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I've been looking at the portrait I'm trying to copy and trying to figure out what shape the kerchief/fichu is. Is it square? If not square, what is it?

You can zoom in quite a bit on the Met website here:

It looks like it's something very sheer with a lot of drape to it. My thought would be silk gauze (modern gauze,) but even that might be too heavy. It seems to have three stripes around the border, which I assume are silk ribbon, roughly 1/4" (6mm) wide and spaced only about 1/8" (3mm) apart. They could have been woven into it, but I'm never going to find that so I would think that applying china silk ribbons would be my best option.

It's long enough to come around from the back across the breast and tie in a bow at the back, but there doesn't seem to be all that much bunched up at the neck. There are definitely two layers at the neck. My experience with 45-45-90 triangular fichus is that there is always a lot of fabric bunched at the neck that needs to be pinned into submission. That's the same shape you get with a square folded on the diagonal so if it were square, it seems like there should be more material at the back of the neck than I see in the painting. On the other hand, the points hanging down from the neck look like right angles, and I can't see how to get two right angles opposite each other without being a square or being some wonky shape with a seam down the middle. I don't see a seam in the painting.

Any suggestions? Any thoughts? Anything I'm missing? Please help!
atherleisure: (Default)
I have basically finished the 1790 striped gown based on the one in this picture from the Met.

I still need to do the cuffs, but I don't have the fabric yet. I want to do the kerchief/fichu as well and will do the cuffs when I do them. In the meantime, it's put away for a few months. No pictures of it on me until it's done, but I do have a couple of detail pictures for now.

The pattern matching came out very nicely on the back. The matching at the shoulder seams was purely fortuitous; I didn't even pay attention to it when I was cutting everything out.
1790 Striped Gown Upper Back Detail

And the pleats happened to work out so that the pattern repeat on the fabric was the pleat depth plus reveal so all of the lighter color is pleated out at the waist but falls on the folds. I wasn't trying to do that at all, but I like it that it happened.
1790 Striped Dress Waist Detail

Everything will need to be pressed at some point, but my iron was unavailable at the time so that will wait until I get back to it this fall.
atherleisure: (reader)
A couple of weeks ago, the Houston Area Regency Society was invited to a private Beethoven piano concert. There were about a dozen attendees at an excellent house party that included a light meal, an hour concert, and cards until we had to break up. About half of the attendees were regular HARS members, and half were other guests of our host and pianist. It was a lot of fun and felt like it fit with novel descriptions of house parties except that we were not served our dinner, it was buffet-style. Compromises are required for modern life, right? Still, it was an excellent afternoon and evening.

HARS Beethoven Concert

More pictures behind the cut... )

I was really pleased with how my hair came out.

1780's Hair

I followed the setting instructions for one of the hairstyles in 18th Century Hair and Wig Styling (the Plume, I think). I didn't tease it, though, just used a rat and sort of half-combed the curls before pinning them over the rat. I was thrilled that it came out so well, even if my husband wanted me to promise him never to do that to my hair again! Apparently, he doesn't go for the 1780's aesthetic.

The concert got me thinking about things to do at private evening parties since we've had two this year. I think we need more music. Kaycee had a keyboard out at her party in January and offered to let [ profile] nuranar and me play, but we didn't have enough notice to work anything up. My repertoire is heavily centered on the 1930's through 1950's so I would have to work something up. Now I need to figure out a way to do something like this, preferably by incorporating Ginger's vocal talents so I don't have to perform alone!
atherleisure: (reader)
I wore my piemontaise to a HARS event today since I really, really didn't want to wear Regency. Others actually took pictures this time so there should be some going around at some point...

Anyway, since I had my stays on and all, I took pictures of the ivory silk underbodice and petticoat I made last summer. The petticoat came out shorter than I meant it to because it's got more body than I realized (and because the petticoat that matches my piemontaise is shorter than I remembered it being), but it's still reasonable. It's probably more practical this way, even if it doesn't match my inspiration picture so well.

Not exciting pictures, but here you go.

Late 18th Century Ivory Silk Petticoat and Underbodice

Late 18th Century Ivory Silk Petticoat

It occurred to me after I got undressed that I had taken the pictures in front of a television set. Oops.
atherleisure: (Default)
I've been working off and on on the lace for an 1890's petticoat and finished the tenth repeat today. That was the point I had promised myself I could block and measure to see what kind of length I'm getting. It's 14" so I'm getting about 1 3/8" per repeat. That makes 26 repeats per yard. I don't know just how much I'll need because the body of the petticoat isn't finished yet, but it should be less than four yards so I shouldn't need any more than 100 repeats. It's still a lot, but at least it means I'm at least a tenth of the way through, right?

I'm also a tenth of the way through my (possibly Tolkien-esque) pinball. And I'm half done with my 1780's underbodice. I've done a lot of thinking about 1610's stuff but haven't cut anything yet. I might do that tomorrow, but I think I'll finish the underbodice tonight. I don't like UFO's, even if I have a lot of them right now.
atherleisure: (reader)
Explain to me why I just made an ivory silk 18th century petticoat and cut a matching bodice when I have two 1780's dresses that have never been worn. I was excited about Victorian costuming opportunities upon moving to Texas, but here I am still stuck in the 18th century. I guess I've been making plans for that period for so long that I can't get it out of my system yet.

I think the next thing I want to do is 1610's, but I really need to do a lot more reading before I start that. I'm not even quite sure what layers I need. I see lots of Tudor information, but Stuart seems to be less prevalent. There's a painting of a girl in a shift and kirtle that's dated 1612/1620 that I like, and I'm hoping I can do something like that with a jacket over it. I really don't want to make stays for it. Any suggestions?

(ETA link to the picture I mentioned.)


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