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Hi, I'm Carol
February 2, 2014
8:23 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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Hi, This is my first post. 

 

I love all things Jane Austen and that has brought me to sewing a Regency gown. 

 

I have made the regency gown once (from the Simplicity pattern version).

 

I have just ordered Elegant Lady’s Closet.  I also have the underpinnings and Spencer Jacket pattern.  My goal is to make a complete regency set starting with the underpinnings.  I am currently waiting on Linen samples so I can choose the linen for my Chemise.   I have purchased 4 1/2 yards of a swiss dot for my dress which I was advised to flat line.  what fabric should I use for flat lining?

 

I appreciate any tips for fabrics to use — especially if you include sources to purchase.  I have access to Joann’s Fabrics locally.

 

Thank you. 

Carol

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 3, 2014
5:50 pm
Geneece
Texas
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Welcome!  I recently made a few dresses with swiss dot and they turned out very nicely!  I bag lined them, but you can flat line them too.  I just used American muslin purchased at Joann’s for the lining.    I’m sure a few other ladies here will have some other good ideas too.

http://www.sewmanytreasures.com
February 4, 2014
3:16 am
feathers
Ohio, USA

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Thank you! 

 

 I am glad I can use a local fabric for lining.  I hope to save where it makes sense so I can spend more where I need to.  :)  

 

I am going to use Fabric-store.com 3.5oz bleached softened linen #IL020 for the Chemise.  From the sample I received it seems very soft and light weight. 

 

Now I am going to decide on the short stays fabric.   For one of the layers outer layer?  I am hoping to be able to use the extra linen from the Chemise… I’m not sure if that will be too thin.  I hope to get some input.  :) 

 

For the interlining/ middle layer I can buy duck cloth at Joann’s fabric.  Is that the best choice? 

 

For the lining layer I do not know which to choose or where to buy.  The pattern suggests pima cotton or coutil.  She also mentions in her intro using muslin… would a premium muslin from Joann’s fabrics be a good choice? 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 4, 2014
3:18 am
feathers
Ohio, USA

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Or would it be better to use the premium muslin for the outer and lining layer with a layer of duck inbetween? 

For the short stays…

 

question

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 5, 2014
1:17 am
ekorsmo
Puget Sound

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Hi Feathers,

Coutil is a much sturdier fabric than most/all JoAnn muslins.  It’s a popular choice for later 19th century corsets, both in single and double-layers.  Pima cotton is a plain weave like muslin (coutil is a herringbone weave, IIRC), but is usually is higher quality and has a much nicer feel/hand to it than the utility muslin.  JoAnn’s sometimes has pima or kona cottons in with the “premium quilting solids” (or whatever they’re currently calling the solid cottons at the end of the calico wall), so you can see how the premium muslin compares with it.

I’m still wrapping my head around these early-19th-century stays, so it’s probably best to wait for someone with more experience to comment on the suitability of duck as a structural layer.  Good luck!  

My project blog: http://bethsbobbins.blogspot.com/

February 5, 2014
1:48 am
sistersuzi
London, England
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I can’t help with specifics, as I don’t use those patterns. Also, in England fabrics often have different names! However, when making early 19th century stays I have found that two layers of something sturdy, such as cotton drill, are usually quite sufficient. If the coutil is similar to English coutil, two layers of that would be fine. I would have thought that cotton/muslin needed strengthening. I’ve never needed to use three layers of coutil or drill for any Regency or Victorian stays. However, if you are following pattern instructions, I would suggest you take the pattern to your fabric store and ask what they have that is as described.

Suzi

Web site www.suziclarke.co.uk
February 5, 2014
6:39 pm
acacia
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Regarding your Swiss dot:  You said you were advised to flat line????  Why would you flat line gorgeous sheer Swiss dot???  The dress pattern has lining instructions for the bodice. 

 

Gowns of the period were lovely sheer confections that practically floated as the wearer moved.  They were worn with a petticoat.  The skirts were almost never lined.

 

Fabrics for stays:

 

“Coutil” is herringbone weave (as someone has already said).  Another word for coutil is “Ticking”.  Think of a woven stripe pillow ticking.  (The herringbone pattern is created by taking a diagonal twill weave and reversing it to create the woven in stripes.) The herringbone weave reduces stretch.  When you make stays or any kind of corsetry, stretch is an issue.  You want to choose a fabric that is as stable as possible.  Most fabrics have very little stretch on the Warp but have some stretch on the Weft of the weave.  The herringbone stripe reduces this stretch.

