Draping the quilted petticoat and top fabric
I couldn’t wait to drape it on the stand to see what it would look like. The tree design came up a lot higher than I was expecting. The stand would not go down as low as my waistline, so in the photos she is sitting a few inches taller than me. The petticoat appears longer as I have left a good 75mm seam allowance at the hem, although I am planning to put three lines of stitching on the hem 1cm apart, and the bias binding needs to be added.
Draping the quilted petticoat on the stand
I also draped the top fabric over the petticoat to check the fabric yardage and formula Claire and I previously worked out was still correct to get the period shape.
Top fabric draped over the quilted petticoat
Pleating and gathering
While the petticoat was on the stand, I practised my pleating and gathering.
Pleating at the back
Gathering on the stand
One of my eyelets had come off a little while ago, and a few others looked loose, so I used my prym eyelet tool at home to push them together. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the right sized attachment for the 5mm eyelets, but I thought it would be close enough. It wasn’t and so a few of my eyelets were deformed before I realised what was happening as it only disfigured them on the side I couldn’t see.
Deformed and replaced eyelets. You can see one deformed eyelet I can't get out.
Eyeleting tools: hole punch and pliers - I wish I had a grommet/eyelet machine
Today Claire got us to work out yardages for the overskirt, gave us some instructions for the quilted petticoat, and I helped to fit Ann’s bodice.
In a bind – corset splitting
I wanted to double check the fitting of the period bodice from last week, but disaster struck when one of my over enthusiastic class mates pulled my corset laces too tightly and one of the seams on the unbound side split at the back. This is one of the seams I so carefully lined up and sink stitched in step J of making an 18th century corset.
My poor split corset
Claire said I should get some button hole thread (very strong), and starting from the top of the tear, bind the seam back together. Will let you know how I get on.
Overskirt draping and working out yardages
Claire said that we needed to drape the overskirt fabric to see how it would hang, then we would be able to work out how much we would need and a layplan.
Unfortunately, I only had a couple of meters of my top fabric, so I was only able to do a quarter of the waist.
Draping overskirt fabric over petticoat to work out yardages
Draping overskirt fabric over bumpads and petticoat
I originally worked out that I would need about 7 meters of fabric for the overskirt, but after speaking with Claire, revised this to 3 drops (150cm wide), so would probably need only 4.5 meters. Additional material would be required for the bodice and sleeves to match.
During the week, I had finished all the topstitching and satin stitched around the tassets. As my tassets were quite small, I found going round the corners quite difficult and hard to make look even. I ended up redoing this several times on one of the smaller tassets.
Satin stitching around the tassets. You can see I had a lot of trouble to get it even.
I needed to add the eyelets in class today, so the corset could be fitted before I sew up the side seams and start the bias binding. I found using the punch for the eyelets very difficult and in the end I just used an awl to make big enough holes to push the eyelets through. In the afternoon Claire went over finishing the seams, adding the neck straps and bias binding.
Using an awl to make holes for eyelets
Fitting went quite well for me, and although the stays would have to be quite tightly laced, I did not need to make any alternations. I did forget to snip between the tassets before I put the corset on, so this caused a little confusion about the fit until Eileen realised. Luckly, everyone is very profficent with scissors, so we didn’t have to unlace the whole thing to cut them.
In the later half of the afternoon Claire gave a handout about Unit 8: Developing sewing skills for costumes, which will cover the outerwear for the polonaise. We had a look at our dress designs we given an explanation how to work out the amount of material to buy for our outerwear petticoats and dresses (will post about this soon).
Project brief: Unit 8: Developing sewing skills for costumes – Polonaise outerwear 1770-1785.
- Finish the side seams
- Bias bind the bottom of the corset.
- Finish the stomacher and hand stitch in place
- Prepare logbook for units 7 and 9