Monday, April 28, 2014

~1860's Navy and White Summer Day Dress

I drafted the pattern myself using the instructions outlined in Mrs. Clark's The Dressmaker's Guide. The bodice pattern was made using the draping technique and the skirt and sleeves are simple rectangles. As you can see, the long sleeves button into the short, puffed sleeves for more versatility. I purchased the floral lawn and navy Swiss dot from Fashion Fabrics Club. The skirt is gauged and attached to the bodice with a dog-leg placket and full enough to go over a very large hoop. The collar was made very quickly out of a vintage handkerchief. Someday, I hope I can have pictures of the recipient wearing her dress. For now, these will have to suffice. Happy Spring! 

(Please excuse the fact that this dress was not displayed on a dress form for the pictures. My dress form was too small for this dress.)

Friday, April 18, 2014

~Navajo Waves Ripple Afghan

The very beginning.......

In progress......

Blocking time!

This wool loved the steam and I loved that it turned out with square corners and straight edges.....

All done and ready to go!

For more information on the pattern and yarn that I used, see my ravelry project page

Friday, April 4, 2014

{An 1860's Child's Dress}

The weather here has been just crazy! One day, we have 60* weather and the next, we have snow! Sheesh! I sewed this little dress for a friend of ours a couple of weeks ago and I thought I should take advantage of the pretty precipitation that this photoshoot would offer. 

The fabric is simple cotton homespun from Joann's fabrics and the trim is from Abraham's Lady. Both have been in the stash for some time and I think it will be much enjoyed by this little boy. (Yes, little boys wore dresses until they were toiled trained in the 1860's.) 

His mother let me borrow his current dress to make a pattern. I then enlarged it in the side seams, around the armscye, and lengthened the sleeves, bodice and skirt. It was very easy and it was so nice to not pay for a pattern! Similar styles of patterns can be bought from the Sewing Academy

Finished with wooden buttons, also from Abraham's Lady. Easy peasy! 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

{An 1860's White Dotted Swiss Garibaldi Shirt}

I used the Past Patterns Garibaldi shirt pattern and 100% cotton dotted Swiss from Georgia Fabrics on Etsy.  After some research, Georgia Fabrics seemed to have the least expensive Swiss dot while still being great quality. What a find! This was my first time to sew with Swiss dot and my first time making a Garibaldi blouse. I do believe more of these shirts will be in my future. They are so light and airy-- perfect for hot Summer reenactments! Why have I been wearing two layer- cotton dresses my whole reenacting career?! I am about to be too old for these shirts so I better take advantage of it. 

The pattern was well written and easy to follow. I made this shirt according to the instructions except for where I felled the seams instead of overcasting by hand. Since a lady ordered this dress, I wanted to get it done fairly quickly and have it hold up after many washings. Flat felling the seams was a better option for me while still being historically accurate. I added the period correct lace by what looked best to my eye as it was not a suggestion in the pattern. Buttonholes were done by hand while listening to this and this

Just a hint--Never try to cut wristbands on the bias. It just won't work even if the dots or other pattern of the fabric looks better on the bias! Trust me. Not worth the headache or the date with the seam ripper. ;)

I made a size 12 for this young lady but since she is quite tall, I lengthened the overall length of the body and the sleeves by several inches. I wanted it to tuck in and not come out easily. The drawstring waist will also help with the 'duck tail' look when wearing.

Overall, a fun, pretty project. I will definitely order from Georgia Fabrics and use the PP shirt pattern again. 

Happy Spring! What have you all been sewing?