mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
Overall, a very productive year for historical sewing because of Costume College, at least for the first half of the year. Sadly, no modern makes and not much done lately.
1880s Undergarments: Chemise, Corset, Bust Pad, Ruffled Bustle Pad, and Petticoat

Felt very accomplished in making all of these. Not pictured is the little ruffled panel that I made to button on my Edwardian petticoat that I wore underneath. This corset is pretty and kinda fancy (gives a very curvy shape) and fits almost just right, but I still need to finish the flossing on it and want to make a new corset this year that is more comfortable and fits exactly right.

See the rest here! )

Altogether about 12 individual items. Not too shabby and definitely a productive year for me. My 2015 goals were to:

  1. Make clothes to wear over historical undergarments

  2. Focus on fit

  3. Make accessories

  4. Use the stash

  5. Figure out hair

I definitely made clothes, 3 outfits/dresses! I am pretty happy with the fit on all of the things I made, although there are a couple of small tweaks that I can and will make in the future. Did better on accessories for some things, although still weak in the hat department. All 3 outifts used stash fabrics (print cotton, green silk, purple synthetic, black chiffon). Hair was OK, but nothing to brag about. Mostly curling and some braids. Having bangs was definitely key with all the bustle stuff I was doing.

My goals for 2016 are looking pretty similar. I want more clothes, especially since I have so many undergarments now, although some more are on the list. Fit will always be a priority with me and something that can always be worked on. I want more comfort (range of movement in arms, waist placement) and I know how to do that, so I can put it into work this year. More accessories, for sure, especially hats but also a couple of other things that are on the docket. I got a bunch of straw hats for Christmas that I can cut up and take apart to make new hats! I bought a lot of fabric this year, so next year needs to be about using them! (A problem you can all sympathise with, I know.) Hair, well mine's getting longer, so some styles should be easier. Also, I have Kendra's 18th Hairstyling book, so that may come into play some time.

Whew! So that was sewing in 2015!
mala_14: (iris)
I put the skirt on the dressform so I can mark the hem and took pictures. And now I'm posting instead of marking the hem. :p This is my improved dress improver/ruffled bustle, the ruffled panel that gave me fits buttoned to my narrow 1910 petticoat, and the scaly Gala skirt.

For the painted scales, I used a scalloped stencil on the bottom edge of each scale row and used Lumiere paint (a mix of metallic silver and bright gold) well diluted with water and painted with a sponge in upward sweeping strokes. I'm not totally sold on them. I think they look cool when light is shining on them and you can see that they're all shiny, but they don't look so hot in low light. I guess it's fine for the Gala. I'll change the skirt to something less mermaid-y one day, if I can find a nice brocade.
mala_14: (iris)
I got the flounce re-gathered and re-attached and ironed... But I couldn't help but notice that the flounce was too short. Wtf? Then I thought back to when I was marking the spacing as to where the flounces should go and realized that I mis-measured. So the flounce is off again. And sitting there. While I come here to whine and complain. Stupid sewing.

And, as if sewing mishaps weren't enough, progress has also been slow today because my dog decided to throw up and I had to clean that up. Not fun.

But things will get better. Going out to see my favourite musical, Jersey Boys, this evening! Yay!

Argh

May. 26th, 2015 10:27 pm
mala_14: (iris)
I was sewing my ruffly petticoat panel and was nearly done, just finished removing the gathering threads having sewn the 3 flounces to the panel, when I discovered that I had sewn the last one with the wrong side facing outward. So then I had to rip that flounce off, which would have been annoying but not terrible if I hadn't also managed to put a hole in the panel! ARGH! Luckily it was a small hole that I could mend and in a place where it will mostly be hidden, but still, super annoying. So tomorrow is redoing the work that I had to undo today, re-gathering and re-attaching the flounce. Then putting the flounce on a band and sewing the buttons and buttonholes to attach it to my petticoat.

