Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Baby Regency Gown, Part 1

I am not prone to being practical and logical, at least at times. For I have spent the past few days researching and working on a regency gown for Malachi, instead of working on his white gown which I am making him to wear to the governors mansion and the ball on Thursday. Shall I ever overcome my procrastination and my ill-time illogic? For I have decided to go 1860's on Thursday and the only use Malachi will have for a regency gown is to wear it while sitting on my lap while I, (be-costumed, of course!) watch regency movies.

Thankfully a sewing machine can be used for the white gown and that should go very quickly! I'm in for a sewing marathon all day tomorrow.

This little gown is based on one from Vintage Textile:
I originally wanted to copy it as closely as possible but while I was sewing on the waistband yesterday, I decided to not put drawstrings through at the waist and to close it with two hooks instead. The bodice is made of a rectangular panel in the front and two in the back, with curved areas cut for armscyes. The shoulder straps are seperate and were sewn on after the drawstring casings were sewn. I think I should have made the shoulder straps narrower to get closer to the look of the original, and perhaps should have shaped them rather than making them rectangles. Something to remember for next time. The dress closes at the back with the drawstring at the neck. I'm not sure if I am totally comfortable with the thought of using drawstrings for fastenings on baby gowns, but it seems like it sure was a common type of closure to use for gowns of this period - even adult ones! I took the dress with me today in the car since we went to town to go grocery shopping. While I sat in the car nursing the baby at our last stop, I tried the gown on him so he can model how it looks. The sleeves aren't on yet but so far I'm pretty happy with how it is turning out! The waistline could bit a little higher, but oh well. . .it should fit him for a while, since the breadth is quite adjustable via the drawstring neck and the waistband is loose on him. Here is a good picture of the bodice: And, just 'cause he's so darn cute: :)
I plan on finishing it up tonight as we watch a documentary about Lincoln on PBS. What nicer way is there to spend a winter evening? I'm trying to figure out how to do the Vandyked trim that is on the original gown. If I can't figure it out, I have some lovely lace that would look well inserted in the skirt and at the sleeve cuffs, but I'm not sure if a printed gown would have had lace insertion, since all the baby gowns I've seen with insertion are white. Hmm. . .

A darling, but hungry husband is waiting for me to start supper and the older two of my wee sons are spinning circles around the smallest. Oh dear!




  1. The dress is so cute! As is (of course) the model. :) And if you are wearing the dress I think you are, I'm so impressed that you're brave enough to wear your historical clothing out and about...I confess I'm not sure I would be, and that has prevented me from making any...despite how much I drool over it!

  2. The dress looks darling and so does your little man:-) I STILL have yet to begin sewing for my little girlie...I am such a procrastinator! I am knitting instead;-)

    Can't wait to see how the dress looks finished.

    Lots of love,

  3. I love that dress. It's so cute on your little one.


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!