V225: Starting the 1790s “Robe Royaliste”

Before Costume College, I was making plans for a new 1790s gown in purple taffeta, called the “Robe Royaliste.”  I decided on a chemise style like the lovely green/gold gown in The Duchess:

I’ve never done a gown like this before, but I enjoy patterning and trying to figure stuff out, and was eager to use the knowledge gained in Jennifer R’s sleeve-fitting class I took at Costume College.

I was also eager to try out my first standardized body block I cobbled together after having so many fit issues with the Parisian Gown.  It was a combination of a stays pattern drafted from The Custom Corset Pattern Generator, and an old Simplicity Renaissance faire bodice that somehow magically fit me.  The paper block fit my dress form, at least…

I added an additional inch to the shoulder strap, to drop the waist and open the armscye a bit.

A quick muslin toile also fit, along with my first solo-drafted shaped sleeve (what a bitch to draft, honestly, but I learned a lot)…

The gown is a drop-front, with a smooth back, and a gathered front panel that buttons or pins at the neckline and also the waist.  Wary of slicing up an expensive silk, I’m testing out my patterning hubris with a cheap taffeta I found on sale for $1.99.

It actually looks how it’s supposed to look so far… I are pleased!

Most of this is pinned together here, but I’m surprised at how quickly this gown is moving along (famous last words?).  I’m beginning to hope/believe that perhaps there will be no horrible fit or pain-causing issues, and it may even be possible to have range of motion through the shoulders (zomg!?).

Skirt and sleeve just pinned on to give an idea.

So here’s hoping for luck through the rest of this project. 🙂


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