keskiviikko 16. elokuuta 2017

1910s project - discernible progress

I've been a bad blogger, I know, but I have some progress to report. If anyone still remembers, I set up a 1910s challenge for myself and some costumer friends to commemorate and celebrate the centennary of independence this year here in Finland. The plan is simply to make a garment from any year of the 1910s and eventually get together to admire our handiwork and toast the 100-year-old nation.

So far I've made undergarments and an armistice blouse which I'm planning to complete with a walking suit, but the most progress I've made with the evening dress. I thought I'd share some of the in progress photos now, but leave the final reveal and in detail post for later, possibly until December. We are planning to dine in grand style on the 6th of Dec., the Independence day, so I won't show the whole dress until then :)

In preparation for this particular dress, I rounded up some fabrics from my stash, recycled some pieces for the under layers, and bought some new fabrics too.

I had this second hand embroidered saree I had bought ages ago:

The colour is yellower than what the photos show.

I used the unembroidered bits of it plus some taffeta and satin I had in stash for the undermost layer of the dress:
The petticoat doesn't actually show like this, the hem of the dress is just clinging oddly.

I have this one extant evening dress from 1914 that I'm using as my reference and inspiration, and it had a lace midlayer, so I followed suit. I bought sequined lace fabric on Etsy and I have since sewn more sequins and beads on it.

The front of the dress.

The lace layer covers the front closure of the underdress.

The lace layer of the bodice attaches to one side with press buttons. I officially love those things after all the hooks and eyes and ribbons and pins that come with 18th and 19th centuries' clothing...

Half of the lace bodice on the front of the dress is not attached to the hem.

The back of the bodice. I like how the pattern on the lace lined so nicely with the darts.

I've added extra beads and bigger, shinier sequins to strategic places on the lace. More bling, I say!

The top layer of the hem, train and part of the sleeve I made out of the embroidered bits of the saree.

There's also a sash in contrasting colour.
It's silk!
And that's all you'll get for now :)

tiistai 9. toukokuuta 2017

Photoshoot day

Last Saturday a fellow doctoral student who is also a photographer invited me to model for her and another photographer. They chose some of my dresses that they wanted to photograph and I managed to smuggle in some dance poses as well :)

Here are some of their shots. All photos Suvi Korpi and Anni Ylkänen

Please be considerate and do not copy or repost the photos without permission!

The parasol is a vintage item from the 1930s but it's so pretty that I couldn't resist!
 Photo: Suvi Korpi

Photo: Suvi Korpi

Photo: Suvi Korpi

Photo: Suvi Korpi

Photo: Suvi Korpi

The good old Courtois dress. I did better with the hair this time, though it's not perfect still. Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

I've made an evening bodice for the Courtois dress skirts. I'm especially happy with how well the hook and thread loop fastenings centre front work! I was sceptical and undecided about the fastenings for months and months, but decided on these because I wanted it photographed at this session. Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Some dance shots :) Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

Photo: Anni Ylkänen

maanantai 24. huhtikuuta 2017

1790s round gown and beaded bodice at the Spring Masquerade

My poor neglected blog! I've been busy with my dissertation and dance so I haven't done a lot of sewing lately, but just last Saturday I went to the 18th century Spring Masquerade again, arranged by L'Amusette in Tampere. Here's a couple of photos of me wearing the 1790s round gown and beaded bodice ensemble I made last autumn.

Photos by Sanna-Mari Karppinen & Nora Juusela

Sanna did the impossible and made me look pretty in the photos!

This was the easiest historical hairdo ever: I put my hair in pin curls wet, slept on it, travelled to the ball, took the pins out and poked at the curls a bit, wrapped the 2 scarves into a turban and added feathers. Thats it :)

Dancing "Gustavs Skål". I like our innovative hem tucking solutions. I pulled the train up under the bodice and out of its armscye on the right, worked like a dream.

lauantai 28. tammikuuta 2017

1910s blouse

I made a 1910s Armistice blouse because it's apparently a regulation item to have in any 1910s wardrobe. Granted, it is a bit later fashion than the roughly 1914 look I'm generally going for with my 1910s project, but I like the look and to me it epitomises the way that 1910s fashion developed to a more casual and usable direction.

I found nice buttercream linen in my stash, just enough for a blouse like this.

I didn't use a specific pattern though I worked on the basis of the Folkwear Armistice blouse pictures and reviews. I used my own plain bodice and sleeve pattern, lenghtened the shoulders of the back piece to wrap over to the front as a yoke, gathered the front pieces to the shoulders and made a centre panel of a separate piece. The blouse is mostly handsewn and the side seams and the sleeves have French seams on the inside to keep the fabric from fraying. I made the centre panel pin tucks on the machine. The buttons on the front are decorative because I can slip the blouse on over my head. I hate making buttonholes, so that's a plus. I pleated the back piece of the blouse loosely and sewed a ribbon on top to help with the gathering of the hem.

I'll take more pictures of it on me and with a skirt once I've made one, but for now this has to do.

perjantai 13. tammikuuta 2017

1910s project

I have something new to share at last! I've started a 1910s project partly because I've been planning that for a long time and partly because this year is the centenary of independence in Finland and I wanted to do something costumey for it. I even put together a loose outline of a sewing challenge for my reenactor and costumer friends around here and I think we'll have an event or two around this theme later in the year. The basic idea of that challenge is to make some kind of outfit in the fashion of 1910s; everybody can choose the year they like best, for me it's turning out to be 1914.

So far I've been sewing the underthings, of course, and they're finally done. I made a shift, a corset, a petticoat and a corset cover.

The shift is a simple shape, with a lace yoke and straps, a drawstring at the waist and a gusset flap that buttons on the front and back hem between the legs. I modelled it after this and other similar 1910s examples:
I've since changed the ribbon to a blue one.

The flap.

I made the corset using the 1910s pattern provided by Jennifer of Festive Attyre. I found her instructions very thorough and useful though I could've chosen a better fabric and in retrospect the corset turned out a bit too big for me. But to take it apart is just too much for me after the super annoying sewing process (bad fabric choice, sewing machine playing up, nerves in frays, not good).

I still need to sew on the suspenders for stockings. And get the stockings. Maybe the suspenders pulling down on the stockings will help with the wrinkling of the corset hem.

There's also a strange pokey edge at the back where the centre back bones end.

See? A wrinkly mess. Meh.
Because I've narrowed my wardrobe choices roughly on 1914, I needed a relatively narrow petticoat which I modelled after this advertisement picture from 1914. The skirt is narrow at the hips and there is a box pleated hem flounce that starts at knee-height.
I might have to sew one more horizontal tuck above the knee to shorten the petticoat a little more.

Lastly, I made a little corset cover blouse. Many such blouses of the era seem to have been loose-fitting and baggy at the bodice, with a drawstring at the waist but somehow that didn't work for me. Also, I'm cheating a little: I'm wearing a modern bra under my shift in these photos. Going without just felt too emancipated and uncomfortable and I wasn't able to tuck the shift into my corset securely enough to support the bust (as they apparently did in 1914). I might make a 1914 version of a brassiere later if I feel like it.

Next up will be a walking suit. I'm fascinated by the baggy skirt fashion of 1910s and will try to produce something similar. I also have a vintage saree set aside for an evening dress.
For inspiration I've compiled a couple of pinboards of 1910s fashion and 1910s underwear .