Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Mantua Maker corset cover , chemise and 1880s-1890s petticoat/underskirt

Three patterns from the Mantua Maker. I will start with the corset cover. There are lots of corset cover patterns around. This one looked easy enough, so I just ran with it. Consider the first one of these you make your wearable muslin. Her sizing runs XS-XL. However this pattern has large seam allowances for fitting. It runs really really large. You want a close fit with minimal ease. I cut the size large knowing I would probably take it in a bit. I did cut the shoulders at size medium because most shoulder straps are too long for me. I still had to take another inch off the shoulders. However, this is a Mimi problem not a pattern problem. After basting all the seams together I had to take it in quite a bit on every seam. But I was expecting this. It went together fairly fast. Her directions are wordy and she gives you several options on seam finishing. Her favorite being historically accurate. Yeah....not gonna happen. The neckline is very low and square, front and back. And the length is fairly short. So if you are tall or long waisted you may want to lengthen it. I think I could have saved some fitting time by just cutting out the size medium. But live and learn. I did go back and make pattern revisions so next time it will go even quicker.

Second up is the Mantua Maker's 1880s-1890s petticoat. This is meant to be worn over your chemise and drawers but under your corset. It is meant to be shorter than your outer petticoats. More of an underskirt, really.  I am not wearing it this way in my picture because I wanted to show more of the skirt.  It does give some extra volume to the bottom of your skirts and adds warmth during the colder months. I made mine out of some stiff silk and used a pleated vintage trim for the bottom ruffle. The "A" line skirt panels are sewn to a yoke and just use a drawstring closure. The yoke is fitted and doesn't add much bulk. I have made this before in cotton. It sews up easily and makes a good work horse underskirt.

Last but not least, Mantua Maker's Victorian 1870s-1890s chemise. A nice pattern, easy to sew. I made the easy rounded neck version and trimmed it with lace. I did not have to use the godet piece for the back. If you have larger hips you will want to. I cut the size large except for the shoulders which I cut to size medium. I also made this one shorter in length. It hits me right above mid thigh. I don't like a lot of excess fabric stuffed in my drawers. All in all a good little pattern.

Mantua Maker corset cover and petticoat.

 Mantua Maker's chemise.


  1. Corset covers are the one thing I have never made. How sad is that? I probably should. It's not like it will take forever, and looking at yours, it doesn't look too complicated. the neckline on it and the chemise are very pretty and dainty.

    1. Agree Val. I really had to push myself to make one. I am very undergarment unmotivated. Once the fitting was done it did go together quickly. :-)