Monday, February 23, 2015

Jade Skirt Review

Recently I received the Jade skirt to review from Paprika Patterns. I was super excited because I've been wanting a skirt just like this, with the folded fabric front and made out of stretch material but I also wanted it in a longer length and not super tight which is hard to find. So I was really happy to try this pattern out and get the kind of skirt that would be perfect for me! 

The skirt is lined which is nice and something I always like in a pattern so the insides look a little neater. There is an option for a zipper in the back which I didn't do because I figured my skirt was stretchy enough. It barely is, I probably should have done the zipper!

The front folds was definitely the hardest part, but there is a video explaining how to do it. I still ended up with some lumps in my folds and they aren't precise. But.. I also start to get impatient and don't want to fold a skirt a million times to get it precise. It's probably the most time consuming part of the pattern. It also would probably depend on which fabric you use to how hard it gets when making these folds. I used cotton interlock and I felt like I couldn't get the crisp folds she gets in her video. 

I ended up tacking down the folds in some parts because I didn't just take my time and and re fold till I had it right but oh well.

The back is just simple. 

Overall this is a great pattern if you are looking to make one of this skirt style! I made the midi version but it also comes in a short version. The skirt is a pretty quick sew, like I said the longest part being the folding in the front. She also gives lots of tutorials for if you'd like to lengthen it or whatever, which I always enjoy seeing from pattern designers!

  I think this particular folded design is really flattering on so many people which is why it's great to see it in a pattern and be able to make it in a way that fits each of us! I like black because it's versatile but this skirt in colors would be great too and the folds would be more distinguishable! 

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Priscilla Dress Pictures

Here is the final finished Priscilla dress next to the original inspiration. I didn't get the grandma down exactly, but I figured my focus was recreating the pink dress anyways. 

The front 



Other side. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Finished Priscilla Dress

Yesterday I experimented with drafting my own pattern for the 1910's pink dress from the magazine "the Modern Priscilla".  After staring at patterns from the CoPA for forever,  and then going through my patterns I decided to start with using Butterick 6093. Which is a little bit early for the dress, but it generally looked pretty close to the house dress I was aiming for. 

The Modern Priscilla dress is the dress I was aiming to re-create but since it's only a side view I needed to do some research on dresses common around 1917 and due to the nature of the picture (sitting at her grandmother's feet while she sews) and the 'poofy-ness' of the bodice, I concluded it's most likely a house dress.

This was my main inspiration for the dress, though I looked at many other patterns. From this I mostly took the idea of what seems to be an elasticized waist. I tried to research if this was used for house dresses but I couldn't find anything. I can't think of anything else that would give that same look in the pattern drawing as elastic though. Plus, the Butterick pattern wanted to put a zipper in the side and I knew that wouldn't be accurate. 

With the elastic, the blouse ends up more poofy then the pattern intended which means taking pictures of it doesn't work out well. It looks kind of messy, but there will be better pictures later of it actually on me. 
I used the top slanted skirt panel from the Butterick pattern but I probably shouldn't have. It is supposed to have three pleats at the top right but they just got lost in the fabric somehow, so the top skirt just ends up looking crumpled. 

The pattern had a rounded collar but I easily changed that to a square collar like the dress on the magazine has. I considered lace on the collar and cuffs too but I didn't want to stray too far from the magazine dress. 

I didn't think to have some kind of panel in the front until I saw it in the Butterick pattern. I went ahead and made one with some lace on it because I like the panel with the dress. I haven't really been able to tell if this is accurate or not. Many of the dress patterns I looked at didn't have them but the neckline was also higher on them. I saw some examples that did but they were earlier around 1914-1915. 

Fabric: Pink and white cotton. 

Pattern: Butterick 6093

Year: Mid 1910's 

Accuracy: I believe the pattern is from an original Butterick pattern but obviously the instructions were re-written for modern use. I tried to be accurate where I could but I just don't know much about eras outside 1860 and the 18th century! It was machine sewn since by mid 1910's, I believe it would be conceivable for women to sew their dresses from a machine and not by hand anymore(?). 

Time Spent: about an afternoon and evening to sew it together. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

1915-1917 House Dress

I'm attempting a copy of this dress from "The Modern Priscilla" needlework magazine that was on the cover of February 1917. 
I'm pretty sure it's a house dress and I've found a couple of original patterns that look like they were elasticized at the waist? 
via CoPA
My main inspiration is this 1914 "Ladies house Dress with sleeve in wrist or elbow length" Syndicate Pattern #47978. Unfortunately it doesn't have the diagram of pattern pieces to go off of. But it has the elbow length sleeves and collar I want. 
via CoPA

There is also this 1916 Bungalow Apron (apron and house dresses seemed to have been similar? interchangeable?), which does show the pattern pieces and has that same type of waist, and the way the pattern pieces are, it must be elasticized. 

