Thursday, January 31, 2013

Challenge 3 - starting

Today I actually finished the Victorian blouse!!!!!  I finished the last of tacking the lace down while watching "The Americans" pilot.  (I think it is has too much violence for me.)

Anyhow, we are now on Challenge #3:  Under it all.  I will be doing the A version.  I think the skinny strap version may be annoying if the straps keep slipping down.  I don't plan on adding all the ruffles, my blouse has enough puffyness in it's pigeon puff as it is.  And... I have it cut out already!  I did it when I cut out my blouse pattern.  It feels good to be ahead of the game.

I am getting a little nervous about so many layers of clothing and how heavy it will all be.  I haven't been wearing my corset for a couple of years while doing tours...but I'm upgrading.  And I didn't have a chemise either.  Well, if the Victorians/Edwardians could do it I guess I can too!  Are we wimps? No, we're not!

stockings, shoes
corset cover
petticoats - 2 at least
then the outer garments.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Challenge #3

Challenge #3: Under it all - Due Feb. 11
"Every great historical outfit starts with the right undergarments, and, just in time for St. Valentines day, here's your excuse to make them.  Chemises, corsets, corded petticoats, drawers, garters, stockings.....if it goes under your garments, it qualifies."

OK, as soon as I finish the back closing and the belt on the Victorian blouse I will be starting my corset cover.  Just as the chemise is to protect the corset from body oils, etc. the corset cover protects the outer upper outside garments from the corset and body.  My corset cover was cut out at the same time I cut out the chemise, so it is ready for sewing!

Of course, if you have really been paying attention you will remember the lace on the sleeve cuffs of the Victorian blouse is still waiting to be tacked down.  It will just have to wait for Challenge #4 Embellish!

Now to get those hooks and eyes and the belt to the blouse done so by the time it warms up outside today I can get to the GARDEN!  It is supposed to get up into the mid 60s!  Yay!

The back closing and belt are done!  Don't mention hooks and eyes to me, I HATE THEM!  All that is left on the blouse is the lace on the sleeves......a good thing to do while watching TV.

Meanwhile, the left side flower bed is almost completely weeded.  Supposed to be 66 degrees F tomorrow!!  I have a meeting in the morning and walking in the afternoon, then plan to plant my little baby plants!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Progressing still

Today was so beautiful and the garden was certainly calling!  And I have my new baby plants to put in!

But I held off and worked on the belt for the Victorian blouse.  It is baisted on at this point.  This evening I started putting the hooks and eyes for the back closing.  I am about half way done.  Hooks and eyes are not my favorite things to do.  When the back closing is finished then I can finish the belt.

I did go out and work in the garden though.  It is supposed to be even nicer for the next few days so I will be getting those plants in.  The chances for a hard freeze at this point is getting slimmer, although this winter seems like we have had a lot of hard freezes.   I will have to protect them just in case.

Tomorrow I will finish the back closing on the blouse before playing in the garden, I promise.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Challenge is due!

I got my pattern up-sized out of this challenge.  I also finished my corset project  and mended my fan.

My blouse isn't finished though.  I finished putting the lace on the collar today and came up with a solution to finishing the bottom hem (by making a belt).  I added the picture to the challenge photo page:

I have yet to do:
hooks and eyes sewn for the back closing
lace tacked to sleeve cuffs
belt finished and attached to bottom hem.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Coming down to the wire!

Actually the challenge ends tomorrow!!  I'm going to be fairly close but won't be making it....

Today was lace, lace, lace....Tacking down lace.  The lace has to be tacked down well because it will catch on anything and everything, besides that it doesn't want to lay nice and neatly.  It is all done by hand and takes a lot of little stitches.

So far, the neckline is about done, the epaulets need to be attached.  The cuffs on the sleeves needs to have the lace tacked down, the hook and eyes on the back closing need to be added and I have to figure out what I am going to do about the "belt".  The pattern doesn't say anything about how to finish off the bottom hem, it just says you can use a fancy belt.  I also may get some more of the lace for the collar.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Fanny, Fan, and Lace

The challenge #2 is due tomorrow.  The challenge was to finish an unfinished project.
The only unfinished projects I had were:
A. corset hip padding
B.  fix my fan
C. upsize my blouse pattern and create a mockup

 The first 2 are quick little projects and the third is, for me, a huge project.

