Presenting – Fashion through HERstory

What’s really in a name?

For me, it’s important that a chosen name have some type of meaning, and lately I’ve been thinking more and more about names in general (this might have something to do with the up-coming task of finding the perfect name for my soon to come second child).

I always felt a bit hurried starting this blogg, just wanted to get going sewing and writing, and never really taking the time to find the perfect name.
In the beginning I did felt it was a pretty good name – It did clearly convey what this site is all about (fashions through the history of mankind).
But lately I’ve been growing more and more tired of it.

And with my decision to turn this hobby into a (small) business, the importance of the name once more struck me.

Since I started taking commissions, I’ve have several inquires about making costumes for gentlemen – which I’d kindly to passed down, since both the construction and tailoring of mens clothes are quite different from women’s wear, and nothing I feel confident enough to take on (also, I find it a complete bore…).

Another thing I’ve been thinking a lot about lately are the mening of words, and what we’r really saying underneath, just using our regular wording/vocabulary.
Think about it – I make clothes from all of the “History of Mankind”, but in fact I only want to make women’s wear…

And with the women’s revolution finally making some progress (I know they been working tierdless for about 100 years, and made lots of sufficinet improvments to womens life over the years), like the chance to a female president in US, the “Me-too” movement and with the terms like “Herstory” starting to be more commonly used.
I thought it time to start to favour my own gender in my day to day talk.

So when my boyfriend sudgested I rename my Blogg/brand to “Fashion through Herstory” I emidiatly liked the idea.

So here it is – my new blogg/brand name:
“Fashion through Herstory”

Hope you like it as much as I do 🙂

(I’m currently working on switching the name on both the blogg, facebook and Instagram, but it might take a while until everything is completely fixed. Please let me know if you’r having any trouble with one of my sites).

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Checking in – What I’ve been up to

UPS!
I can’t believe it’s almost been four months since my last post – where do the time go?

Even though I’ve been lacking in posting (don’t say I didn’t warn you), I do have some things that’s been happening behind the scene here at my “Headqarter”.

Here are some of the things that kept me occupied this winter:

*My 1,5 year old

What ever did I do with my time befor I got kids – Oh yeah I sewed – a lot…

*My growing belly

Only three more months to go:-D

*My regular work

Working part time att our local childrens theatre taking care of 6-15 year olds on a dayely basis.

*Helping “La Belle Epoque” with some planing, and doing all the graphic designs for “The Officers ball 2018”Affisch Officerarnas bal 2018 EngIt’s going to be an awesome event – be there if you can 🙂

*Working on (more planing then actually working on) my own ballgown for said ball.

It’s kind of hard starting anything for myself due to “the football” beneath my sweater right now…

*Also plotting a 1880s evening gown for my sister to wear to the same event.

Searching for patterns and fabrics at the moment 🙂

*Re-designing my logo and brand name.

Teaser 😉

*Working on some stock items

Currently focusing on 18th century 🙂

*Working on a woundeful gown for a clients wedding.
skannad-r-e1521734882234.jpeg
I’m so exited over this project 🙂

*Preparing for a lecture incl. workshop on Regency fashion to help prepare all the volunteers at new Regency inspired market/fair.

How do you even teach someone to make good reproductions of every piece of Regency clothing in just a few short days?

*And re-arranging our entire apartment for the new-commer 😀

I do have a lot of backed up posting to do (some dresses which I made last summer :-O)

..just need decent pictures of the finished garments, (and to edit those pics, upload, write the post and post…).

2018 – What’s to come

I’ve ended 2017 pretty slow regarding to sewing (and posting) and I must confess – even 2018 will follow that line.

Sometimes you just need to know when you need to slow things down a bit (even if I seems to quickly forget and suddenly be right there speeding again…ops)

But I do have a few big things planed for this coming year (amongst other smaller stuff that will pop up here once done):

2 Secret Projects:

This year will be the year of the big and grand gowns for me.

And even though I will not tell you much, I can tell you that:

One will be a magnificent ballgown from somewhere between 1870-1890s.

And the other one will be a total delight from the 18th century for a client.

A name change:

When I started this blog back in 2014, I didn’t really take the time to figure out the perfect name for it.
Granted, “Fashion through History” have served me well, and does clearly indicate what it is I do here.

But with my decision to start a business, and brand myself a bit more, I took a new look at the name, and came up with (ok, my boyfriend came up with it) something even better.

Don’t worry, you will all still recognize my name/site. It will just be a tad more specific 😀

And a Baby:

Yup!

Those of you who know or follow me closely, might already have figured out what my sudden lack in posting/sewing/partaking in life in general ment…

I’m doing that baby thing again 😉

Do you have any big planes for this coming year?

2017 Sum up

And so another year of sewing draws to it’s end, and it is yet again time to look back and count down the makings of the past year.

My 2017 have been a real roller-coaster ride, juggling maternity-leave, work, keeping a home and a looking after a ever growing baby/toddler (with a love for running around and climbing on stuff…).

But I’ve also managed to get quite some sewing done between babys naps and some an-planed unemployment.

