Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Federal Era Print gown

Fabric: cotton reproduction print from fabric.com sale

Pattern: Sense and Sensibility original dress pattern for skirt and front bodice
Sense and Sensibility ELC pattern for back bodice
La Mode Bagatelle pattern (OOP) for sleeve

Sleeve cuff detail from garments on page 79, 102 and 109 of Costume in Detail by Bradfield

Modifications: I moved the front bodice away from the fold a couple inches to get the fan front look. Without the back opening from the original dress pattern and the drawstring opening from the ELC pattern, I needed another way for my mom to get this dress on and off! Enter button side closure. I also shortened the bodice to add the waistband.

I'm going to be using this format for projects from now on. I hope its helpful.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Freeman House Exhibit

Hooray for living in a small town! The Freeman House has been borrowing some off season things of ours. So glad its being appreciated when we're not using or wearing it.

And it *is* a really great exhibit. This is just one corner so you'll have to go and check it out for yourself to see what all is there. :)

As Always,

Friday, September 16, 2011

Baby hats!

Free fabric + free time = baby hats for a special midwife and her babies.

The free pattern from Tie Dye Diva was beyond easy and a great intro to sewing with knits. Now I know what stitches to use on my machine, if I need any particular needles and if the grain of the fabric affects anything. Win win situation :)

So glad that I have another bag of fabric to dig into,

As Always,
Bethany Lynn

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pink party dress

This dress was made out of cotton rib-stop voile from Fashion Fabrics Club. The color pink was requested in the form of a light sheer fabric and this certainly fit the bill. The trim was in the stash and the petticoat functions as a decorative under-skirt to match her mother's dress. I used Elizabeth Stewart Clark's Girls Dress Pattern again but a different bodice variation. I was not sure about the neckline but it worked out just perfectly! I really did not have to alter the mock-up much at all.

Again, this bodice style is flexible, un-fitted and allows for growth just like a yoked bodice. Perfect for this girl.

Adjustable back with extra eyes.

As Always,
Bethany Lynn

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Ruffle-y Petticoat

This petticoat was made out of a sheet to go with the printed day dress. Nice white sheets are so much better quality than cotton muslin which I am used to using. My hope is that this will wear even better and last much longer than the cotton muslin petticoats that I have.

The ruffle was chosen so that the wearer would not have to wear so many petticoats all at once. Ruffles on petticoats are more common in the late Victorian period (1870s) so that is why I make this clarification. It does do a pretty good job of poofing out the skirts though! It has a deep hem and a ration of 1.5 to 1 to the skirt of the petticoat. 2 to 1 could have been done but this seemed sufficient at the time. Once the ruffle was sewn onto the main petticoat body, I bound the raw edge with twill tape. I did not want it to fray and it adds even more body to the petticoat also.

The tucks, extra buttons along the waist and a drawstring in the back will allow the petticoat to grow with the recipient. If only I had done some of these things on my first petticoats a few years back!

The construction of the petticoat is very basic. Elizabeth Stewart Clark has the basic instructions I follow just without the ruffle how-to.

As Always,
Bethany Lynn

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Girls Printed Day dress

A sweet little girl crossed paths with my family and another and somehow made her way into all our hearts. This dress was made for her very first reenacting season. I used Elizabeth Stewart Clark's Girls Dresses Pattern and really loved it. I am used to constructing mid-nineteenth century dresses a certain way based on ESC's Dressmaker's Guide. This pattern worked well for me because it used all the same techniques and concepts that I was used to. I would not put it in a beginner level but anyone can make their first dress with this pattern and some patience.

Honestly, girls dresses don't necessarily take any less time than a woman's dress! Since the fabric is cotton, gauging seemed like the best idea. Gauging takes time! I seem to forget that every time I decide to do it.

Since this girl will be growing a lot in the next couple of years, the yoked bodice seemed like the best option. She really will not need another dress for fitting reasons because of the bodice, the adjustable back, and the tucks in the skirt. I made sure the sleeve bands were a bit roomy also.

They are a bit hard to see, but the back closure has hooks and eyes with extra eyes to make the waist smaller or larger.

To get the most use out of the dress, the bishop sleeves button into the puffed sleeves so the dress can be worn at hot summer events and cooler fall events. With a jacket and some warm underthings, she could wear this dress in the cold winter also.

At the end of making this dress, I decided that more dresses need trim! It took so little time and adds so much!

As Always,
Bethany Lynn