Tudor Frock part 1

My tudor dress for work – which has to be posh – is looking somewhat the worse for wear and I really need to replace it. I’m hoping that if I get it done quickly I can have a day playing with my button coat (work trumps fun, alas), but so far am not working very fast.

I’m starting with a new farthingale. Mainly this is because I really, really hate making farthingales. But my old one is quite quite dead. In fact it’s so dead that for the last few weeks I’ve had to cobble together two old farthingales to make a kind of frankenstien of farthingales, which was, quite frankly, a bit embarassing.

I started about a month ago, using a heavy linen lining and some peach coloured silk taffeta, and my efforts lasted about an hour cos I cut it out, realised I didn’t have enough taffeta, and sulked about it for a month.

Oh, you can call it “taking a step back to reconsider the design process” all you like, but we all know its really sulking. might as well be honest.

 There was no way of  getting more of the peach – I think its a weavers sample remnant as you can clearly see the slightly different coloured stripe that runs through it.

So I had no choice but to make the extra panel from some bronze from my stash.

Honestly, I have no idea why either of these taffetas is in my stash in the first place, other than the fact that I am physically incapable of not buying silk if its cheap enough, so I can therefore conclude that both of these must have cost less than £5 a metre, otherwise they wouldn’t be there – especially since I don’t much like peach and am not generally attracted to browns, even nice ones.

Sigh – I’ll make sure the motley goes towards the back. Hopefully no one will notice. I don’t really tend to flash my underwear more than is strictly necessary.

 I’m machining it, although I will hand finish the outer garments because even for work wear I just can’t lower myself to visible machine stitching on historical garments.

I folded the hem out because if it comes into contact with the floor at any point the silk will wear far worse than the linen, especially this linen, which is marginally tougher than old boots.

 The boning channels are velvet ribbon. I could have used some of the silk velvet from my stash, but didn’t really fancy messing around making strips and folding them under (did I mention I hate making farthingales?) so I compromised and used ribbon.

I now have one flat farthingale. Hopefully john will be able to spare and evening to help me rivet the steels together. I did look into farthingale connectors, but they looked too flimsy to me, so I discussed it with John and we’re going to rivet them encase the join in leather. I’m sure the commercially available connectors work just fine for occaisional use, but I’m going to be wearing this thing two or three times a week and I expect it to last for at least four or five years, so double rivets seem a better option to me.

tomorrow, kirtle, after I’ve had some easter eggy.

~ by opusanglicanum on April 7, 2012.

14 Responses to “Tudor Frock part 1”

  1. I think you should get one of the connectors to see. They’re very sturdy, stood up to the heaviest of skirts I’ve put on them for long lengths of theater show.

    • JOhn looked at them too and he said rivets would be better – I’m prepared to trust him as he knows more about steel then me.

      besides which, in a theatrical production, you probably dont get “helpful’ people trying to fold it up for you – I had one ruined that way

  2. It’s making good progress, even if you do feel like you sulked for a while!

    • no, I really did have a big pouty sulk, honest!

      Am glad I’m machining the kirtle tho, its the same stiff linen canvas as I used for the boys outfit earlier in the year, and its far too harsh to hand sew

  3. I don’t much like making faryhingale either. Ive made two with rope and one metal.

  4. Pwetty! Silken underwear! 🙂

  5. Man, I want your job. 😛

  6. I have to agree with Jackie Foye, I’d love your job! You’re so lucky!
    It looks great!


  7. Fantastic post. I recognised so much of what you say. What is the work though that you will be doing in this? Also agree with you about brown, peach and terracotta. Dislike all three. The eighties were a nightmare for me.

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