Thursday, July 13, 2017

FASHION banyan

I actually finished this project a while back, but I had to get my laptop repaired* so I didn't have access to the pictures.
This was supposed to be a present for my dad, but I liked the fabric way too much (don't worry, his version is pinned and ready to be sewn) so I decided to make it for myself instead.  It's a modern take on an 18th century banyan - a man's fitted wrapping gown - intended for modern use.  I blame Vincent (Mouse Borg Designs) for this.....damn cute banyans....
Take a look at this grown college graduate taking selfies!
It's a Colonial Williamsburg floral print with a matching stripe, lined with silk taffeta from a really nice furnishing store in Richmond (only got 4 yards 'cause it was ugly, but I wish I'd gotten enough for a proper gown...)
I used my 1860s bodice block and my 1780s gown sleeves as templates and winged it as I went along.  In retrospect I could have done a lot better at matching the size of the fashion fabric and lining to avoid hem weirdness, but there's nothing that I can do about that now, and the skirts are so full it's hard to tell.  I will probably need to reset the sleeves at some point to resolve armscythe weirdness, but it's surprisingly well-sitting considering the fact that I set them on myself and it usually turns out poorly.  I am considering putting self-fabric ties on it to hold it closed, but I also like wearing it open to show more of the garish lining.
Unfortunately it's too hot and heavy for summer wear but I'm looking forward to rocking light wash capris, wedges and a minimalist top with this in the early fall.
I hope you all look forward to seeing my dad in his wrapping gown when it's done. It's gonna be great!

*Coffee and computers do not mix.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Finishing a UFO

I finally sewed something blog- and era-appropriate!  I did make myself a banyan for modern use, but it still needs some last additions.  I wanted to finish a late 1790s gown that I started last summer with fabric that I got near Sturbridge, especially since I have such nice memories of the place and time that I got it.  I thought the nice, lightweight sprigged cotton was very regency-esque.
I patterned this gown myself, basing the design on a gown in the OSV collections.  The original (which I can't show for copyright reasons) is made from a heavy dove grey silk-faced satin; the pleats are stunning and the gown itself is immaculate.  I took so many pictures of it so I could recreate it later.  
The gown is lined in linen.  The bodice lining closes separately with pins and the front is tied underneath the bust.  The hair is totally not accurate but I recently cut it short and didn't have much time to put it up so that's all I've got.  I'm wearing it over my old short stays and a linen shift, and my 1860s American Duchess ball shoes too, since most of my flats are not era appropriate.
It could use some minor alterations, including lengthening the hem and fixing the armscythe, but considering the fact that it almost didn't get finished I think it's pretty good.  It's also nice and cool for the summer, so I can stay cool while not going to the Jane Austen festival in KY. Thanks adulthood...
I'm going to finish my banyan and start on a few other small projects.  Hopefully this summer I'll get around to a 1880s inspired cosplay project and maybe some random historical piece as well!  We'll see how inspiration strikes.

Monday, April 3, 2017

A Short-Sleeved Silk Gown!

Hey! This won't be a full post because I've ripped the photos from other sources but I want to update you all on what I'm making. 
I guess I love italian gowns because I made another!  The grey one has some serious issues that need to be dealt with and I don't like re-doing things, but luckily enough B&T had a workshop that I was able to take where I made another one.  Sarah taught us how to draw out a quartered gown back and how to drape the rest.  
I worked with some brown silk I had from Vogue that I'd planned for an 1860s dress but decided at the last moment to use for this project, and I'm glad I did.  I'm probably getting more use out of it than I would otherwise.
These were taken by the lovely Angela (B&T) and are on their facebook page!
From the Colonial Williamsburg Friends facebook group
I'm working on a petticoat to match, and I'm planning on getting some nice buttons to loop up the train - maybe also some nice puckered cuffs eventually, too.
Later on - Megatron kigurumi (which might or might not end up here - it isn't particularly historic?)  I don't have a lot of events or time for sewing in the next month or so thanks to graduation, so we will see.  On a related note check out my etsy - I have my white silk gown up for sale and will be putting more up as the need arises.