Friday, October 3, 2008

Dressed For the Photographer

Well, not quite yet! I still need to finish the skirt (which I have to have done by tomorrow!) but this is the dress I am planning to wear when we get our period photo taken. I initially thought I did not have to have it done until our final event this year which is still two weeks away but on Tuesday night I found out that we are going to a living history tomorrow and I wanted a nice gown to wear. So, I buckled down on Wednesday and dove into making this dress at last. I've had the wool since very early this year! The stripes are not as small as pinstripes but from a distance they do blend in nicely with the fabric to be a silvery-black shimmer. I do like this fabric a lot!

The bodice is done, except for the hooks. Black hooks are impossible to find locally anymore! And of course, as you can see, it needs a collar and some undersleeves. I'm using my lace trimmed collar and undersleeves for now and they are as I write this soaking hastily in a bowl of detergent. I wore my silk dress with these undersleeves and collar on Sunday and they were a big grungy on account of being worn the entire day!
I originally wanted to make this dress with a small jacket over top of it but after looking into this style more, I found that most often a dress was trimmed to look like there was a jacket being worn. Well, that made things a lot easier! I used my basic fitted bodice pattern and lengthened the front a bit to make a shallow point and I added a peplum/postillion to the back. This was a lot of fun since I have never made this style before. I spent a while trying to decide on an appropriate sleeve but at last went with a two-piece coat sleeve and trimmed it with green/blue silk. I used the same silk to trim the bodice, and plain blue for the bow at the neck. I really want a nice brooch so that is on my Christmas wish-list. :)
I have also been working on a little girls dress for a young lady in our reenacting group. I was quite stuck on what size to make so at last sized up the pattern I used for the boys and I am anxious for tomorrow as the moment of revelation. Will the dress fit?
I used a heavy pink striped seersucker for the dress. It is not the best choice since although seersucker was used for clothing during the 1860's, it is not documented to have been used for dresses. It is, however, a fabric I had plenty of and since I do not know if this dress will fit yet or not I thought it would be all right to go ahead and use it. If it does fit, I can make another dress from a more appropriate fabric. It is a very thick fabric and has very nice body to it. And a big thank-you to Mrs. G for the pretty pink silk ribbon trim at the sleeves!
I actually broke down and did buttonholes on this dress, instead of taking the easy way out and using hook and eyes. I hate making buttonholes. And now I am refreshed as to my reasons why! :)
It is COLD. Hope you all are keeping nice and warm!




  1. Your dress looks beautiful!! I can't wait to see how it turns out...I'll bet it will be just charming with the baby bump. :) I hope you have loads of fun!

  2. Sarah, I love your dress, of course, and I'm so happy that you're getting use out of the ribbons! Be sure to tell us if the dress fit your little protege'!


  3. I love the dress. I'm really looking forward to seeing your family photo. How exciting. :-)


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!