Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Truly Victorian 1870s Day Bodice TV400, Tie Apron Overskirt TV301 and 1870s Underskirt TV201

I needed a new bustle dress for a museum event in October. I was thinking about the 1870s AKA the early bustle era. At some point I had bought a butt load of some close out last chance sale plaid silk shantung. I figured I would make a full bustle dress out of it. Well, once it arrived I realized the primary colors (golds) were not something that works with my coloring. So I set it aside until I found some other colors that would work with it. A friend helped me choose a really pretty kelly green to match the plaid. That is what I decided to use as my TV400 bodice fabric.

TV400 Bodice
The bodice is easy to sew together. I have standard fitting adjustments that I use for her patterns. However, as per usual I never account for the extra room boning and a bag lining take up. So it was a touch too tight. Well, no matter what I was going to make this work. Enter my favorite fitting tool, the button placket. I added what basically amounted to 1/2 an inch to each side of the bodice. Fitting problem solved. I really like this bodice and in fact have made another one. The back peplum is easy to do. I know some people get confused by the pleats on her other bodices. The back peplum is a good alternative if you don't want to fuss with pleats. I did add a waist stay as well, even though she doesn't call for that. I think if you are new to her patterns and want to make your first bodice this is a good jumping off point.

TV301 Tie Back Overskirt
This is a very easy overskirt to make. Great for a beginner. It is unlined so you want to make sure your fabric has no right or wrong side because it will show when the skirt is tied. You also need a bodice that has a peplum across the back to drape over the tied part. This skirt is really all about the trim. So have fun with it!

TV201 Basic 1870s underskirt
This underskirt id meant to be worn over the grand bustle. The grand bustle has two hoops on the bottom. In the late 1860s and early 1870s they were still transitioning out of hoop skirts. This skirt is easy to put together and it is really all about how you trim it. I used 2 ruffles of my plaid fabric. I wanted more but I was running low and still had to make the overskirt.

What kind of boning Mimi uses:
The lazy kind. I am a big fan of German plastic boning. In my TV400 bodice I used German plastic on all the seams except for the curved back seams. For those I use the spiral steel. FYI German plastic boning is just a high quality plastic boning. The stuff you can buy at craft/fabric stores is not good for much. You would be better off using heavy duty zip ties if you can't access the German plastic. The German plastic and the zip ties are very similar in weight. I like to use the plastic because it is quicker to work with. No cutting metal and tipping it.

Hey! And let's also discuss fabric covered buttons. I LOVE fabric covered buttons. However buyer beware because the ones you buy at the fabric/craft store are chintzy! I lost two on the day of the event. The metal loop that you sew onto your garment pops off the backing piece. There is no way to fix it, except replace the button. Learn for my fail. I am lucky enough to work at a business that has a professional button cover press. So I will be using that from now on. The buttons that we cover and sell are higher quality and don't come apart. I have no idea why I didn't use that in the first place...