Sunday, 21 October 2012

More of the Gown... and other things

Well, I was wrong.  The bodice of the Elizabethan Gown is indeed lined.  Unfortunately the instructions don't tell you this until a good 15 or so pages after you've put the eyelets in. The fact that you are supposed to stitch in a lining which would cover, and thus render useless, the eyelet holes that lace the gown together is just another of the frustrations of this pattern... it's a darn good thing that a) I always save the eyelets till last and b) that I checked the instructions again.  I promptly cut out and sewed together the lining.

After that, my Sunday took an altogether more relaxed turn.  The lovely Mr & Mrs B and I popped over to K's house; she is recovering from surgery, so we spent a happy hour or two indulging in tea and sympathy and talking horses and dogs.  The 11yr old came home and we carved out the apples to make our shrunken heads for Halloween.  This is an American tradition that I recently discovered and promptly fell in love with.  They look rather cheerful now, but I'm hoping for wizened and wrinkly in a couple of weeks time.



Meanwhile, Finn relaxed on the sofa in his smart new jumper.


And the child showed off her new hat and mittens.


Eventually, it was time to settle back down to some serious sewing.  I promised that I would have the sleeves done today as well.  The lining is a fabulous burnt orange, it was nice to sew with a bit of colour after all the grey.


The sleeves are very simple; simpler to sew than to photograph!  Both the outer fabric and lining are sewn together... the 11yr old kept me company and I love the concentrating child/sleepy owl hat combination, they make a good pair :o)


Once each piece of the sleeve was sewn, they were pinned, then sewn, together along the bottom sleeve edge and turned the right way round.


I then tried the sleeves on.  Just over my t-shirt the sleeve felt tight, though I do love the colour of the lining as it's turned back.


I quickly put my kirtle on and retried the sleeve.  I spent the next 30-40 minutes turning both sleeves back the wrong way, unpicking the seam and resewing it with less seam allowance to give myself a little more ease in the sleeves.  At a push, you could have left the sleeves, but it would have been uncomfortably tight; even with a little more room, once sewn to the bodice I think everything is going to feel good and snug!


You've got to love unpicking... especially black thread on dark grey fabric...

And here's a honest peak at the the realities of historical costuming (in my world at least!)... late nights (I work  better at night), in my pyjamas (comfy is best), half in or out of part of the costume (depending on what needs to be tried at any given time), clutter everywhere (who said a dining room is for eating...?), not exactly looking my best (please ignore the suitcases under my eyes) but  smiling and with my willing and happy assistant to hand... she does a damn fine job!


Finally, on a sadder note.  We said goodbye to Hammy, who is now in heaven charming the angels.  


He was a good hamster.

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