In my mad rush to get three pieces of 1860s attire (and let’s not even think about the accessories) done in time for a bevy of upcoming Victorian Christmas events, I’ve been laying the groundwork for the next piece of the puzzle – the ballgown bodice.
I’m wanting something with an enormous floofy bertha, like these:
|Alexandra, Princess of Wales, by Winterhalter, 1864|
|Queen Sophie of the Nertherlands, by Winterhalter, 1863|
|Princess Dagmar of Denmark, who became Empress Marie Feodorovna of Russia – 1866|
I have no idea how to make something like this, so I turned to Patterns of Fashion 2: c.1860-1940 and Period Costume for Stage & Screen: Patterns for Women’s Dress, 1800-1909 to show me the way.
The place to start is with the foundation bodice upon which all the floof shall be built. I don’t have a pattern for an 1860s ballgown bodice, so I thought I’d try a technique I came across on Ralph Pink’s website, showing how to scale gridded patterns in Photoshop. (See the video here).
I scaled the 1860s basic ballgown bodice pattern from Period Costume for Stage & Screen, printed it out, taped it together, added seam allowance, and here it is:
It’s much too small, but I at least have a starting point for the muslin, which will become the final pattern. I’m really interested to see how this method of scaling the pattern works out, because if it does…well, that will change *everything* !