A sleeve by any name…may just work!

While it is true that in modern clothing, there may be some variations, it, nonetheless, does not compare to the copious amounts seen in gowns from the past century.  Whenever I am planning my next gown, one of the areas that I will carefully considered are the sleeves.  Sometimes I decided based on the fabric, sometimes the shape of the bodice, or the length of the train, but the accurately chosen sleeve can really complete a look.

When choosing and creating a sleeve there are three simple rules to keep in mind:

1. Make sure the shoulder seam is dropped a few inches than what today’s clothing would view as normal.

2. Make sure to NOT have a tight sleeve.  While some styles may be narrow around the arm, you do not want it stretched over your bicep.  Think graceful and flowing at all times!

3.  The sleeves (just like everything else ) should be designed to show off the waist….whatever size you are.

Here are several examples of the most popular styles of sleeves from the late 1850’s-18’60’s.  Since this is my area of expertise, I began here…however please comment below if you would like me to focus on other time periods!

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Earrings, earrings, which earrings?

With summer upon us and the warm weather inspiring me, I have spent a lot of time on my front porch planning away.  I have A LOT of ideas and new areas to expand for this blog, and well, I just can’t wait!  You also might have noticed a new format to my blog.  This is in an attempt to improve ease of use and organization.  I hope you like it!

Now on to the good stuff!

I want to share with you some beautiful photographs.  As I was researching and looking up various examples of women’s jewelry, I was surprised at how many different types of earrings were worn during the 1860’s….including hoops, which I thought were just 20th century and today.  I know that for any historical savvy re-enactor it is all about the details.  I hope these help!

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Small things that make life easier…..

So I went by our local Home Goods and came across these two items which have (in their own small way) made life in my sewing world, just a little bit easier.

The first:

A black metal cart with three compartments on wheels.  Perfect for storing bolts of fabric and easy to move around due to the wheels.


DSC00752The second:

A light blue metal organizer that holds my business binder, journals, measurements book, and favorited articles.  Now when I pull out my binder, the rest of the books don’t go sprawling along my craft table.




And how much does it cost to make one’s life easier?: $60 plus tax!

And I would like to give a little shout out to my dad!  Happy Father’s Day!!!!  Thanks for always taking me to the fabric store when I was little : -)


Fabric Haul!

Picked up 32 yards of  beautiful fabric and 12 yards of trim today, that are destined to be created into something….historical!  I was so excited with what I got that I wanted to share them with you!





DSC00699DSC00700Not sure what I am going to start with first….I will have to wait to see what fabric speaks to me!


The appeal of a wrapper…

I know that if I lived in the 1800’s I would have many of these made up for those mornings when I wouldn’t feel like getting all dressed up but still needed to look presentable.  Sort of today’s yoga pants look. I was so interested in this look and how so many women just do not wear these often at reenactments (partly because they are “indoor’s” looks), that I wanted make one of my own!  After a lot of research (and some hard evidence) I found a variety of styles and photographs of women in the 1800’s wearing wrappers in public.  Here is a sampling:


And here is my version:


DSC00668 I really like the styles that had a different front panel, and very much like today’s color block dresses, it is a very flattering style.

Have a great Sunday evening!