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I keep coming back to a very small handful I really want to work on, and realised I have a major love for very stark gowns.


I mean Sunburst or not on that skirt that gown would be on my Must Make list anyway.


 


Virginie Gautreux by JS Sargent and Rose Caron by Toulmouche.


I have actually made part of each, but I really want a nice silk satin for Mme X. I need about 8m and in a nice heavy weight that’s just not really been on the cards. But, sales are sales so fingers crossed one coincides with a bit of luck 🙂


My day ensembles have tended to also be a bit stark like my grey dress and this is in keeping with that with a touch of Worth:



Worth’s Cleopatra yellow wool dress.


I also have to admit the fabric I just cut for my new duvet cover (one of a set of curtains) has such a huge pattern it’s super tempting to make a Worth-a-like based on those oversized patterned velvets. The front is a crinkle silver with chenille waves, but the reverse.. now the reverse looks like black velvet with flat silver waves and that is just too much to resist. Well I hope I can because I *might” just be able to get a frock out of it. But I want a high necked version. That might be a bit much. The curtains had huge eyelets at the top which est into the amount that is free. That said I do have a strip.. but also my new duvet cover is so pretty that it really needs a bit of matchy matchy in terms of pillow covers.



It might be possible for a more 1890 vs 1895 look.





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While I was at the library the Ultimaker was also there XD It felt brilliant being able to talk historic costume nerding while also talking about the printer and the software to use it. Just fun 🙂 Also it’s a nice size machine so seeing it in person means potentially being able to plan to get my Maleficent horns printed piece by piece.


Anyway, I know the Opulent era well but it’s still really nice to have the luxury of having it at home. Also this is still a gown that keeps leaping up for attention:


http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/155944


Date:1900

Culture:French

Medium:silk, rhinestones

Credit Line:Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of the estate of Mrs. Arthur F. Schermerhorn, 1957


My scanner has fallen over but The Opulent Era has a strip photo of the beading and it is just clear enough to make out the bead types 🙂 Looks like delica style pearelscent bead which is fabulous! One of the desriptions in the Worth Bio mentions “iridescent” beads which I always take to mean opalescent- rainbow refracted colours very pearlescent but either is of interest to me in terms of materials. I adore AB finish so figuring out an appropriate start date to use it is always of interest.


As a start:


http://blogs.houseofgems.com/index.php/2014/09/sparkle-shine-a-brief-history-of-how-glimmering-gems-and-beads-came-to-be/


Metallic sparkle and shine has long been a favorite among bead connoisseurs. The bead makers of Gablonz first painted metallic finishes on glass beads, including iridescent coatings. Next, they came up with iridized and electroplated glass beads. Iridized glass was glass sprayed with an almost hair-thin vapor deposit of metal oxides. The craze for iridized glass and beads reached its height during the late 1800s and again in the 1950s and 1960s after the introduction of aurora borealis coating.


http://www.karipearls.com/how-pearls-are-made.html


Wax Pearl with Essence Coating and Fragile Glass

Photos thanks to Diane Volkmann


Which I had only heard about, so it’s nice to see (click through.) For an example of the description of this kind of fake pearl:


MAN and SHELLS Molluscs in the History

By Riccardo Cattaneo-Vietti, Mauro Doneddu, Egidio



Though I think this has the closest explanation:


https://www.thespruce.com/stones-in-vintage-costume-jewelry-4026020


Saphiret is type of glass stone with a blue-brown hue used in Victorian jewelry.


This page also distinguishes carnival glass from AB (specially Swarovski method) so I think this one is the lead 🙂


 


Anyway. My desire for iridescence is generally tempered by being sure it’s slightly out of date for my most loved eras! But





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http://www.trademarkia.com/solidot-72191450.html


PIECE GOODS MADE OF NATURAL OR SYNTHETIC TEXTILE MATERIALS, AND PIECE GOODS MADE OF PLASTICS OF THE KIND USED FOR MAKING UP INTO ARTICLES COMMONLY MADE OF FIBROUS TEXTILES, ALL COATED WHOLLY OR PARTLY WITH THERMOPLASTIC RESINS, THE PIECE GOODS PREDOMINATING, AND BEING GOODS FOR USE BY LAMINATION FOR STIFFENING OR REINFORCING


So yes, it seems to have become a generic term as the tradmark and patents relating to the invention have expired/dissolved.


 


So working outward. Turns out a grandchild of the inventor of the specific solidot I think I am thinking of has a copy of his PhD.!


http://kimthew.com/2005/03/visit-to-the-peed-ii/#footnote1


1“Instead, a series of experiments were set up to devise a form of chemical finish which would partially block the interstices of the base cloth without stiffening it, and, at the same time, would reduce the wicking effect of the yarn fibrils, which otherwise removed the water from the resin emulsion preferentially.” (Page 28.) (Back)


3If anyone’s on the edge of their seat wondering what happens in the history of fusible interlinings, or has questions about the difference between producing resin granules by wet methods and by hot compounding methods, or the importance of the Solidot process (Very Important) or the fate of Staflex (A Sad Story), you’ll have to wait until IÌve finished the book. (Back)


https://www.pressreader.com/uk/the-jewish-chronicle/20091009/283021165730067



(actually yes, thinking about it the fabric I am thinking of has a slightly fishy smell, as do a lot of PVC coatings.)


And:



www.google.com/patents/US3067162


Method of forming uniform-sized plasticized resin granules and resulting product

US 3067162 A


Anyway. The fabric I am looking for appears to no longer be made. Unless perhaps if I order a 3000yard roll.


 


And it is the regular spacing of the granules that is important. The dots are also quite raised. So fantastic for a heavy satin as you can really melt the dots into the ground and not have it strike through!





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solidot

Apr. 2nd, 2017 06:33 am
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It is real!


http://sewingchest.co.uk/pdf/p19-Interfacing.pdf


Cotton woven with PVC dot resin

is what is commonly called Solidot and

is probably one of the oldest interfacings

still used today.


Woo!!! I am very lucky to have just enough for my Sunburst as what I have I cannot find any more. What I have is a very well woven cotton fabric of a complex weave and a very distinct regular series of opaque dots. The closest I can find is in fact labeled as anti-skid fabric. And yeah. Very similar. But it’s annoying it cannot be found any more.


But I can’t very much info about who produced the stuff and why I cannot find any since about 2010.





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Well dye remover. I decided rather than trek across Auckland for dye remover I’d just order some. So I did, and ordered a new cutting blade for my cutting machine at the same time because well I’m going to finally just start cutting the darn Elsa sequins! Well huge confetti circles that are 1″ across 🙂 They are translucent so once dye up will be very icy when finished 🙂


The dye remover is for my silk satin and also for something else I have forgotten.. whoops!


But I have also just spent the day detangling my very expensive lace front wig I bought for my Chistine Daae costumes.


It’s a bit frizzy for that now but ideal for doing all kinds of historic hairstyles which is fab. I just need to run a blade over the ends (designed for human hair these thin ends out and as the frizz sticks out is fairly easily cut out 🙂 )


I have read most of the first bio of Worth I got from the library. The library has two last holds for me: the Opulent Era and The House of Worth : portrait of an archive.


That second one I have not read through yet, obviously I know TOE very well 🙂 This is just saving me hunting out a copy for myself as the costume reference shelf is a little out of hand. Okay, no I do want this. I just want to find a very good quality copy!


I have the large scale edition of Costume by KCI and sadly most of the photos I am interested in were not adjusted for the larger format so are a little blurry. Luckily the section on Japanese influenced western costume is all good!


Also.


I’m buying the freaking Rocailles. I may as well do this properly if I’m going to the effort of removing all the dye then adding more. And if I have 10m of silk chiffon already decoloured just for the selvages and.. well this is the gown that started the obsession. And yes, the museum catalogue includes “metallic thread” so I was right in assuming the outlines were originally si;ver.


OMG!


