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Black Kirtle

After a lot of sewing for other people, I wanted to sew for
me. I *needed* to sew for me. I’d been wearing the same dress most of the season.
It was driving me buggy. I’d started a new set of pretty undies a while back,
started a diary for them,
and gotten no where. In sort of a fit, I finished the corset and corded petticoat
— badly. In another sort of fit, I tore all the cording out of the corded petticoat,
which makes it a, well, petticoat. ‘Nuff Said. I also found out that things
had grown, and my corset no longer fit as designed. (It wasn’t my waist this
time, which I suppose is good.) I made up a nice, simple black kirtle (more
or less from my own draping
— I really do things that way). The whole skirt is pleated
onto the bodice with knife pleats — singles in front, progressively more stacked
on top of each other as they approach the center back. It’s worn over my old
corded petticoat, and the newly uncorded one. I think the silhouette, especially
at the sides, turned out quite nicely.

The sleeves are actually the legs of a pair if ludicrously
small pants I bought forever ago (I really liked the silk jacquard, and they
were all of 5$). They’re caught with buttons and handstitched button-loops (all
bar-tacked — ain’t that fancy?). I swear I had a close-up of the sleeves taken,
but I can’t find it. That’s what happens when you let your web updates sit for
several months.


  1. […] years ago – they were absolutely horrid as a size 4 pleated, tapered pant, but they made me a lovely set of sleeves! I think now they will make a lovely dress. The velvet is cotton, the brocade is, erm, a blend of […]

  2. Meg
    Meg July 11, 2011

    Oh Sempstress! I worship your black doublet pictured here with the kirtle, but can no longer find your diary for it. Wherefore art the diary? I covet that doublet and have long intended to … well … COPY it! It’s perfect. Is that diary still available online? Have always loved your site — very inspirational!

    • missa
      missa July 17, 2011

      Hey, Meg,

      Sorry for the very late response – I’ll try to find the old diary and re-web it. I’ve been a little swamped lately. Two shows back to back, with a 4th of July float in the middle…. Oy!

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