Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wrinkled... but I took pictures anyway.

Here's the pictures of the bodice with trim. There are four rows that come up in the square, and then three that run paralell to that and up and over the shoulder and down to the center bottom of the back. I spaced everything about 3/8 in apart except where the shoulder straps widen and I spread the trim to kinda cover more area. I think it looks better that way. I couldn't decide whether or not to also sew the ribbon across the back of the neckline and then kinda forgot about it in the excitement of getting the rest of it all sewn on the bodice. I might add some later. If anything, I feel that I made the center trim too 'square' in the front and didn't taper it enough to the middle.

I've worked on the sleeves too. The first thing I did was the wrist tabs. I don't want to put a button or opening at the wrists cause I am too lazy to try and find two buttons that might match the dress, so I took my wrist measurement and rounded it up to 8 inches - which still fits over my fist so I can still easily slip it on. I had determined that I would make all the tabs one inch wide, and then the vertical trim on the lower sleeves would be spaced one inch at the bottom and tapered evenly upwards to best give the appearance of the trim in the portrait. The tabs are made from 3 inch squares of the linen sewed into tubes with a half inch seam, turned inside out, pressed, trimmed along both edges and then folded in half. I basted eight together for each wrist. The finished string of tabs turned out to be a bit more then 8 inches (grr) but I think I should be able to ease them into the wrist opening without too much difficulty.

The rest of thw sleeves will be composed of three parts, the lower sleeve, the upper sleeve and the lining. To get the proportions for the upper part of the sleeve, I took what would have been the upper part of my regular sleeve pattern and roughly multiplied all its outside measurements by two. In the portrait it is difficult to determine if there are more rows of  trim on the upper sleeve than there are on the lower sleeve. In order to make it easy on myself I decided to make it the same number. As I mentioned before, on the lower sleeve, the trim starts off at the wrist being spaced one inch apart and tapered upward. I took the resulting spacing measurement at the top of the lower sleeve and also multiplied that by two to get the spacing measurement for the trim on the upper sleeve. Once I'm ready to gather the two parts together, matching up the trim should be pretty easy and result in a fairly even gather...I hope.

I have the trim sewn on to the first lower sleeve and about a quarter of the way done sewing it to the first baragoni. So far I've done it all by hand and haven't broke down and used the machine. I'd be pretty tickled if I don't get too impatient and could finish the entire thing by hand, but looking ahead to the skirt......that seems doubtful.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Carpi Bodice Done

I've been making pretty good progress on the dress, dispite working on a few quilts for Christmas presents. I have the bodice completely done, and since I've taken pictures last, have also got ALL the trim on the bodice as well as started on the sleeves. But for now here's just a few pictures of the untrimmed bodice and a little  about the construction methods I ended up using.

The bodice is interlined with one layer of medium to heavyweight linen/cotton fabric and one layer of brown wool which are basted together. The outer jade-coloured handkercheif linen is also used as a lining. The bodice is finished off in two separate peices, the front, and then the back with the shoulder straps. They are bag-lined, and then the lining is 'topstitched' through the layer of wool and heavy linen but not through the outer layer of linen. This gives really nice edges and smoothness on the outside.
I did a total of 18 hand-bound eyelets, spaced for spiral lacing, using an awl and cotton embroidery floss. Here I have it laced with silk ribbon but I plan to eventualy make some lucet braid to use.
After the front and back sections were finished I pinned the shoulderstraps to the front bodice portion and whipstitched the edges together from the back. I'm very happy with how this bodice turned out. It is very comfortable so far. I seem to have gotten the shoulder straps exactly where I wanted them (we'll see what happens when I add sleeves) and they are not tight or constricting ( which is usually me biggest problem) . The outside surface is very smooth and took the trim very well.

                            Hopefully tomorrow I will get pictures up of the bodice with trim:-)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Bodice Mockup

First of all, thankyou to my few followers for your comments. I've been wanting to converse with some of you but for some reason I cannot leave comments.....I don't know why, I just don't understand computers/internet all that well.

On the brighter side, I've been ambitious and today I made the mockup for the carpi gown. It was rather fun, having no help, and taking it off and on and off and on and trimming and pinning... I think I got it where I like it now. I let it sit for several hours and tried it on again to be sure, and then cut out the permanant pattern out of more white cotton, and hopefully I will get to cut out and begin constructing the bodice tomorrow.

As you can see there was alot of pinning and tweaking of the shoulder straps. They end up being kinda a funky shape once they're laid out flat, but they hug my shoulders fairly well without being too tight. My worries however, are wether or not they will continue to hold their shape once the sleeves are set in, and wether or not the fact that they are much narrower where they join the bodice front will make trim placement more difficult. Since the ribbon I am planning to use is so narrow I think I can ease it closer there without it looking too silly. I guess we will find out.  The diagonal wrinkles under the bust will theoretically dissapear once the bodice is constructed with the proper materials.

I'm still planning on interlining with a layer of linen and wool stitched together, but now am trying to decide if I wish to 'bag' line the bodice like I do with most of my gowns, or once again try the  'flat' lining method, or wrap the front fabric around the interlining, whipstitch it down and then line it by turning the edges of the lining in and whipstitching it on.....I've never had much luck with that method, but I think it is more period? I haven't done much research on that area.