So obviously the owner being rich and in New York had other worth frocks but WHAT THE HEY!@!!!!


 


I wish it was possible to know if all these gowns were worn my The Mrs Astor, or if they were collected. But I love her taste. I really do. And I am almost up to this section in the Worth biography so I’ll keep reading and see what the book has to say about the New York social scene. Most of the info is fantastic. Not a lot about the day to day proceedings, but a lot of info I assumed but more as well (1200 seamstresses in the 1860s????)


My OMG moment was false though, a picture of the Electric Light (Worth) gown for the Vanderbilt party  came up and I thought how could I possibly have not made the connection. And now it turns out I have lost my book with the very good copy of it.. Anyway. False Excite.


So next step is to see where the book is and possibly rescue it from the pile of books to donate….


 





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I have been using @Autodesk @AutodeskReMake for a while. Just the free version while I practice how to photograph my models. I think I finally cracked it, and it’s almost certainly going to offer great results once I pay for the subscription and can send 250 photos not just 50 😉


 


So my very first test.


I can’t find my photos but basically I started with the head cast a little way from my far workroom corner and took photos with it stationary.


 


Looking at the model put out through different angles:



So here you can see the rest of the room was partially captured but the sculpt is well defined.



Isolating the sculpt and it’s even captured all the clay shavings! Just a few lumps in the horns but otherwise I’m impressed.


However I was not really able to get close enough in all angles around my sculpt to get decent shots of the underside of the horns.


 


So I watched a few more tutorials and a few suggested rotating the object rather than standing up and lying down to get angles otherwise difficult.



This was in the same place as before. The doorhandle looks mildly terrifying…



Still on the same stand and this time against a wall in better light. Well I have bricks!



So I painted the horns pink! And put them on a tall stand to really isolate them. Again the horns disappear and there is a great view of the wall.


 


Okay so obviously this sculpt needs to be static not moved around. I realised the back deck is often protected from harsh sunlight but offers good light bouncing from many surfaces. So to the deck with my pink horns on a spike and finally got this:


  


Lots of background but the horns are easy to isolate.



So finally some of the ridge detail is captured! But still quite lumpy.


 


Each model used the 50 photo limit. I do think with 250 photos I’ll be able to get all the detail needed.


 


So for a sculpt like this, of complexity of line:


Do make sure the model is static. Do not rotate it for different angles, move yourself around instead.


Get it at a height where you can get images from underneath as well as on top and all around (for me this is about knee to waist high)


Get some photos with the full area around you as that will help isolate the model and put it in context.


Get some mid distance images.


 


Once those are done you can get in close. I have to reset where my camera focuses because I got a few where the point was on the deck.


 


But yes. I’m going to set up a few sculpts outside so I can digitise a good number of them. Shae for one, old Maley horns for another. And I’ll melt some clay and pour into some other molds to capture them as well 🙂 I think with one month Subscription I can get a reasonable number captured. Heck I will even capture my Togruta horns for in case I have to move and my molds have to go bye bye. I may have someone who could take them on but I’m not 100% sure.


 





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Watchadoin? Oh nothing just chillin.


View in Instagram ⇒





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The things I have to do for my art…. The app keept reading the grey of the clay as shadows. Made for a very disturbing model! So… To the paint. Figured pink was the best option. Also I only have a few tubes of any paint atm.


View in Instagram ⇒





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The noise I’m dealing with. The actual sawing, fine. But the whine between? Ick!


View in Instagram ⇒





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#sunburst silk before and after RIT color remover. Before was with Dylon Pre-Dye. In each case make sure the powder is powder, don’t accept a pack if it feels solid. This is an oxidative process that also uses water. When a solid rock it literally can’t work.


View in Instagram ⇒





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All my self drafted pattrns in one place. In the folder are scaled diagrams. In the blue card envelops are mainly flat patterns but also some card (armour and complicated bodysuits) and in the plastic a mix of WIP and templates to keep.


