2015. augusztus 24., hétfő

Puffy sleeves - How to make them?

After a hard decision, I kept the bigger sleeves, anyway, thank you for the help, I was so lost in that question :)
I still needed some support to make them extra puffy.

Original sleeves supporter from 1890, it wouldn't fit for this dress, because it has a normal undersleeve.

I didn't need such a massive thing, like a whole cat or a crinoline inside, so I made this little buddies to help me. I saw it on my original 1890 gown, and I would like to share this easy, little and accurate trick with you as well.

All you need is some strong fabric, I used leftover upholstery canvas and purple lining to cover them.

First, you have to cut two half circle. (My mesaurements for them cc. 12 cm long and 6 cm high)

Here are my two supporters

After, just sew them together, and hide its under the gathers. That's it :)

I sew between the two sleeves

I tried to make a picture of the current look of dress

I told, no cats in my dress, but who can say no to her? :)

2015. augusztus 18., kedd

10 problem, what ALL costumer know

1. You don't fit anywhere.

I fits I sits
Car is even worst. Forget it.
(I love this video from American Duchess )

2. Try to reach anything what is not close to you. Everything feels 1000 kilometers far away.

...and if you have true friends, they gonna make pictures rather to help to you :D

3. You are feeling too hot or cold. Never ever felt the perfect temperature.
It was 35 degrees.


4. You don't have space in your wardrobe because of your Historical gowns.
You still have NOTHING to wear neither to festivals, neither to anywhere at all.

5. Find the perfect fabric what you like, authentic and not from polyester. Costs of your monthly salary. Three times.

6. You know how hard to choose between to look faboulusly laced body and food. You can never win this battle. 

Oh FOOD you are so beautiful

7. Work one and half years on a dress, trash it within one and half hours. But, still worth it.

All of us knows, trains are useless, but, what can I do, they look so fab.

8. You don't go out. You don't do alcohol and drugs. No one understands, why you don't have money after second day of payday.

Give me ALL

9. You have a room for those fabrics, what you goint to use soon...and you still can't stop yourself of buying more. 

10. Try to explain the difference of Historical costuming and fancy dresses. Finally you give up, and let these pople believe that you do kinda Disney Princess cosplay. :D

So, what did you say?

2015. augusztus 17., hétfő

Princess (help) line - How to cope with them?

Before we cut the fabric, just a little bit back to my Tea gown's tale:

You know me, how much I love to make dresses with stories behind. I had this fabric for ages, but not with a nice back story. Whoever worked in dressmaking industry knows that sometimes customers are disappearing and we stay unpaid with a dress to store or fabrics what we don't like. I made a dress, it's still with me, and I just had a feeling to wait for her before I cutted the rest of her fabrics. She never appeared again, so after almost 5 years, I decided to use this beautiful green brocade to forget this awkward story.

Those yummy fabrics

I only had 4.5 meters of it, what is made me a little headache, it's quite small to make a Historical dress, then, I remembered of this Oriental-style tea dress, so I thought, I will challenge myself with a new cutting and, work with small fabric.

I had an idea to save my dignity, also from an extant Worth design, and what a luck, I had a matching silk hiding in my wardrobe as well. So, that's how this challenge begin.

About the princess line:
Princess Alexandra
In this photo she reminds me of Sisi

I wasn't surprised, that it was also Our Master's invention. Worth introduced this new cut in the late 1870's. The conception was to show the women's curves without any distraction of crinolin or bustle. (...and here we are, the era natural-form dresses) It becomes very popular, not just for adults, young girls wore as well with a stash.
Worth named this cut after Princess Alexandra, who was famously elegant and a beauty of her age.