 

The term “coutil” seems to become more commonly used toward the mid 19th century.  That doesn’t mean that Regency era stays were not made from “ticking” or herringbone weave fabrics.  Stays can also be made from Twill weave fabrics like Denim.  There are many extent stays made from denim-like fabrics.  As well, Tabby (ordinary, plain 1 over-1 under) weave are found in extent stays.

 

The main thing you’re looking for is minimal stretch on both warp and weft.  Tug the fabric in both directions as you assess it in the fabric store.

 

When examining extent stays you will find that they come in several layers sometimes.  Sometimes this means there is the “stable” layer in the middle and a “facing” layer that shows on the outside (perhaps silk in a fancy set of stays) and a lining layer (maybe linen or some other fabric that is nice for the inside).  Sometimes there are even more than three layers, perhaps reinforcing boning channels, so the ends of the boning doesn’t work through the fabric.  The thing is, when I’ve had the opportunity to examine extent multilayer corsets and stays, they are not bulky.  This is a danger that we want to avoid if we decide to try to replicate a corset with several layers.  You don’t want your stays to be bulky.  You just want them to be firm and you want the fabrics to be able to withstand normal wear.

 

With the materials we have available to us today we are able to make (for costuming purposes) single layer corsets. (Single layer corsets become more popular later in the 19th century, but they’re not “normally” Regency.)  To make a single layer corset we use coutil and “boning tape” which has a tight enough weave to prevent the boning from working its way through the fabric.  Usually the panel that has the eyelets is a double layer as it needs that additional strength.

 

When I’ve made short stays from the Sense and Sensibility pattern, my most common choice is to use 2 layers of a medium weight fabric.  I often make the gussets of a single layer.  That deviates from Jennie’s instructions somewhat.  Personally, I find cotton Duck a bit bulky when used as a double layer.

 

 

Dawn Luckham Live Journal http://dawnluck.livejournal.com/
February 5, 2014
11:43 pm
Janel
New England

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Welcome. :)

I love swiss dots. yum!

I can’t wait to see your final project.

www.janelmessenger.com
February 9, 2014
5:23 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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Excellent information!  I really appreciate the detailed tips on picking fabrics from a store.  I feel more confidant in picking good fabrics for my stays.  Thank you!

 

Oh sorry, I meant that I was advised to flat line the bodice. 

 

Linen samples arrived.  For my chemise I am picking a softened bleached 3.5 oz 100% linen from fabric-store.com  I am hoping it will go on sale soon and I am watching it right now… though I do have a 5% off coupon code. 

 

 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 9, 2014
5:42 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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I think because I am new I should still be posting all my questions on this thread.  I was wondering if anyone can give me more information about this style of the white dress in this listing. 

 

https://www.etsy.com/listing/39956263/custom-the-seashore-teal-striped-regency?ref=shop_home_active_18

 

The dress looks like it is a dress with a long white light cotton short sleeve spencer (or pelisse, I don’t know the difference yet) ?  I think the designer calls it an open robe.  What patterns would you say I could use to get this look.  I was thinking I could make my dress out of the swiss dot and then make the over layer in a different white fabric (suggestions appreciated)  and I do LOVE the lace the designer used at the hem of the “jacket” … is that period correct for the wrap dress I am making.  If anyone knows where to get such lace please share. 

 

I have been doing a bunch of “research” aka looking on the internet at everything I can find.  LOL  I see I need to add a petticoat to my wardrobe and read that they were meant to be seen.  When walking out of doors a lady would hold up her dress and her petticoat would show, keeping her dress out of mud but still maintaining modesty.  So I think the hem of my petticoat should be somewhat decorative. I was going to start with a bodiced petticoat and may later add a second strapped petticoat.   Any thoughts?  Am I on the right track?

 

Thank you for taking the time to read my posts.  grin  It means a lot as I do not have any friends interested in making their own Regency wardrobe and it is so good to have ladies to talk it over with. 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 9, 2014
5:44 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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February 2, 2014
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or maybe not a white jacket but a colored one?   Oh, opinions please!  grin

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 9, 2014
6:59 pm
sistersuzi
London, England
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Please do not decorate with lace in that fashion – it is not period correct in my opinion – but well done for checking.

