Friday, August 24, 2012

A Sidetrip to the 60's - Black Lawn Gown

#1: The spacebar on the keyboard gets stuck every other punch. The baby spit up on it. So if there are multiple wordsspelledalltogetherlikethis that is why.

#2: Since we are attending an 1862 event this weekend I decided to postpone making the Hobbit bodice until next week. This week I made up the black lawn I was supposed to have turned into a dress while I was still pregnant. Yeah. I procrastinate.

#3: The baby turned 1 month old this past week. Where does time go? She looks so much like Malachi did at this age. Her eyes are getting bluer every day, much to the disappointment of David, who hoped she'd have brown eyes, like him. It seems blue eyes are dominant in our family. Her hair is still dark though. And I think she is just beautiful with her big blueberry eyes!

The black lawn is from Fashion Fabrics Club and the style I chose is pretty basic for the era. The bodice has gathers at the shoulder and waist, over a fitted lining. The sleeves are full at the wrist and fitted at the shoulder. There is a teeny sleeve cap with a ruffled edge at the top of the full sleeves. The skirt is about         180" at the hem is cartridge pleated to the waistband. I chose a V neckline (definitely more flattering to me than a high round neckline) and edged it with a lace frill instead of a collar.

I like it. I'm not that excited about it but I haven't been super excited about 60's fashions for a while. The fashion of the decade gets old after 14 years of study. It will work well for this weekend and that is what matters.

But I DO really like how the sheer shawl I made earlier this summer looks with it. I love the fluffy ruffles and the cheerful colors and how they look with the more somber black gown. 

And I like the shape my bum pad gives the back of the skirt. Yay for fluffy Victorian bums!

I will be back next week with the Hobbit bodice once again foremost in my mind, sewing-wise. 



  1. Sarah,

    I always admire your work. You make each of your gowns lovely by wearing them.

    The black is wonderful and the shawl is perfect for it.

    Have fun!


    PS I don't need a Victorian Bum Pad! Just thought you would like to know. Don't tell anyone else.

  2. How beautiful are those eyes on your little one. She is a precious gift from God.

  3. Always a treat to pop in and see what you're up to!

    Baby is super sweet!

    You are so very talented. Clothing always turn out fantastic.

    God bless,
    d on the kansas prairie

  4. I love the black gown, beautifully simple. And your little one is gorgeous!

  5. I like it very much, black is a nice colour! The shawl certainly is to advantage against it :)

  6. I am in love! Adoration is complete! For both your blue-eyed sweetie and the dress. Love it! You have been so so so busy!

  7. The baby is mightily cute! And your dress looks very nice. I am partial to black right now, and I am partial to many sheers. And black and sheer is another realm of happiness. I can see how after fourteen years the 1860's would get old.

  8. That is a lovely pattern! I'm not thrilled with black either, but I think the shape and look of the dress is very pretty. I understand about getting tired of a fashion. I reenacted Civil War for 9 years before I got a little tired of it. It's nice to have a break and do something else. I can't wait to see the hobbit bodice!

  9. She is adorable, and the dress is lovely!

  10. I have been looking back at your absolutely gorgeous dresses. I am a very novice sewer, but I am curious. Where do you get most of your fabric, and where do you get patterns? It would be beyond my skill level to make something like this, but I can aspire, right?
    I am a home school mom and I don't have a lot of extra money for fabric and/or patterns. Right now I am working on a late 1700's DOLL dress for my girls. Lol -- we'll see how that turns out first! :o)

  11. Carla, thanks! I don't have a lot of extra money for fabric or patterns either since hubby is the only one who works (well, for a paycheck that is. We know that stay at home moms work 24/7!) :P I get most of my fabric either online during fabric sales (, and are the three places I usually get fabric online) or at thrift shops or at Wal Mart in their bargain racks.

    Patterns can REALLY add up, so I have been teaching myself how to make patterns since I got married and we had a super-slim budget to work with. I like draping patterns since it's so much easier than drafting. You just pin and cut fabric right on your body until it looks right and that is your pattern! I also use pattern books like Patterns of Fashion, Corsets and Crinolines, The Cut of Men's Clothes, etc. so I know what shapes the pattern pieces ought to be when I take my draped pattern and make it become something period. The cut of an 1860's bodice is totally different than the cut of 1780's bodice, for instance.

    A lot of times I ask for fabric at Christmas or my birthday. Also people tend to give me fabric since they know I sew, so I have accumulated quite a lot over the last few years at very little cost. I am so grateful for a creative outlet that is really very budget friendly.

    I'm sure your doll dress will come out great!! If you are just staring out into historic fashion, I really REALLY love the patterns at Sense and Sensibility since the sizing is good and the instructions are so very clear. I really like the drawstring dress from the Elegant Ladie's Closet pattern. It makes a lovely gown and is easy to sew, so, a great project for someone just beginning. But beware, historic costume IS ADDICTING! :D

  12. I am just sitting here imagining what something would look like that I tried to fit on myself. It's kinda hilarious. Seriously though, I honestly never thought about doing that. I'm strictly a pattern kinda gal. I knit and crochet and it is very rare that I venture outside the confines of a pattern.

    I'm tempted to try it however. I know from my yarn hobbies that it just takes time and patience to learn the lingo and the rules and basics that make life easier.

    Plus I'm a spaz when it comes to materials. Im afraid if I get material for a dress it will end up like my first afghan project where I mixed some horrible acrylic and cotton. Urg - what a disaster! Lol. Anyway, I love your blog. You inspire me and thanks for the comments and info.


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!