Very wow cutting, is anyone getting excited on the same level like me?
Look how amazing this pattern-matching at the front seam.
Truly amazing
Worth Wedding gown, 1896
Quite modern cutting, it looks very simililar
what we use nowadays.
Worth Bridesmaid dress, 1896

Dat A... I mean cuts :)

Let's see the description of my choice:

"Tea gown from Worth (12.12.1891)

This gown is a masterpiece, unique in design and in materials. It is a long flowing caftan of beige colored cloth, draped over a velvet gown which fits the slender figure with a seathl-like closeness. Velours frappé (stamped velvet) with maroon design on a lighter ground, is used for the front of the close gown; it is fitted by darts and extends far back on the sides, fastening invisibly on the left. The fronts frame the slight figure with wide revers of white plush; their fulness is narrowly massed on the shoulders, with ends carried thence to the middle of the back, and knotted there above full back breadhts that fall in Watteau-like pleats. A high collar has a velvet at the back, and is covered in front with a white lace extending lower in a pointed plastron. Deep cuffs of lace are on sleeves."

Side closure really caught my eyes, I never saw a full dress closed on the side, just only jackets.

"* 1870—1889: • Hooks and eyes or buttons run down the front of day dresses • Closures are often in back for evening dresses • Back lacing is still popular for evening gowns • Tapes sewn to the inside of bodices at the waist and closed by a hook and eye are common * 1890—1899: • Bodices fasten with hooks and eyes up the front, or in front and along the sides • Buttons are frequently used, especially for back closures • Bodices sometimes have linings with separate fastenings • Bodice and skirt usually hook together with large hook and eyes at the waistline"
From Vintage connection

Anyway, I'm not a huge fan of side closurings, so I just gone for a classical back lacing.

Second hardest thing was the pattern. I never used this line before, I had to see some referation before it, but I barely find. ( If it was so popular why nooooot? Maybe Worth kept locked in his desk :) )
My only one pattern of a Princess line dress, it has a front clousure
I had only one pattern to help me from Authentic Victorian Patterns book. It was more than nothing.

Third sweaty part of this dress was the amount of fabric. I spent a whole afternoon to figure out how I should cut it, finally, I had to put a little triangle of the end of the second side panel, as I saw from my extant skirt. So it was an authentic cheating :)

On the pattern, darts  seemed okay, but in reality was awful, anyway this cross and dot paper is very useful to make big patterns.

First version of the dress, darts are still awful, despite that I unfold the lower part of them
How surprising, the pattern didn't work with the dart, they looked awful, like to big C on the side of the dress, it was everything else rather to follow my shape. I pinned only the upper part of the darts, and I made the rest of the dress until I find a solution. Finally, I just did, what I learnt from my Master at home. Pin it on you, and just watch the dress, it will shows you where to pin. (Sounds like a quote from Sewing zen book lol :D )

Little not authentic trick to cope with annoying slippery fabric. I used interlinig ribbon to sew easier. Just iron on the edges of the back of fabric and enjoy easy work after :)

Use some silk organdi as a middle layer. It gives an extra support to the dress.

So I sew the first ones closer to each other and the seconds were looking to the sides. Actually it could be a french dart :) but it worked!

Nice fitting darts! They are really follow my body :)

After I had different ideas to make princess cutted dresses, but I will need more fabric to test them. One can be like a 18th century dress, secret lacing in the back. My other ide was to cut the dress half, and make a seamless top and circle skirt. Mmmm nice challenges for the future :)

If you look it closer, you can se that it has a cut
at the waist and a skirt is sewn there
This fabric... I could die for it. Don't be surprised, Worth dress :)

Tricky solution as well. I think they hide the seamlines behind of the decoration


2015. augusztus 16., vasárnap

Oh those tea gowns

In real life, I have thousands of clothes and shoes, so for me wasn't surprising that I fell in love with Victorian era. Once I counted, how many times supposed to be changed a real elegant lady, and I was laughing, that she would spent all day changing clothes. Morning wears, daytime, afternoon, promenade, dinner, evening dresses, or travelling, seaside, opera, visiting gown is she was out, if she was at home, reception, home dress or tea gown.

Victorian wrapper

Duties of these dresses are quite obvious, but how about a tea gown?

Stunning example of a beautiful and comfortable dress
J.P: Worth, 1900

First, I imagine just a nice dress with some Oriental kick, and I would wear when my friends come for a 5 o'clock tea to change some gossips. I wasn't so far from the truth, but was a little bit more than this.

