It has been a while since my last post… but a lot has been happening here, on the private and university-related ends of life. So the sewing has taken a little break. But today it is back and I can finally give you an update on my latest Regency project:
Currently I am making the 1805 frock from Janet Arnold’s “Patterns of Fashion”, for which I finally fitted the toile today. And let me tell you, making this gown has been a marvel so far. The pattern was taken from this extant evening dress on exhibit at the V&A:
And, ever since enlarging the original pattern, I have dubbed this project “the clone”. This is not because I am re-making something extant, but because the original dress would fit me straight off the stand, without any alterations. Ever since realizing how its wearer’s bust and underbust measurements fit mine to the tee, I have been wondering whether there was a clone of me running free in the Regency era. And, I would have absolutely loved to meet the lady in question. Judging from the intricacy of her frock, she must have been from the French upper class. Perhaps I should write a short story about our meet-up one day. ;)
When fitting the toile today, things got even funnier. While patterning the front piece, I had originally added an extra three inches to the neckline band and another four to the sleeve band, just to be sure. And, lo and behold, I ultimately ended up taking almost the whole extra length back out, down to the original dimensions. You can see where I pinned off the excess fabric in the pictures below.
The last thing I need to do now is to jump into my petticoat and stays, to make some final adjustments. And, with the toile fitting so well, I will not have to worry about making another lining; I can simply use the piece as they are. The toile was made from a scrap of an old cotton sheet and is very comfy to wear. Hence I see no reason to throw it out. This whole project will probably never stop to amaze me. :)
I will try to get back to you once the bodice and sleeves are finished. See you all in a little while.