Last week, we talked all about my process of creating and designing historical gowns. But that led many to ask:
“How do I get into historical sewing?”
“What if I’m new to sewing? Can I still start?”
And the answer is ABSOLUTELY YES! Join me as I chat about what exactly historical sewing is, some easy beginning patterns and pattern brands to try out, along with tools you will need! ***Hint – you probably already have everything you need! 😉
I can’t believe we are already at Thanksgiving! While I feel that the summer went by at a normal pace, this fall has simply flew!!
I have been very busy sewing these past days, not only getting ready for Black Friday and Cyber Monday on my shop (click HERE to see all the deals), but also with some fun projects just for the heck of it! One such project, was this 1810’s day gown in such a fun shade of coral-ly pink.
I think I have drained my current pool of patterns. I mean, I love many of them and will always use them…but, I’m am definitely feeling a little bored. Especially with my due date coming closer and closer, I am trying to stay occupied with sewing…it’s sort of working! 🙂
So yesterday, with the warm sun on my face, I spent a little time looking up some new and different patterns to try.
Here are a few of my favorites!!!
Links to the patterns are below each image!
I love the unique and various caps in this particular pattern. Especially the Round Eared Cap with double ruffle!!
With a yardage requirement of 16 yards, this gown would definitely be a commitment, but I love all the ruffles and draping! I would also want to use a polka dot fabric just like the sample photo below!
I decided to bring back an old post favorite which I haven’t done in a while: On My Inspiration Board! For this post, I choose either a color, pattern, shape, or type of gown and collect my favorites to share from the years 1800-1950. For today’s version, I decided to choose gowns made out a of patterned fabric. Whether geometric, floral, or striped, these gowns are wonderful examples of fabric design and gown creation!
In my daily wardrobe, I don’t really wear a whole lot of patterns. Yet when it comes to my sewing, I adore using patterns. Any type of pattern using any type of colors. I simply love it. And based on all my research, I am not alone! From morning gowns, to tea gowns, to evening gowns, patterns have been a favorite for decades.
This particular painting shows how embroidery create a lovely pattern on this elegant 1810’s court dress. Perhaps not a gown to be worn by the average woman, bust still stunning!
Duchess Talleyrand-Périgord, Princess Dorothea by Joseph Chabord
This gown from the late 1800’s is a wonderful example of the striking impact a good pattern can create! Not only does the cut of the gown highlight the pattern, but the black and white stripe is absolutely eye catching!
While there are so many options out there, I did my best to select a variety of gowns from a variety of time periods. So, without further ado, here is this month’s Inspiration Board!
I have not always used nor understood the point of piping. I didn’t get it. I didn’t know when to use it, and I was pretty sure it was a waste of my time.
And then, I got a bit better at my sewing. So I stopped using excuses as to why I didn’t pipe and finally acknowledged that it was because I didn’t know how to use it at all.
Piping, in this context, refers to a 1 1/2″-2″ wide strip of fabric, cut on the bias, which has then been folded in half with a piece of cording place in between. A tight stitch along the side of the cording creates a smooth finish. This piping is then used in various places on bodices, and occasionally skirts, to add strength, texture, and contrast. The tricky part is you have to keep your stitches tight. I mean tight. You just want to see the cording peeping through in a neat and tidy fashion. And this is where I would become frustrated and give up…I just couldn’t seem to make my stitches tight enough.
So piping was left on the back burner for several years, until one day when I decided to try it again.
I took a deep breath, stitched as close as as could to the cording and would you believe it!!! – It came out perfectly!! In fact, it looked so great, I couldn’t believe I hadn’t been using this technique all along. So now I’m back on the piping train and loving it! And I thought nothing would do but to create a post celebrating this wonderful little technique.
My return to piping on a 1860’s Garibaldi blouse.
Piping is most commonly found around the armsyce, or armhole, of bodices from the early 20th century and back. Here is an example of an 1840’s gown from the Tasha Tudor collection:
Notice the cord like piece between the sleeve gathers and the shoulder? That’s piping! While most commonly used in the same fabric as the gown itself, one can sometimes use coordinating fabric to add a bit of pop!
Piping can also be used in between bodice seams. Notice the very small piping along the back seams of this 1860’s bodice as well as the 1810’s Pelisse.
Piping can also be used to add details to sleeves…
notice the sleeve of this Regency jacket. The piping adds interest.
The same can be said for this 1860’s sleeve where the bands have piped edges.
And let’s not forget the rather advanced skill of putting piping around the edges of bodices to keep a smooth and clean finish!
This 1840’s gold gown has some wonderful examples:
If you have never tried piping, or haven’t in a long time, I highly recommend bringing back this very fun and relatively easy technique!!
What do you get when you take two friends, a plethora of historical gowns, and two large Pumpkin Spice Lattes? A wonderfully fun time with some fabulous pictures to prove it!
A few weeks ago I decided that I wanted to photograph a large portion of my historical gown stock using real life models. So armed with a fully charged camera, my friend Cassandra and I braved the rainy and slightly chilly elements over the past two weekends to photograph some really stunning images! And since there are so many pictures to see, I will just get right to it!!
I hope you enjoy!!!
Oh and one last picture of Cassandra discovering the most perfect fall leaf of all….lovingly named “Leif Erikson”
Sometimes, on my researching adventures, I come across paintings or photographs of individuals that stop my wandering eyes in an instant. Whether it is something about their pose, or their outfit, or the fact that I feel like I can connect with their personality, images like the ones in today’s post just fascinate me.
This first one features the wonderful giggliness of a young girl from the 1850’s! What a sweetheart!!! And a wonderful example of children’s fashion.
This next painting I found to be a fantastic example of late 1700’s styling and fashion. The smile, the gown, THAT HAT….its all absolutely beautiful!
Portrait Of E. N. Arsenyeva By Vladimir Borovikovsky, 1796
This last portrait (c. 1860) caught my eye as the riding gown this woman is wearing has the most amazing placement of tucks. I can just envision her riding a horse with that long, flowy skirt fluttering behind her!
Such beautiful examples of fashion, creativity, and personality!
I see images of individuals from various time periods everyday…hundreds of pictures, drawings, paintings….and yet, only a few cause me to stop and admire. I like to think that it is something from their spirit reaching out to me. I also like to think that if these individuals were around today, I bet they would be close friends!
And then I also wonder, if in a hundred years or so, someone like myself will come across my picture. Someone who has an interest in historical fashion and I wonder if they will think my picture, my outfit, my smile may be worthy of a second glance……. 🙂