Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Regency Embroidered Blue Silk Gown

Exactly one week before the Jane Austen Evening I decided that I wanted to make a new gown.  I had finished my new stays and petticoat and so Ben and I rushed to the LA Fabric District to go find me some silk!

We found the most beautiful embroidered blue silk and that was it, no more browsing we knew it was the one!  Side note: my favorite color to wear is blue, my previously favorite gown is a blue dupioni silk, I've tried other colors and have never been happy with them, apparently my color is blue...

A lesson I learned from making my first silk gown and seeing it fall apart before my eyes, use Fray Check, it is your best friend!

I drafted my own pattern for the bodice because I wanted it to be a bib front gown.  Last year I made my own version of the bib front gown, but I didn't love it, you can view it here.  So this year I tried to be more faithful to the real gowns, here is a great example.

It almost looks like a spencer over my petticoat!

I wanted the top piece to be ruched, so I made a channel and pulled a ribbon through.  Lucky day when I squished it all together I ended up with the most lovely flower pattern!

Since I was totally winging this I wasn't sure how much fabric I'd need, so I sewed a channel, ruched, tested it, and then was very glad I had not cut the fabric yet because I sewed it a little bit longer!  When it was the right size I cut it off.

I did make one mistake, I did not make the bodice piece long enough and there was a bit of gapping.  Nothing a little scrap fabric can't fix though!  In this picture I tied the waist band on the inside, but realized it wouldn't gap nearly so much if I tied it correctly on the outside...

And here is my new gown all done and ready to go hours before the dance!  Technically I finished at 2am, but I'm still counting it as the day before since I had to sleep to make it count as the next day...

Now for some pictures of me getting dressed starting with my undies!

Shift and short stays.


Suddenly the clock was giving us warning that our coach would turn into a pumpkin before we left for the ball, so I continued getting dressed and forgot about the pictures.  But when I got home I made sure to take some in the new gown.
Teddy approves!

Up next, a post about the Jane Austen Evening!

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