A Reluctant Work in Progress Post

I’ve started something, and I’m too stupid to know when to stop.  I am, however, taking a small break.  Months ago, I bought a pattern off Etsy.  The seller made it clear that it was an old pattern, and there might be issues with it.  Boy, was that an understatement.

So beautiful, so deceiving. . .

I would love to make this suit in this same, peachy salmon color.  Pastels were very trendy for the Edwardian woman.  Yet there is a part of me that still remembers being 12 years old and not being allowed to wear all black.  I think I’ll save my all black ideas for their own separate project.

A pile of rags on a mannequin.

This feels more like an archeological expedition than a sewing project.  That pattern pieces don’t have any notches, or grainlines, or anything like that.  No seam allowance is given, and the few instructions that remain are little more than useless.

Front and back view, and the blouse I took the sleeves from.

I started the skirt when I had gotten frustrated with the bodice since it looked like it would be a lot easier.  I could not have been more wrong.  The seams are all tucked into the pleats, but again there are absolutely no instructions about the construction.  What I have right now looks good, though, so I am rolling with it.

Celebrating my new-found love of bishop sleeves.

The pattern didn’t come with any sleeves, which was really frustrating at first, but lucky for me I already had a blouse with bishop sleeves.  To me, the front view of the pattern does not look like it has bishop sleeves, but the rear view does, so rather than looking for something that may or may not work, I just went with what I had.  I think it looks great.  I feel like every project has a turning point where the addition of one element suddenly brings the whole piece together.  For this project, that was definitely the addition of the sleeves.  as soon as I got the sleeve on and was able to struggle into it, I knew that I was onto something.

Did I mention this thing has a train?! I cannot believe that women would wear something like this on the daily.

Skirt yoke, capelets, tabs, tucks, pleats, belt, train, and a whole lot of frustration.  I haven’t even hit the half-way point yet, but seeing this thing clinging to my mannequin I know that it is something I desperately want to finish.  I haven’t seen much stuff like this floating around the Internet, and I just know that it is going to look great once I have it completely finished.  Even if it’s not completely perfect, it’s going to be a real accomplishment.

To anyone who has bothered to read this far, please tell me if you have any ideas or suggestions, especially for color and type of fabric!  I have a beautiful white shirting that I want to use for the piping detail, but that’s the only design element I’m really tied to.  Any and all ideas, comments, and suggestions welcome!

4 Comments Add yours

  1. tanya2austin says:

    As someone who is currently working on a slightly later-period peachy-pink Edwardian dress (https://itsallfrosting.wordpress.com/2018/05/29/1915-picnic-dress-part-iii-skirt/), I totally get what you’re going for!

    For fabric, if you want to go a little structured, bengaline would work. It’s like grosgrain ribbon in fabric form and it has some nice body to it. Very period as well, though modern stuff tends to be kind of shiny. Otherwise, perhaps you could get some crepe and flatline it with cotton to give it enough structure– it has a nice matte finish.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hot damn, you’ve given me a lot to work with! Thank you so much!!!


  2. Emily Kitsch says:

    Amazing! This is going to look SO fabulous and you’ve already done a wonderful job so far! I’m so impressed! And persevering in spite of missing pattern pieces, lack of instructions and all of the other issues with the patterns – WOW, I’m completely in awe. ❤

    I don't have any tips or suggestions for fabric, but when I look at the pattern picture my eye keeps being drawn to the peachy colours used in the artwork and the green and I just keep thinking how beautifully both would compliment your hair/eyes/skin tone. I think green in particular would look incredibly striking on you. 🙂

    Whatever you end up doing, I know it will be amazing! Congratulations on how far you've come along with this project, against all odds, it really does wonderful and I'm really, really proud of you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This reminds me! I do have a green outfit planned, and I shall make a post about it tomorrow!

      Liked by 1 person

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