Tuesday, January 19, 2016

HSM 2016 #1: Procrastination

I am the queen of procrastination. If you've been reading for a while, you may have noted mentions of sewing all-nighters, last-minute car-finishing, and general shenanigans in the "being done on time" department...so this challenge seemed perfect!

I decided to approach it as a double-whammy: when I made this 1890s ballgown the first time last January, I ended up rushing to have it wearable for the ball. In fact, I described it as the "murphy's law" of sewing plans! So even though I wore it to a ball, it wasn't actually completed--no hem, massive fit issues in the bodice, and no closures (a feature I am rather notorious for, unfortunately). So instead of storing it with my costumes, back into the UFO (unfinished object) pile it went...where it sat for a full year until this January, when with another ball approaching I needed to finish the job.

And I did!

this is the haughty expression of TRIUMPH
The Facts:
The Challenge: Procrastination
Material: many yards of royal blue poly velvet (dress), linen (lining)
Pattern: self-drafted but based on TV416 which I had recently fit (bodice), LM101 (skirt) altered to fit smoothly over the hips without darts
Year: 1890-1895
Notions: thread, rabbit fur trim, hook and eye tape
How historically accurate is it? Using Leimomi's litmus test of whether it would be recognizable in its own time, I'll say 70%. Obviously poly velvet isn't period (although silk velvet for ballgowns is), but fur trim is accurate, as are the general silhouette (hooray two petticoats!) and construction techniques. Plus, I wore it to a ball and danced in it--a very period accurate activity--and it moved comfortably through dances from the period, which I think is a pretty good litmus test as well.
Hours to complete: Oi vey. probably 4-6 hours to add closures, alter the bodice, and hem. Can't remember how long the original project took.
First worn: Fully completed, first worn to the Ball at the Winter Palace on January 9th.
Total cost: I believe approximately $50, although $10-20 of that was on rabbit fur trim, and most of that hasn't hit the dress yet. So in its current state, about $35.

with my white (faux)fur cape, an old but very useful item from 2011

on the balcony overlooking the ballroom

telling secrets and causing trouble!

a jolly party
Hooray for finishing UFOs!

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