Category Archives: The First Lady Dress

Wrap up – 1890s evening bodice

So a long while ago, I declared that I was going to have this 1890s bodice close with a hidden layer underneath, and the fashion layer on top. So here’s how I did this! All the back pieces of the … Continue reading

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Finishing the 1890s top

Nothing super exciting happening on my First Lady top. All pretty standard stuff. Baste fabric to lining, sew the pieces together, add some boning channels, use a bias facing on the top and bottom, sew on a bunch of trim. … Continue reading

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Weirdo zigzag boning channels

So a bunch of these extant bodices have some weird zig-zag thing which is holding on the boning channels. Closeups: WTF is happening here? The only way I know how to make a zigzag is with a catch stitch. It’s … Continue reading

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Inside of 1890s bodices

While I work on the pattern for my bodice, I’m also thinking about the construction. I am not an expert on 1890s clothing, so I am turning to my friends, Pictures of Extant Clothing. A million thanks to Lilyluna Standin … Continue reading

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Muslin tweaks

  So last time, I had all that excess droopiness around the shoulder area. I tried pinching out about a half inch all across the back. Woohoo that looks really good! I was so happy about this; I felt like … Continue reading

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First Mockup for the First Lady Bodice

About 6 months ago, I made the skirt of this dress originally¬†owned by Francis Cleveland. Since Danse Libre will be performing 1890s dances with the Peninsula symphony, a daywear look with a blouse wasn’t going to cut it this year. … Continue reading

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First Lady Skirt – Historical Fortnightly #11

The Challenge: The Politics of Fashion (Historical Fortnightly #11). I chose to make the skirt (bodice coming later) based on a skirt owned by Frances Cleveland, who was First Lady of the United States. As the married President Grover Cleveland … Continue reading

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