Wednesday, February 2, 2011

1840s Dickens Fair Gown

  1. So there were lots of things about this gown pattern that I didn't like and ended up altering.This was the fringe gown from HELL. From everything I read, this modern fringe we have in stores today was not even accurate for the time period. Plus, I hate it. The problem is, the gown was designed for fringe and the sleeves are impossible to keep as Pagoda sleeves without it, because the are actually split in two where the fringe meets. So, no fringe.
  2. I hated the pagoda sleeves and had to draft my own straight sleeve pattern instead. This was trickier than I anticipated!
  3. I ended up having to extend the bodice darts all the way up because I have no bust. I altered my sleeve design so the curve of the sleeve would be seamlessly integrated with the bodice dart line.
  4. No collar for me. It looks clownish in person.
  5. Had to lengthen the bodice waist two inches because I must have a freakishly long torso. Huh. This didn't come up in the Regency pattern.  ;-)

When it came down to cutting the fabric, I couldn't decide which side I wanted to be the front, both sides were pretty! I decided I would use the contrast fabric on the side bodice panels and on the sashes.

Lining is made to make you happy. Pick the one that makes you smile. Even if it's Looney Tunes!
Blue and Brown together makes me smile.

So, it was really difficult for me to find the center of this bodice since I decided to have it overlap in order to add buttons. I didn't like the frog closure on the original pattern because I've always had a fascination with the millions of buttons on Victorian gowns.

Here's the dress pinned on to my friend's dress form. The form is larger than me, so the dress doesn't close all the way in front, but it sure made those pretty back panels pop out!

You can see a little of the contrasting color on the back panels in these photos.

Here you can see the line of the dart extending into my sleeve line.

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