Page 1 of 1

Suggestions please :)

Posted: Sun Jun 22, 2008 8:59 pm
by lidimy
Am a little bit stuck with how to proceed with this project!

You may remember that I'm currently making a copy of THIS dress, which is cool (:

I've adapted a pattern of 3 panels, 2 back, one front (was told to do it with 4 but a centre front seam looks really unsightly :? ) and it's looking really good, fits well, etc etc. I've taken the flare out from the waist rather than the hips, and the fold lines in the pic would appear to support this move...? Yet despite the angle at which the flare is taken out, it's still near impossible to take the damn thing on and off, because of the length of the lacing; it only drops a little way below the waist line and this just doesn't seem to have enough 'give' to pull it over the head/hips :(

Any suggestions? Is it just a matter of deviating from the pic slightly and making the lacing longer, to hip level or so...?

Thanks (:

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 1:02 pm
by seamsmistress
Quick question. The image shows the lacing is wide over a stomacher/underkirtle. Is your front cut as wide or is it a straight slash opening down the centre front?

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 1:05 pm
by Ariarnia
The decoration to the hips below the lacing might conceal a second row of tighter lacing that might give you that extra movement perhaps?

Looking at the proportions in the image I would suggest it was intended to go up, over her none existent bust. The narrowest point is her waist and that has lacing.

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 5:00 pm
by lidimy
seamsmistress wrote:Quick question. The image shows the lacing is wide over a stomacher/underkirtle. Is your front cut as wide or is it a straight slash opening down the centre front?


Yes, I made the gap across my tummy 6 inches wide, the sides are cut at right angles to the end of the lacing (if that makes sense) so when the sides are pulled apart to go over the shoulders, it forces more material to the front of the skirt (that's my clever bit of pattern designing, that is! :lol: )

Ariarna - I've been toying with that idea, either close lacing or hooks and eyes, as there wont be any stress on that area anyway. But I don't know how I'd do that without affecting the pattern of the decoration (which I'll be doing with gold braid).

It's easier for me to pull it off over my head than over my hips (I am, I'm afraid, anatomically similar to said lady!) but the restriction is how much the bodice part can be pulled apart within the distance from the tightest point at the waist, to the level at which the lacing stops.

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 8:52 pm
by Marcus Woodhouse
Funny, never thought about it before but the only way my daughter can get into her dress is by pulling it over her head, her "Savoyard dress" is more "french" than your one though.

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 8:53 pm
by lidimy
Marcus Woodhouse wrote:Funny, never thought about it before but the only way my daughter can get into her dress is by pulling it over her head, her "Savoyard dress" is more "french" than your one though.


Do tell...? How is hers dfferent?

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 9:03 pm
by Marcus Woodhouse
Not as fancy you big tart you :wink: (We be but 'umble folk not like you mi'lady)

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 9:44 pm
by lidimy
Marcus Woodhouse wrote:Not as fancy you big tart you :wink: (We be but 'umble folk not like you mi'lady)


Yup, on your knees, peasant :wink:

Posted: Mon Jun 23, 2008 10:20 pm
by seamsmistress
Clad that close to the upper body, I'd say you've no choice but to take it off over the head - even in my 15th peasant kirtle, it can be a struggle and needs to be totally unlaced at front.

Looking at the image, I'm wondering if what we think is purely decoration on the abdomen could actually be masking a split which goes further down - a centre line does seem to be indicated? But I could easily be wrong, after all she doesn't have much up top to worry about :)

Having made an early 15th cotehardie for a lady not dissimilar in size, I used side lacing to get the really close fit, but that one didn't have front lacing at all and I can see why you might not want to do that.

If you wanted the lacing loose and removable rather than fixed you could perhaps use lacing panels fixed to the inside of the gown at each side front opening. If you stay the panel between each eyelet to the facing, you'll find it doesn't fly open. That way, you'd have no worries about spoiling your embroidery to the face.

Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2008 9:00 am
by lidimy
seamsmistress wrote:
If you wanted the lacing loose and removable rather than fixed you could perhaps use lacing panels fixed to the inside of the gown at each side front opening. If you stay the panel between each eyelet to the facing, you'll find it doesn't fly open. That way, you'd have no worries about spoiling your embroidery to the face.


Sorry, that just went straight over my head... :oops:

I'll see what can be arranged with creating a little split inbetween the decorative bits. I think it might be the only way - I don't want to drop the lacing any further down!

Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2008 7:05 pm
by Marcus Woodhouse
I'll go fix the fence in the lower field.

Posted: Wed Jun 25, 2008 10:42 pm
by frances
Maybe there is a big pleat or gussset under that fancy piece below the waist. And maybe it is not embroidery but a fabric applique which is sewn on one side only and hook and eyed on the other when the person is inside the frock. The pleat or gusset would then be behind the applique and flattened against the body and therefore would not show.

Posted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:55 am
by lidimy
Hmm... but if it was big, surely there'd be some evidence of a fold?

I think the hook and eye method seems plausible, as long as I put the braid on in a careful way.

But how do I put a slit in down the front without affecting the pattern? :? :oops:

Posted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 8:28 pm
by Ace Rimmer
perhaps you need a dressing assistant?

I'm sure you wont have any trouble finding volunteers :D

Posted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:15 pm
by frances
Lidimy, the slit could be a triangle. The point will be downwards. You may need to make a small adjustment at the hem of the frock.

But remember that pics do not show every minute detail of a garment. So maybe there is a fold or a pleat that is just not shown.

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 7:30 pm
by lidimy
Ace Rimmer wrote:perhaps you need a dressing assistant?

I'm sure you wont have any trouble finding volunteers :D


I think I'll need a dressing assisstant anyway - this is hardly going to be a standard lob it on and lace up the front affair!

Frances, do explain.. what would I need to do to the hem?
I was thinking that perhaps I would need to widen the the bottom of the lacing (which is about 6" at present) by about half an inch, and then basically use the half inch as the seam allowance for the slit, so that when the slit is fully closed, the original 6" will be resumed...? Does that make sense and, more important, would it work? :shock: :?

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:18 pm
by lidimy
Oh, and also this site: http://cadieux.mediumaevum.com/burgundian-gown.html

At the bottom, has gowns that are similar (none really 100% identical though) but none of them really look like they have a pleat either :?

(I'm looking particuarly interestedly at piccy 6!)

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 9:43 pm
by Ariarnia
*shrug*

Out of the first 15 images on that site:

Numbers 1, 3, 4 and 9 have a concealed or obscured waist.

Numbers 2, 8, 12, 13 and 14 have decoration extending to or past where the belly button would be, possibly concealing a split or fastening

Numbers 5, 6 and 7 have pleating that seems to depict some excess material under the belt

15 is the only one in the first 15 that clearly seems to have depicted the waist and have no decoration or pleating at the waist band.

To me at first glance that is.

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 10:26 pm
by lidimy
Keep scrolling down - I'm not looking at the Burgundians but the so called 'wide lacing gown' :D

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2008 11:21 pm
by frances
Dear Lidimy,

the only way you are going to know if it will work on your particular body shape is to make it up in spare fabric first - a toile. Get an old sheet or two from the charity shop and try it out to see what happens. There is no othe way to do it, I'm afraid. Everyone's body is different so what works on me will not work on you.

Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 6:21 pm
by lidimy
I've already made a fitting toile, hence why I don't want to start chopping and changing incase it all goes wrong and I end up back at square one! :D

Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 11:51 pm
by frances
Yes, it may fit you - but if you look back at your original question, you still have the problem of getting it on and off. So it does not really fit, does it?

Getting a pattern right can be long-winded and the final garment will never show how much work went into it. But it is worth fiddling with so that the end product is as good as it can be.

Posted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 9:45 am
by Hraefn
Are you using the two bags sewn together round the edge method or make up in panels and butt seam together method?
Why is putting it on over your head a problem?

Posted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:25 pm
by lidimy
Frances - it does fit because that's how it's going to fit when it's finally done. I guess it depends upon whether 'fitting' includes the concept of 'removal'! :lol:

Hraefn - that woosh was the sound of your post going straight over my head! :oops: Do you mean by the 'bag' method, finishing each panel and then whipping them all together? The only method I know is making up the lining, make up the outer, then sew together, then turn out the right way and then do the hem. Though I am really starting to prefer slip stitching the whole lot together, seems so much easier than the hassle of turning out around dodgy corners...

The lady who purchased the silk for me gave me some notes which (if I interpreted them correctly :lol: ) favoured the whippy method, so I might try that. But... am still confused by it... I mean.. finishing each panel? :?

Putting it over my head/hips is a problem because, unlike say, 15th C kirtles, the lacing only *appears* to reach to just below the waist, rather than to the widest point of the hips. Therefore, the gown can't open up wide enough to pass my shoulders/hips through.