Friday, February 28, 2014

HSF #4 Under It All

So I haven't been blogging because I've had a full plate of sewing (and sewing related) activities filling my free time to overflowing.  Besides taking a class in making Victorian undergarments, I also signed up for a class on making an 1880s hat. (I love millinery, but haven't done it seriously in years) In retrospect, two simultaneous classes might be a bit much for my sewing schedule, but it's certainly increasing my productivity!  I also have some editing of pattern notes to do for a Kickstarter I helped fund, so my sewing to do list is pretty much as long as the to do list that greets me at the office every morning. And, blogging, alas, is secondary to all of the above.  Hence the silence the last couple of weeks.

Luckily, (and perhaps a bit guiltily) the chemise I made for the Victorian Undergarments class for HSF #4.  I used white combed cotton lawn that I bought at Dharma Trading Company and it was a joy to work with..  and wear.  One pre-washing made the chemise feel like the softest, comfiest in garment in my historical closet. The pattern, TV102, wasn't difficult, but me being me, I had to make it more time consuming by fussing with the trimming.  But I'm glad I did.  I think the three tucks really add something, as does the ribbon on the hem.  (Although I was cursing when I did it because threading the ribbon thru the eyelet took the better part of an evening)

I had an astoundingly difficult time finding grosgrain ribbon for this.  I went to 4 different fabric stores locally, ideally looking for a pale blue or lavender.  They had a few neon colours and white.  I couldn't even find black.  I wasn't thrilled about the poly but with as difficult as it was to find any grosgrain, I decided to get the while poly grosgrain and learn to like it,

The finished chemise

I do think if/when I make the pattern again, I will probably narrow the sleeve a bit. It seemed wide to me to begin with and adding the lace with such a soft drapey fabric made the sleeve stick out more than I cared for. One of my classmates said she used the sleeve from TV105 instead.  I may try that or just skip the sleeves altogether.  I did really like the effect of the eyelet insertion drawstring, though.

Sleeve and eyelet insertion drawstring

Tucks and eyelet on the hem  (photobomb by Samuel L Catson)

The Challenge: #4 Under It All
Fabric: Combed cotton lawn
Pattern:  TV102
Year: 1885
Notions: cotton eyelet, cotton lace, poly grosgrain ribbon
How Historically accurate is it? 80%?  Points off for the poly grosgrain and machine sewing a bit more than our average Victorian seamstress probably would have
Hours to complete: 6-8  (I am a slow fussy sewist)
First Worn: Probably to 221BCon in April
Total Cost: $40?  (I intentionally bought extra on the fabrics and trims to add them to the stash)

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