To all who mourn in Israel, He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory. Isaiah 61:3

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

1884 Eggplant and Silver Day Dress

I have decided that for the next 3 TBTs (I would just like to point out that not one of my TBTs have been posted on a Thursday...), I will finish out the SPWF series of costumes as they are sort of a matching set.  This next dress just really didn't blow my skirt up and was my least favorite of the whole weekend.  What did I do with it when I got home?  I dismantled it.  Why?  I have no idea.  I think some sort of lunacy grabbed hold of me and made me do it.  Whatever the case, it is no more.  Well, that's not entirely true.  I still have it in pieces in a rubber tote in my garage.  I might put it back together...but the hat I can't.  I re-made it into a mourning hat for my friend Beth.

At any rate, this dress is another blending of two inspirations.  One a fashion plate, the other an extant garment...let's begin shall we?

Here I am looking very peeky.  I had just gotten over a fabulous bout of bronchitis and was still feeling a little under the weather.  But my antique reticule matches my dress perfectly and that's what counts isn't it?  YES!!!!

Inspiration #1

Extant Garment from Abiti Antichi.  I saw this dress and loved the bodice immediately.  I adore tabs and I adore buttons....HELLO!!!  The bodice has both!!  How glorious!!!

My bodice had hooks and eyes on the hidden center panel...I wish I would have taken photos....

Inspiration #2
From the LaSalle Library

Fashion plate from 1883.  The ruching on the side of the underskirt and the way the bustling in the back is caught up in a sweet bow over the pleating at the back of the skirt really made my costumer's heart quicken!!  I decided for the side front treatment to pleat instead of ruche and put velvet strips to separate the sections. 

Patterns Used

Bodice:  TV463 French Vest Bodice
Underskirt:  TV261 1885 4-Gore Underskirt (without the back bustling)
Overskirt:  TV382  (just the front draping)
Bustling:  Self drafted

Fabrics:  Silver Moire is cotton
The rest is synthetic

More pictures of the dress on Emma.  The color is much better her.

The inspiration for the hat came again from a fashion plate.  I loved the way the hat perched towards the front of the head.  The tall flowerpot hats had not come into vogue yet so I was delighted to be able to fashion this hat.  It is constructed of wire and covered with the fabrics of the dress and feathers.

I like to try to use antique or vintage feathers when I can, but at the time didn't have any gray or silver colored ostrich plumes.  I sewed together 3 new gray plumes and curled them to emulate the other ostrich plumes in my collection.  The small egret spray is antique...

I had the fun opportunity to try absinthe!!!  It was FAAAAABULOUS!!!!

Here some of are with Steampunk Boba Fett!!  He was so utterly awesome!

I thought I'd share the picture of more of us on the day I wore the Fushia Flower Day Dress...I should have put that in on the last post, but didn't even think of it!  I think we all look great in our pretties!!

Until next week my friends!
Be blessed!



  1. I loooooved this dress! It was my most favorite of the weekend, wait no the sailor.... Um or the red and white. Ok but I still loved it! I have a thing for these colors and no idea why they don't live in my stash. That hat shape makes me giddy- it's practically perfect in every way. Gosh that was fun to all be together. The people watching was pretty off the scale too! I still think photo scavenger hunts are the coolest convention game ever- and since I don't shutterbug that's kinda sayin' something.

    1. Yes, I must agree with you about the people watching!! One of the most epic people watching opportunities I have ever had! Except for when the clothes started coming off...Then it was time to protect my eyes and head to bed!!! And I have some fun news...I found the dismantled dress in my closet so in the future, I will be putting the dress back together!!!

  2. Oh Gina, come on now, is there ANY dress of yours that isn't utterly fabulous? :D The detail on the underskirt is breathtaking. THOSE. PLEATS. Like, how? Oh my.

    1. Believe you me there are plenty of my dresses that are less than stellar! Sometimes I complete a dress and think, " least I have something new to wear" then never wear it agian! hahahaha!! But that's the fun part about your craft...if you don't like one of the dresses, the opportunity to try again is just around the corner!