On the good side of things, I finished up painting the fishscales on my skirt today. Tomorrow I can iron to set the paint and assemble the skirt panels.
mala_14: (iris)
I finished up my small bust pad, complete with buttonholes and sewing on buttons to my ruffled bustle. Not going to be able to paint today, though, because while making supper I managed to burn my thumb with hot oil and having ice off of it for any period of time longer than like 30 seconds makes it hurt, a lot. Ouch! :(

However, I got my muslin ruffle all cut out and the flounce hems ironed. So I can sew that up this evening instead and hopefully get the painting done tomorrow. Puts a hitch in the sewing, though, because I have to wait for the paint to dry before assembling. Maybe I can cut out the silk organza for the flounce while it dries...
mala_14: (iris)
I started painting the scales on my skirt. It's a somewhat gruelling process and it also takes way more paint than I was expecting, though I'll definitely have enough for the skirt. I got the front and back panels done on Saturday. I was painting on the floor and my back is not pleased with me. But it looks interesting and shiny, and you can definitely tell that the pattern is scales, so all good stuff. Sorry, no pics right now.

Yesterday was a pretty busy day for me and I knew I wouldn't get enough time to do more painting (just the 2 side panels to go), so I started my extra skirt poofers. I have the bustle pad about half assembled and stuffed with fabric scraps. The muslin is washed and dried and needs cutting out and ironing before I can get to assembling it.

I want to get these three things completely finished this week and then next week I can get to work on the train and a balayeuse.
mala_14: (iris)
Looking at the profile picture of myself in my polonaise, I decided that my skirts just don't have enough back poof for the era. I don't really have the time, or the inclination, to make another petticoat right now. However, I've come up with a couple of stop-gap ideas that are quick and easy: a small, flat-ish bustle pad that I can button under my ruffle bustle and a button-on back ruffle for my 1912 petticoat (which is pretty narrow). Both will be put on bands with buttonholes and the ruffle bustle and petticoat will have buttons added. This way, in the future, I can remove the bands and the buttons and the bustle pad can become its own thing and the ruffle can become a part of a new petticoat when I have more time to make one (I'm thinking a yoked petticoat). If I do machine buttonholes and keep everything very simple, should be easy to make these two things in a day. The bustle pad is already cut out and the muslin for the ruffle is in the wash right now.

I've also ironed my sateen for my ballgown skirt and pulled out my skirt pattern. This sateen is from Joann's and doesn't have the nice sheen that the Dharma Trading sateen does, but I think it will be fine once I fancy it up with paint. I can always make a new skirt for this outfit in the future out of something nicer, like a brocade, and switch over the trim, which will be box-pleated silk organdy.
mala_14: (iris)
So I took a bunch of pictures of it all as it stands so far. Mostly my 1880s undergarments, but also an unhemmed skirt. The petticoat I'm wearing under my ruffled bustle pad is my Edwardian one. It's narrow (like Natural Form) but gives a little more volume than just one petticoat. I really like the ruffled bustle pad. Add a bit of extra junk in the trunk and stops the skirts from collapsing, but isn't as pronnounced as the shelf-like late bustle.
SO many pictures )
I think the skirt might be a bit too long in the back, but it wouldn't be if I was wearing heels. I have no idea what shoes I'll wear with this, but I think I'll leave it as is because I'm lazy and will probably have heeled shoes for it. I also took at hint from [livejournal.com profile] jenthompson and added an elastic to hold together the back of the skirt. Gives the right narrow shape in front. I'm pretty happy with how this is shaping up so far. :)

Closures

Apr. 4th, 2015 04:56 pm
mala_14: (iris)
I sewed a hook onto my petticoat a while ago. Just finished sewing the eyelet. So that is now officially done!

