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Edwardian Blouse & Skirt

10 Jul

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Back on May 11th, a group of us from the costumer’s guild rode a vintage train from Grapevine to the Stockyards in Fort Worth for the Frontier Fort Days. As cool as that event is, we really just used it as an excuse to dress up. I decided to make up a blouse, skirt, and belt using the 1905 Circular Skirt, 1903 Plain Blousewaist, and Edwardian Dip-Waist Belt from Truly Victorian. As I was pressed for time, I didn’t do a muslin for the patterns (tsk tsk), so I was very thankful that it all worked out in the end. As usual, I used a smaller pattern piece for the back of the blouse and took off quite a bit of the shoulder width. The good thing about this style is that it’s way more forgiving than a fitted bodice, which is why I chose it. Also, I had to make do with my ill-fitting victorian corset by just lacing it a bit looser around the top. ( I have GOT to get over my corset-making phobia)

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Skirt Fabric: Italian Tropical Wool in Coral Pink from NY Fashion Center

Blouse Fabric: White Stripe Eyelet Lace from Hart’s Fabric

Belt: Heavy cotton from my stash

Due to the last-minute nature of this project, I didn’t get buttons and buttonholes sewn on the back of the blouse so I used snap tape (which is a fabulous invention!). I’d like to go back and do those at some point, but I’m not convinced that I could do them up myself when I get dressed.

I found that the heel of my boots caught on the hem of my skirt quite badly, pulling out the 3″ hem I had painstakenly handsewn. *sigh* So I think next time I need to make an honest to goodness hem guard. Meanwhile, I need to go back and try to smooth over all those broken threads in my nice wool…
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Much thanks to Jen Thompson of Festive Attyre for taking photos!

1912 Dress- Titanic Exhibit

17 Jan

I should start off by saying that I’m a member of the DFW Costumer’s Guild. Up until last year, I didn’t even know such a thing existed. I can’t even remember how I discovered their website, but when I did I remember thinking, “Oh my! There are other people who never grew out of the “dress-up stage”!” I believe I sent in my dues and joined before ever meeting anyone or attending an event. I was that excited. At some point, I will go back and post about a previous event and costume, but the most recent event was Titanic themed. The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History currently has an exhibit of Titanic artifacts and reconstructions and a group of us went in costume. The exhibit itself was really neat, and if you live nearby I highly recommend going. When you get there, you’ll get a ticket to board the ship with a real passenger’s name and bio on it. As I walked through the exhibit I actually saw some personal memorabilia from the passenger I had, which was really neat. It wasn’t until the end of the exhibit that we all found out whether our assigned person survived the sinking or not. Mine did, but there were so many names on the list that did not. Unfortunately, we were not able to take photos inside the exhibit, but I do have photos of my ticket!

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My dress is based on this burgundy and red dress. I know when most people think of “Titanic Dress” they picture an evening gown, but I didn’t think that would be appropriate for a.) boarding a ship in 1912, and b.) going to a museum in January in 2013. Much thanks to Jen Thompson (see her blog for more photos) for taking photos after the exhibit.

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Screen Shot 2013-01-17 at 9.30.13 PMSpecifics on the dress:

Pattern: Hint of History’s 1912 Shawl Collar Dress with various changes, including collar, center closure on bodice, and changing the skirt to a six-panel with pleats (which just about did my brain in. It took me… a LONG time to figure it out)

Fabric & Trim: Wool Suiting in Dark Steel Blue, bodice lined in matching (sort of) linen, cummerbund and buttons in light beige silk crepe de chine, all from Denver Fabrics. The trim is petersham ribbon. The “dickey” or false blouse is in linen, and I basically made it up using parts of a bodice pattern from Truly Victorian.

Hat: The straw blank is from hatsupply.com, and is the Grace- Bleached. I ordered a bunch of feathers from etsy and used the remaining crepe de chine and various trims from JoAnns. The is my second successful hat, and I’ve discovered there’s always a point while working on them that I think, “I just… don’t know…” but so far so good!

Overall, I’m pretty happy with how it all turned out. I learn so much with each outfit I make. If I could change anything about this one, I’d have made the collar a little longer in the front and I need to take the sleeves off and fiddle with how they’re set because I get a strange crease down my arm. Other than that, I’d consider it a success.

My attempt at making my photo look old.

My attempt at making my photo look old.