Thursday, 25 January 2018

Black early baroque jacket

This is yet another original pattern I wanted to try and fit to my measurements to have it in store for quick projects. It's black for the simple reason that I had some black leftover fabric at home, the rest in my external storage was out of reach when motivation hit me. The pattern is the embroidered jacket from Nora Waugh's "The Cut of Women's Clothes". I re-scaled it and modelled it to my measurements by adding another seam to the front, as I intend it to be worn without corset.

The pattern is pretty simple to make, only the gussets were a fuss to sew in, ten of them including the lining. Only the sleeves need more fullness than the measurements given in the diagram. I stuck to the pattern with completely unshaped sleeves and they do look fine despite my doubts at the beginning. Weren't it for the gussets, this would become my staple three-hours-and-done-jacket. Guess I'll merge this pattern with the one from Holkeboer's "Theatrical Costumes" for another project.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Purple baroque dress

Found nice fabric, needed a gown for my third baroque character, a huguenot noblewoman - perfect coincidence. The fabric is a medium light cotton weave, warp in black, weft in purple, which makes a nice but not too bright colour, perfect for a young huguenot woman who might dare to risk a bit more colour but not stray too far from the usual black.

The skirt has a circumfence of four metres, and as the fabric was just half width I had to add a good measure at the bottom. The decoration of velvet ribbon makes this hardly noticable.

The bodice is based on a crossover between an original 1630s pattern from "The cut of women's clothes" by Norah Waugh and the early baroque pattern from Holkeboer's "Patterns for theatrical costumes": instead of the tedious but authentic method of inserting darts along the hip section to gain width, I used the Holkeboer version of curved lines instead of straight, but without the stomacher, closing like the original, with a high neckline suitable for a decent and pious woman. Also decorated with velvet ribbon.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Rococo "Bergère" hats - the basics

Ikea currently providing an ample support of round place mats made from natural fibres, I have also taken up rococo hatting again. Getting the right shape for one of those flat Bergère-style hats out of a round place mat is easy, you treat the piece with steam or hot water at the centre and the part that's going to be the back, and let it dry over a small glass bowl for the crown with the back part of the brim held upwards by another bowl. Flatten the sides with whatever comes in handy, in this case it was two boxes of fondant for the cake I was baking...

Let dry overnight and you'll end up with a shallow crown and a turned-up back. Ready for decoration!

The procedure works well with any kind of natural fibres, be it paper, straw, reed, or other grassy stuff. The hat will keep its shape pretty well, provided it doesn't get too wet. You may want to attach wiring to the edge when you line or trim the hat, which improves the stability of the back curve.


As I found some nice ball pendants that can be used for making pomanders, I decided I needed one. Or more. The first one sold quickly at the historic market, so quickly that only a blurry picture could be found because I forgot to take a decent one. It's artificial pearls, four joined on a wire, and a dark red one with silver ornaments between the white pieces. They should be long enough to go round the waist, the scented ball being slightly below your knees. The top end finishes with a hook to close around the waist with one of the joints between the pearl segments so it can easily be adjusted.

The second one is made with black and silver filigree pearls between the white segments, ending in a cross-shaped pomander pendant.

The third one (yes, it becomes slightly addictive...) is with red pearls again, this time with golden ornaments and a golden scent ball.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Teddy bear blanket

A friend of mine expecting her first child, I decided now was the time to try a pattern I had seen on the internet. And as time is always short when I start doing something, I couldn't bother ordering said pattern but quickly re-invented it. You'll find the original here and the price is really fair for a complete pattern plus how-to: teddy bear blanket pattern on etsy. Definitely going to order the sheep-blanket-pattern for the next baby project!

The complete blanket counts eight by nine squares to have all three tones of turquis evenly in the pattern; yes, I can be very orderly if I want to!

The squares were connected by slip stitch rows and then ironed flat. Make sure to iron the ears individually so they lie flat, then iron the complete blanket from the back to flatten it thoroughly.

The eyes are wooden beads, two of them stringed before you start the teddy face and then crocheted in so they don't stand the faintest chance of ever coming off.

And the little man seemed very pleased, slumbering under his cosy teddy bedding! ^^

Monday, 11 September 2017

Hat decoration...

...or: How to turn something incredibly horrible into something more credibly horrible :D

Having a pencheant for fleur de lys, I just had to buy this masterpiece of glittery madness (who the hell invented sticky glitter?!), plucked off the silly ribbon and the plastic rhinestones, scratched and sanded the glitterglue off, changed the position of the metal ornaments, and lo!, it can easily serve as hat decoration now - though I'll more probably use it for a rococo tricorn than for a baroque cavalier hat.

Glittery madness before
De-glittered ornament after

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Tiny stuff

This is what I do when I get along too well with my projects and decide I can waste some time on doing random stuff. While sorting through some drawers my mum found this wee rubber doll from the 1960s and brought it to me for some clothing. As it's a boy (even though the details are missing) he got red woollen trousers and a white shirt, mostly hand-sewn because four centimetre trousers and a three centimetre shirt are simply too small for a sewing machine :D