Most colours are suitable for a spencer jacket, and a contrast is often more attractive – again, see what fabrics you can find!

I have a great many fashion plates and paintings and pictures of Regency clothing. Please feel free to go and browse my Internet pages – looking at visual images can be more helpful than reading in some cases.

http://www.pinterest.com/sistersuzi/

The minimum you need, in my opinion, is as follows:- 1) shift, 2) stays and petticoat, or bodiced petticoat (you don’t really need both sets), 3) gown, then any of the following – 4) jacket, spencer, pelisse, coat etc.

Incidentally, “petticoat” can mean an elaborately trimmed garment, often in a contrasting colour, and which is meant to show, or a plain garment meant to stop your gown from being see-through, and not really for display – a little discreet decoration is O.K.

Suzi

(P.S. you can ask your questions anywhere relevant on the forum, by the way. We’ll correct you if we don’t like where you’ve put them!)

Web site www.suziclarke.co.uk
February 9, 2014
8:14 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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February 2, 2014
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Thank you.  I want to look at dresses and jackets to see what colors were period appropriate so I “followed” you on pinterest so I can look at all your pictures.  I still am not confidant picking any patterned fabric.  It is important to me that I get this as accurate as possible (even though I have no where to wear this!).  I just turned 40, is there any colors or styles that a mid aged married woman would not wear?

 

 

Sistersuzi did you see this article?  I thought it very interesting to see period corsets next to the fashion dress that was worn over them.  I thought since you have a section of corsets on your pinterest page this would be of interest to you. 

 

 http://thehourglassfiles.com/?…..=1269Today

Not sure if the link is posting right… so it’s her Jan 16th 2013 article called the Corset Effect http://  thehourglassfiles.com/?p=1269Today  try that omit the space

 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 10, 2014
4:29 am
feathers
Ohio, USA

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February 2, 2014
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sistersuzi said 

The minimum you need, in my opinion, is as follows:- 1) shift, 2) stays and petticoat, or bodiced petticoat (you don’t really need both sets), 3) gown, then any of the following – 4) jacket, spencer, pelisse, coat etc.
 

Would a lady have worn drawers?    I do not see much on that topic.  :)

 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 10, 2014
1:14 pm
sistersuzi
London, England
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No, drawers were not a regular part of a lady’s wardrobe until towards the end of the Regency (1811-1820). Highly fashionable women might wear them, rarely, and certainly pantalettes were worn by young girls. http://tinyurl.com/nzhrey8 (Pantaloons were worn by men – a kind of leg covering similar to breeches.)

Suzi

Web site www.suziclarke.co.uk
February 10, 2014
8:42 pm
fstitcher
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Hello,

I am late to reply to this, but wanted to add two cents worth! I agree with Suzi and Dawn about the fabric for stays. I would go for the soft linen for the inner layer and cotton drill or twill for the middle. And a soft but firm cotton for the outer, say cotton sateen (but not stretch!)

On the petticoat, it helps a lot if you add tucks or a ruffle or some sort of firmness at the bottom to stop the soft fabric from catching around the ankles. My two favourites that I have made had a facing of flannel at the bottom, one quilted and one lightly corded. The light, floaty dresses skim over this beautifully.

Good luck! This is the best fun!

Frances

February 10, 2014
9:54 pm
acacia
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There is no hard and fast rule for terminology.  Just as today we have regional differences in saying “jeans”, “dungarees”, Levi’s, “denims” and assorted other words when we describe indigo blue twill work pants, the period use of “pelisse”, “tunic”, “overgown” and “open robe” is muddled.  The images in period fashion plates can show a garment that, to our modern eyes, looks somewhat the same.

 

Regarding the link you provided of the Etsy seller: 

 

In period, white work – white embroidery on a white ground was popular.  Some of this embroidery would be “Tambour” embroidery, which is a lot like a “chain-stitch”.  The embroidered hem decorations on gowns could be extensive.  Have a look at this period piece: http://tinyurl.com/osgzphc

 

Here is another example of period style white on white embroidery: http://tinyurl.com/nesdsmc

 

Here is an extent white cotton pelisse from Meg Andrews’ site: http://tinyurl.com/n9jznfy

Here’s another one from The MET: http://tinyurl.com/q468bwl

 

The second image on this page shows a Regency era fashion plate showing the back of a woman wearing a long gown with a shorter length overgown/tunic/pelisse worn over top. http://tinyurl.com/q5dnecf 

Here’s another of something similar: http://tinyurl.com/po3k3q7

 

This is just my opinion, but the Etsy seller is providing a “look”.  It’s not reproduction, but for the price, it’s a compromise.  She’s bought cotton fabric that has a border decoration – a form of eyelet.  As Suzi mentions, it’s not exactly like what they used in the Regency era.  It’s a bit more clunky and a bit more cut-out but it gives something of the impression.

