Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Final Push #6


Friday, January 18, 2013

final push #5 or Fear Factor

I have put my question out to the "Hive" at the Elizabethan Costume facebook group.  This group of people are some of the best minds, or most involved in the making of Renaissance Clothing.  I got over 49 responses.  The experts mostly concur that no one really knows why.  There are theories.  But it was reported that even the people who restored this dress do not know why it was done.  But the fact remains  "It was done" in period.

So now I need to head down stairs.  Take a deep breath, and do this.  I have 1 1/4 inch to use for the hem.  If I sew on a Bias Hem facing I will then have one inch to make the tuck.  The tuck in the Pisa dress starts about 5 inches from the center, on each side of course.    It is hard to tell actual dimensions from the pictures alone.  It could be more.  But that is where I will start.  I need to unsew the center edge.  The use another 5 inches to get the full depth of the tuck to one inch. Then "Horrors" cut the hem and taper from where the tuck reaches one inch done to zero then the five inches to the center.  Once I've done this there is no going back.  The skirt panels are straight, but the hem has some curve to it.  A dry run of pinning this up is called for. 

Back to the Sewing room.  "Typing on the Blog is actually an avoidance of work"

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Italian Chemise

I have made the Chemise for the Italian dress.  The binding does not lay as flat as I would like, but when worn under the parlett, it shows up very nice. 

final push #4

I've finally put all the pieces on.  I'm up on the coffee table we use to mark the hem.  This is my husband's least favorite thing to do for me.  But he is very experienced at doing it by now. 
I was hoping I had figured enough material to do the pleat around the bottom that you see in the Pisa Dress.  Janet Arnold also documents this in her books.  I have not figured out why they did this.  Maybe to add weight to the skirt, so it hangs better.  Or, that if the bottom wear, there is extra material to fix.  Maybe The dress is made to a certain length, and if the wearer is shorter, they take it up this way. 
I may put this question out to the Hive on Margo Anderson or the Elizabethan Costumers facebook site. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

smocked apron

Needed to take a break from "The Dress".  Will begin work back tomorrow, when the snow is falling,

I decided to make a smocked apron.  I had lots of beautiful white linen I bought at Pennsic.  So since it was out on the cutting board, why not.  I also wanted something to present at the Athena's Thimble Guild meeting at Birka.  Smocking is a category I do not have.  I like the Honeycomb smocking.  So I cut one out Sunday.  The directions I had called for 1/4" pleats.  I though on that and said, Too small.  That would be OK if I was doing a different smocking stitch.  I went with a 1/2" pleat, and so like the look.  This is perfect.  All I have left to do is the hand stitching on the waist band and ties.  I machine stitched the side and bottom hem.  The smocking is done with Linen thread.  I have lots of that for my Bobbin Lace.  One tip I read said "use Linen because it will not slip while smocking".  This made perfect sense to me.  When I make Linen thread Lucet cords for my dresses, the Linen is tough to pull because it does not slip easily.  Also Linen is correct for period. 

Back to my Mundane world.  Making a hugh pot of Spaghetti Sauce - Italian Sausage/onion.  Using jars of tomatoes I canned last summer.  This will make a wonderful sweet sauce.   Also have 6 pds. of hamburg/pork/and ground turkey.  This will be mixed up to make Meatballs.  I have always dusted them with floor and pan fried my meatballs.  More work, but the crusty outside of the meatball makes them hold up well when added to the sauce.  Most of these meatballs will be bagged in 1/2 dozen batches and frozen.  So won't lot of the Sauce.  So come bad weather days, it's go to the freezer time. 
This is my Bobby favorite thing I cook ahead.  When I'm away at events etc he is all set.  He LOVES spaghetti  and meatballs. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Final push #3

The camera is back in working order.  We had left the battery charger plugged into a hotel wall last October, and had forgotten all about it.  So we had no way of recharging.  Thanks to "you can find anything at Amazon.com" we got a replacement kit, and are now all "charged" up to take pictures.

Back tracking.  I can't remember if I covered the Farthengale problem.  I am wearing one with this dress.  That is not period for Italian, but to give this dress the fullness and line I like, instead of making a heavy full Kirtle, I decided for the hoop.  I have used this farthengale many time. I made it several years ago.  For the hoops I used spring steel.  This was a 75 foot snake from HomeDepot.  I simple snipped off the end and cut to lengths.  In order to protect the material from the edges, I incased the steel in water tubing, the kind you buy for ice makers in the refrigerator.  The hoops are held together with brass fittings. Works great, has lots of support for the heavier fabric, and is light weight. 
So the problem was that the hoops showed thru the velvet.  I have never had them show up before.  I can only think that this was because the velvet skirt is so heavy it is "laying" against the hoops.  My solution was to make a padded overskirt for the Farthengale.
I finished it with white satin blanket binding.   These pictures show it with the bottom edge unfinished. 

The Parlett is finished.  I may make another one, now that I have the pattern figured out.  The Parlett is based on a portrait in Moda...   It is very frilly, as I said before.  My version is simplier, not as many rows of frill.  I wanted the blackwork to show thru, and the frills would block that.  But I pinned extra rows of the frilly trim onto the Partlett and Liked it.  So I may make another with more frill, but will need to find more of this trim at another JoAnn's before I can do that. 

The dress is now 90% completed.  The Chemise is all together.  I put it under the dress to see if the arms were long enough when Plucked thru the sleeve spaces.  I made them 12 inches beyound my finger tips.  Seems to be OK.  I also made the Chemise extra long.  For no reason, just because I have lots of fabric.  But the Bottom is not wide enough to go all the way down.  So I am going to have to shorten it, or Split the side seams open. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Final Push #2

The new Parlett came out nice.  It is Frilly.  The one it is based on is edged in gold with gold chains on an off white, even goldish color, veil material.  The portrait is "dark", maybe due to age.  This makes the parlett look rich.  My Parlett is white.  In order to make the collar "stand up" I used two things.  I inserted a band of Buckrum and the top has a wire.  The collar is thus free standing when worn.  It works.  The only spot I am concerned with is the width from neck to shoulders.  I may have short changed myself and I'm afraid it may pull out at the shoulders.  I can always pin this in when wearing to ensure no accidents. 

Cutting out the Chemise next.  Just finished washing and ironing 10 yards of the beautiful handkerchief weight linen I bought at Pennsic.  I have enough for several different smocks. 

A side project I am cutting out now also is a Smock Apron.  Do I have enough time to do this before Birka to present at Athena's Thimble.  Got to get off Keyboard and get cutting   

Happy Days are days spent creating your dreams.