måndag 13 maj 2013

A kirtle´s diary

Since I couldn´t go to a whole week event with just one dress in thick brown wool, what if the weather turned out nicer than promised, I had to sew myself at least one new kirtle. Said and done, I had gathered some images and studied the sleeve-cut that I wanted to try out and thought I would challenge myself a bit again. And why stop there? No, I picked the fabric I got at a flea-market for handicrafts, one piece 1,5x0,5 metres and one piece of 1,5x2 metres. No chance of getting more anywhere should I cut it wrong. It is a really nice reddish brown thin wool in a twill weave.
It took some thinking, but I managed to get the bodice and sleeves fitted into the smaller piece which left the larger portion of fabric for the skirt-parts of the kirtle.
Then I had to try to decide on what to use for lining, the choices being a non-bleached linen or a really thin green wool. With some support I decided on the wool, mainly because it went so well with the brown colour-wise.
When the lining was cut I first basted along the seam-allowances to keep the to fabrics together before starting sewing the pieces together. Starting with the sleeves I stitched the sleeves and two gussets together, pressed the seams, cut down the seam-allowances and then started felling all seams.

Ironing the bodice back before assembling the bodice and then the easy part, stitching the four skirt-panels together and finally assembling it all. I use a hot iron and a damp cloth to protect the fabric when ironing it.
 I did consider sewing a strip of fabric covering the seam-allowance between the skirt and the bodice to avoid shafing, but decided not to. The fabrics are pretty smooth anyway.
Finally, time for eyelets, having felled all seam-allowances and hemmed the entire dress. This should be done in no-time, right?

The dress got done in time, eyelets and all, and I enjoyed wearing it with my new striped veil that got hemmed while traveling for the event. This is me outside Hovdala castle all dressed up, and the other picture is when wearing the striped veil, which came in very handy when touring the insides of the castle with really low doorposts and sloping floors. The guide spoke of a gardener that once got a concussion trying to get through one of the doors, misjudging the height entirely.

But of course there is always room for improvement. I find the sleeves a bit hard to move in, so I will take them out and tweek it for a bit. Might even make a new and longer gusset in the back in order to get more room.

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