View in Instagram ⇒





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10m of chiffon colour removed 🙂 also exciting, the satin scrap also faded which means I will get more remover and redo all the satin 🙂


View in Instagram ⇒





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Can you see the soot? Yeah… That’s how long ago I really worked on this! #sunburst #worth next step is to remove the last of the yellow from the satin.


View in Instagram ⇒





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Rereading for obvious reasons. Yes the little book is the book I remember the beading is not what I recall so next on the future projects pile is to make my own beaded tablier design 🙂


View in Instagram ⇒





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So obviously one uses silver lined glass beads and the other uses pearls. Of note, fake pearls. Which is very exciting. Beacuse I have vintage fake glass pearls so I suspect they are made the same way- I think it’s an enamel paint over glass.


Anyway notice the other big thing.




The pearls do not have a shadow line. I was originally working from The Opulent Era which includes a close up of the pink gown that shares photo space with the yellow sunburst. And in that the beads are outlined with fine seed beads. But that is not what is going on!


The yellow sunburst apparently has a silver cord laid down and the silver lined beads sewn around that. You can see the couched threads once you look for them but especially on the cloud circle to the inside of the furthermost star. Also metal would explain how the cord stays so crisp as opposed to a silk over cotton core. Compare how firm they appear compared to the known beads and thread. The gown has a lot of shattering of the silk but how soon did the silver corrode? Was it a factor calculated into the making? Or did the gown get stored in a way that wasn’t completely optimised?


So I suspect the same rational I used to decide the pearls were the better option for me played a part in the original. I think the beads alone were not going to give enough definition so the couched silver does that.


I however love the effect of the the corroded metal! I love how it outlines in such a sharp graphic line. So I am really really torn as to just how “accurate” I want to go. I should only couch cord iff I use rocailles but it should also be silver. Also the rocailles are one size while the pearls graduate… will going for a single sized pearl and dark silver cord work? As somthing that could have been done?


But the same can be said of the sequins. I will likely use modern non tarnishing sequins so will that affect how this changes over time?


 


And now I am remembering why I stalled the last time! My historic gear is rarely a copy. I much prefer to do as was done which is to take a fashion plate or photo of a celebrity and say “I like this, but do this” as is how the pink version came about anyway! But I love so much about the yellow (with hints of pink and green and bright yellow).





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I have decided that I know how to make line art in photoshop so let’s just do this 🙂


I had basically traced all the photos of the skirts in my books here and then traced over that while adjusting for curve. Let’s just say onion sheet is the best stuff ever 🙂


I just scanned that, and scaled to full size and have so far created paths for all elements except the hem and the curves inside the clouds.


I started with the easy-peasy straight rays of light, this is just using the pen tool on the tips and ends of each ray.


For the wavy rays I wanted to have a more regular and controlled shape so I created one ray in paths.



I started by adding anchor points regularly, shifting them to gently widen and length each curve.



Once I was happy, I stroked the path. My experience with Elsa has suggested the ideal cutting/stitching line is to use the brush on 3pxls



This was then copied and pasted as multiple layers and each one rotated and placed in position. I also erased overlapping lines.


 



The straight rays were merged and the wavy rays were merged to another layer.



So then I started to add the clouds. Each circle was created by using the circle line tool, stroked and copied to different layers and for each layer they were free transformed to shape. And the overlapping sections were also erased.



So now I need to create a star and cloud to repeat for the hem and also add curves to each cloud.


Once finish it will probably be flipped and printed then temporarily basted to the back and machine stitched as I had planned before.





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 Contemporary style:


Harper’s Bazar Ball Toilette, (2.11.1882, cover). Magnolia satin with rosy hints. Tablier is embroidered in silks and beads, terminated at the food by two pleatings of the satin. )

I did find a few more examples of a the tablier style covered in beads. But I need to explain what a tablier is.


It means apron. But it is important to understand what an apron in fashion in the natural form and sencond bustle era looked like. It was plain and pulled back. So it’s basically a plain skirt front as opposed to one covered in drapery or rushing etc.


