The mad rush towards Costume College – a Bubblegum Titanic Dress

So I’m going to Costume College for the first time this year!

So of course that means I want shiny new outfits (even though it’s not like people have seen my current stuff, since I don’t go to many events). In particular I wanted toned-down daywear, since most of my stuff is more formal.

Right after finishing the Kaylee dress, my plan was for 3 new things, and I would finish one in May, one in June, and one in July. I was thinking maybe something 1780s (to match the fichu I am hand-sewing, which is STILL NOT DONE after 3 months), something 1920s because it would be fast, and maybe something 1930s daywear?

Except I was also working on that Edwardian corset (which I still don’t have pictures of) and it seemed silly to make that and not have anything to wear over it, so maybe I should make something 1910s?

And then the corset took me until the end of June to finish, so I don’t know what I was thinking with 3 outfits.

I decided to make one new Edwardian outfit, since I could hopefully finish that in a month. I also threw money at the 1920s problem and bought a dress on ebay, which is a 1970s imitation of 1920s (although it needs to be shortened since it is hitting ankle length. And who knows how I’m going to manage a hat).

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Instead of doing something sane like a nice 1910s skirt and blouse, I found this pattern for an afternoon gown, and decided I would make that instead.

I even had all the fabrics I needed in my stash woohoo!

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The trim is ivory taffeta from Renaissance Fabrics.

Instead of spending $$$ on guipuire lace, I am cutting the pieces out of a lace shrug my mother in law gave me. It looks a lot like pieces of insertion lace sewn together, which definitely feels Edwardian-lingerie-dress like. It was fairly yellowed but after a bath in oxy-clean it is much brighter.

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The pink fabric is weird. It’s a silk (suiting?) that according to the receipt I found I bought back in 2011. I’m pretty sure I bought it immediately after seeing Jenny Rose’s pink Italian Renaissance dress and going OOOHH WANT.

Except this is a weird fabric. It’s 100% silk, but it *looks* like linen. I think my thought process went something like:

  1. silk is period
  2. linen is period
  3. So silk that looks like linen is fine?

Yeah I don’t know what I was thinking.

It is fairly drapey, which is good for this dress. Alas it gets the drape from being pretty loosely woven, which means it frays a ton (bad). A lot of Edwardian seams were left unfinished or overcast, but I think this would fall apart if I did that.

I considered flat fell or french seams which is my usual go-to, but according to a A Manual of Homemaking from 1919, those were not used on silk dresses. Drat! I’m assuming “plain seam bound” means a bias bound seam, so I’m going with that.

It’s also really hard to write on, because a pen just ends up falling through the threads instead of writing on them. I’m finding myself doing a lot of more couture-ish techniques than usual – tailors tacks, thread tracing, hand-basting seams, etc.

I think I will finish, but I’m definitely on a strict sewing schedule between now and Costume College.

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3 Responses to The mad rush towards Costume College – a Bubblegum Titanic Dress

  1. C weiss says:

    Is your new machine making many of these stitches ,which I have no idea what they are, possible?
    Does the college suggest you come there with specific pieces to work on and do you get a choice of classes to take?

    • avantgarbe says:

      The stitches are just regular straight stitch, it’s just the method of sewing the seams.

      There are limited and unlimited classes – you sign up for the limited classes in a lottery and see what you get, and then you can go to as many unlimited as you like. Some classes have required materials to bring.

  2. Pingback: Costume College recap | Avant Garbe

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