Here are two others that have the shorter sleeves and similar collars. They also have what looks to be a similar waistband. No pattern pieces but, some information about house dresses. Both pictures and info found at Witness 2 Fashion Blog

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Finished 1837 Dress

A year after I started planning it, I finally finished the 1837 dress.

I started with the 1837 Day dress from Museum of Costume at Bath which is the book, "The Cut of Women's Clothes 1600-1930" by Norah Waugh. The dress pattern is shown at the bottom of the post. 
I changed the gathered bodice to pleating at the front and split the back pieces so I could have more shape in it, and put piping in. 
Unfortunately, it's hard to see these details in this fabric print.

The fabric is a reproduction fabric from Reproduction Fabrics  
I really wanted a dark blue silk ribbon or maybe velvet to go with the dress, but I ran out of time and this was the closest I could find. In real life, it didn't look so shiny.... 

I also changed the sleeves a bit and don't have the gathered section. I did keep the skirt style of pleats in the front and gathered in the back.  I didn't gather the sleeves, I used pleats because I love the crisp look of that a lot better. 


Fabric: Cotton reproduction print from Reproduction Fabrics

Pattern: Started with an original pattern from The Cut of Women's Clothes and tweaked to fit in details from the period that I preferred 

Year: 1837 because the pattern I started with was, but it could pass for any of the later 1830 years I think

Historical Accuracy: It was completely hand-sewn, and the fabric print is accurate along with the fabric type since cotton was frequently used for day dresses in this time

Time Spent: Including the planning and procrastinating, a year. Not including the time it took to size the pattern up and tweak it, the actual sewing only took about three or four days of working on it. 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Lillian May's Dress

The only picture I have of my great grandmother, Lillian May, is from around 1875 when she was 16 years old. 

It's not a great picture but I've always wanted to re-create the dress she's wearing. I never did much progress on it though because you can't see much detail and I have no idea what the back would look like. Then, I saw this dress on All the Pretty Dresses... She notes that possibly it could be inaccurate and actually made later but it's very very similar to Lillian May's dress above! Which may give me a starting point. 

The band across the bottom edge of the jacket and the skirt are similar as well as the large cuffs on the sleeves. Even the skirt and jacket braid design are similar. Perhaps even the colors were similar. 

Anyways, I knew if I didn't post this I would forget about it and then one day when I get around to making this I would never remember where I saw this dress! In the meantime, I have been working on my 1830 dress, slowly... but I have been!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Plans for the 1830 Lovina Barber Dress

I'm about to start work on an 1830's dress to submit for a DAR contest due in January 2015. It sounds super far away, but I want to focus on details for this. So here is my general plan.

1. Under things: 
Chemise, made of linen. I'd like to go with one similar to this below. Another example of this is seen at Frolicking Frocks and it comes from the Workwomen's guide which you can read online on Google books! The book is from 1840 but I am aiming for a later 1830's dress so I'm okay with that. 

Corset, or are they still called stays at this time? I still need to do more research on the style I want, but I do think I want it to be corded instead of bone if that will work for a later 1830's style. I also want to go all out on embroidery for it!

Petticoats: a corded one or a quilted one, plus 2 or three plain ones similar to the layers of skirts seen here. I would really love to do a quilted satin one, but that would be so much work and time and wouldn't be shown. 


2. The Dress

Initially my first thought was to go with a day time dress made of something like cotton. I'm really leaning towards this because I love the late 1830's sleeves but... an evening dress just usually is more stunning. 

This dress above is my all time favorite day time late 1830's dress, but I wonder if it's somewhat plain compared to what you could do with a ballgown. I've spent so much time looking at all sorts of 1830's dresses but I really just love this one so much. 

If I do end up on this, I do want to do some kind of printed cotton. While I don't want to replicate this exactly I still want accuracy, so I am thinking of finding an 1840 print I like and trying to make it on Spoonflower.

Williamsburg also has these three absolutely beautiful fabrics, here, here, and here; but they're for the 18th century. They look sort of similar to 1830 cotton print designs perhaps, maybe?? 

3. Everything else

Shoes, hair, jewelry. I've pinned some things to my pinterest board for this project but I can't even begin to think much about what I'll do till I get further into this project.