"Resign yourself, Catherine! Shops must be visited! Money must be spent! Do you think you could bear it?" - Northanger Abbey

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Regency Dress - Decisions Decisions

So I pinned the sleeves on and added a ribbon just to see what it would look like. And I think I prefer the pink.
But then there is also the green, with the 'shirt' underneath.

I'm thinking with the current waistline height its looking more 1790's than 1800's?
Actually its reminding me of this:

Hmmm....decisions, decisions. 
I know I have some light pink brocade and white satin crepe I could use to make something for my hair. My hair is on the short side but I'm hoping to grow it out in time.

Just stumbled upon another fashion plate on another blog that I think is a little closer to it....
Now Feathers...that's an idea...

Monday, July 30, 2012

Regency dress...another update.

So I did some epic handsewing. It aught to be an olympic sport. lol! Below you can see I finally cut out skirt and sleeves. I used the Sense & Sensibility pattern for those as I wanted to gather/pleat the back and I like the long sleeve pattern.

Above is front view just pinned together. 
Back view pinned together.

I tacked the pleats at the back down. So I could try it on and see if I needed to alter pleats or not.
 I've also made lots of self fabric bias binding to finish the seams.

Now I need to ask advice. I'm worried about if the bodice can take the weight of the skirts. I'm going to   bias bind the seam so I hope that will help re-enforce the seam. 

Any other suggestions? I notice in patterns of fashion some of the dresses have ties on the inside. Would something like that help?

Oh, and it looks better on my than on the hanger. lol!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Regency dress...a little progress

SO I messed around with the princess seams and finally jumped in and cut out the fashion fabric. I sewed the bodice entirely by hand.

As you can see I am going to use the mock up as a petticoat. So wanted to see what it would look like. I have since the photo was taken lowered the 'petticoat' front a little more.

I moved the shoulder seams back as per instructions. And the princess seams.

My next thing is sleeves and finding the right pattern. Thought I might find a modern sleeve pattern I find comfy and try to 'modify' it. What do you think? Is that a good idea?

Then its the skirt do I cut straight panels or make them A-line? And if so how steep a gradient?
My mood board
I  realize I'm going to have a seam down the front of the skirt. But Will only have the bodice and about inch of top of the skirt open. the rest will be sewn shut. Is there a way to disguise this seam?


After seeing this pinterest link
Its given me a few ideas.

It would enable me to make the centre seam look pretty. 

And I notice the dress is sleeveless. I could wear the 'nightshirt' underneath.

Update: Here is the mockup which is gonna be made into a short petticoat....


Will be using hook & eye for the front of the bodice bit. The front seam is sewn up on the 'skirt'. I haven't finished sewing it yet so this is partially sewn partially pinned at the moment.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Regency Dress - working the wrong way

Now you may or may not have seen my little rant earlier. Thanks for all your help and suggestions. I *did* give them a go and well between undoing the seams and re-sewing them and all the fraying my 'mock up' just ended up a mess. So I stepped away from it for a while to just calm down.
Then last night just before bed I had an idea (I get my best ideas then for some reason). My problem was I was trying to take patterns that didn't fit and trying to force them to fit. Maybe I should try getting a modern pattern that fitted and then adjusting the shape to look regency-ish. I had in my head an idea after seeing aylwens post about pelisses and jenni's two piece regency dress of what I wanted. Front closure, simple neckline. And what sprang to mind was a little while ago for a pattern review challenge I'd made a pattern from one of my most comfy non stretchknit tops!

So I cut it out extending the front rather than cutting on the fold and raising the neckline slightly....then trimmed the length.

Cut out a strip of fabric so I could see what it looked like with a skirt section. 
Now question is to make it more regency do I need to
......make the back higher?
....and those circular seam things?
(I see them in images are the just decorative or do they have a purpose?)
From the back

I tried it on over my foundation garments. My mock up would look nice as a dress on its own. I might keep it as my petticoat rather than using it for lining. Is my neckline right or should the back neckline be lower?

Edit: Here is my design and 'mood board'

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Regency dress - Rant!

I've made mock up of the S&S dress, and one from patterns of fashion. And been unhappy with both. I just don't feel comfortable in them. Or secure. Or in any way that they 'flatter' me.

I just get the feeling I could get the same result with a old sheet and some safety pins.

I can make clothes (I've prooved that now) but the 'regency dress' completely eludes me. Everything I try fails. But I'm running out of time to get something made for the Jane Austen festival.
I can't afford to fork out a couple of hundred quid to get a dress made.
I'm so angry about it I'm seriously considering just buying a modern maxi dress and disguising the to with a shawl!!!!!!

Surely I can't be the only person with this problem?!


The Fabric cost me the same as the cost of buying this dress
Which is the 'shape' I was looking for....just add sleeves or a jacket.
Can you see what I mean? It looks classy not bedsheet like.

Addition 2
pics of the bodice mock up

Sorry had to try taking pics in mirror....
this is my fabric I bought

Monday, July 9, 2012

Half Circle Skirts - in a spin

So I'm a thrifty girl at heart when it comes to sewing. Can't stand waste and will always try to find ways of saving money when sewing. Even if it means cutting corners (like not lining) or changing closures. So I had 2 metres of fab kath kidson-esque 100% cotton fabric. I could see my ideal in my head a circle skirt...but it wasn't to be. A half circle skirt would have to do. Now I needed a pattern. Brainwave: Butterick 4790 contained the right shape pattern piece.

But I did a silly thing....didn't allow for what effect changing the waist shaping would do (changed from losenge to circular).

It meant I got a 'dipped hem'. Making the most of my mistake I changed it to front opening, sewing up the front and using snap closure (did I mention how much I hate doing buttonholes?) I also took about an inch off the back so it was almost level but not quite.

Means when I wear it it looks level. 

I also made a matching bow but didn't wear it in the end.

 I also found I had to put darts in the waistband as for some reason as always happens the waist seems to have grown since I cut it.
I added in some darts.
And I wore it with my belt just in case....and here it is in action...

And *drumroll* I won 'best dressed'. I am well pleased about that. :)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Follower milestone - Giveaway- Winner Announced!

Giveaway: Winner 'Ana'! 

Simplicity 2588 (Size 12-20)

I announced a little while ago a follower milestone and giveaway here

I put the names into a hat and pulled one out.
And the winner is.... *drum roll*
Please can you contact me so I can arrange to send your pattern? 
(tip: post your email as a reply to this thread then 5min later delete the post and I will get notification of what you posted even if its deleted so then I can send you an email.)