Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Regency reticules - Jane Austen Festival

MFA collection
I need a reticule or two for Bath. I love the beautifully embroidered ones of the period, but I have no time to embroider silk on silk, instead, I will use pretty fabrics to create mine.

Something large enough for my hanky, mints, business cards, small note book and pencil, phone, embroidery, money purse and entry tickets. In period it would have contained:
... a fine linen handkerchief, a calling card case filled with the Lady's card, a small purse for tips, a vinaigrette, the Lady's seal, a tablet and pencil in a small case, and a tin of breath mints. Each case was probably housed in a small velvet bag to prevent scratches. Two Ackermann plates below show ladies in walking dress with reticules. Georgian Index

For reticule one, my apprentice used the pattern on the right, full instructions can be found here. She used leftover black silk from my partner's Regency tailcoat.

Phoebe with black silk reticule
 While she machine stitched, I hand stitched a patch work reticule using a pattern provided by my friend @patrick Dale Andrews, a wonderful costumer of 18th and 19th garb. Its a patch work style and the squares are 3". I am pleased to say that I finished first, lol, not that it was a competition, but hand stitching can be quick as machine.

Here is my step-by-step procedure in piccies:
Laid out to be stiched

All sections stitched together, right side

Wrong side

Making the cylinder, wrong side

Right side

Cotton lining, wrong side

Right side

Lining inserted into bag

Tassel added

Stitching for ribbon lacing

Bag completed bar lacing ribbon

Lacing ribbon waiting to be inserted

This was a very enjoyable and simple project that resulted in a very pretty reticule.

Friday, August 17, 2012

A Regency Chemisette with ruff - Jane Austen Festival

A new chemisette with a ruff collar will come with me to Bath, I love the one in the painting on the left, such gloriously sheer silk, ah if only we could buy such beautiful fabric now, le sigh!

I am using the pattern from Janet Arnold's Patterns of Fashion, but without the pin tucks.

So here is my finished version, I have made three collar layers in organdy as it keeps shape so well, the bodice is cotton muslin.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Another spencer - Jane Austen Festival

An early 19th century spencer
I have made one warm long sleeved spencer for my trip to Bath, now I am creating a lighter one, using the spencer shape on the right.

I will wear it with my Regency 'little white dress' to give it a different look.

 My sewing assistant, our new ginger baby!

Right: What's this crinkly stuff?
Left: Bored now, what other interesting things can I do ...
Left: Back view with peplum.
Right:Front view with pleats and band.

Spencer finished bar the neck ruffle and hand sewing.



Sunday, August 5, 2012

Regency long stays - Jane Austen Festival

Image from The Asylum blog
I have wanted a pair of long Regency stays for a while but have prevaricated as my short stays work very well and are exceedingly comfortable, I used Sense & Sensibilities underpinings pattern to make these short stays, however they are a few years old and a new pair of stays for Bath seems like a good idea ... however with only three weeks left, two gowns to complete, two chemisettes, another chemise, 'millions' of button holes on J-Ls men's garb, PLUS a big 'secret squirrel' commission to fulfill before I go, so, they might not get finished, or I will take them with me as my travelling project.

I am using Past Patterns 1830s-1940s stay pattern for the base, consulting Norah Waugh's Corsets and Crinolines and working with my S&S stays as I know they fit me.

Here is my first cut of my pattern, I had to add a considerable amount to the sides of the PP size 18 that I drew up, otherwise it would have finished at my shoulder blades at the back, way too much of a lacing gap.

I amended the width using the S&S short stays size 16 that I know fits me and now it goes right around and the hip darts are in the appropriate places front and back. Its probably too wide now for decent lacing, but I'll make the toile and see how it goes.

Back lacing on the stays should be similar to the image on the left. I love the braided hair in the image as well, so pretty.

The fabric I'm using is a white cotton damask and white cotton sheeting.

I am using cable ties instead of cord as I have it in the stash and this is a quick project, baleen was used in period and cable ties work just like it.

I also have a wooden busk created from a slat from an old pine cupboard, 'make do and mend".

 I fitted the damask layer to Ermi and took in the side seams and adjusted the fit accordingly.

Then I pinned both layers together, making sure I aligned all the seams together.

Next I inserted the bust and hip gussets, normally I would have turned under a seam and stitched neatly, but these have just been zigzagged into place and I'll cover with binding. I've only 4 days left to finish these!

Then I added the boning channels.

Attached the straps and my temporary lacing strips

Now for the final fitting on me tonight .... which went well ...

Front view, the breast gussets are a tad big, but I shall gather them in at the top
A perfect Regency breast 'shelf'
Side front view, shelf in evidence lol!
Another front view
 Last things to do are the binding and then stitching all the lacing holes!

FINISHED! Well as much as I can do before I fly out to London. I have no time to stitch lacing holes as I leave on Friday and there is still acres of hand stitching to complete on other garb, so I am using my temporary lacing strips until I return. I bound the top, but before that I filled in the armhole spaces as they made the bodice top less stable and so I enclosed them and that provided the required stability. So this isn't a pretty garment, but it sure works well!

Photos taken sans busk.