my house. We then hopped into the car to head north to San Francisco.

I'm very pleased as to how it turned out. The waistband could have been about 1/2" tighter but was just fine for wearing. The armholes, however, could have taken that extra 1/2" as they were very snug on my upper arm.
The front draped pieces were taken from a couple of period examples from Costume in Detail.

The wonderful bonnet I cannot claim as mine as that is one of Mela's hats (Mela Hoyt-Heydon who is a professor at Cal State Fullerton and is a long-time instructor at Costume College. She is widely known for her fabulous hats - many of which reside in my sewing room.)

The last-minute frustration came Thursday night when I realized that my basic gathered sleeves would not get small enough to fit into the armhole. I decided to pleat them in because I did not have time to cartridge pleat them. Both are period appropriate techniques. I think the pleats look terrific! I can see now how for late 1830s fashion, women stitched down the upper sleeves folding these small pleats flat and tacking to the inner sleeve.

All in all - a very fun weekend and wonderful completed project! This will definitely be entered into the Fair next year, although I may add a few black accessories to pull off a "Victorian Witch" costume so that my historical sewing work might be better appreciated as a modern costume. (See the post below for this year's results and awards.)

For more photos, please see the Cloak & Corset Flickr album.


Robin's Egg Bleu said...

Absolutely stunning, stunning, stunning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jennifer said...

Thank you so very much!!

I thought about putting it into the county fair this year but to add a black capelet, belt and pointed hat so it can be judged as a "Victorian Witch" rather than a historical garment which I've found out don't get judged as they should. (See my post on the 1876 Gown receiving 3rd place after 2 adorable Wizard of Oz infant costumes.)

Thanks again.