The Corset Hip Padding:

The Fan:
 I found this fan about 25 years ago.  It has beautiful carved sticks, but as you can see, one of them had been broken.  This is what I planned to fix for the challenge.

The material on the fan was in fairly good shape when I first found it, but it had a bit of wear.  In order to stabilize the fabric so I could use it I covered the fabric with a black sheer material. 

This morning I super glued the broken stick.  I haven't cleaned up the excess glue yet.

It was actually harder to do than I thought it would be because it was hard to manipulate without getting some glue on the other sticks.  I certainly didn't want them to get stuck together.

And the third project is the Blouse I've been working on.  I'm not going to have this one done by tomorrow!

I am working on the trim which has to be done before the back opening can be finished.  I'm about one third donel as of tonight.

Friday, January 25, 2013

A little faster pace!

I feel like I passed a major hurdle getting the sleeves set in.

Today I figured out the collar and attached it, hand sewed the hems in the sleeves.

Tomorrow I will start working on the trim.

I am contemplating what to do about the bodice waist hem.  The very short description on "Finishing" says to wear with fancy belt.  Well, that means I have to figure out how to make one and then do it.  It still leaves what am I going to do about the bottom of the bodice.  If I leave it so it can be worn on top of the skirt (which is what it would be if I do the belt thing then the question is:  How did you raise your arms at all without the blouse pulling up?  Maybe they didn't do such unlady-like  things as raising your arms?

Anyhow, I think I will be making a belt.  That will be a challenge in itself.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Preparing for the next steps...

Today I had little time to work on the blouse project.  I did finish hand stitching the puff sleeve cuffs down to the lining.  I still have the tabs on the ends to finish but they will be done when I add the lace trim.

 I put bias tape around the neck opening in preparation for adding the collar.  I am going to have to create a collar pattern which ought to be loads of fun.....not.
 I finished making new patterns for the trim.
I am really not looking forward to doing the collar.  The last 2 times I did a stand up collar it didn't turn out right.  Well, I will have more time tomorrow to work on it.  It is something you don't want to be interrupted in the middle.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sleeves are IN!

 This morning there was at least a hundred robins in the back yard!  And Cedar Waxwings, sparrows, etc.  They were pulling worms out of the lawn and eating the berries on the pepper tree.  Hope they ate a few snail while they were at it!
 And the spring flowers are showing their faces...........The yard is calling!  Spring is coming!  Then the rain started...time to work on the sewing project.

The sleeves are officially in.  I will be tacking down the puff sleeve section tonight and will be hemming the bottom of the sleeves tomorrow.

And I bought the lace trim!  I will have something to do for the embellishment challenge! 

Redoing the sleeves, again....and again

I started out working on adding the lace over the lower part of the sleeves.  Since I am making this out of my stash I had to figure out how I was going to be able to have enough lace to cut out these pieces.

The lace on I decided I really needed to own up to the fact the sleeves were just not fitting right in the arm hole.  The actual arm hole was just too small and the top of the sleeve lining was too small and the puff sleeve was just not setting right.  I had stewed over how I was going to fix it all since I am now pushing the limits on what material I have left.  This started out to be my mockup but somehow it is turning out that it may turn out to be my blouse.....!! 

I ended up putting in a gusset in the top of the sleeve lining and that worked for giving more room for the arm.  I cut the arm holes bigger which really helped.  And after many pinnings, and unpinnings I decided I needed to add a piece to the puff sleeve.  With all the other alterations it just needed more room around the arm at the cuff.  I managed to stick in a section of the sleeve under the arm hole so hopefully it won't really show.  Anyhow it is all pinned and ready to sew tomorrow.  I hope it still looks right tomorrow morning.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Sleeves are attached

Today I spent a lot of time working with the sleeves.  A lot of adjusting and hand sewing was involved.  There is the lining which is the full length sleeve and then there is the puff sleeve which is elbow length.  But by the end of the day the sleeves are attached to the bodice.

The puff sleeve ends in a special little cuff which is just pinned for the moment.  The rest of the lining sleeve needs to be covered.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

It's starting to get that look!

I started out just making a pattern for me from the original pattern that was several sizes smaller.  Some where along the line I just started making "the real thing".  Actually it happened that way because I just happened to have some fabric in my stash that I wouldn't mind giving up if it all didn't work.  So I am now into the outer layers!

