Victorian skirt guides!

victorian skirt cutting without markings

A large sample:

Materials and tools needed:

150cmwide (60″) cotton twill- approximately 3yards or just shy of 3m or more

115cm (45″) wide rayon crepe- approx 4 1/2 yards or just shy of 4m or more

long glass headed quilting pins (any pills but these are the easiest for this yardage)

shears or scissors (able to cut through two layers of fabric at least)

tape measure (optional)

Cutting 60″ fabric

Start with the fabric laid out folded in half, selvage to selvage

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If you prefer an intuitive method start by holding the fabric to your waist and let it hand to floor unimpeeded and mark the hem- add a comfortable seam allowance to both waist and hem.

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If you prefer use a tape measure to mark the length you desire for the side gores. This will be the length from where the waist sits, over the hip and down the side. Include shoe height plus an inch or two at hem and waist depending on your comfort. There are many ways to hem a skirt that is too short or too long.

I used 115cm (45″.)

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Cats make excellent weights until they decide to play.

Cut across the fabric through both layers.

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Next mark the width of the upper portion of the panels on opposite corners of the fabric (I place one at upper right along the cut across the fabric, and one at lower left ditto.) Then fold the fabric from mark to mark, making sure to keep all layers smooth and aligned.
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I used 8″ or 20cm as I will be added pleats at the waist of these panels.

This is to go with the pattern layout guide 🙂

late historic skirt guides


(Another large selection)

Pattern A:

Regency (1810s): waist; flat in front panel, lightly pleated/eased at side panels, gathered or pleated at CB panel. Gore angles steep. Cut waist and hem curves after trying on. The deeper the dip at the CF waist the straighter the side seams will fall.

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Romantic (1820s-30s): lower waist slightly for 1820s and add ease to CF and side gores. Lower waist further for 1830s and gather/pleat from CF through all side panels while directing CB panel gathers/pleats towards the back.

No pattern, straight widths:

Mid century (1840s-50s): waist; increasingly gathered all around evenly. Panels become straight with little or no shaping. Gauging is most common though pleats and reverse pleats can be found.

Pattern B: Heavily gored skirts:

First Bustle (early 1870s): waist is flat at CF panel, eased at side panels, gathered/pleated in CB panel.

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Crinoline (1860s): widen tops of each skirt panel to allow for more ease at the front and sides, this will straighten the side gores somewhat. Allow for some ease towards the sides and front, or create inverse pleats at each seam.

End of century (1890s): narrow tops as much as possible and replace straight CB panel with a panel cut like the CF panel and either slashed for the CB closure or cut straight down the CB. Towards 1900 cut the diagonals in curves (this will create a narrow ellipse shaped scrap on each diagonal) to create a trumpet hem.

Pattern C: Natural Form

Natural form (late 1870s-early 1880s): waist; flat all around front and sides, narrow gathered section at the very centre back. Front can be cut as a complete tube, back gores cut in steep angles.

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Second bustle (mid to late 1880s): cut the side gores wider in general with similar angles, this may mean cutting only two gores where there are four above and using the blue area for the other side gores. make note which sides have been cut.

I basically used the 1870s and 1890s pattern but with straighter diagnonals as this skirt is fairly straight up and down.

Oh I used my Phantom of the Opera wedding dress fabrics 🙂 I’ve actually started to tackle my wall of projects! It only took about.. 9 months to actually do this! I was supposed to take my step down as a chance to make stuff for me, but I mostly wound up spending the year recovering from the last eight! So, a delay is understandable!

Anyway so the lace is all back in a box of lace trimmings but now that I’ve put scissors to fabric I’ll be able to take it out and get it all sorted again. I have a ridiculous amount of vintage lace so I really wanted a good fabric foundation. And now I have.

the Australian wedding dresses had a crepey texture when I saw them in person so this is perfect 🙂 just have to iron it all a few times while handling.

And then, or at the same time, I’ll start work on.. THE SUNBURST GOWN!!!!!! I have to stop waiting for an event to wear it to and just make it. So that is what I’m doing 🙂

Elissa does continue!

I have taken this project to a friend’s house every Xmas for the last few years.

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This will be the last time but there is so much on this costume that even if it is finished I can probably bring it along for tradition and put just a jewel on. 🙂
Jewels are just sitting in place but I’m putting them on now 🙂

Wow, I have been away a long time…..