Here’s what I’ve been up to:

(And here’s a reminder from January on what I planed to make 2017 and part 2)

January: 

A green Regency apron  For the HSM2017 Challenge nr 1 – First and last, I made a fast and simple Regency Apron, from fabric i had in my stash.

A 1860s Corset for my sister The first piece for her 1860s ensamble, was made in a beautiful light green cotton satin from my stash.

February:

A golden 1860s corsetWhile I was on it I made one for me to in a flowery coutil I had bought for just such a project a few years ago.
And yes – I already had all of the materials for both the corsets at home – got to love a big stash, right?

Re-made my old Elizabethian pair of bodice for the HSM 2/2017 – Re-make
I made the whole thing a bit smaller by taking out the added guesets, and a bit more comfortable by removing 2/3 oft the boning. So much better!

Added some lace to my 1660s evening gown – Not yet blogged about

Mars:

A Regency Spencer For the HSM 3/2017 – Outdoors, I made a Regency Spencer n a lovely burgundy and black colored wool.

A (huge) Eliptical Cage CrinolineTo complete my sisters 1860s underwear I made a Huge orange Crinoline (and petticoat) out of a cotton sheet and some (a lot, actually) bits of metal pipe cleaners.

April:

A grecian Chiton For the HSM 4/2017 – Squares and rectangles, in made a Grecian chiton in an (totaly inapropirate and hiddeous) poly satin.

A 1865s evening gown
To finish of my sisters ensamble I made her a 1860s evening gown from a teal colored curtain sprinkled with silver sparkles (each attached by hand, by me). This gown also fitted the HSM Challenge 5/2017 – Literature, and since I teqnically finished (I made the final touches and added the belt) in may, I say it works.

May: A 1825s evening gown I just couldn’t resist the lovely purple bedsheet when I found it on sale at my local chain store. The urge to turn it into something crazy (like a 1820-30s dress) came soon after. And I just love how quirqy and colorful the whole ensamble looks.

June:
A 1860s walking outfit for my sisterAnother one I’m shoe-horning into the HSM – nr 7/2017 – Fashion Plate, since this needed to be worn in June, but since I found the perfect fashion plate to mimic I knew I had to enter it. This dress is yet another one made from beddings.

A 1920s turqouise colored daydress My original plan for the HSM 6/2017 – metallics, was this jade colored 1-hour dress, maybe decorated with some silvery gems, but once finished I liked it as it was and I decided to leve it bare.

A 1920s evening dressSo I ended up using one of my long stashed sequnied fabrics for this sparkly bit of 1920s evening dress – Which fit perfectly into the June challenge.

1801s cotton drop front daydressI made this dress as part of “Romantic Recollections” Regency challenge where you where asked to make something from the Regency era and then emelish it. I’m really happy about how it turned ot and the matching bag (where I tried my hand at silk embroidery for the first time) is one of my favourites.

July:
July was the month where I really started working on some stock items for my business. In a few weeks I finished several Regency dresses (tweaking the pattern as I went). Unfortuanly I haven’t have the time to blog about them yet, and not all have proper photographs taken.

A striped Regency Evening gown 

A golden/glittery Regency evening “skirt” (to be added to any plain dress)

A dotted Regency evening gown

A red/white flowery Regency Daydress

A blue/white striped Regency Daydress (no photos yet)

August:

A Pink/white Robe a la FrancaiseI started this project about 3 years ago and finally took the time to finish it this summer, and I’m so happy I did. It’s so joyfully over the top that it fit perfect for the HSM 8/2017 – Ridicuolus.

A Green Cotton Regency Pelisee (No other photos yet)

a complete re-make of my old Spring Anglaise I’m so happy how this dress turned from something “Not even worth selling” to “I’m keeping this one for me”.

September:

A 1690s MantuaYet another “over the top” dress, this time for the HSM 9/2017 – Seen on Screen. I made this dress to wear at an Baroque ball tis fall, but once my planes fell through I still managed to get it finished in time for the HSM.

Oktober:

Regency menswear (No photos yet)Both to challenge myself for the HSM 10/2017 – Out of Your Comfort zone, and to add another few pieces to my ever growing stock, I made 3 Regency Wests and 1 Pair of pantalons.

November:

A 1920s Cocoon coat (no photos yet)For a friends 1920s themed Halloween-party, I made a black velvet skirt and a blue/black ribbed Cocoon coat, which sadly never got worn due to my whole family getting sick with the flu.

A Purple Regency “Train” (awaiting better pictures)For my dance teams annual Regency ball I updated my old evening gown with some gold leafs and added a Court train (cut short for dancing).

December :
A Burgundy 1450s Burgundian gown (Still in process)
hopefully finished by the new year mark…

I’ve also made a ton of kids-clothes.
Mostly T-shirts and soft pants, but also a few hats, pajamas and warm (water-resistant) pants for outside play. The first batch of long and short sleeved T-shirts for my little boy.

***

Phew, that was that 😀

Wow, this year I’ve been really productive (If I might say so myself ;-))
It’s so unrealistic seeing it all in a row like this – you might think I never do anything other then sew.
But thanks to a really nice kid (who sleeps like, well, a child) and some lesser work load then usual I, counted to about 3 hours of un-interupted sewing timme each day (some days a lot more).

