The bodice is more-or-less finished. I had previously used a version of Eleanor's bodice from Patterns of Fashion, and was planning to use that as a base for this bodice as well, but I was away from home when I was cutting things out and so I cheated, laid out a ready made pattern, and then made minor adjustments to make the pieces shaped more correctly. I then cut out five layers, one of an ivory silk/cotton blend for the inner lining, and two layers of cotton duck canvas, one layer of very fine muslin, and then the dupioni silk. I sewed the first four layers together, and sewed in boning channels at the center front, and center back. However I only had enough boning left on the roll for the two fronts, but after trying it on, I figured the canvas made the point stiff enough in the back that I could go without boning there. After the insides were all done, I laid it on top of the dupioni layer and basted them together around the edges. I then bound the bodice all the way around with a narrow strip of dupioni, and sewed it down by hand on the inside. There are seven brass lacing rings sewn onto the inside of both center fronts. The shoulder straps are not yet sewn down to the front of the bodice, but I figure I will do that after I have the trim cut to shape and sewn down so that the whole thing will lay flat and be easier to deal with.
Now onto the trim. The trim on the dress of my inspiration portrait is probably embroidered on, but I wanted to do something quicker and with more depth. My idea for the process also came from Eleanora's burial dress, velvet that is embroidered on and then cut to make bands with little windows to see the silk beneath. I started by tracing the finished bodice front onto a large piece of paper, and then carefully drew out the trim how i wanted it and where it would be. I then traced the trim design onto a piece of wonder-under, ironed it to the back of the white velveteen, and then carefully went and cut out the velveteen around the designs with a craft knife and embroidery scissors.
After all the little pieces were out of the way, I then fused the velveteen to some of the scraps from the dupioni. This might seem like a waste, as i ended up cutting most of it away, but i wanted some stability to the cut velveteen as I embroidered, and I'm hoping when the trim is sewn on it won't be noticeable. I used a split stitch in the same pale gold floss as i am using on my camicia, and stitched around all the edges, through the velveteen and layer of silk. When i was done with this, i trim the silk away from the outside and inner edges of the trim, and left it between the cut parts. This ends up making the trim a very stable 'band' and the whole piece is in the perfect size and shape and ready to be sewn to the bodice. I have the set for the bodice front nearly complete, and plan to do a strip to go down both shoulder straps to the center back point, and then a strip across the neckline in the back, not to mention the fourth yards of it i need to make for the bottom of the skirt, or the sleeves..... Oh, still soo much to do.