The skirt is coming along too. It's all together and I just did the button and buttonhole. I'm taking a page out of [livejournal.com profile] jenthompson's book an putting elastic at the back to hold the front of the skirt back. When I tried everything on the other day it was just too poofy, but holding the back part of the skirt back a bit gave the right natural form shape. I sewed one side down. Just need to try everything on again and measure the elastic. Then it's just hem and ruffles. The ruffles will have to wait until I'm done the polonaise though, to make sure I have enough fabric.
mala_14: (iris)
My petticoat is finished, minus hook and eye which is waiting until the corset gets done. The corset is the last puzzle piece in my 1880s underwear. Well, except that now I need to make a small bustle (maybe ruffles or a small crescent-shaped pad); you'll see why in the comparison pictures.
Standard front and back pics:
P1010820P1010821
Comparison pictures and details )
One more thing crossed off the list for CoCo sewing!
mala_14: (iris)
Ok, I totally didn't get my petticoat goal done. Things were busy and I was lazy. Standard stuff. But as it stands at the moment, all the machine sewing is done and just the hand finishing is left. There's a hockey game on tomorrow and I should be able to finish up the petticoat while watching it. I gave it a preliminary try on, with and without my bumpad. It is definitely a c.1880 petticoat; very narrow. It barely fit over my bumpad, but gives a great mid-1880s silhouette with it. (I may need to make a smaller bumpad for the dresses I'm planning.) I'll have pictures in the future. Without any sort of padding underneath, it looks a bit sad on its own. I may end up wearing my Edwardian petticoat under it. Really, a petticoat with a flounced back would be ideal, but I just don't have that kind of time or patience right now.

I think it may also be a bit short. It definitely clears my feet and is about low ankle length. Do you think that's ok? How long do you make your petticoats?

In other news, I went to my first event with my living history group. One of our neighbourhoods was having a heritage day and invited us for local colour. It was rather loud (lots of fiddle music and jigging, classic Metis culture stuff) and the kids were a little TOO enthusiastic about the quern/stone handmill/grindstone and had trouble sharing at times, but it was still fun. I met a younger member who I hadn't met at the meeting who is into costuming, both historical and cosplay, and we had lots of talks. I also learned how to use a hand loom. Super cool! I look forward to attending more (preferably quieter) events. :)
mala_14: (iris)
The 1880s corset is so fiddly I needed a break. Plus the living history stuff is more Regency-focused. So I went back to working on my Regency stays. Now the back pieces have boning channels! :) Unfortunately, sewing by hand for several hours on the couch all slouched gave me bad back pain, so that's on hold for the next couple of days. I'm going to an event on Saturday and will bring the stays to work on there.

My goal for the week is to finish up my 1880s petticoat. I now have the flounce trimmed with embroidery (store-bought eyelet) and tucks. I'm going to gather and attach the flounce with a facing to hide the raw edges inside. Then I'll just need to sew down the facing by hand and put on a waistband and closure. The closure will wait until I'm done the corset though, so I have an exact waist measurement. It won't matter if the waistband is a tad big. Then it'll be back to corsets and stays.
mala_14: (iris)
I attended my first meeting for my local living history group. It was a lot of fun. The people are super nice, welcoming, friendly, and fun. There was an annual general meeting and then a sewing session. I got a welcome gift as a new member of a period appropriate sewing kit with flat wooden spools for thread, needles in red flannel, little metal snips, a brass thimble, bone buttons, and an awl. (I'm extra happy about the awl. I've been needing one of those.)

The only downer is that because of the local history they do not tend to recreate many eras or much fancy clothing. The focus is on early 19th century. And the people in this area at that time were very early settlers so lots of work clothes. Some ladies had some very nice caps though. They put out the Country Wives patterns. So I need to make some stuff that is appropriate. Luckily I have some repro cotton print dated to 1822 that I can use to make something plainer. I'm thinking something like this. My stays are about half done. Need to get those finished up.

I'm thinking that February is going to be the month of undergarments. I have my stays, my 1880s corset, and my 1880s petticoat to finish. I would also like to make my 1820 dress, but we'll see. March will be my 1882 print skirt and polonaise. Then April will be my Little Mermaid ballgown. Hopefully I will get all these things done by May. Then it will be on to Lost Hope Fairy. I just need to focus!

