Monday, December 28, 2009

To dye!

I'm working on a ball gown! I bought this gold/purple silk organza last August, and bought some white habotai to go beneath it. The white habotai just HAD to be dyed, though. The look I'm going for is gold tissue over dark purple, and the gown is going to be rather simple. The fabric looks a little garish, each by themselves, but together!!!!!

It was not difficult to dye it. I ended up buying a RIT dye (purple) and it matched great. I thought I was going to have to play around with it a lot to get it right, but it matched the second time I tried on a small swatch!

Here are my results so far:











I'm going to be gauging the skirt next! I'm working on a mockup for the bodice, but got a little derailed over the Christmas season. I'm very excited about the ballgowns I'm working on at the moment!!!

-Elizabeth

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Black Basque

This is a black wool basque I made and sold on eBay. It's lined with white cotton, the sleeves are faced with white silk habotai and the inside ruffle is also white silk. Trimmed with rayon velvet ribbon and white eyelet that looks like embroidery anglaise. My absolute favorite part is the sleeve with the ruffle! It really really feels nice when you put your hand through. The silk is thin enough that it's pleasantly soft and ruffled just a little bit against your fingers. I got it to fit very nicely, I think.








Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Another reenactment, at Jackson!

I finally finished a gown for Anna! I gauged the skirt, and currently do not have any pictures close of that. I'm happy with how pretty and even the gauging turned out!

The other four of us girls are all dressed in shades of blue, but Anna needed something different because she is so different from the rest of us. Something unique. :D So she got a coral color for her gown. It has an infant bodice that is pleated. I'm not at all happy with the cotton I got for her dress. It's the same company as the stuff I got for myself which I really really like. It's quite heavy for a gown, but it has very little wrinkle and the color has stayed well. Anna's on the other hand, when I washed it before cutting it out faded along the wrinkle lines. Quite badly. I really don't think this one will last very long, which is a real shame!

I'm not too happy with my infant bodice either. I was doing it last minute and didn't take the time I normally would have, so the pleats are crooked and it just doesn't look quite right. I'm going to take the whole thing apart and redo it. I like the sleeves, but that's about it.

The boys came along with us, and just dressed as they usually do, only they added hats. They even look semi-right!









Monday, May 25, 2009

Dressed at last!






Finally got most of us gowned for a Memorial day event at Greenfield village. I planned to cloth seven of our ten, and only ended up clothing four, but those un-civil-war clothed enjoyed the day even without costume from another time.
The back of Lauren's hat. Didn't really get any good pictures of it.
more of a closeup on the crochet collar: this was the end of the day, I'd been up till three the night before and up at seven thirty, so I was tired, a little pink and quite hot. Not at my prettiest, I'm afraid, but still cheerful, which is really what counts in the end.
Katherine in a dress made entirely of my own pattern. Not difficult in and of itself, seeing as the pattern is almost entirely constructed of rectangles, but still gives me a sense of accomplishment.
a closeup of Lauren's hat, though I need to get pics of the inside and back as well. It dips down in front and back.
Lovely Leah in the first gown I made after finding the Sewing Academy. This one has been almost done for about four months, and I finally put the collar on Saturday night. It's only whipped on, and I shall take it off to wash it. I'm not done with the ribbon trim: it still is not even enough to suit me.
The backs of both the dresses. I think I am actually supposed to gather the back of Leah's as it is gathered in the front...Next time, I guess. It's actually shaped to her, though I hadn't known about the side seams being further back than the side, and they actually ended up directly in line with her shoulders instead of being closer to the back of her waist.
Lauren with hoop...
And without, in her work petticoat and pinner which she made herself, so she could cook over the open fire.
With some acquaintances: The lady in the purple plaid asked us (indirectly, through a mutual friend) to model Civil War Gowns for a talk she was giving on fashion at a local cultural center last year, and we really enjoyed wearing the gowns. She was tickled that we were there in our own costume this year, and that we came to say hello.
And all four in costume, grouped for a picture. I've never had so many perfect strangers ask for my picture; it was quite flattering. :D

Nana just gave me some more pictures which she and Papa took:



-Elizabeth

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Friday, May 1, 2009

More hair!



These two pictures/diagrams are the 'inspiration' so to speak for our cousin Amanda's short hairdo. She got her hair wacked off accidentally, and this was what we found to do with it. It turned out a little more like a 40s do with the high bun, but we're happy with it!