Tag Archives: Historical Sew Monthly 2016

In My Easter Bonnet

Well, not exactly a bonnet and a little late for Easter, but I like it just the same.  I purchased the following pattern ‘Late Edwardian Early Teens Small Hats and Toques for Time Period 1909-1916’ by Lynn McMasters.   Check out her website for an outstanding collection of period hats.

March Challenge – Protection (okay, so it’s pretty, too).  I went with a hat – specifically View A as I had lovely white linen for the base and lots of vintage black soutache trim.  There’s something about the dark trim against the light brim that sold me.

Pattern:  Lynn McMasters Late Edwardian/Early Teens Small Hats & Toques

toques

Year: 1909 – 1916

Notions:  Made of white linen exterior, black linen and silk for lining, and embellished with vintage soutache braid.  Other notions include hat wire, crinoline (lots), a jewelry pin and a dyed egret feather.

Historically Accurate:  Not sure how accurate this is.  Research shows hats of this style were certainly worn, however, using the recommendation for fusible facings would not have been.  I instead opted for layers of crinoline basted together, which may have been more historically accurate, but may have detracted from the overall stiff look.

I discovered interesting history while researching this hat, especially when making the Aigrette for the embellishment.  The term aigrette (pronounced: [ɛɡrɛt]; from the French for egret, or lesser white heron) refers to the tufted crest or head-plumes of the egret, used for adorning a headdress. The word may also identify any similar ornament, in gems (thank you Wikipedia).

Extravagant feather plumes were all the rage from the late 1800s through the teens, so much so that many beautiful birds were slaughtered for the sake of beauty, and the Egret was almost driven to extinction.  It’s nice to know our ancestors knew to be outraged and the practice did eventually stop.

Hours to Complete:  Too many to calculate.  I’m sure it would have been easier if I just followed the directions and certainly faster had I used a lace panel applique rather than hand applied soutache – ah, such is art.

LynnMcMasters Hat

I enjoyed working with the soutache.  It’s like a puzzle to get it all matching from start to finish but I love the process.  I’ve worked with soutache before so if you’d like to learn my technique, click here:

 

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Filed under 1912 Hat Challenge

Gathers & Pleats & Tucks, Oh My!

Here in the US, Downton Abbey has but one more episode to air and where will we find the historical eye candy that fluttered across our screens each week? Although the series will come to a close, the fabulous creativity can still be found at Historical Sewing Monthly where the February challenge is ‘Tucks & Pleating’.

For my project, I chose a dress sized for a 7 year old girl, the original pattern from La Mode Illustree, May 1894 (Model on right).  Made of a lightweight woolen with linen detailing for the collar, cuff and scarf, this dress fit the challenge nicely.

e0953coverart1

There are lots of gathers along the bodice waist at center front and back, and along the puff sleeves at shoulder and cuff.  There are pleats along the waist of the skirt to pull in all that volume without adding bulk.

pleats

There are tucks to shape the front bodice at shoulder and front opening and more along the back, hidden below the collar.

tucks and gathers

And, let’s not forget the tucks along the skirt which can be let out as needed when our little girl grows.

e953front

e953close

I had hoped to trim the sailor collar and make a slightly longer skirt, but in keeping with my desire to use up my stash, I was limited to the two yards I had on hand. I have one 3” x 8” piece left which could possibly be added to the collar at a later date. Now all I need to do is find a willing model to wear it – a bit before her time, but little Sybbie Branson, I presume?

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Filed under The Vintage Pattern Lending Library

The Story Behind The Fabric

Carolyn wasn’t a close friend but I admired her from afar for her grace, talent, and impeccable taste.  For monthly sewing guild meetings, she would arrive with the most creative and gorgeous outfits, and have in tow a few more to show that she made for her children & grandchildren.  I secretly wished she would adopt me.

Belle-Armoire-Jan-Feb 2011

In January 2011, I purchased “Belle Armoire” magazine featuring the designs of Alabama Chanin.  After reading the article and studying the fabulous garments, I became a total Natalie Chanin fan.  It wasn’t until days later when I actually continued on to page 25 and found another article showcasing an art to wear garment by Carolyn.  I had no idea (as she was not the type to brag) she was being published.  Nor did I realize she had won several design and sewing awards as well as The American Sewing Guild Creativity Contest in 2005. Yes, she was that talented.

