Tuesday, April 12, 2005

At Last

I've been hanging onto this half-yard cut of gold damask for over a year now. At last, all the pieces come together into my gold-striped bodice.


Boy, do I look flat in this picture...!

The inspiration to finally cut and sew was finding a really cool striped cotton remnant for the lining, which coordinated perfectly with the gold and added a bit of whimsy. You can't see the stripe in this photo, but the bodice is fully reversible. This was to have been my only bodice project this season, but my preferred supplies didn't arrive in time and I whipped up "Plan B" while waiting (see previous post). It turned out to be a good thing as I made one last adjustment (lowering the bottom of the armhole) to the final garment. For some reason, this piece wound up having a noticeably looser fit than the comfortably snug Plan B bodice. Lighter fabrics (I interfaced the lining)? all the handling? a different undershirt? Will see how it wears after a wash and press...

After learning how difficult it is to turn a bodice inside out with the front boning sewn in, I left an opening to slip it in afterwards. This worked out even better than expected, and I was able to turn a really nice square corner in the center front by tucking in the seam allowances and edgestitching them closed:

The 3/16" antique brass grommets came from Grannd Companies & Grannd Garb. They have a great selection of sizes and colors, nice alternatives to the tiny 1/8"s and large, shiny 1/4"s available at local craft stores. Note: the hand-held Dritz grommet setting tool does not work on these! With Scott's help, I installed these using an eyelet setter and finisher I got years ago at Impress Rubber Stamps. The finisher is especially important because it rounds down any sharp edges left after setting the eyelet.

Also wearing: Ring belt from Sofi's Stitches; skirt hikes and small leather pouch by The Crimson Chain; beaded snood by Lady MacSnood; Woodbaby Puppet by The Midsummer Knight's Dream; Scott's shirt and two layered skirts described in other posts. Oh, and my favorite straw hat, which I bought for my honeymoon almost 11 years ago!

Laura's purple dress is a Butterick pattern I made as a Christmas gift (delivered in February!). The fabric is wonderful stuff, with a crinkle texture, a suede-like feel, and a nice weight (I love the feel of heavy clothes). It was her idea to add a cincher for a look in keeping with faire, and even more brilliantly, her idea to split it into two pieces and have it lace in the back (partially for a custom fit, but mostly so we could use these great clasps she fell in love with in the front):
HPIM2639.JPG copy

The cincher started out life as Simplicity 5359. In the back, we cut down the center back line and added a seam allowance; added an inch and a half to each side for extra room (which turned out to be unnecessary); moved the last set of boning to the center back edge; and added grommets for lacing. The only change in front was to hand-sew the clasps. I edge-stitched around the whole thing but decided not to top-stitch along the boning so as not to spoil the pretty look. For this reason, next time I'll need to be sure to stitch the bone casing more securely to the lining first.


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