 

Suzi also mentions something worth noting:  The term “petticoat” could mean EITHER an undergarment OR an overgarment.  When you mention a petticoat is meant to be seen, it does not mean that a young woman would pull up her skirts to display her under petticoats for any old reason.  (There’s more on this in a moment.) What it means is that the TERM “petticoat” is used for BOTH under clothes and outer clothes.

 

About pulling up the skirts:  There is a somewhat famous (in Regency research circles) painting by John Lewis Krimmel called “The Pepper Pot”.  It shows a young woman feeding soup to a small boy.  It’s a street scene and she has turned the skirts of her green gown back.  She reveals her under petticoat.  Should some of the soup be spilled on her skirts, it will spill on her undergarments as opposed to the dress.   Practical and not at all “an issue” – but she’s not “fashionably” showing off her underwear.   If you’re doing research on the era and you want to see pictures of “real people” in North America during this time, DO look at John Lewis Krimmel’s work: http://tinyurl.com/ktzlnj6  “The Pepper Pot” is about 1/3rd of the way down the page.

 

For your under-petticoat: You can certainly decorate the hem a bit if you like.  Self ruffles and tucks were often used.  Not only are they decorative, but they add a bit of support for your skirts.  I almost always add tucks to the hems of my petticoats.  It makes walking easier:  Your long skirts don’t wind about your legs as much as you step forward.

 

Regarding corsets:  The period from about 1790 to 1820 is a period of transition.  Women’s support garments had been heavily boned and created a cone shaped body with a flat chest for 18th century fashions.  When the “waist” rose and the aesthetic was for “natural beauty” stays morphed into something that would display a rounded bosom and a “columnar” figure.  There were short stays and long stays and cupped stays and gusseted stays and “elastic” stays and countless options.  Eventually, toward the end of The Regency Era, women’s undergarment fashion settled on the hip length style that evolved into the Victorian corset.

 

No, I don’t think there is any colour that you should probably avoid as a middle aged woman. 

 

Dawn Luckham Live Journal http://dawnluck.livejournal.com/
February 11, 2014
9:11 pm
feathers
Ohio, USA

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So, did an early Regency woman wear any kind of underpants?  The modern woman in me cringed a little at the thought of “going commando” (means no underpants/naked) under the dress. 

 

Thank you for all the links!  I especially loved the one with “Pepper Pot” I have seen European fashion plates and such but this is the first for fashions from the USA. 

 

Frances do you have any pictures of your petticoat hems?  I’d love to see them if you do. 

 

I have ordered a 3.5 oz linen for the chemise. 

 

On the stays: I think I will use some of the 3.5 oz linen for the inner lining, the middle lining: twill/denim, ticking or drill cloth and a satin cotton for the outer.  I think I would have preferred to use the coutil but it is expensive and I can get drill cloth locally, I can get striped ticking and I may use that if the stripes won’t show. 

 

Petticoat:  I think a cotton/linen blend tissue linen and add tucks at the hem.

 

Elegant Lady wrap dress made of swiss dot cotton 4 1/2 yards in my possession!).  (still researching the trim- if I should any)

 

Spencer jacket:  (still researching)

 

 

I appreciate you sharing your wisdom.  If you feel I’ve gone astray with my fabric choices please let me know.

 

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

February 11, 2014
10:11 pm
sistersuzi
London, England
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Do please go back to my Pinterest pages and look at the “Underthings” and “Stays and Corsets” – you will find petticoat hems and stays of the right period.

Suzi

Web site www.suziclarke.co.uk
February 12, 2014
2:06 am
feathers
Ohio, USA

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I have looked at the stays, then the dresses caught m attention.  LOL  I am looking at underthings now.  Impressed to think the women did all that embroidery by hand.

Never be afraid to do something new.

Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.

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