The outer "fashion fabric" layers are easier than the "foundation" bodice because it isn't as "fitted" as the foundation.  So I now have on the outer back, front and the lace yoke in the front and back.  I love it when it is all going together and (knock on wood, as they say) I haven't blown it to this point. 

Next are the sleeves, I'll have to make a muslin pattern here for sure to make sure it is right.

Just remembered, I better do the boning now while I can still lift the outer part!  The instructions are from the original 1910 and sketchy is overstating  it.

Friday, January 18, 2013

The pattern part 2

Today I have been working on the top bodice (or fashion fabric pieces) making their patterns off of the original size 36 pieces.  So far I have the front pieces done, taking a break and then will tackle the back pieces.
This is the patttern I am currently working on.   Once I get the pattern pieces done I will start to put  the foundation bodice together with 100% cotton broadcloth.  By then the lawn I have ordered may be here and I can start the outside bodice.

And below is the new pattern that came yesterday.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The pattern

I have made a new pattern for the Edwardian Blouse up to the bodice lining or Foundation.  Next is the top fabric bodice and sleeves.

I received another blouse pattern, this one based on 1909 but made up as modern fitting.  It also comes in many sizes so I wouldn't have to change the pattern size.

I am now waiting for the "lawn" fabric I've ordered.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Well, I got big and brave and started to try enlarging my new blouse pattern from size 36, the only size it comes in.  I've never really tried to do something quite like this, enlarging a whole pattern and it really had me intimidated.  But, I've started it.

I created a mockup pattern of the foundation (lining) only, so far.  All the stuff you see in the pattern picture is attached to this foundation.  I have to do this all over the corset and hopefully it will all work out!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Un Finished Object - Challenge #2 part 1

I spent some time on the corset pad project today.  I had gotten my old dress form down from the attic.  My duct tape form was made when I was not wearing the corset so it really isn't made to the corset measurements.  So I doctored up my old dress form to my size minus 3" for each measurement which according to those that know is how much your measurements change with the corset on.  Then I put the Edwardian corset on the form.

Edwardian Corset without bust pads...

And without hip pad.
It sure doesn't have the S shape at this point.

 You can see how it doesn't really have "form".  This corset is the one that gives an "S Shape".  It has padding that supports the bust because the corset does not really touch the chest area. There is a "rear pad" also.  It goes under the corset and helps create the "S" in the back.

The padding.

This is with the padding and you can see some difference.  The padding seemed to need a bit more stuffing so I rectified that problem.  

With the padding and the petticoat I can see the S form developing.  I haven't actually tried it on at this point.

I did want to document the bustle I found at a flea market in Pennsylvania about 20 years ago.  The seller did not know what it was, I thought it might be a bustle but wasn't sure.  It is made of thin metal woven into this form.  The belt is twill tape.  I rarely use it because it has several places where the wire is rusting away. 

And that's not all!

UPS just delivered 2 pieces of fabric I ordered online.  JoAnn Fabric has such a limited fabric selection.....Almost everything has polyester in it also.  This material is from Burnley and Trowbridge Co. in Williamsburg, VA. The navy lightweight wool is for a 1903 trumpet skirt and the oyster striped muslin is for that blouse for which I have yet to change the pattern.  I love both fabrics, they are much better than I hoped for!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Starting Challenge #2

Ok, I've actually started working on the pads tonight.

The interesting thing I have learned is that the pads are how the Edwardian Ladies got the "look".  They padded the top and the bottom which made the waist look smaller.  The "rear" padding helped creats that "S" curve.

Everyone has been posting their Challenge #1 efforts and they are all great and interesting.  I have learned a lot from photos and comments from around the world.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Challenge #2 - Decision Made!

I have a couple of things I plan on doing for Challenge #2 "UFO - Finish something that's never quite gotten down.  I will be finishing my corset project. 

The Edwardian corset is now done except for the pads.

I am going to have to get the dress form out of the attic to display this project!

There are "rear" pads that go under the corset to push out the back of the corset and pull in the tummy and there there are the "bust" pads that go into the top front of the corset to fill out the top the the "S" curve of the Edwardian shape.  I haven't quite gotten myself make those pads.

A difficult project ahead!