Wedding dress Place of origin: Paris (made) Date: 19/02/1880 (worn) Artist/Maker: Worth, Charles Frederick, Materials and Techniques: Silk satin, lace and net, lined with silk, imitation of pearls embroidery, velvet Museum number: T.62 to B-1976

5: Wedding dress Date:1881 Culture:American Medium:silk, pearl Credit Line:Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art,Accession Number:2009.300.3847a, b

Wedding Dress c. 1882 – England Material Ivory silk brocade of gold thread with floral pattern; trimmed with silk tulle, Brussels lace, beads, and imitation pearls; 240cm-length train with fifteen tiered flounce. Inventory Number(s) AC2203 79-9-8AB

 

 

6:Dress About 1885, 19th century Gift of Miss Estelle Holland M20296.1-2 © McCord Museum Keywords: Dress (85)

2: Medium: Green/brown changéant silk velvet, lace, beads, rhinestones, and gold metallic cord Date: 1889-1890 Country: France  Object Number: P91.55.6

Evening dress Date:1888–89 Culture:American Medium:silk Accession Number:C.I.47.65.1a, b

 

A garment found several years ago on ebay.

Another earlier ebay find

 

 

There was some exploration of asymmetry of these overlayers of beaded silk especially when on a delicate fabric.


Name: Wedding Dress Date: 1887 Place: United States Medium: silk, beads, faux pearls

Classification: Women’s Ceremonial Dress Department: Fashion Arts and Textiles  No: 1971.320

Maria Feodorovna (1847-1928), Princess, Tsaritsa, Glucksberg family, Romanov family

Maria Feodorovna (1847-1928), Princess, Tsaritsa, Glucksberg family, Romanov family

I adore these oversized pearls on thin silver beaded loops. Some of the other gowns how tassels and loops made from matching pearl beads (see garment immediately to right), but this is quite a statement.


And then we come to the two Sunburst gowns. Worth regularly repeated his designs, with some adjustments based on the new client.


Evening Dress© The Kyoto Costume Institute Evening Dress c. 1894 Designer Charles-Frederick Worth  Material Ivory silk satin two-piece dress; gigot sleeves; pale pink silk chiffon decoration at neck and bodice; skirt with sunbeam and cloud asymmetry pattern of pale pink silk tulle insertion and bead embroidery. Inventory Number(s) AC4799 84-9-2AB

Ball gown Design House:House of Worth (French, 1858–1956) Designer:Charles Frederick Worth Date:ca. 1887 Medium:silk, glass, metallic thread  Accession Number:49.3.28a, b

This just happens to be a very obvious copy due to the single large stylised motif across the entire skirt. These just stand out a mile away!  These do also make use of cut work and so perhaps represent an early start to the later gown with heavy use of cutwork. They certainly show more in character and line to the vertical plant motifs than the layers of net and beads.


And that seems to have lead to experimentation with full skirt length motifs.


Ball gown Design House:House of Worth Designer:Jean-Philippe Worth (French, 1856–1926) Date:1900 Medium:silk, rhinestones Credit Line:Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Accession Number:2009.300.1250a, b

Harper;s Bazar, 1894. (3.17.94, cover) Coiffure from Lentheric of Paris. Pale sky blue satin bordered in black fur. Beaded irises cover the side front seams.

 

(BTW that shape of the wheat sheaf gown is well represented in other garments Worth created especially in velvet or fabric a la disposition.)


And what can we say about this gown that has not already bean said:


THE ‘LILY’ EVENING GOWN, WORTH WORN BY COMTESSE GREFFULHE Worth Gift of the Duc de Gramont Circa 1896 Black silk velvet, white silk satin (for the partially modern collar), white satin appliqués embroidered with metal cannetilles and gold sequins. GAL1978.20.1

 


Still no luck tracking down the book so I went looking on  Worldcat


So this allowed me to look for a book published between 1970 and 1996 (the year I know I saw it) that is about wedding dresses and probably by a museum. I though Museum of London based on the format I had in my head but well:


Wedding dress : 1740-1970

Author: Madeleine Ginsburg; Victoria and Albert Museum.

