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Hey everyone! I hope that you had an amazing new year! Ours was pretty low-key. We dressed up in some spiffy 1950’s clothing and hung out with our friends and sang musicals and had yummy beverages. So to update you all, January letters for the the monthly letter tier should be mailed out by next week. I need to buy more envelopes (which is cool, because I really love stationery). My first costumed outing of the year is coming up this Saturday. I am doing an Edwardian themed stroll at a gorgeous garden/historic location in Delware-Winterthur Gardens. I still need to finish the fur capelet (which I am converting from a faux fur jacket that was slightly too small), and convert a gorgeous white skirt I found on Amazon into pantaloons. I have A LOT of projects for 2023, and many of them include updating & adding to some of my current gowns. I started to write out a list of the projects I want to do, but I know how my brain works, and new projects will be added all the time. But in the meantime, here are some of the projects that I want to tackle:

-Finish my husbands 18th century waistcoat -Make a SECOND waistcoat out of the really pretty fabric that I purchased from SIlk Baron

-Add ruffled trim to my two 18th century hats -Make ruffled trim and sew on to my purple Angelica gown -Make the 18th century Amalia jacket and a new petticoat

-A new spring Edwardian era ensemble

-18th Century, Regency, and Edwardian pieces for my children (they grow so dang fast!)

After January, we have an event in February, that will double up as our anniversary trip. We are going to the Milford Regency ball, which helps fund activities at the Milford Senior Center. We are making a whole weekend of it by staying at the Mansion Farm Inn, only a few minutes away! I absolutely cannot wait! I already have a gown that I plan on wearing, my pink regency gown that I made to go see Mr. Malcoms List (by the time we were scheduled to meetup in our regency outfits, the movie was already out of theaters). I don’t know if I am going to add on to the current gown, or make an overdress to go with it. But we shall see!


2022 costuming year in review

My costuming year in review! This year I made the most ensembles and went to the most events that I ever did. I love this little #costumingcommunity 💜 Looking forward to #2023 – my projects will be bigger and better, and hopefully there will be more awesome events! (I may take my hand at hosting another one!)

Making an Edwardian Capelet Pt. 1

I am going to a costumed stroll with friends in January, and I can’t wait. Now while I have an ensemble already, I desperately needed outwear. My originally plan was to make a capelet out of wool, but when I saw this faux fur coat in Goodwill, I knew that I could turn it into a capelet. I actually left the store without it, got home and sat for about 20 minutes, before deciding to go back! This is what it looks like:

So to convert this, I first cut out the lining from the jacket, and then used a seam ripper to open up the arm seams all the way down the side seams.

I then laid the open sleeves flat, and pinned them to both side seams of the jacket, basically making the sleeves into gores. This now turned a jacket that was a bit too small for me into a capelet that closes all the way in the front. I also cut out the pockets, but left the pocket slits open so I can have a place to slip my hands through.

Now all that’s left to do is stitch up the seams (they are currently clipped together right now), and sew on two pieces of ribbon to the collar so I can tie it closed. I am torn between a wide black satin ribbon or a thinner velvet ribbon. So based on a lot of the garments I have seen, the length of this should be a bit shorter, so I may cut it to even the length out, but I am not sure. I have until the end of December to decide. I still need to make a muff to go with this though. I have the sleeves from a friends fur coat that he wanted me to cut the sleeves off, so I can do that.

But all in all, this project is coming along quite well, and I’m sure that hand stitching the seams with silk thread will go along quickly.

I’ll be sure to post it when it’s done.

The silk is ordered!

Just placed the order for the silk taffeta for my Amalia jacket from the Silk Baron. Here is is!

Now, originally for the petticoat, I was going to get the color Magnolia. But I two white curtain panels made of a faux silk taffeta that I can use, and I’m thinking about doing that until I have the extra funds to get the Magnolia color. You can check my last post to see the pattern that I am making and the color!

WIP: 18th Century Waistcoat

Coming along well! I didn’t add pockets to it, but if I really wanted to, I could stitch faux pocket flaps to it, which I might do. The fit is snug, which is coming of the 18th century men’s clothing. I just have to wait for the buttons to come in.

Turns out that the color of the fabric that I wanted is sold out, but they do have another blue that’s very similar, and that’s the one I will be buying for the final version. I may have to take my hand at making fabric buttons too so they can match to the color of the silk

Upcoming projects!

So i’ve been working on the wearable mock-up for my husbands 18th century waistcoat these past couple of days. It’s the JP Ryan pattern here:

It’s coming along well. My husband already picked out the color of the silk taffeta that he wants for it, and that is the color Sultan from Silk Baron. I don’t know if I am going to attempt to make functional pockets, just the pocket flap, or no pocket at all, but I do need to decide. After I do the mock up of course comes the real version. And then after that, he needs two new 18th century shirts.

As for me, I have my next projects lined up. The first being an Edwardian-era capelet for a stroll that I am going on with friends in January, along with a nice, big, fur muff. After that, I want to tackle view B of the Amalia Jacket from Scroop Patterns:

For this jacket, I plan on making it from yet more silk taffeta from Silk Baron (I seriously love that company), but this color is a gorgeous pink with greenish and blue tint, called Aurora. I got the sample in the other day, and it’s even more gorgeous in person.

I absolutely adore the zone front and peplum of the bodice! For the petticoat, I plan on going with the color Magnolia from Silk Baron. My friend said the colors are like frosted strawberry lemonade, and I am here for it!

Of course I need to make some new pieces for my kids, but they grow like weeds! My daughter when from wearing a 14-16 in girls at the beginning of the school year to a womens small/medium now. How am I supposed to keep up with that? Plus I need to actually find a decent and quick pattern for some 18th century jackets/bodices for her, since the petticoats are super easy to make. I may know how to sew, but I have no clue how to scale or alter patterns to make them kid/teenage size.

