Finished Project: HSF #16- Separates- 18th Century Silk Petticoat

Hurrah! Something I’ve sewn meets a Sew Fortnightly Challenge!  And you get a peek at my Costume College gala dress before my official post.  I’ve been slow getting back into things after my vacation to Costume College.

I recently learned that what we call an “underskirt” in Victorian era clothing was called a “petticoat” in the 18th century.  So let me clarify, this silk petticoat is meant to be worn and seen.  The petticoat I just made for foundation purposes was worn underneath this.

The Challenge: #16  Separates

Fabric: Ivory Silk Taffeta, Silk Organza for hem facing

Pattern: No Pattern, used tutorials by both Katherine (The Fashionable Past) and Lauren (American Duchess) as used for my under petticoat.

Year: Late 18th Century

Notions: Scalloped Scissors (purchased on Ebay- size large scallops) for shaping the ruffle edges, thread, twill tape.

How historically accurate is it? It’s accurate enough for my purposes.  Entirely machine sewn where it doesn’t show, the ruffles are pinked, as they did in the period, and then hand gathered and hand sewn on.  I made slits on the side which were hand finished.  Basically anything visible from the outside was hand done, while all hidden seams were machine sewn.

Hours to complete: I didn’t track.  Maybe 5ish?

First worn: Costume College Gala, 2013.  The beginning of this month.

Total cost: I am sheepish to share, as it was a splurge for me, even though I bought it in the LA garment district was a mean negotiator.  Silk is expensive, and I used 5 yards for this petticoat, not counting the silk organza that I used to do a wide hem facing.  But I chose a very universally useful tone so I could use it LOTS and (somewhat) justify expense.  The waist would also be easy to take in and out for future use, should need be.

It was my first foray into shoe covering, thanks to Loren’s tutorial.  The backs aren’t so great, but it’s all right for a first try.

And I got to wear my American Duchess stockings!  Yay!

2 Comments on Finished Project: HSF #16- Separates- 18th Century Silk Petticoat

  1. The Dreamstress
    August 13, 2013 at 9:16 pm (3 years ago)

    Oh, it looks glorious! I love the vandyked ruffle! And the shoes are fantastic too. I keep meaning to try that tutorial, and then I remember the pair of shoes I covered 12 years ago, and how my fingers STILL hurt from doing them, and suddenly I’m less keen ;-)

    No shame in paying for good fabric for a well made garment that you’ll use lots. Just think of it as price per wear/enjoyment!

    • Lauren
      August 15, 2013 at 4:37 pm (3 years ago)

      Thanks so much!
      The tutorial isn’t really that hard… it’s just the backs I still have to figure out.
      I actually enlisted my husband to help me out with the heels, including taking off the hard bit and smoothing the fabric over the shape. In the end, he was much more skilled at that part than I was. So I can’t take credit for all of these!

      That is true… I think if we had more 18th century events around here it would make me feel better. Oh well, we’ll just have to make some up :)

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