Publisher: London : H.M.S.O., 1981.

Edition/Format: Print book : National government publication : English


This sounds like the puppy!!!. And it is still available at the library I know it was from. And I recall the production I was in that caused the book to be at a rehersal:


Trial By Jury! Yes, a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta about a bride and with all her bridesmaids in tow! I then requested a whole lot of other useful book s 🙂


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In tidying all my beads I found my pearls again. All the pearls. The Metropolitan Sunburst gown uses faceted beads so would have glittered like a glittery thing. But I am short shighted, that effect would get very lost on me, especially while working so the more solid effect of the pearls of the Kyoto version is very tempting. It may also be down to the darkening of the lined beads (not sure what metal, but given they look nearly black.. tin? Silver?)


I’m not sure if the instagram importer will work so here is a quick grab from facebook 🙂



In this photo, clockwise from top:


~super delicate cotton tulle. It wobbles so I think it may actually be rayon. It’s still a very gold colour. So to the RIT color remover


~silk faced satin (a purchase from Cynthia Setje waaaay back in 2006! So it’s kind of perfect 🙂 ) Already knocked back to gold from green, it should soften further (6 skirt panels cut and interfaced, colour removed with pre-Dye by Dylon)


~hand drawn beading pattern (pinned to the face of my front skirt panel.) This may get swapped for a scan of my scale drawing which is more accurate 🙂


~glass pearls! You have no idea how expensive glass beads have been for the decade around my start date! These were a lucky dollar store find! (24 hanks)


~silk habotai- intensely yellow- to the RIT!


~silk chiffon- looks quite lovely, much more institutional mint in reality! To the RIT!


 


Not shown are my sequins and lined seed beads.


I may have enough sateen to line the bodice, but there may be a little Worth construction hunting before I commit!


 





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I recently had a conversation where someone apologised for reading all my bog because it felt like stalking. To which, I hope, I replied it wasn’t at all 🙂


I pay for this website and so have full control over the content. If it’s posted here it’s intended to be read- at some point in history 🙂 I just share across different media so that no one has to tread over here! Mobile devices are great but for apps rather than browsers 🙂


The entire point of this website is to put down all the costuming resources I have used for myself and for anyone else 🙂


 


There is really only one thing that I would ask- is to share 🙂 If anything on my site has been of interest please share 🙂


 


(PS stalking is totally different, I only use the term for actual stalking. So that means taking screen caps of my words/photos of self and hoarding/obsessing over their meaning over many years might just get into the creepy area regardless of intent 😉 )





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Help. Obsessed. There may have been a Pinterest board created and it may be strictly properly sourced and maybe just updated with a gown that is included in one of the few Lafayette photos to have lots of close views. Such bliss.


 


LANGTRY, MRS

Neg. No: 2194

Neg. Size: 15″X12″

Neg. Date: 10-11-1899


Sitter: Lillie Langtry (stage name) Lady De Bathe, née Emilie Charlotte Le Breton (1853-1929).



I think this may be my favourite of all the gowns Worth produced like this. Though that may be because it’s Lily Langtry!


Yes, I often combine my interest in theatre, costume, and stage so of course I have a lovely file archive of Mrs Langrty.


 


I know a lot of people have been inspired by RedThreaded’s Worth gown, but there may be some weird web archiving glitch so here it is for anyone not yet seen!



 


I apologise! This image has been very hard to source. This is the other woven velvet/satin gown that is also absolutely taken up brain space!



Worth, Tea gown, 1895 © Photograph rights reserved / Mairie de Paris


This has horizontal bust darts! As well as curved bust seams and a waist seam to get that beautiful shaping of the velvet.


 


But all this has been part of my life tidying that has been happening- organising books, papers, digital files. SO this has meant reorganising my patterns and WIP and thus my recent flurry of posts.


 


I’ll be trying to get all my Mina posts from before the website changeover, but that may be a bit difficult!





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