Thursday, November 19, 2015

Mid-19th Century Work Dress

Pockets! Oh pockets! 
We cannot work without pockets!

My Aunt Didi called up. She needed a work dress. She is a docent don't you know. She sent me fabric.
I sewed.
Three weeks later-ta da!
A very nondramatic dress tale. I wish all dress tales were so simple!
The dress itself is nondramatic and simple, no fuss'n'feathers.
It's made for work.

It has been snowing so excuse the lack of outdoor photos!
I am happy to say I fit into the dress to model!

 We made it to work for an expanded number of years. It has basic features and it extremely versatile.  
It is pre Civil War in the sense that the shoulders on not dropped too much. 
The fort she volunteers at with my cousin is pre 1860's.  
I did not really do my own research for this dress, she knew what she wanted and what the events she attends require, so I followed her orders. I believe she was aiming for an 1840's impression. This dress, I imagine could pass for several eras since work dresses did not reflect passing fashion trends.

It has silver buttons, 
a fitted, double dart bodice (although gathered waists were more common for work dresses-she requested a fitted bodice),
 a waistband, 
knife pleated skirt, (pleated directional toward the back) 
and is made from 100% cotton reproduction fabric.   

My first dress I've made with REPRO fabric! Ahhh! It was such a fabulous feeling!

The back and piping details!

My BEAUTIFUL pleats, if I do SO SAY ! I started with my usual  inverted back pleat (which I sew kinda dart-like a few stitches to anchor), and then branch off all my pleats from there!

The hem has four tucks along the bottom for detail as well as practicality! (Say she gives the dress to a taller person someday when my cousin can drive himself to events and she doesn't have to participate anymore!)

Ah sleeves. 
She wanted narrow wrists with no cuff, (I am used to gathered wrists with cuffs on C.W. work dresses!) but the generic pattern we used called for cuffs, so in order to make the sleeves long enough, I did a little binding magic!
Inside sleeve detail.

My token scandalous shot -showing the lining fabric within!

The interior-including inside waistband shot that covers all raw edges!

Buttons and machine button holes.

Love this inside skirt shot, showing what the tucks look like from the other-side!

Sleeve gathers! Pretty!

Waist-band hooks....

I hope you liked this post!
While this dress is not 100% historically accurate (it was machine stitched and has some contrast color piping on the back etc.)  I think it's close and looks very nice and will certainly serve my Aunt well.

I hate to part with this beauty! I would keep it in a heart-beat!

Happy ThankGiving to you all if I don't post again before Thursday!
Blessings and God-bless!


1 comment:

  1. What fine work Lexi! :D I'm sure your aunt will be so happy to have this piece.