Friday, July 10, 2009

Debbie's 1850s Ballgown

It's amazing what some extra time of work can do for progress. I have taken today and tomorrow off on flex to finish doing my July costuming projects. I am hoping that I will be done. I only have a small amount left on my 1830s history alive dress - just the hooks and eyes that do up the back of the dress. My ballgown has started coming together as well. I am really happy with how it is turning out so far, even though I have only just started with the bodice. But lets face it, As long as the undergarments are done, the putting together does not take that long. It's only the trimming that really takes a lot of time. It will be my focus for the whole day tomorrow.

But the main reason for this post is that I have finally finished my mum's ballgown. I finished the skirt a few weeks ago, but I really wanted to get it all done sooner rather than later. I picked the fabric up some time last year at east coast fabrics for about $6 a metre, and when I needed to make my mum a ballgown, I realised that it would be perfect for her. The skirt did take quite some time to make and just about drove me up the wall in the process. I had decided to do a feature on the skirt by creating a detail bias strip. I am really pleased with how it looks, but it was very annoying joining up the boxes so that the fabric matches perfectly. The best thing though, is that it stands out on it's own. I had thought that I might need to sew a bias detail on the top and bottom of the band, but it really does not need it. The bias is quite noticeable without anything to draw it to.

Though the bodice took me the longest to make. Mainly because of the eyelets down the back which had to be completely covered so that they look hand sewn and not show the metal that they are. I love the style of the bodice too. The poofiness of the sleeves and the puffyness of the bertha (the bertha is the decorated poofy bit at the top) really help make the bodice look formal. I was very happy when I got the lace for the bertha too, not only was it not overly expensive, but because there was a join, the lady gave it to me for half price. This is from lincraft too - huge shock. It actually looks a lot better on than it does just lying on my floor.
The weekend upcoming though. Starting with Newstead House on Saturday and then Abbey Medieval on Sunday. I should mention that the Newstead Houseevent is open to the public, so anyone is welcome to come along and see the pretties.  I shall be there all day with both my mum and dad in full costume. Oh and of course, Abbey is a huge event, but if you have not heard about it There is some pretty awesome stuff there. The markets are generally pretty neat too - I am hoping that they guy selling the honey mead will be back this year. So far, I think my brother is coming with me, but that leaves three spots in my car if anyone wants to come along.

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