My dress is made of mystery-fiber fabric from the clearance bin of a local fabric store, and I think the whole dress ended up costing me around $10. I sewed much of the dress on the machine, but because it is so sheer, all of the seams are carefully finished by hand on the inside. To create the pattern for my dress, I used the very helpful diagrams and photos of a roller printed dress from the 19th US Regiment of Infantry Women's Dress page. I started out with double poof sleeves like you see in the original gown, but after wearing the dress that way a few times, I cut off the bottom poof because I thought the single puff was a little less fussy looking. The dress closes in the back with a drawstring at the top and a single hook at the waist, and I wear it over over a white bodiced petticoat.
|Madame Faber, 1816|
|Princess Charlotte of Wales, 1816|
|Modes et Manières du Jour no. 27|
The next time I wore this dress was to the Breakfast with the Bennetts event at Costume College, so I wanted to go for a more casual "at home" look. I took inspiration from this fashion plate from Modes et Manières du Jour and added a splash of color with a yellow silk turban and a yellow reticule. I made the turban using a similar method to the tutorial I posted last year, and I also sewed some fake curls to the front edge of the hat so that it would be even easier to get dressed early in the morning. I also decided to dye my beloved pair of American Duchess nankeen boots with yellow Rit dye, which was a bit scary, but I really like the results.
I also played around with wearing this dress with an antique black lace shawl, black gloves, and my black bonnet with a lace veil over it to create more of a full-mourning look. I doubt I'll wear it like this to many outings because the veil and shawl are pretty delicate and are prone to getting snagged on things, but it was fun to at least take a nice picture or two.
I do have one additional way that I've worn this dress, but I'll save that for its own post since it is much less orthodox. So, I'll just end this post with a few more pictures and a "to be continued..."