>The princess slip and the chemise are finally done!
The pattern was scaled up from Frances Grimble’s The Edwardian Modiste book. I looked at a period princess slip and the wedding petticoat I have in my collection for ideas of how to make it. The ruffle at the top was for those of us who are less endowed, and the skirt is not cut off at the ruffle, but rather extended all the way in length and then a smaller ruffle is added for body at the hem. I love the beading with the embroidery, it was probably the biggest per yard price splurge for this project. The princess slip is a little loose, but with the cost of cotton insertion and edging I wanted it to last a good while! Unfortunately, it was too small so I had to add insets down the sides but I don’t think it’s that noticeable.
In the place of the combinations underneath the corset I did end up making a chemise. I made it shorter to prevent the bulkiness of more length underneath the corset garters. The garters are finally done and the elastic loops were sewn today into the corset so that they can be detachable. Hurrah!
I am still wondering if I should make matching drawers and a matching petticoat, but I think that will be an “if I have extra time and money” project, as I’m out of the edging and the batiste right now.
I have got to make a waistband to extend the length of the petticoat I have purchased. Other than that and two buttons and buttonholes on the peach drawers, the underwear it done!
I did end up taking out the two bones on the corset which run over my hipbones, laced myself in again, and it is much more comfortable. It does wrinkle a little at the waist, but I’d rather the wrinkles that the pain. And they’re not that wretched. If anyone has suggestions for non-digging bones/wrinkle getter-outers, they would be greatly appreciated!
So now I have options, and just have to descide which looks best under the dress!
1) Chemise, corset, combinations, petticoat
2) Chemise, corset, drawers, princess slip, petticoat.
And speaking of the combinations, I have found in one of my books a full article which was copied from the March 1907 Delineator magazine which says:
“The lingerie pieces in the trousseau include chemises (for those who wear them), drawers, petticoats, corset covers and nightdresses. A “set” consists of one piece of each kind trimmed in uniform style. These are desirable but not absolutely necessary.
Combination garments are gaining in popularity since they aid in eliminating unnecessary fullness from about the waist and hips. So valuable are they in this direction that made modistes positively refuse to fit a sheath skirt or a princess gown over anything else. The combination garment is worn over the corset. Sometimes it is a chemise cut on princess lines and ruffled along its lower edge; at the belt line there is a wide beading threaded with ribbon. When this is drawn snugly and tied, the garment forms a corset cover and under-petticoat in one.” And on the same page of the book and on another page it shows a combination garment from 1907 which says “The drawers are cut circular and wide, answering the purpose of petticoat in the front in the matter of fullness.”
So I suppose my question is, were the photographs of women in corsets with combinations underneath (which most often I have seen are seamed at the crotch) an imaginative concoction for cabinet cards since a chemise only might have been too risque? I know many have said it was at the wearers preference, I just wish there was more documentation from actual women rather than photographs on naughty postcards. Also, were there women who did not actually wear anything underneath their corsets? It says “chemises (for those who wear them)). I think out of curiosity I’ll dig around more in periodicals and see what I can find.