I pushed myself to finish a plain day gown during the weekend, just something very simple that can be worn with all the spencers, chemisettes and on its own, too. The gown pattern was yet another variation of my basic bodice and hem patterns and I especially like the slim silhouette of the front of the dress. This is actually the only Regency gown I've made with actual puff sleeves. The fabric is possibly viscose or some other cotton blend, it was a lucky and cheap find in a fabric shop closing sale. The colour is much creamier than what the photos show and the fabric has small rectangular spots woven in.
|Trying the dress on with the 1790s red spencer and the Shetland lace shawl I knitted a couple of years ago.|
|Close-up of the fabric, the colour doesn't really photograph right|
|Big Regency puff sleeve|
|The green stays and the top edge of the petticoat show through the dress. I have to wear the old white stays with the white gowns and one last project I need to whip up is a bodiced petticoat.|
|The two middle buttons close too, but I couldn't bend my arm that far and there were no ladies maids handy.|
I also finished another hat project; I've talked about the merits of paper yarn in hat making before but this time I really think that the result is exactly what I wanted. I don't know what the situation is elsewhere, but here in Finland paper yarn in several colours and thicknesses is a crafts shop staple. I guess people mostly use it in weaving tapestries, rugs and tablerunners and the like, but it is really a very versatile material, being durable but pliant, and definitely more easily attainable than for example straw.
For my poke bonnet I used 200 grams of 0.8 paper yarn (by Lappajärven värjäämö) and a size 5 (European) crochet hook. The pattern is my own. First pictures, then the pattern :)
|I think I look pretty silly wearing bonnets :)|
|I added wire to the brim to keep it in shape|
200g paper yarn ( I used the 0.8 variety, using different thickness means that you need more/less of the yarn)
Size 5 (metric sizes) crochet hook (the hook can be quite large, otherwise crocheting this stiff material is rather difficult and the result will look uneven)
Thin wire for the brim (without wire support the brim wants to curl from the edges so this is a must!)
Abbreviations (I decided to use the US crochet abbreviations):
st - stitch
sc - single crochet
cs - chain stitch
dc - double crochet
Make beginning loop and croched 2 cs.
1. Crochet 8 sc on the beginning loop. Do not close the round but continue to crochet as a spiral (here would be a good place to mark the beginning of the round so that it's easier to keep track of the increases on each round)
2. Crochet 2 sc on each st of the previous round. 16 st.
3. *Crochet 1 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 24 st.
4. *Crochet 2 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 32 st.
5. *Crochet 3 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 40 st.
6. *Crochet 4 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 48 st.
7. *Crochet 5 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 56 st.
8. *Crochet 6 sc, crochet 2 sc on the next stitch* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 64 st.
You should now have a circular piece about 15 cm in diametre.
Still working in spiral, crochet 10 rounds of sc without increases.
19. *Crochet 2 sc on the next stitch, crochet 7 sc* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. 72 st.
Crochet 9 rounds of sc without increases.
If you want/need to make the crown of the bonnet bigger or longer you should make more increase rounds and/or add more rounds without increases in between. Just make sure that the increases are even and aren't made right after one another; spread them out! The crown should be long enough to accommodate a bun hairdo.
NOTE! Remember to strech and pull out the weave as you make the hat; because you're working with paper yarn that does not stretch on its own like wool would, the hat needs to be pulled into shape every now and then while working it. This is really not that clear when explained, but if you try to crochet paper yarn, you'll see what I mean :)
The brim begins here; it is worked by crocheting back and forth.
29. Crochet with no increases until there are 18 st left of the round. Crochet 2 cs and turn work.
30. Crochet 2 cs on the 1st "sc" of the round, crochet 7 sc, then 2 sc on the next stitch. *Crochet 8 sc, then 2 sc on the next stitch.* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. Turn work.
31. Crochet 2 cs (1st stitch of the round), crochet sc all the way to the end without increases. Turn work.
32. Crochet 2 cs (1st stitch of the round), crochet 8 sc, then 2 sc on the next stitch. *Crochet 8 sc, then 2 sc on the next stitch.* Repeat *-* all the way to the end of the round. Turn work.
33. Like round 31.
Make 3 more rounds with increases, always adding one stitch more between the increases (10, 11, 12). After an increase round there's always a round without increases, so altogether you need to crochet 6 more rounds.
After completing the 6 rounds described above, crochet one more round without increases.
The lacy gingerbread edging on the brim is optional. This is how you make it:
In the corner of the brim, crochet 3 cs and connect it with a slip stitch on the short edge of the brim. This is the first double crochet. Make 8 more double crochets on the same corner stitch, *jump over 2 stiches on the brim, crochet 1 sc, jump over 2 stitches on the brim, make 6 double crochets on the next stitch*, then repeat *-* until you've reached the other corner of the brim. Then make trebles on that corner like you made the first, connecting the last double crochet of the group of 9 with a slip stitch on the short edge of the brim. Cut off yarn and weave in the ends.
Finally, add wire to support the brim and to keep it in shape. Because the brim is worked back and forth, it wants to curl in different directions on the corners, so wire is definitely needed. You can insert the wire after you've finished the bonnet, or crochet it in while you're making the brim.
That's it! I will probably add this pattern to Ravelry as well.