And yeah, looks like HSM 2015 is not in the cards for me. My sewing schedule just doesn't fit in with the challenges enough. Oh well, one of these days.
mala_14: (iris)
I got my petticoat mostly cut out. I still need to cut a waistband and flounce, but those are going to wait for a bit. I'm using a slightly modified version of the Short Underskirt in Two Styles from Fashions of the Gilded Age Vol. 1 by Frances Grimble. I didn't bother with a paper pattern and just marked everything on the fabric using erasable fabric marker.

For the future, my changes and plans: I made the side gore a few inches smaller at the top and tended to round off the inch measurements given. I lengthened the skirt by about 4"-5" so it's 29.5" long. The hem circumference around the main part of the skirt will be about 68". I'm aiming for a flounce that is about 6"-7" deep and 2 widths of the fabric long (around 108"), with eyelet embroidery and some tucks to hide the join of the embroidery to the flounce. Length from waist-to-hem somewhere about 36.5" because I'm short and that will leave it just brushing the tops of my feet.

Back to sewing!
mala_14: (iris)
I got half of the corset together the other day, but also managed to run out of thread. So corset is now on hold until I can pick up some more silk thread. Having to re-sew things three times probably didn't help the thread situation. Also, I had put in a waist tape, but forgot to add it in until I had sewn about 1/2" past the waistline. I threw in the waist tape there, but once I got all the pieces together it was pretty clear that the waist tape was too low. I gave up on the waist tape and just cut it out of the seam. Oh well...

Since I'm out of silk thread, I'm going to get my petticoat cut out today and maybe put together. I can use cotton thread on that. If I get it done tomorrow, I can use it for my HSM 2015 foundations challenge.
mala_14: (iris)
12 Challenges? I think I can manage that this year. So I'm going to join the Historical Sew Monthly.

Yeah, I tried to do a monthly/half-marathon of the Fortnightly this year and failed near the end. But that was because the thesis took over my life. Prior to that, I was doing alright. Since I won't have to work on the thesis soon I should have more time to sew. Plus, all the sewing necessary for CoCo will help me out. So, without further ado, the first three challenges:

January - Foundations: This one was easy. I wanted to make my 1880 corset and petticoat this month anyways. They're the foundation garments for at least 2 of my CoCo outfits.

February - Colour Challenge Blue: Not sure. Blue isn't a colour I'm very fond of wearing and none of my CoCo stuff even goes with blue really, except for my GoT Tyrell gown. At the moment I am considering making some blue slippers to go with that, but I don't really want to spend time on something that isn't really necesary when I have so many other things to make. My other thought is throwing some blue ribbon in the petticoat, but that seems like a cop-out. Hm...

March - Stashbusting: Definitely my Little House bustle dress, or at least the skirt for it. I have all the fabrics for it in the stash and the pattern will be coming from Fashions of the Gilded Age. Pretty excited for this outfit!
mala_14: (Margaery)
I got the jacket all together with the collar and everything. I think I made the collar a bit too stiff, but it's ok. All that's left is hemming the sleeves and adding the closures. Tomorrow I am going to get back to my Tyrell costume so I can finish that off. I need to make the shoulder pieces. For this I need to:

  1. make the pattern

  2. dye the fabric

  3. cut out the pieces: lining and velveteen

  4. interface the lining

  5. sew pieces together

  6. sew to bodice

Not too bad and I'm pretty sure I can get it done by Friday. *fingers crossed*

My next project is going to be some Victorian/bustle stuff. I should really finish my Regency stays, but I'm feeling meh about them at the moment and I just bought a bunch of buttons for Victorian bodices (see here and here). Best case scenario, I can make all the underpinnings before the end of the year. This includes: corset, chemise, ruffled petticoat, and plain petticoat. I conveniently already have a bustle pad, so that's good. And getting back to corset making should be fun. I think I'm going to try using all spiral boning, a la [livejournal.com profile] the_aristocat. I find that the flat steels at CB are usually uncomfortable and twist a bit, probably because I have a swayback. Thoughts?

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