Now remember, and don’t judge me, that this project is one of those “I just want this to be done quickly and no one will be able to see the details” projects.
First, the facts:
Fabric: Cotton-poly blend.
Notions: About 2 yds of 1/4″ cotton twill tape.
How historically accurate?: Accurate pattern, almost totally inaccurate fabric (that cotton counts for something, right?), and entirely machine sewn (not a single hand stitch, which for me is a rather unusual accomplishment). I give this one a 60% on historically accuracy. I think the pattern goes a long way towards being a saving grace. Ok, maybe a 65% if I count the cotton…
Hours to complete: Let’s say 16. All that gathering does add some time.
First worn: Not yet, but will be worn in April.
Total cost: Between $9-$12 (I can’t remember exactly how many yards I bought…)
How does this fit the HSF challenge? The simplicity of the fabric and style of the dress and lack of extra trimmings, puts this in the category of basic Regency clothing that could be worn by a pioneer-type. It’s probably still a little fancy for a peasant. It’s hard to make plain and simple clothing!
A few more pictures, then a little more explanation.
Explanation time. I actually don’t like this color much on its own. In fact, I think it does absolutely nothing for my complexion. Actually, it just looks bad on me. So why did I pick it, you ask? Well, this is intended to be an under dress, not something I ever plan to wear by itself. I was at the fabric store looking for colors that worked under my 1812 striped square neck gown, and this is the one! The other colors looked too much like skin, or just awful pastel shades of ew. Also, I was probably influenced by this next picture. I couldn’t stop looking at the blues.
Anyway, given how much I don’t like the color/am amused by the scrub-like quality of it and don’t plan for this to be really seen, I just wanted it to be done, quickly and without fuss. That’s why it’s totally machine sewn. Granted, I did do a nice machine sew job, so I suppose it might one day be worn without the over dress, but I don’t see that as a likely option, at least on my body. Funny contrast is that the white dress is entirely hand sewn, with not a machine stitch to be found.
Voila! One over dress, two different looks! One of the comments awhile ago mentioned the idea of the Regency LWD: Little White Dress. That’s been on my brain while I’ve been making this blue under dress. With different under options this LWD becomes more versatile and can change looks for different events. Nice!
Also, and this is really cool, my blue under dress is incredibly similar to this “slip” at the Met! The cool part is that I came across the slip in January, months after I had made the plan for my under dress. But look at the gathers on the sleeve at the sleeve band and at the crown, and at the shoulder strap construction of the bodice, and at the gathered top and bottom center front panel. It’s kind of uncanny, because this is not the dress that Janet Arnold based her pattern off of. Just goes to show that this construction style was used on more than one dress in the Regency period. Cool!
As I dressed Squishy I realized that when I go to wear this blue under dress it would probably save me some fussing if I baste the shoulder straps of the two dresses together so the blue doesn’t poke out where I don’t want it it. That’s an easy thing to then take out again later. I’ll have to get on that before April!