Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Last night I wanted to be productive but I didn't feel so much like handsewing (though I did some of that later) so I worked on a couple straw hats.   I had started taking apart some straw blanks a few nights before So I worked on getting them to the state I wanted.

And after a little bit of work, I had made a cute little hat to go with my Floral Francaise!

The hat before trimming.   I'll have to get a picture of what it looked like before.
After trimming!  I used some of the trim I'd made for my seaside bustle gown, some silk ribbon and some trim that kind of looks like fly fringe.

And here's how it looks from the side.
 I'm really happy with how it turned out!

I also started the brim for my new Regency bonnet, which is not exactly how I wanted it, but I think it comes pretty close.   I'm going for something similar to Marianne's bonnet from Sense & Sensibility.

And here are the fabrics I'm using for my Regency ensemble, which I'm writing a post about now (still trying to figure out exactly what I'm going to do).  The stripe fabric will be the hat.  The white with blue swiss dots is the fabric of my drop-front dress.

And for fun, cause I'm proud of it, here's a picture of my tiny hand stitches on the bodice of my francaise!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Floral Francaise

My Marie Antoinette inspired Floral Francaise is coming along.  I've changed my approach just a bit as I've done more research and am now making it more historically accurate, which means straying a bit from the movie dresses, but I don't think to far.  I've also decided to hand sew it.  Well, I'll do the skirt and petticoat seams on the machine, but everything else will be by hand.  What can I say?  I've been sucked in to the hand sewing thing.  I like working on it at night while watching Netflix.  And I'm getting better too, which is good! :)

So here's my inspiration and how mine is coming:

This one's my favorite.  I love that fabric!  From here.

From here.

I decided to make the front a center front closing instead of doing a stomacher.  I found lots of period examples of this and I really liked the look.  I also haven't seen many other people do it this way, so it would be a little different, which I also like. :)  Here are some other dresses that I drew a lot of inspiration from, including something I'm doing with mine, angling the stripes on the front.

This is from Costume in Detail, it's a dress from 1742-52, but I loved the center front opening and the trimmings!
 I was surprised at how early this gown was, when it seems like most others at this time period all had robings, I thought they would be on later gowns, which was true of the others I found.  And some with stripes!
1770's.  From here.
From the Kyoto Fashion book, you can see there are no robings, and in another picture (that's sort of blurry since it's in the background) it looks to be a center front closure and the description says it buttons closed, it's from 1770-5.

Another center front opening, again from 1770-5, and the stripes (which are hard to see since I cut the rest of the dress out of the picture) of the dress are slightly angled on the front and the trim follows the pattern!

 So!  Here's my progress so far.  I draped the back and sewed the pleats down as well as tacking them in a line and also tacking down the back sides to make it more fitted.  These two are from before I sewed the pleats down.

Look how the pattern lines up down the pleats! :)

From the side.
I also draped the bodice today, since I'd figured out what I wanted, and I'm really happy with the fit, though it did take some time.  I cut my fabric out, the floral fabric on the diagonal, and will hopefully start sewing that tonight or tomorrow night!

The front, I did make some alterations after this, but it looks pretty much the same, which is to say fitted! :P
And from the side.  I'm liking how the back hangs.  This is after I've sewn the pleats.
So after I sew the front bodice on to the back, I'll cut the front panels and attach them, then make the petticoat.  Man am I glad I bought more fabric!  I would not have had enough with my original 5!  Then it's sleeves and trimming!  And hemming, which I always find a pain, especially on large hems like this!!

I've also been working on the hat for this which will be a little straw one I think.  Though I may cover it with ivory silk, like the one in the movie's garden scene above.  I partially took apart a straw dolls hat, am flattening it, and I will sew the little crown back on.

So it's coming along!  I have to finish it before April 9th, which is another 18th century ball.  And of course I'll be wearing it to Costume Con. :)

I've also got lots of other plans for other things, but I'll save that for another post... ;)

Hooray for Blogger

I was excited when a lot of my costume friends on LiveJournal decided to start blogs here, because now I can kind of come back to Blogger!  I feel like I have so much more control here over how things look than I do on LJ.  I will continue to post there, but may make it friends-only readable.  So add me to your blog roll, or follow me, cause I think this is where most of the posting is going to happen! :)

I've added pages with some of my past costumes on the right over here.  I will be adding to these with links to dress diaries, etc. as I have time.  For now, I've just thrown things up there!

I'll be posting soon about my new project so stay tuned!


blogger templates | Make Money Online