Thursday, April 24, 2014

1800's Fashion Timeline: 1800-1820

Oh boy, here we go!
At the turn of the century (and by that, I mean 18th century turning into the 19th century; this was called the Regency era), dresses were really simple. Waist lines were high, and continued to rise. I believe the highest ever was right around the 1810's. All the fashionable ladies wore pale colors, with thin fabrics that were sort of clingy. If you look at different paintings, you will see what I mean. The ladies in the picture below have scandalously high skirts (oh, they are showing their ankles!), but that was a fashion for evening dresses.
Here is the back of one of my favorites; the cherry embroidery is so beautiful. The cut is really....graceful. The beginning of the Regency era, the skirts were cut rather slim, but towards the end they started adding more fullness in the back, which I love.

Most BBC dramas have done a great job sticking with this, but compare the costumes in the BBC Pride and Prejudice with the costumes in the Keira Knightley version; the movie did not do a very thorough job. I'll explain in a little bit.

The costumes on this show were so amazingly accurate!
And now we have the other one....

And this dress....I don't where where it came from. In all the pictures, she looks like she isn't wearing the proper undergarments. See how the waistline goes down to her natural waist? Not cool. The other thing that bothered me about this movie was they portrayed Elizabeth like she didn't care what she looked like, but back then they would have been raised to care a great deal.

1825 Evening Dress

I saw this dress yesterday and I think I just died. Why are all the dresses I absolutely adore from before the 1860's?
Anyway, I haven't seen a dress from this era that I actually liked. So remember, Regency era was all high-waisted dresses (think Jane Austen films), which was 1800-1820. This particular dress was of the style were waistlines were dropping (by waistline, I mean where the skirt begins); somewhere just in between below the bust and the actual natural waistline, more towards the waistline. Here is the link to the original Metropolitan Museum article, so you can zoom in a little.
So it looks like the skirt is box pleated; I can't figure out why they hemmed the skirt like that, it looks kind of sloppy.
I don't normally like tight sleeves with puffs at the top, but I love this particular one. When you zoom in on the side view, you can see how there is a small band of some kind of pleating just above it. It looks like there is quite a bit of piping around the armhole, and on those side seams on the bodice front.
 The back looks like it closes with hooks and eyes, with a velvet ribbon covering the area where the stitching was made.
I would totally love to make this dress some day! I wouldn't take all that much fabric, because during this era, I think two petticoats was the style to provide only a little fullness.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Quilted Quilt Block

This may seem a bit lame, considering I didn't actually make the quilt block, but it took forever. F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Just to get the darn thing hand quilted. This is the one I started way back at the quilting day that I wrote about a week ago. Mrs. Hoobery was the one who sewed the whole thing (with a machine) and then I took the block home when I couldn't finish it.
I wish I could have thought of a more creative pattern other than stitch-in-the-ditch, but I was a bit lazy :/. So there you have it. And yes, the colorful side is the front. I'm just proud of the back; you can't see the quilting at all on the front.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A New Pinafore

This is a pinafore I made for Camille. I really love how it turned out, and it was a really quick easy project. I think it took me six hours to complete, which really could have been faster. Camille has really been wanting one; hopefully she will get a lot of use out of this one. I used Mrs. Clark's pattern to make it, which is almost like saying no pattern because she teaches you to draft your own pattern using measurements.
So for those of you that don't know, a pinafore is an apron for girls who haven't yet reached the age where their skirts are floor length. The difference between a pinafore and an apron is simple: a top part of a pinafore has a back, and the skirt goes around a little more than an apron. Girls wore pinafores more than women wore aprons, simply because it extended the life of the girl's dresses. It protects from all kinds of rough-and-tumble play, and also can hide stains. I also think aprons on women look more shabby than pinafores on girls; girl's could dress up their pinafores a lot, although decorative aprons were worn by both women and girls.
It does need some modifications; she says the length is fine, but I think I will add a tuck to the hem. On her part, she kind of wants the neckline to be a little lower, just because it cuts right across her neck. And as you can see in the back, the bottom button is straining a little too much. I think I will make ties for the bottom instead of that last button, then it won't be a problem.
She looks so cute in it! Drat, she hates getting her picture taken, but mwahahahah! We got some! I attached all of them so the world can have proof that Camille still lives!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Quilting Day at the Museum

I have been looking forward to this event for some time, and finally got the skirt on my wash dress shortened and re-gauged (ugh!), which took forever. Mrs. Hoobery lent my mom a dress, which I shortened quite a bit (Mrs. Hoobery is very tall) with a basting stitch.
Mom has also been looking forward to the quilting day and spent a lot of time hand-stitching a quilt block. She got it done in time; I really wanted to make one, but I had other projects.
It was absolutely POURING when we got to the Museum. I realized how much I need a hem guard. Anyway, Mom was kind enough to drop me off at the door.
After plunking ourselves down in chairs, we set to work. I was worried I wouldn't have much to do because I didn't have a quilt square, but Mrs. Hoobery had tons to do! She had lots of quilt squares that hadn't been quilted. I thought I would be able to go through them pretty quick, but I had absolutely no idea how long it takes just to do one square! By the time we left, four hours later, I wasn't half way through.
Mr. Hunter was kind enough to play us some music and sing. It was really cool; they let him sit in the area that was actually a display of a bar. It was really nice, although my one complaint was it was very dark. There weren't any lamps, and the lighting was dim, so we all had to sit wherever the lighting was best, so that made conversation with everyone a bit difficult.