Friday, September 7, 2012

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V251: Starting the Indienne Gown, 1780s

With only about a month left until we leave for Williamsburg, I have rather a lot of sewing to do!


I was giddy when I found this Indienne print cotton at Lowe's, and now it's time to make it into a dress.  The "Prelude to Victory" event that will be taking place during our trip is set in 1780/81, so everything I have been constructing has been late 1770s, but no later than '81.

Costume in Detail, gown, 1780s - My changes - moving the skirting more to the front, changing the closure from lacing to self-covered buttons
Costume in Detail, page 70.
I'm using a gown in "Costume in Detail: Women's Dress 1730-1930 " for reference, page 69 and 70.  It has no specific date, just "1780's," so my plan is to set it a little earlier in that decade, by bringing the skirt more to the front than is on the original.  The overall construction is not much different than a 1770s Robe a l'Anglaise.
The original gown from "Costume in Detail," from the Snowshill Collection,  National Trust Inventory Number 1348733 
For the pattern I sortof smooshed together my basic bodice block and the pattern from the last Robe a l'Anglaise.  I want to try the squared-off tail style in back, along with a narrow-cut back, and a single-piece front/side/side-back piece. The shoulder strap is in-one with the bodice on the lining piece, but separate for the fashion fabric.  The sleeve has yet to be tested.


So far so good with the bodice.  I cut the center front well on the bias, and it has made a supremely massive difference in how the front/side/side-back pieces are fitting to the form.  I've turned the side back seams and pinned them - they'll be top-stitched into place, and if any additional fitting is needed, I plan to take it up at the center back seam.

Progress so far
Back pinned in place.
Here's hoping the rest goes as smoothly as it has done so far...I say this before getting to the sleeves, which always seem to stop a project dead in its tracks! Someday I will stumble upon the perfect sleeve pattern...maybe this will be the day. :-)


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21 comments:

  1. It is already stunning !! *-* I admire you, your hands are magic !!!!!

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  2. I think I like this one best of all the ones you have made.... And that's saying a lot :D Love the fabric, and the sketches alone are amazing!

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    1. I think I agree with you - I really like how it's turning out.

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  3. This is going to be so pretty! I bought those curtains, actually, and was debating making them a skirt or a gown... this is looking so gorgeous, I think they'll have to turn into a gown. I love watching your projects unfold!

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  4. Looking great! I bought the curtains as well. The fabric is beautiful. Im excited to see yours completed. Chintz gowns are a favorite of mine. So pretty!

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    1. Good call! I can't wait to see what you do with them :-)

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  5. The perfect pattern for this fabric, it looks so good!

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  6. Gosh that looks gorgeous. Is Lowe's online? I'd love to buy some of that fabric.

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    1. There's Lowes.com, but when I went looking for the Waverly curtains online I couldn't find them, had to physically go back to the store to get them. I thought maybe they were on their way out of stock, or just freshly in

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    2. Thanks L, they do have them online at the moment but don't post to Australia. Nevermind. I liked the one with the dark background too. Anyway I wouldn't make one with the same material as yours - mine would suffer too much in comparison! : ) How many curtains did you need to buy or could you buy the material by the yard?

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    3. I bought two curtain panels and it's been enough to make the gown, but of course not the matching petticoat. If you like, I can pick up your choice and post them to you.

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    4. You are a Duchess aren't you! And a good fairy. I have no will power - I'd love a pair of the same ones you have bought and a pair of the dark background ones. Will drive you up the wall?

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    5. Aside from the nice ones you bought did you think the black background was nicer than the red background?

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  7. It looks lovely! I predict a Lowes curtain costume craze similar to the Ikea curtain one a few years ago. ;)

    Jen Thompson posted links to the fabric on the Lowes website in her latest blog post:http://www.festiveattyre.com/2012/09/an-ode-to-curtain-costuming.html

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  8. Wow Lauren! Just wow! You'd be surprise what you can do with a lot of stuff from Lowes or Home Depot! Very beautiful Lauren!

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  9. This is going to be SO pretty!!!!

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