Thursday, December 12, 2013

My Dream Dress

It's not exactly what you think. Last night, I had this really wonderful dream - it was Christmas time, I was with a group of friends, and we were celebrating Christmas Regency-style, in a large Colonial house in the country. There were fresh cut evergreens everywhere, large meals of roast meats and vegetables, a warm fire, we played Regency games, took a walk in the woods and cut down a Christmas tree - it was one of those wonderful, comforting dreams that you hate to wake up from.

And, of course, I remember the dress I was wearing almost perfectly. It was a blue chintz dress, with a solid blue silk turban. I do love Regency fashion, and I wore Regency style dresses for a large chunk of my teenage-hood, but, they weren't historically accurate, I had no Regency undies (I just wore regular modern undies), and they were all made from the same pattern. I love them, I still have most of them, but none of them are exactly like the dress in my dream. And I want that dress!

First off, I'll have to create some stays. I don't know why I don't have a good Regency wardrobe built up, but now is the time to change that. Foundation garments are the logical place to start, so I went hunting for some inspiration. I don't want to buy a pattern when I know I can draft them myself, and luckily, I came across this - My Regency Journey: How to draft a corset pattern. She skips making a sloper entirely, which I love. And her pattern pieces are for long stays, which are just what I want. ^^

The dress itself is going to be a drawstring dress, in the style of the 1790s. I was originally thinking of doing a drop-front gown because I love my round gown so much, but it just doesn't give the same look as the Dream Dress, with the lovely gathered front. This dress is pretty much exactly what I'm imagining.

The waist seam on her gown is a little lower than I intend to make mine, but the overall look is the same. With a little bit of digging, I managed to find this pattern online, based on a dress in Colonial Williamsburg.

This is the dress it was based off of.

It's completely perfect. The pattern says "sz 10 ready to wear", so I'll have to size it up a bit, but at least now I don't have to finagle a pattern from scratch. Here is the original page, for your perusal - Williamsburg Gown c.1800

As for the fabric, well, how could I not immediately go for that wonderful 'Felicite' Waverly fabric, aka, The Curtain-Along fabric? Joann's has it in "indigo", which is absolutely perfect. The sell it for $14.00, which is cheaper than I've seen in other places, and it's 56" wide, which means I won't have to buy as much as I usually use for gowns, so huzzah! Click on the pic to take you to the Joann's page for the fabric.

I may be starting on this sooner rather than later, since I'll be in the position to pick up some fabric for myself, and this will be among them. :D I'll keep everyone appraised!

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