onsdag 17 juni 2015

1860's dress

Finished my 1861 dress (first post here) just in time for the lovely "Stora krinolindagen" (which means Day of great crinolines, or Great day of crinolines). And by just in time, I mean just in time. I finished the last decoration on my hat at 9.50 a.m., panicked over my hairdo at 10.15 as I could not fit the spoon bonnet on it, used some amount of violence to adjust the hair and manage to make it work with the bonnet at 10.18, put on all the underwear and the dress (using no more than 5 safety pins), and run for the bus at 10.30. But I had not been sewing that intensely last weeks, so I had just myself to blame. Friday afternoon I was like "well, it's so little left to do, I can easily do it tomorrow morning, of course I want to go swimming when it's so nice weather!".

But, everything went  together, I lost just one button on the way to the bus, and I arrived on time. Just to be stopped by the local newspaper as soon I arrived at Gamla Linköping. They was there to make a story about our gathering, and wanted to interview me a little bit. The day was very nice. We got a dance demonstration and got to try some historical dances, we had pick-nick, strolled around and looking in the shops, ate ice cream, and of course, took lots of pictures and was photographed by lots of tourists.

I was very happy with my dress. I was not as hot as I had feared, and the spoon bonnet did a good job of keeping the sun from my eyes.  I also felt very pretty in my dress! To stop ranting however, here are some photos.

Photo by Åsa Peterson (Fashion through history)

Photo by Åsa Peterson (Fashion through history)
The dress is made with separate bodice and skirt. The bodice has a fake bolero - it looks like a bolero, but is actually just trim added to a standard bodice, with the raw end of the box pleat trim hidden by a strip of fabric, and the seam on that fabric strip hidden by rows of braid. Also the sleeves has more than one layer of trim:  there is the box pleated strip of fabric, and the ends of that is hidden by a white band. The original dress had the same braid also on sleeves and lower edge of bodice, but I skipped that, to have more time to be outside enjoying beautiful spring/summer weather... I might add that later (at some time with bad weather perhaps...).

The bodice...

A close up of the bolero decoration
The inside of the bodice - you can see the stitch line of the bolero decoration
Inside of sleeve, with band hiding raw edges of trim

The bonnet is a straw spoon bonnet I bought and decorated. There was quite a lot to put on it... I was quite sceptical as I assembled it, but then it turned out very well, I think.  A friend of my (thanks Ida!) helped me making some of the silk flower and showed me how to do them myself.

Making and arranging the trim
When assembling the bonnet, I made a mistake in the order of attaching things - I put on the white lining first and then the outside decoration. That way I ended up with dark stitches in the white lining, instead of the lining hiding the stitches. Fortunately it turned out to be not visible when I wore it. 

The visible black stitches of wrong order of assembly

And the final result (slightly wet in the rain).

 This dress fitted nicely in the June challenge of Historical Sew Monthly, so here is the facts:

 The Challenge: Out of your comfort zone

What the item is (and why it was out of your comfort zone):
An 1861 dress. I found the comfort zone question interesting, so it got a blog post on its own here. The (not really) short answer is: not because it is a new time period as I thought, but because it has button holes, an "over decorated" bonnet that clashes with my modern taste, and because I tried to be more confident in my sewing and not try it on all the time after the toile was finished. 

Printed rayon, cotton for lining, silk taffeta scraps for hat decorations, linen for the under sleeves.

I used Truly Victorian 1859 Pagoda Bodice as a base, and then adapted it quite a lot to look like the 1861 afternoon dress in Janet Arnold's Pattern of Fashion.


Notions: Thread, fabric covered buttons for bodice, buttons for under sleeves, braid for decoration. A straw spoon bonnet, and polyester band and plastic (I know, I know...) green leaves for decoration of it.

How historically accurate is it? 

Well, not at all in materials, exept for the dtraw hat and the part of bonnet decoration that are silk. The dress is rayon (not invented yet). The lining is blue and brown striped cotton. Cotton of course existed but probably would not have been used as lining like this, at least not coloured. Both of them would more appropriate been silk, but that way way out of budget. The printed pattern is decent I think but nowhere near perfect.
Cut I would say is very close, as I followed the drawing of an extant garment.
Construction is half way: I read instructions of how the original garment was made in Patterns of Fashion, but did not fully follow them, for example I used zigzack instead of hand finishing seams.

Hours to complete:
About 40 for dress, 6 h for bonnet
First worn:
Last saturday for an 1850's-1860's event here in Linköping
Total cost:
perhaps 650 kr, about 70 Euro (For straw bonnet, dress fabric, grey braid and blue band, everything else from stash.)

And to finish - a less elegant photo - a happy but somewhat exhausted selfie in the elevator after a great day!

1 kommentar:

  1. Hi, I've nominated you for a Liebster award, http://costumekullan.blogspot.se/2015/07/i-got-liebster-award.html