Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Redingote?

Here's a fashion term that was new to me. I found it on one of my new vintage cocktail dress patterns - "One-piece dress with detachable overskirt and redingote".
So I looked it up and found that a redingote originated from the 18th century when it was used for travel on horse back. Originally it was a bulky, heavy, utilitarian coat but overtime it developed into a more fitted fashion garment. 
Apparently today's redingote is marked by a close fit at the chest and waist, a belt, and a flare toward the hem, as in the blue version in the vintage pattern. It's not a term I see often - did it have a revival in the 1960s I wonder?

Personally, it was the fringed version of the dress in the pattern that caught my swinging 60s!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Test garment complete and dress started

After completing the muslin for this dress, I got a bit side tracked a domestic project namely curtains, so progress has been a slow.

Here's what I learned from doing a muslin for the first time:-
- there's a great sense of freedom in cutting and making a muslin, knowing you won't make a mistake with  your precious fashion fabric
- as the dress is for someone else it give's you a great opportunity to try the garment and make any necessary adjustments
- as it's a vintage pattern, some aspects of the dressmaking is a little different, so the muslin gives you an opportunity to become familiar with the garment construction
- you don't have to bother with the time consuming finishing part of the dressmaking
- with this dress in particular, the waist is tiny and very nipped in, so some adjustment was required there
- the length was adjusted to around knee length

This is the selected's 100% lightweight cotton.
As the cotton is relatively sheer, there was some discussion about lining the dress, especially the skirt. However the wearer prefers not to have it lined making life easier for the sewer :).

I haven't posted a photograph of the muslin yet but might add one later - it's a little crumpled....

If you have expensive fabric and are a little uncertain about your pattern and fit, I'd certainly recommend a muslin (or test garment). It 's quicker than you think.Yes, it adds expense but I'd rather have problems with the cheaper muslin at $3/m. 

If you interested in more thoughts on this, the delightful Gertie has done a number of technical posts on her muslins - here's one.... 

Let me know what you think. Do you do one? Do you have a different approach?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Inspiration Board: Vintage Glamour 40s nightgown/evening gown

I've decided to create a series of inspiration boards for the vintage patterns
I feature on EstyFirstly, I love inspiration boards - they give me a chance
to play with images and colour and I enjoy this. Secondly, I think it helps
visualise the look of the garment. It's not meant to be an actual representation
of the finished article but more a "look and feel. " For the source photographs
on the inspiration boards go to my Polyvore site.

Many of my vintage patterns are carefully selected for features that I like. 
At the moment I'm focussed on cocktail, evening wear and some lingerie. 
Key feature of this 1940s Advance pattern are:
- cross over or racer-style back
- cross over gathered bodice
- bias cut
While this is labelled as a nightgown pattern, it makes a wonderful option
for evening wear - something like this perhaps?

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