Saturday, September 8, 2012

Iron Woman!

Or woman with an iron maybe.  The three rows of underskirt pleats on the Tissot dress are done and pinned on, so I started on the aporn overskirt.  It's only semi stitched together but I wanted to see how it would look on the dress form before I continued.  I think I'm going to lower the flounces on the underskirt a bit and cut town both the back and front of the overskirt  a bit because I still am going to need to add a pleated flounce to the overskirt which will make it longer and it's already a bit long.

Friday, September 7, 2012

The not-so-perfect pleater

One of the things I love about Tissot is that he often uses the same dress in several different paintings.  So far I've found 3 of the black and white bustle dress aside from the original one I posted:

Anyway, the last few days have been spent listening to NPR and pleating...and pleating...and pleating.  I've got the underskirt pleating finally finished, now I need to actually sew the pleated fabric to the underskirt.  And then I'm going to start work on the bustled apron overskirt.  I BARELY had enough for the third row of pleated ruffles and even then I don' have enough to go all the way around, luckily the overskirt will cover the un-ruffled back.
I'm saving the bodice for last because I'm not in the mood for pattern drafting at the moment and the skirt is a no-brainer.  I'm using modified versions of the Truly Victorian patterns as the bases for the costume: underskirt (TV201 ), overskirt (TV305) and  probably TV 871 as the bodice base with modified versions of the sleeves from TV410.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Louis the XIV TV series in development

Variety reports that the writing duo that brought us Mad Men is working on a miniseries about Louis the XIV.  Canal Plus, the French company which produced the Borgias is financing it, like the Borgias it will be in english.  It's in development now and will be shot on location in Versailles.

You can read more here:

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Tissot-ish bustle gown

So I've been really jonesing to sew lately, but the both kids STILL aren't back at school so it's been hard to grab some mom-time.  Then yesterday there was an unexpected lull so I went up to the hobby room and got to work.

I've had some off-white/grey striped silk taffeta in the stash for a long time now.  I bought it originally to make a Sleepy Hollow repro back before Exclusive Silks came out with the black and white version of the same thing.  And then when the b/w came out I bought some of the narrow striped version of the same thing thinking one day I'd make a bustle dress out of it.

Then I was pawing through my big Tissot picture book the other day and ran across this dress and thought it would be fun to make something similar with the striped silk!

Conveniently I also had some dupioni of exacty the same shade of off white in the stash.  I'm using this for the parts that don't really show, so if they DO show they at least sort of match.  I have much more of the narrow stripe than the wide so I've decided to knife pleat it and use it for the skirt flounces and use the narrow for the bodice and over skirts.  I'd obviously thought about this a bit a while ago because the off white dupioni was already cut out!  So the underskirt base is nearly done and I've started working on the pleated underskirt ruffles.  While I have a perfect pleater I find that when I'm working with stripes I like to do the pleats by hand to make sure the stripes are lined up correctly, it's just easier for me that way.  I pleat, hold the pleats in place, spray with a water/vinegar mixture and press.  This taffeta is really great for the pleats - they are so crisp!