For vain ladies, this gown requires a corset underneath, but looks so faboulus with this fabric and caftan.
Worth, 1891

Earliest tea gowns came in fashion around 1870, and gone at 1930. I really surprised, when I read, these dresses were mean to be comfortable. Yes, comfy dress in that era, when everybody wore tight-laced corsets and minimun 6 kg heavy dresses. Allright, whenever we re home we wish to wear something loose fit and not to fancy, that wasn't different 150 years ago. Home dresses and wrappers were still exist, but how about those little dinners with your family or just an afternoon chatting with your mom. You just couldn't open a door for them in wrapper.
So, that was the moment, when the tea gown arrived.
No definied waistline, loose fitted tea gown

I didn't have definied waistline, so you could wear without corset ( or vain girls with), so it was very-very informal gown, never-ever be so daring to wore outside of your house. ( So what happened with my friends if they visiting me? They need to be tight-laced, while I wore my loose comfy tea gown, I stuffed all cake in myself? Oh, lucky me!)

As I see, there is only one lady who isn't laced so tightly, what about the others? At least, the don't get fat from the cakes :)

Don't worry Darling, next time I will go to you!

So tea gowns inherited practical things from wrappers, they inherited the luxurious look from ball gowns. Usually made from expensive silks, laces and Oriental patterned fabrincs. Let your fantasy out, if you were in love with huge flowing sleeves of Renessaince, or Watteau-pleats of 18th century, or some Asian influnce, no problem.

Worth, 1894, tea gown
It reminds me of a Tudor dress with that bodice and sleeves.
Loose fit, must be easy to dress up in.

Possibly made from cashmere, which was probably woven in1860, and it's a nice analogue of men's dressing gown, and a good example of function of tea dress.
1891, France

Next to princess line, later empire-styled high-waisted cuts were popular too.
Natural form era tea gown, with princess lines

Generally tea gowns were for midday, but with lower neck, you could wore for dinner as well, so hooray, you could enjoy the food as well and still looked faboulus.
Low-necked, evening tea gown, 1910 J.P. Worth

Evening tea gown, cc. 1880
Rococo influenced, open robe, possibly still had to wear corset underneath

Tea gowns were very popular in their times, but of course those old-fashioned people were moaning, that such a horrible thing to be stunning and convinient at HOME :)

"Ladies who a few years ago would have considered the idea appalling, calmly array themselves in the glorified dressing-robe known as the ‘tea gown’ and proceed to display themselves to the eyes of their admirers…Of course it in no-way resembles the dressing gown of utility.  It is of elaborate design and infinite cost….It is absolutely useless, and utterly ridiculous; but this is not the worst that may be said about it.  It is, to all intents and purposes, a deshabille; and so great is the force of association that the conversation is exceedingly apt, nay almost certain, to become deshabille as well….At their first beginning the tea gowns only put in an appearance when the beverage from which they take their name was dispensed in the ladies boudoir, and only a rare and favoured specimen of the opposite sex was admitted on sufferance.  But such old-fashioned prudery has long been thrown aside…the tea gown have descended to the drawing room and the hall…"

Which one you want to look?

I think worth to mention Aesthetic dresses as well. They were a rebel daughter of tea gowns. Designed by artists, totally rejected all morals of Victorian fashion. They goals were emphesaise women's natural lines, wrapped in marvellous fabrics with a hint of pluperfect fashion eras.

Ladies in Aesthetic dresses, you can find more here

Nowadays, tea-lenght dresses a kind of granddaughters of these amazing gowns of Victorian fashion. They can be worn summer parties, daytime events, where you need to be look formal.

Tea-lenght is not too long, not too short, there is no exact definition of it. Hemline is ended somewhere just above knees and up to the ankles.

Be elegant all day and night, tea leght dresses
We gonna be late from the garden party!
Get inspiered from The Dreamstress' pinterest collection!

The Dreamstress
Artictic dresses