Did you find the time (and energy) to make what you wanted this year?

1690s Mantua (HSM 9/2017) – Photoshoot

With the dress finished a good month before, I finally got all the components (photographer, babysitter, day of work and nice weather) together for a photoshoot in early October.

For the location we chose (as so many times before) the park and creak right outside my home, including our parking-lot (super fancy, right? :-D).

I’m wearing the 1690s striped Mantua over the corresponding skirt, my 18th century stays, chemise, 2 small bumpads, quilted petticoat, an regular petticoat, stockings and Kensington shoes.
I’m also wearing a quickly made “Fontage” made from lace and cotton scraps pinned to my 18th century cap, fake curls, a pearl necklace and a peacock-feather fan.
The belt is just a piece of navy velvet ribbon pinned in back and the under sleeves of the chemise is fake, and made from  pieces of cotton voile and lace gathered and tacked to the sleeve cuffs.

Photos by: Maria Petersson

Behind the sceens:Last fix-up in the elevator

1690s Mantua fit for Versailles?(HSM 9/2017) – Construction part 2

Once the skirt was done (read about it here) it was time to cut the new fabric for the gown.

The only trouble was that not only did I not have enough fabric, The fabric also had the stripes running the wrong way to my cutting plan.
So I ended up spending an entire evening re-calculating and testing layouts until I finally cut the whole gown on the cross (to get the stripes running down the body) and pieced the heck out of the train in several places.

Then it was time to actually get on to the sewing.

I started by basting interfacing to the main pieces, but not after going through some decision-anxiety about which side of the fabric I was to use. The choice fell on the “wrong” side where the stripes was les pronounced.

I basted the pleats and stitching the front and back bodice together.

I basted the neck piece and did a first test drape of the skirt.Here you can clearly se the difference between the back bodice sober stripes and the horizontal “right side” stripes on the draping.

Then I put it on for a try.

The fit was pretty good, but a bit to snug.

So I stitched down the pleats and the front darts, forgetting to let it out a bit when sewing up the side seams.  Stitching the back seams.

Unfortuanly the fabric shows EVERY mistake, both puckering and letting out of seemsSo I decide to keep it as it where – better a tad to small then ugly markings at each seam.

The I added some boning to the back and side seams to help keep the shape on the fabric once worn.

Once the main bodice was done, I started on the front pieces/robbings(?)And as I didn’t had a pattern piece for them I’d just cut something along the right shape when i cut the fabric. And after some draping on the dressform (and myself) I ended up with a smaller shape which I then pinned and stitched down on top of the front hiding bot the darts and the strange seam that was the shoulder seamHere you can see the experimenting and draping of the front pieces on myself.

I also did some work on the sleeves and added a cuff and pleated the top to the armhole.  Trying out the sleeve before attaching the neck and front-piece.

Once the main gown was finished the only other thing that I needed to decide was what color would I trim it in?   Silver or gold?
Both have there merits – silver matches the gown fabric nicely, but the gold was more common in the time-period and brings out the copper in the petticoat.

After lots of back and forth (why is these decisions always so damn hard?) the golden trim won, and I hand basted and stitched 12 m of lace to the gown and stomacher.  I though for a while to ad eyelets to tie the gown on top the stomacher as seen in several pictures, but figured I’d just pin it in place for the time being.

The finished dress:

Just the facts:

Challenge: nr 9/2017 – Seen on screen – Be inspired by period fashions as shown onscreen (film or TV), and recreate your favourite historical costume as a historically accurate period piece.

What: a 1690s Mantua

How it fit the challenge: Gowns like this was worn during Louis VIX reign in France, and therefor fit perfectly with the TV-show Versailles.

Pattern: I drafted my own using the 1690-1770s Mantua pattern from Waughs “Cut of Womens clothes”.

Fabric: 5 m of striped polyester taffeta and 1 m of white cotton for lining for dress, and 2,5 m of copper polyester taffeta for the skirt.

Notions: Thread, boning for the stomacher and back/side seams, 1 m of bias tape for boning channels, 12 m of golden lace trim, and 1 m of dark blue velvet ribbon for belt. And 5 m of blue polyester fringe for the skirt.

How historical accurate: Not particularly I’m afraid. The fabric and construction techniques are all modern, even though the pattern and general shape is ok, and they did have a flair for stripes and fringes at the time. One thing I didn’t know until halfway done though, was the facts that this type of gowns usually closed center front omitting the stomacher of the later era completely. I’ll give it a 5/10.

Time: About 30 hours in total, but I’ll guess at 10-15 hours if I was to make another one right away.

Cost: Everything besides from the fringe (which I got from a thrift store) came from stash. But I’ll guess about 600 Sek (50 Usd) wen first bought.

First worn: Early October for photos

Final Thoughts: I’m feeling a bit mixed about this dress. I did feel fabulous wearing it (and most of the photos turned out great), but I’m not entirely happy about some of the constructions “mistakes”, like puckering seams in the back and the fact it’s not a closed front as it should be.

 Apparently it works as a driveway to 🙂