Or at least it feels like it. I am still rehabilitating my body after the last six months of inactivity due to the sinus infection. I am not sure if I have cleared it but I am able to sit up, look at a monitor for more than five minutes. Except today. Today I am zombiefied because of the two steps forward one step back pattern I am currently in.

But I have had a chance to clear out several projects I felt hampered by, knowing I would never finish them or lost the desire to finish and so felt a bit disloyal to part with them.

This has left me with a much more manageable pile of stash fabrics and in progress costumes. I am also going to clear out some more. I really do not “need” everything. I like having a rnage of costumes but I am at the point where I have so many to choose from I feel held down by the weight of them as well.

So this year I have decided to make a final list of Must Do/Finish?repair and they should fill the next five years nicely.

1) Think of Me Gown, the full kit from slave girl through to dressing gown. I have the dressing gown, pointe shoes (I want to soften them a little more to be able to wear them and strengthen my ankles back to the state they were when I first bought them) and most of the fabrics and trim to make the overgown.
Aim to finish this year for Auckland Armageddon.

2) Cleves gown overhaul. The gown was decimated by the dry cleaners so I have totally recut a new shell of maroon faille (perfect for a Cercei gown if I can bare to face that embroidery) and black silk duchesse satin. The bodice is still the came canvas and I will be able to line the sleeves in vintage bordering on antique tube rat. I never use new fur, and tend to buy seconds or recycled animal products and I hate the smell of tanned skin but for this gown I really do aim to make it as accurate in materials as I can.
Aim for possibly next year? Would love to get her finished for the Bloth/Baronial Anniversary but I really am having a very slow recovered back to good health and this is a project that will require a lot of handsewing.

3) Worth Sunburst gown. If I culd get this finished I would get my butt to the Oamaru Hertiage festival. If not I’m going to Howick and posing the plce up due to the beautiful atmostpheric lighting. This has a tablier of cutwork and beading. I am going for a blend of the two variations so I can use glass pearls for the clouds. The Met clouds are formed from cut glass beads. The Kyoto gown though is pink. So Met base colours and trim and shape, Kyoto beading. On hold for about 6 years. Time to actually transfer the pattern (currently on paper ready to pin and machine the pattern in place- I plan on machining the pattern to really stabilise the cut work) and then repair my stand up frame and get beading.

4) Silly spanish. This is actually the most doable as the linen thread to hold the trim is easy on my hands once waxed properly.
Again I’d love to get this done for BA, but I may wait until I have a Kingdom level event I can attend.

5) Nyreen. Luckily the pattern for the fabric parts are done. I have fabric I can use for the bodysuit but I may invest in a new can for my airbrush and airbrush the pattern to the bodysuit fabric. Then it’s a case of adapting footwear and making armour from foam- not fibreglass or leather!) simply because this is the first costume where I feel it an appropriate material that I have done.
Love to be done by WellyGeddon if I can.

6) Mon Mothma. I keep pushing this back but she is going to be a nice simple costume to wear even if no one recognises her. I just need to remold the brooches as the last set tore. I am avoiding epoxy though so this may take a while just to make sure I don’t trigger a big allergic reaction. I have some molds and costume pieces to repair so will save it all up for them.

7)c1600s Cleves style. So far just a swingy coat half made. All hand sewn though and fully lined so I have a reason for it to be held off 😉

8) super fine ruff and partlet. A hem of less and 2mm is still tough on my hands, but while my eyes are still good I’d like to attempt it!

9) Wedding Dress from Phantom. I have most pieces and have managed to salvage much of my original piece. I aim to make it hook up the front as per the very original and take elements from favourite versions from around the world. Including the super amazing bow trails from the Japanese production.

10) MLP inspired costume. Fluttershy is my totem (her reticence, surprising amount of understanding of things people assume she is ignorant of and her few glimpses of rage).

11) repair Shae, Talon and Shaak Ti, as well as redo the Mina bodice.

I also have my Tissot inspired dress to repair and the Green Spring dress to decide to finish or not. Both mid 1870s.

dolls

 
 
 

little-lotthe:

Fully articulated figure based on Sarah Brightman as Christine Daae