In 2012, Carolyn lost her battle to cancer and her family donated the contents of her studio to the sewing guild.  Special pieces in her collection were passed on to her children and grandchildren, but her patterns and fabric were donated to her sewing friends.  Being late to the meeting that day, I missed so much of the lovely fabric that was being sold, but I did obtain 3 pretty pieces of fabric that I decided I would hold to make an item, or items, that Carolyn would be proud of.

So, fast forward to my last post on the 1912 dress – I used two of her fabrics to create it, and, this is also the reason I put it away for so long.  The dress came without directions or pattern layout but I was happy to see from the pieces themselves that I had just enough of the deep red silk twill for the main dress and the small section of linen would work perfectly for the center panel.  Yippee!

I used cotton in my stash to line the bodice and silk to make the bias bands, started an embroidered collar, muddled through underarm gussets, but wait….. why is there no pattern piece for the bottom hem band(?), ARGH, now you tell me, and I don’t have any more linen!  So, what I had hoped was going to be my personal thank you to Carolyn, ended up somewhat crushing my motivation.  And, the half-finished dress moved into my UFO tote for over 3 years.

Thanks to Leimomi at Historical Sewing Monthly and her perfect January challenge “Procrastination’, I felt it was time to re-visit my dress.  My linen hem doesn’t match as much as I’d like and it’s not as creative as Carolyn would have made, but I think she would be proud of it just the same.

 

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Filed under Costumes, Pattern #4016, The 1912 Project, The Vintage Pattern Lending Library, Uncategorized

Historical Sewing Monthly 2016

January Challenge: Procrastination

Fabric: Silk for main fabric, Linen for center front and hemline, Cotton to line bodice.

Pattern: Ladies Dress from La Mode Illustree   Date:  April 7, 1912

Notions: Buttons, Grosgrain Ribbon, Cotton Crochet Collar – Still needs belt.

How Historically Accurate: Dress pattern/design is 100% accurate drafted from a vintage magazine. I’m not sure of the main fabric – it IS silk but has a twill-look weave to it. Due to time and budget constraints, I used buttons that are not necessarily accurate. The collar that is meant to be with this design is not complete (possibly the May challenge?), so I added a vintage cotton crochet collar from my stash.

Hours to Complete: Too many to calculate. This started four years ago as a project to test a pattern which had no directions or layout to go by. Fabric was purchased (so I thought) and not until the final step did I realize I needed more of the white linen fabric to finish the bottom hemline. I can’t believe how much white linen is out there and NONE matched up. Hence, with regret, this was relegated to my UFO tote. Timing wise, I would estimate 24-32 working hours.

First Worn: Not yet – this was made in the size presented in the magazine and is a bit small for me. I will probably donate this to a local theater for use in an upcoming production, or try to peel in on when I finish the proper corset for underneath.

Total Cost: Very little as fabric was purchased from an estate sale at $1 a yard.  Story in next post.

e4016 collage

 

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Filed under Pattern #4016, The 1912 Project, The Vintage Pattern Lending Library, Uncategorized

The Historical Sew Monthly 2016

It’s been a while since my last post.  Oh, my…. three years?!  It’s not as though I haven’t been sewing, but blogging and taking pictures has certainly not been on my radar.

Then, along comes The Historical Sew Monthly 2016, a blog/challenge I have followed since it was an Historical Sew Fortnightly 2013.  Each year I would pledge to work on a challenge, and each month another project would push said challenge to the side.  I sat back and watched in amazement as others showcased their wonderful talent and was always a bit disappointed in myself that I let yet another month go by.

Well, the call went out again and it begins with the January challenge of ‘Procrastination.’  Talk about perfect – I feel the theme is quite apropos.

So, this year I will again make my pledge, (putting it in writing may help).  I WILL finish a garment that I have been totally procrastinating with – the 1912 dress from my last post in 2012.  I think the timing is right.

HSM2016

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Filed under Pattern #4016, The 1912 Project, The Vintage Pattern Lending Library