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Sunday, 18 January 2015

1760s stays part 2

Two posts in one weekend!  Whoa!  Perhaps I'm a tad excited to share my progress on my stays...?

I've put all the pieces together AND sewn all the channels.  WOO!  But seriously, just let that sink in... Sounds quick and easy, yes?

Since I'm sewing the mostly by machine, I attached all the pieces together first.  I'm using two layers of cotton canvas for the inside, cotton toile sateen for the outside, and cotton broadcloth for the lining.  I marked my channels on the good side of one of the canvas pieces.

Don't mind the minty toes!

Before sewing ANY channels, I carefully stitched all the seams together.  I was petrified things would shift and I'd be so discouraged I wouldn't finish them.  I'm not saying that's happened before or anything... It was surprisingly easy to sew all the channels.  Time consuming though.  Even by machine it took me almost two hours.  I hope I'm not the only crazy person that super enjoys sewing channels...


Don't you just LOVE toile??

Hard to see in this one.  Bloody iPhone.
Tonight's project: making yards and yards of bias.  Fingers crossed I have enough left to line the inside with.  I have plain white, but who wants that!  And also sewing hand bound lacing holes.  Hrmph!


Saturday, 17 January 2015

Stay the Course

As promised, an update on my 1760s-ish stays.

To check the fit of the finished stays, I found this most interesting blog describing the use of cardboard as a replacement.  See Slightly Obsessed for more details.  So great!  I'll spare you the photos of me half-laced into cardboard and duct tape.

I made a few adjustments to the front tab.  You'll notice it's just a little nub now whereas it was was a full tab before.

I'm using Butterick 4254, which is made for modern seamstresses and not historically accurate ones.  Since I'm machine sewing my channels and am therefore already cheating, I feel justified.

I'm using a lovely piece of cotton with a sage floral pattern.  It was ear-marked for another project, but that's just the way things go sometimes.  I've searched high and low for linen for the inside of the stays, but no luck.  Edmonton simply does not sell linen canvas.  I was lucky enough to find all cotton fabric so it is at least accurate fabric if not my first choice.

Here's my progress so far:

I've pieced it together and marked my button holes.  Just marking the casings tonight so I can fully assemble tomorrow.  Hopefully.

In other news... Meet Judy:

Judy came home with me from College one day after the school replaced all the mannequins and sold off the old ones to students.  I believe I paid $125 for her.  Originally she would have cost upwards of $2000!  Even through my moves across the country I've toted Judy with me.  I was close-ish to Judy's size when I purchased her; however, she needed some adjustments now.

I read a few different ways to recover a mannequin, but since I need every inch to be pinnable, I decided that a muslin cover padded to my size was the way to go.  I started by making a princess seam tunic that was exactly my size.  I used a zipper in the back to check the fit, then removed it before starting to fluff.

Then I started padding.  I used 100% natural cotton quilt batting left over from the 'year of the baby' in which I made 8 quilts.  I simply cut it to the shape needed and tacked it in place.  I even sacrificed a bra in the name of appropriately placed boobage.

A little fluff here, a little fluff there...

Seriously, I have no rump.

Then, just tacked the cover closed.  It was actually quite simple.  I highly recommend this process!  It's semi-permanent, pin-friendly, and allows for any weight changes quite easily.  

The new improved Judy!

Cheers all!