|This 17th c. gown is one I’d like to re-make, in silk satin, so I’m going to sell this version on|
Every once in awhile there comes a time when just about everything in my costume closet no longer suffices.
This non-sufficiency happens for several reasons:
- The costumes no longer represent one’s skill
- They didn’t originally fit great, and magical closet transformations never took place, thus they still don’t fit well
- One increases or decreases in size, and the costumes don’t
- The materials from which the costumes are made are no longer as bitchin’ as once thought
- I’m just not that into it anymore.
After constructing my wedding gown, which was made from silk taffeta, I felt it was time to up my game. The silk was so lovely, so nice to work with, and so pretty and shimmery and sheeny that I don’t want to go back to synthetic taffeta ever again.
|I didn’t mind this year’s Titanic costume, and it fit alright, but I never really cared for it that much, so to a more loving home it shall go…|
I also don’t want to wear uncomfortable, ill-fitting garments anymore. This presents a conundrum where the wedding gown is concerned, because it was too small. Way. WAY too small. I get the “pleasure” of deconstructing the bodice and attempting to let it out through its various seams, but because it’s my wedding gown, and made from such lovely materials, I want to neither sell it nor remodel it into something else. I pad-stitched the dickens out of that collar, and it deserves to be preserved!
|Sometimes I’m just not that into a costume, even though it turned out alright. This Victorian will be great for somebody else…|
I think these kinds of overhauls are good for one’s self. It’s a shedding the old to make room for the new, and I feel excited by the challenge of making better clothing from now on. It won’t always come out perfectly (the wedding gown being an example of that), but this is a life-long skill, and there’s as much fun in the journey as in the final result. 🙂
Anyway, I have a bunch of stuff to photograph and list on Etsy in the next week or so. I’ll post here on the blog, and on Facebook, when it’s all up and ready.
Stephanie LynnOctober 24, 2013 at 11:23 PM
As far as your wedding gown goes, even if you decide not to let it out, just remember that most people's wedding gowns just sit in a box for the rest of their lives so there's no saying that yours has to be multi-wear either!
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 12:33 AM
This is true, though I wanted to be able to wear it again!
DLMOctober 24, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Oh I'm a bit sick for you that the wedding gown isn't flawless *right now*!
And probably a little glad I'm vastly too large to fit in any of your beautiful pieces (oh that FIRST one – love!) so won't have to worry about spending money like that on myself before the holidays. Le sigh!
Do link the sales when they're ready. I intend to cruelly tempt my slender friends.
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 12:35 AM
If I'm totally honest, I am bummed about the wedding gown not fitting, but I'm hoping it isn't too obvious, and it's not what I remember in the future. I don't even know if I can fix it. :-
AuntieNanOctober 25, 2013 at 1:24 AM
Ok, quick fix questions–if its 18th C can't you shove a wider stomacher in there to make up the diff? Next question — can you slip in an added panel in the back, to be covered by hanging hair or your veil? Is it an underarm tightness that a gusset would fix? Feel free to email me with your specific gripes.
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 3:47 AM
Hi Auntie – My first go-to is to let out the side, side back, and center back seams. I *think* this will do it. What I did for the wedding is leave the top hooks undone so there was more of a V in the front, which looked fine. If that's the way it's going to be permanently, I'll remove the hooks and eyes that are no longer being used, and I might attempt to fold the collar deeper, though the roll line taping on the interior may prevent it.
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 3:53 AM
Now that you mention it, too, a second side back panel may just do the trick if the other bits don't give out enough (entirely possible). The whole gown was made from a movie costume and was never intended to be historically accurate, so I may be able to piece in some back panels and have it look quite alright.
AuntieNanOctober 25, 2013 at 12:07 PM
Sounds like a great plan, the side back panel. By the bye, I HOWLED when I read the magic closet transformations!!! I can't tell you how many costume items, regular clothing items, and half-made items Ihave been waiting for my closet to do something with!!
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 5:52 PM
Hahaha! I thought all sewing room closets had magical wardrobe properties, BUT I GUESS NOT!!! :*(
Sanna KOctober 25, 2013 at 5:45 AM
I'm going through the same feelings about my old costumes right now, too. But it just means you're getting more advanced and that's a good thing. Even if it's kind of upsetting to look at your costuming closet and realize that you don't like pretty much anything in there. I feel like I need a fresh start on costume making and have been thinking about selling some (or most) of my dresses but I just never get around to do it…
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 5:53 PM
Go for it! I think a fresh start is great. Plus by selling the old costumes, you can "legitimately" fund the purchase of the swish new silks, wools, linens, etc. 🙂 or in my case, a whole lot of shoes.
CarolineOctober 25, 2013 at 8:17 AM
Oh gosh I go through this every time I learn something new. I then hate everything on my costume rack and decide I have nothing to wear. I have a whole rack of outfits that will probably never be worn again… But I kind of look at them like a 3D album of how far I've come in sewing. Cheers to you for having the guts to pass them along. I'm such a pack rat. And I really don't think wedding dresses ever fit right. It took three people to zip mine up 🙂 I'm sure you look gorgeous in it 🙂
CarolineOctober 25, 2013 at 8:18 AM
Btw that 17th c gown up top is awesome!
Lauren StowellOctober 25, 2013 at 5:53 PM
Thanks! I haven't seen any photos from the wedding yet, so I hope the dress didn't end up looking like a sausage casing. There were bodice wrinkles…it drove me a bit mad all day, but I'm trying to remember that most everyone else at the wedding didn't see them, and I'm not an epic sewing failure :-
MrsC (Maryanne)October 25, 2013 at 8:49 PM
Go you! Can I ask though, have you gotten to the bottom of why it is too small? You made such a beautiful job on it. Knowing where the fit issues come from is an important lesson in not doing that again. I am curious too because we all learn from that stuff! xoxo
Lauren StowellOctober 26, 2013 at 2:47 AM
Hi MrsC – yes, I laced my dress form too tightly. I didn't realize quite how much weight I put on. 🙁
MrsC (Maryanne)October 26, 2013 at 6:10 AM
Oh how annoying! Still, sometimes it doesn't take much to make a bodice fit – especially if you could wear it so it can't be THAT much too small (I detect a bit of over-thinking) and even letting out a couple seams can do it. It is SOOO gorgeous and we can't wait to see the photos! And hear about the big day! xoxo