"Resign yourself, Catherine! Shops must be visited! Money must be spent! Do you think you could bear it?" - Northanger Abbey

Monday, May 27, 2013

A regency shift - HSF #11 - Squares, rectangles and triangles

The Challenge: 11 - squares, rectangles and triangles

Fabric: Cream Polycotton

Pattern: No pattern I just...stumbled through it from looking at other shifts and chemises online with a little help from the blogosphere.

Year: approx 1800 was my intention

Notions: ribbon, thread and embroidery floss

How historically accurate is it? As I copied a lot of images of accurate garments apart from the fabric choice and unique construction order I would think it was accurate.

Hours to complete: about 12 hours...but really it was 2 afternoons and an evenings sewing time including time taken for embroidery.

First worn: N/A

Total cost: I used leftover fabric from another project I think just over 2 metres and notions were from my stash. So it was free technically speaking but probably be under £10 in all.

Notes: Well I expected a shift to be simple and stright forward. But it wasn't...and least without a commercial pattern it wasn't. I understood the principal of the construction but certain elements bemused me.
Firstly the gussets for the sleeves. I took them apart and resewed them so many times (as you can see in the below image there was something not quite right).

Every explination I read got to the same point then became vague/confusing and quite frankly I was really annoyed. Thanks to helful suggestions from various avenues I realised what I'd been doing wrong. I blame all those instructions for sewing made for people who machine sew. Just makes it over complicated. I'll do a step by step tutorial of MY way one day. (As a handsewer I am a bit more dexterous than a machine sewer so can do things differently).

The neckline was a bit of a guess....and a bit of a mess. I didn't have enough fabric to make bias binding so I had to fold over the neckline. Which is why it was a bit messy.
I added some embroidery detail on the centre back where a thread had pulled in the fabric to cover it up and stop it laddering.
I also embroidered some simple detail on the 'sleeves'. As I thought it was a bit plain as is. 
I hope to make another longer one in another material as I can't afford proper linen at the moment. Next in my regency wardrobe will be a bodiced petticoat....and I have a special idea with that.

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