Stiffened upperbodies, Gnagy bodies 2

We had much fun trying out the Gnagy measurement method to draft doublet bodices at the beginning of the year, and it produced some gorgeous looking gowns, however, mine did not provide me with the support I’d like so I said I would do it again, adding in some compression in the measurements.

Today was that day, and I decided on 2 inches of compression at the bust level and 1.5 inches at waist. I’m currently making it up into a stiffened upperbodies, which will be sort of a test for a full gown. Hopefully, I can build a chocolate brown silk dress on top of this.

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Black wool 1575 gown – Second finish

The first finish was the premiere outing at Spring Crown of my black wool gown in the style of the mid 1570s. The second finish I achieved tonight, when I finished the last trim application. I have two rows of trim doing down the front of the bodice and down the skirt done to hide the line of stitching that anchors the lacing strips, one line around the hem, and two rows around the sleeve openings. The trim, which is black satin tape, around the hem is 10mm wide, while the trim on the bodice is 4 mm. I also decided to reinforce and pick out the neckline with a single row of the 4mm trim.

For the sleeves, I have one round of the wide trim outermost, plus one round of the narrow trim. If I had had enough of the wide trim I would have gone twice around the skirt, but it seems I bought ten metres of the narrow and only 5 of the wide.

Since the gown is black wool and the trim is black satin, the effect is mostly one of texture and shade difference – which is what you often see in period portraiture. It’s all very tone on tone, and will give the gown a very subtle finish.

So now, when I bring the gown to Double Wars, I can celebrate the second finish with a bottle of bubbly if I should so choose.

Wardrobe troubles

So, it’s been clear that everything is all muddy again.

I’m not sure anymore which layers I should be wearing with new insight into supportive kirtles to be accurate to about 1560s 70s:

  1. A smock next to my skin, plain white to be washed frequently.
  2. Over that, a shirt? Or a corset?
  3. Over a corset a shirt?
  4. Over the shirt, a kirtle. Sleeves or no? Supportive, with boning or no?
  5. Over the kirtle a partlet?
  6. Over the kirtle a gown.
  7. Accessorier: Hats, socks, shoes, gloves, ruffs and bling.

So for those 7 layers I’m certain about 3 if you count the accessories. There’s more ponderings and research to be done.

The one thing I know I need is a new red kirtle made in silk. But the question is how I should construct it.

Just goes to show you, the more you know, the less you’re certain.

The 1575 Gown – first finish

A couple of photos of the gown. I wore it outside with the partlet made for me by Countess Cecilia Jaeger, the half-gloves knitted for me by my mother, suite of ruffs and black velvet veil and billiments. Unfortunately you can’t see the fabulous shoes that I’m also wearing. It’s also clear from the photo that not ironing the front seam was a mistake on my part, which will be fixed for the second finish when I will adjust the length of the sleeves, and also add trim.

1575 Dress - first finish from the front 1575 gown First finish from the back

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