How much is there, really, to say about skirts? They’re pretty basic. I’ve never really been one to make patterns for skirts, because, well, I’m lazy, and it doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to whack out a rectangle. Somewhere back in the primordial fog of my early costuming experience, someone told me, “Gored skirts aren’t period. They waste fabric.” And I believed her, because it was easier than doing my own research or making with the thinkies. And shame on me, because it turns out that you can get through most of your costuming life if you know how to draft three basic skirt patterns. Ready?
23 search results for "farthingale"
I spent the day doing photography for demos on patterning and making some basic stuff (smocks, skirts, etc). I’m working at sizes to fit Tyler Wentworth dolls, and I just had some sort of completely wrong notion that sewing a smock for a 16″ doll would be easier and/or faster than sewing for a human… But no. The seams are shorter, but little dolly armscyes are a giant pain the tushie. And as if that weren’t bad enough….
So I was out trimming the privet hedge the other day, like you do (she says, sounding perfectly British about the whole thing) when I stopped to think, “Gee, I wonder if I could bone a corset with some of these clippings? I should give that a try…” So I did.
Measuring the Waist to Ground Length correctly is crucial for several things. Most obviously, it’s used for making skirts that fall fully to the ground. It’s also the measurement I rely on for estimating fabric use in historical work, as the vast majority of the fabric is in the skirts.
Yet another dry, dusty pile of academic writing… This time, the topic is the corsetry/torso support of the 16th century. I find the full history of the artificial silhouette totally fascinating, and I’m geeked beyond belief on the actual genesis of the corset. In the 16th century alone, a bunch of different devices are in play. Corsets, obviously – who doesn’t know about the Pfaltzgrafin and Effigy corsets by now? Wardrobe warrants also list stomachers (for Tudor gowns) made of pasteboard covered with tapheta – that’s certainly stiff enough to smooth the front of the torso into the signature tudor inverted, featureless cone. By the end of the period, warrants talk about busks made of whalebone and wire, quilted with sarconet. (How does that fit into a channel in a corset?!? Or does the end of the era, with it’s open-fronted gowns, turn back to the same infrastructure used by the earlier tudor gowns with stiffened stomachers? I have my theories, obviously….)
So here is…. Everything I know About 16th Century Corsetry,
This is an excerpt from a research paper I did a while back. The paper itself is 40 pages and covers 4 centuries of support skirts and corsetry. I figure it’s more digestible in smaller chunks. Please note: my regularly scheduled writing style has been suspended in favor of something more palatable to the hardcore academia types. Special thanks go to Stephanie for her proof-reading skills.
And now for Everything I Know About 16th Century Support Skirts…
This is a corded petticoat, meant to be worn in place
of a farthingale under middle class costumes. The base of the skirt is
cheap cotton broadcloth, and it is stiffened with 3.8″ cotton upholstery
cord filling held in a channels created with 1″ wid…
With the help of my lovely assistant, Janey (currently seen
modeling my absolutely excellent “Henchwoman” shirt (thanks, lynn!)), this article
will fulfill a need that does not exist (because drea already wrote the article
on it, b…
Finally, pictures of the finished dress from the most recent
diary of a work in progress. The gold
part is the underdress. The cherry part is a safeguard and jerkin. (There was
not a safeguard and jerkin in the original plan…