I have a project coming up that is going to be very difficult and I am steeling myself for it.  I will be making a victorian blouse (which can be tricky enough)  but I have to increase it several sizes.  It only comes in size 36 and unfortunately I have grown up a bit since that size!  That means I have to do a muslin one to make sure my changes are correct before going "all out" and actually cutting the expensive fabric for the real thing.  So send good thoughts my way.  At least I have my duct tape "Me" to help fit it!  This project does not fit a challenge through those due by April 9, but since Ardenwood opens in April it would be nice to have finished by then.

Challenge #0 - chemise DONE
Challenge #1, the parasol DONE  and  I am getting ahead so I have extra time to work on the blouse ...It's going to take some time!

And then there is the next challenge, #2:

UFO  - due January 28, 2013
Let's get something off our UFO pile!  Use this opportunity to finish off something that's never quite gotten done, or stalled halfway through.  Can't tell you what I will be working on for this yet.....

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Exercise Day!

Today we walked after our weight watcher meeting....4 miles plus!  We earned 3 activity points, 112% towards my goal achievement for the day, 88 min regular activity and 33 min of intence activity.  We were pretty proud of ourselves!

Then I went home, ate lunch and fell  asleep in my chair.  Got up and when to see "Hyde Park on the Hudson" a movie about FDR.  Not historically correct and soooo slow.  Don't recommend it.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A Little Garden Time

Those weeds out there are growing like crazy.  I am going to have to take some pictures to show you.  I tried to work on the patio area and it was just too wet still.....and then we had more rain this afternoon so it will just have to start drying out again.

I did get to the baby tears area.  It was dry enough to work and pull some weeds.  The chickens loved the weedy snack.  I got about 1/4 of it done.  A lot of the volunteer Chinese Foxgloves are in great shape and will be really pretty.

I need to find a spot to put the Japanese Maple my sister, Coletta gave me.  I love it and it is dormant now so I'd better get on the ball and dig a hole before it warms up.  There is so much work out there!
I am really planning to make the side flowerbed a succulant area.  Although I need to make sure they can live through frost.  We seem to have some harder frost than we've had before and hate, and don't, cover plants.

I actually worked on part of Challenge 3 today and I haven't completely decided on what to do for Challenge 2 yet.......need to decide by Jan 15!

Monday, January 7, 2013

New Year Resolutions!

I am in the process of increasing my time on the treadmill, etc.  It would be really nice to be able to have to "take in" my new clothes by the time Ardenwood opens in April!  I'm trying!

I haven't quite decided just what to do for Challenge 2 yet.  There are several possibilities......

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Getting Ready for the Next Challenge

Challenge #1 is due January 14th and the parasol is finished ahead of time

Challenge #2 is:
"UFO - due January 28.  Let's get something off our UFO pile!  Use this opportunity to finish off something that's never quite gotten done, or stalled halfway through."

I do have a little something that needs to be finished and will be perfect for challenge 2, to be devulged January 15th.

In the meantime, I just might get out to the garden, the weeds are getting out of control out there.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Finished with Challenge #1 - parasol

After a day and a half of hand stitching the lace, ribbon stripe, and the trim I am glad to be done with it.

Added the little finishing ruffle on the top!
And its done!

Friday, January 4, 2013

More Research on Parasols

I know the umbrella frame I have is from the turn of the century.  I thought it was around 1913 but that may be pushing it.  It is probably earlier that that.  In the 1800s parasols were part of a ladies outfit.  They always seemed to have one.  Up to 1905 it seems they were still popular but started to fade in popularity fairly quickly.

The style from 1900 changes from frilly with lots of trim to more plain but often with a stripe pattern involved.  In the fashion plates I have found of 1913 there are just a few.  One has a lace trim on the outer edge, another has a fringe of pleats. 

I had already added a lace trim on the outer edge and I added a "stripe" of floral ribbon just in a couple inches from the outer edge.  I think it would pass as transitional. 

At this point I am still hand sewing the floral strip and edgings to it.  I will add photos tomorrow. 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Covering the Parasol

So, I cut and basted the dotted Swiss fabric.

The pieces were then fitted onto the parasol frame, adjusted.
Then machine sewn together. 

Lace was pinned on and hand sewn to cover the raw edge.  This was done before cover is attached permanently to the frame.
Of course Missy has to help pull the pins out.
The cover is on the fame but not tacked down yet.  The lace is hand sewn over the raw edges.

To be continued...