So that’s it for now. After I am done cleaning and getting things done around the house, I am going to pin the lining and fashion fabric of the waist coat and see how to go about sewing that. I’m kind of confused because I have literally skipped doing lining in any projects for years! I told yall that I am a chaotic goblin when it comes to sewing! So I’ve never properly done lining until my regency gowns and angelica gowns, but attaching the lining to those were different. This pattern calls for the fabrics to be pinned together all the way around right side out (which I can follow), and then it says flip it inside out through the armholes….WHAT???

Wish me luck!

Autumnal Bonfire Party: The debut of The Angelica Gown & the black Chemise a la reine

This past weekend was just amazing. On Saturday I headed down to Virginia to attend my friend Jennys autumnal bonfire party. This was an all day into the evening party in which we donned our finest frocks, and the theme was dark & spooky autumn. There was no set time period to come in, so it was lovely to see the array of historical era’s displayed. As you all know, I have been working crazy hard since October to make an 18th century Italian gown, The Angelica gown from scroop patterns, and I had already made a black chemise a la reine for the event. And they both made their debut! I put the chemise a la reine on for the first half of the day, with the angelica gown for the second. Let me tell you, the way the angelica gown looks and moves is EVERYTHING! Believe it or not, I was originally going to go with a color named Hex from the Silk Baron, but by the time I went to buy it, it was sold out. So the color of the gown, Bruja, was a color they had just released and I knew it was perfect for me. The petticoat is a shot silk petticoat in a sapphire blue that I already had. But enough babbling, let’s go to the pictures!

Finished! The purple Angelica gown

She. Is. DONE!!!! Yes yes yes yes yes yes!!! 🙌🏾 I literally got done sewing the lace tucked on maybe an hour ago, and then I hastily threw her on the dress form for pictures, but y’all! SHES FINALLY DONE! And tomorrow, she will make her debut!

So a couple of things about making this gown. 1- The silk taffeta is a color called Bruja from @silkbaron (and I’m already eyeing other colors from them for future projects). 2- I was going to make a black petticoat to go with this, but I really like the way the blue petticoat pops, jewel tones for everyone! 3-this is the second version of this gown that I made, and the 2nd time around went much smoother. The pattern is the #angelicagown from @scrooppatterns. For the sake of time since I started working on this just under two weeks ago, the bodice/sleeves/and hems are machine sewn, everything else is hand sewn. 4-the gorgeous brooch that’s pinned on the waist sash is from @dames_a_la_mode . 5-not pictured are the shoes from @americanduchess .

And with that, I am DONE with making 18th century gowns for a while, next projects up are for my husband who has been a saint in waiting. If I say that I want to do another Angelica gown in the next 12 months, slap me!!!

Progress on the Angelica Gown V.2

So I am back from the wedding in CT, and from visiting friends in MA. For the first time in 18 years I did NOT do anything for Halloween since we were driving back home Monday afternoon through the evening. But that means that today I started attaching the skirts to the bodice. Well first I had to readjust the pleating so it can fit within the 28 inch mark line , but that was relatively easy.(taffeta is a DREAM to pleat honestly!!!
And once the pleats were adjusted and pinned, it was time to actually attach the skirts. Using silk thread for the very first time made a world of difference! I also learned that you should typically sew with the type of thread that your fabric is: so cotton to cotton, linen to linen, silk to silk, etc. This is news to me 😂
I have until Friday evening to get this finished. I still have to sew the rest 50% of the half of the skirt to the bodice, cut the sleeves and sew them, sew the straps, and hem this gown, and my black chemise a la reine. For the sake of time and my sanity, I will be using my sewing machine to hem it.
Tomorrow I plan in running by JoAnn fabrics for items for product photography for a couple of small businesses, but also to see if I can find a lightweight sheer cotton that would work as a fichu. I got the white fabric that I’m wearing for this one pictures below .

Oh! And I still have to make two petticoats to wear each gown! I have faith!!!
After all this sewing for myself, I’m going to start working on a couple of projects for my husband. Including an 18th century waistcoat, a sleeved waistcoat, and a new shirt.
Oh! November letters for my $10 tier patrons will be going out VERY soon!

It’s Done!: The Angelica Gown (Mockup Version)

So it took just under three weeks, but the Angelica gown is done. HOORAY! (I repeat, HOORAY!). Even though I’ve been sewing and doing historical costuming for years, this gown was the first truly historical pattern I attempted, and boy did it kick me in the butt. I tend to take a lot of shortcuts and do what I want to do when it comes to sewing and using patterns, but this one has shown me that I can’t do that all the time UNLESS I already know what I’m doing. For example, I can knock a regency gown out with a sewing machine in under 2 days.

A couple of things I have learned from making this gown:

1-Historical patterns are VASTLY different from modern commercial patterns.

2-Some things just NEED to be hand stitched. I’m used to taking shortcuts and machine-sewing everything. NOT with this gown!

3-Hand sewing is not all that bad. I used to hate it but found out that I’m quite quick with it once I get a good rhythm going and focus

4-PRESS. OPEN. SEAMS. Trust me on this.

Now, the dress still needs to be hemmed, which I can do at any time since it’s a wearable mock-up, but other than that it is done! Here are some pictures:

Also, can we get a round of applause for these pictures taken by my 11 year old? Looks like she is following in my footsteps as a wedding photographer!

Now that the mock-up is done, I feel way more confident in starting the real version, and cutting into my silk baron tafetta! I have an event to go to on the 5th, and the theme is dark and moody. So although I already have a black chemise a la reine (which still needs to be hemmed), I am EXTRA, so I want a second gown to change into. But if it doesn’t get done, then I’ll be changing into edwardian.

Wish me luck and happy sewing!