Saturday, May 21, 2016

Back to Embroidery

I've had a bit of down time since the semester ended, so it seemed like the perfect time to really get back to the embroidery for M's 18thC court suit. I had been working hard to finish it for the Francaise Dinner, and then we didn't end up getting to go. Then I tried to finish for the DFWCG's own Georgian Dinner, and there was so little time to devote to it that I decided to make something else so I didn't rush it.

Well, now I have time! The past couple of nights I have devoted a good number of hours (around 12 hours a day, actually) to finishing up the embroidery so I can finally move on to construction. The first thing I needed to do was finish up the last of the embroidered border on the bottom edge of the waistcoat, which took about 6 hours.  Then I moved onto the buttons.

I had debated whether to make embroidered button covers or to find some jeweled buttons to use, but I finally settled on the embroidered ones. Because the buttons are so small (5/8") I couldn't do anything super elaborate, so I just did a little blue flower ringed with spangles.

With plenty of time to devote to the embroidery design, I decided to make it a bit more elaborate. I stitched an outline for the pocket flaps onto the body of the waistcoat that was accented with spangles, since I'd seen similar designs on extant waistcoats. Then I moved onto doing the pocket flaps themselves.

They are outlined with the same dark green that I stitched the waistcoat body with. I wish now that I had made the flaps in a different shape instead of the parallelogram that I've used for his other two waistcoats, just to change it up a bit, but I guess that gives me an excuse to make another waistcoat!

One pocket flap took about 12 hours to embroider and spangle completely.

The other pocket flap is nearly finished, but I ran out of green floss late last night and wasn't able to complete it before turning in. I should be able to finish it tonight, though! Then I'll just need to create the little filler pattern for the rest of the waistcoat. If you remember my last post, the body of the waistcoat looked like this -

Most extant waistcoats have a tiny, regular fill pattern to that big blank space, usually a single flower or something like that. I found a waistcoat from our decade (the 1760s) that had little flowers that used spangles as the bloom and had the stem and leaves embroidered in. I love any excuse to add more spangles, so I'm going to try that for this waistcoat. The original fill pattern from my inspiration waistcoat is probably a bit too much for M (TONS of spangles), and I don't fancy spending a bunch of time on filler, so I'm glad I came across the spangle flowers! You can see the original spangle flowers below, and clicking the pic will take you to its listing on the Met website so you can see the whole thing.

I'm hoping to finish up the embroidery by Monday and begin on construction soon afterward, so stay tuned!

1 comment: