lördag 28 maj 2016

1876 afternoon dress

I have not been posting much for a while, and the reason for that is that I have been busy hand sewing trim on the 1876 dress - not much to post about. But last Saturday I got a chance to use it my parents birthday party at a manor, so I increased speed a bit and managed to finish it in time - even one day ahead! Here is a post about the construction of the overskirt. There is not much to say about skirt and bodice construction, so here I will just post pictures of the result, taken at the beautiful Kohlswa Herrgård, a small manor close to where I grew up. Also I will give the facts about it as for HSM. 

As always, big thanks to Olof for patient and skill-full photographing! And please disregard that I am outside without hat and gloves - how improper of me!

Inside...




 And outside.



Close up of overskirt, back.


I just had to add some bows.

Crocheted trim with hand made tassels (I think I made about a hundred...)



With my parents. Yvonne wears her Gagnef, Dalecarlia, folk costume.


We also got a tour of the old orangery, which was remade into a suite, in a mixed modern/old-ish style. As decoration, I found an old book, which turned out to be from exactly the year my dress is pretending to be, 1876! It is a collection of magazines, with stories, travel reports, poems, and the like. Of course we had to take a picture of me reading something "contemporary".




I really like this dress! I feel elegant, and the train was not as annoying as I had imagined. (I still wouldn't wear this dress to any crowded event thou - even on this quiet event two people stepped on the train. We are obviously not used to there being trains on clothes nowadays...)

 HSM facts:

What is it?  1876 afternoon dress
The Challenge: no 5, Holes.
Why does it fit this challenge?  I admit to stretching it a bit here. There is a crocheted trim on the skirt, which is made in a lattice pattern, so there is holes, but they can hardly be said to be a prominent feature of this dress. The trim turned out to be more discreet than I would have preferred - I should have made it in a contrasting color, not the color of the fabric beneath.

There is also a "hole"  on the over skirt where the red fabric shows through - formed not by cutting but by the adjacent fabric pieces. I find that a interesting feature of this particular time period , how there are so many ways of making an over skirt.

What time is it? Will work for 1876-1879. It is typical for the transition between early bustle and natural form, with there being still some volume at the skirt in the back, but a slim front.
Fabric? Wool blend for skirt and bodice,  red polyester brocade upholstery fabrics for trim, small piece of cotton velvet for cuff, white cotton for neck and wrist "ruff".

Notions: metal buttons for cuffs. Hooks and eyes.


Pattern: Bodice is Truly Victorian Cuirass Bodice, modified to fit without a large bustle and with another neckline. Skirt is from Fashions of the Gilded Age. Overskirt draped by me. 

How historically accurate is it? Well, fabric should have been silk for a dress like this. For bodices closing at front like this one, buttons seems to have been used on the majority of garments at this time, not hooks and eyes like I used. I think the look is pretty good thou - the elements of trim (including the diagonal "sash" at the bodice) are taken from different fashion plates and combined.
The colour combination is not typical, but it existed. I have seen a few fashion plates with dark blue fabric and red trim, but it is not common. It seems to have been much more common to either use one base color and then a trim of a similar colour but lighter or darker shade (like dark and light blue), or a soft base color with a vibrant accent of another colour, like grey with red. I probably will do a separate post about the preferred colors of this time period later...

Total cost: something like 30-35 EUR. 

Hours to complete? A lot, I would guess 50+. The basic bodice and skirt would only have been a few hours each, but making and hand sewing on all the trim took a while. Just making all the tassels for the trim, and crocheting the trim, would have been 10+ hours. 

First worn? At my parents birthday celebration last Saturday. (no-one else was historically dressed, but I could not resist the chance to wear it at a festive occasion in a beautiful old manor.)

How did I research this? The skirt support has a post of its own. The dress: mainly by looking at fashion plates and photos of extant garments. I also found this post about the so called "parasol pockets" of 1875-1876, which most likely were just decorative. I will have to add a decorative pocket to my skirt sometime, I think.

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