Re-made Spring Anglaise (Photoshoot)

It took me more than a month to get the necassary components togeter for a photoshoot (free time, 1 sister to photograph, 1 sister to take care of the toddler and nice weather…), but yesterday we did manadge to take some nice new photos of my re-made “Spring Anglaise”.

I’m wearing the dress over a white skirt, quilted petticoat, bumpad, stays, chemise, stockings and my beloved Kensington shoes from American Duchess. I’m also wearing a curly wig and my new Bergere hat.

Photo by: Maria Petersson

18th Century Light Feast at Ljungs Castle

So, in late August is was time for the event I’ve been working (sewing) like a mad for.

The “Light party” at Ljungs castle (webpage).
It was an evening in honor of the parties van Fersen d.y. used to host in the late 18th century.

As you now know I had a bit trouble deciding on what to wear (as I always do).
But the theme for the party was “light”, and called for light/white 18th century costumes.
So after some to and forth (read about it here) I finally had my ger ready.
Gown with skirt and bumpad.

The only trouble was that the party was on the same day as “Söderköpings medieval fair“, which caused me to be in a bitt of a hurry to change from one costume to another, and get myself to the party in time.
But after a quick pit stop at home where I handed over the toddler to my fiancé, jumped out of my Elizabethian gown and quickly laced myself up in 18th century stays, skirts and gown (gulping down a sandwich at the same time) I was ready to once again get on my way.

I made it with 10 minutes to spare…Before event” selfie

The party itself was held at the beautiful castle of Ljung perish about 30 minutes from my hometown.
The day was warm sunny and the slowly setting sun gave a lovely air to the place (and some of my pictures).

Once there I started by walking around talking to people and admiring everyones outfits

I only knew a few people there and one of them was maud from my dance team (who also done the fast-forward in time from medieval to 18th century an hour before). Picture by Ljung Castle

Some costume candy from the other ladies attending… 

After an initial toast and speech from the hostess we where all invited upstairs for some fine dining.A lovely dinning-room, with lots of food and drink being served. And for once, the vegetarian food was both delicious and plenty-full 🙂
 After dinner there was a lovely concert (with music from the 18th century of course) played by some really talented muschians. Then it was time for dessertby this time I (and surely a few others with me) was pretty sick of sitting down (after all we had done so in over 3 hours – in or corsets!) and was really happy when it was announced the dancing was about to start.

First there was a small dance-recital by the Ljung castle sociaty, and then we all got to dance a few of them.
 Picture by Ljung castle
As a dancer myself I was a bit disapoined by how little there was time for, and would have wished for quite a lot more. But a least we could fiest our eyes on the spectacularly good dancing of one of “Menuettakademins” recitals, who was projected on the wall.

After the dance we had some fun looking trough some of te rooms (all very dark by this hour) and taking some photos and selfies.A newly made friend and me.

Keit makes the most amazing 18th century dresses, and acted as the dance master for this event. IKEA dresses unite 😀
Our costumes are all made from different flowery IKEA fabrics. The evening ended with some champagne and a toast down in the main hall. 

I had a really good time, and I wished it could have lasted longer.
Especially since the most fun (for me) begun after the dessert was finished and it almost was time to go home…

And I do hope they will host more of these parties in the future.

Re-make of the “Spring Anglaise”

You know the dress that got rushed and didn’t turned out the way you liked?
Or maybe the fit wasn’t perfect, or the matching trim didn’t quite match after all.
Or maybe you just learned so much lately that what seamed pretty good to you before, just won’t cut it anymore?

We all got one (or more) dresses/costumes that we just can’t seem to love.

That’s exactly how I feel about my “Spring Anglaise“.

I love the fabric and the style, but for some reson I never cared much for the finished dress.
I’d say it is the styling combined with the fit that makes it look… of.. at least in these pictures.
But why don’t I love the dress itself then?

It’s for exactly this reason that it’s been sitting in my wardrobe un-loved and un-wanted for quite some time now.
I even thought about selling it, but decided I didn’t want to sell something I wasn’t completely happy about.

But then something happened.

It all started earlier this summer when I decided I wanted to attend a event, to which this dress would be perfect
– if only I could get it to work.

So I dug it out the closet, and gave it another try on.
Still not loving it… :-/

So I put it aside in favour for another dress I do like (the striped Anglaise/Turque), and which I’ve worn two times before.

But I couldn’t put it to rest completely, and a few days before the event I decided to see if I could fix it.

So I ripped the gown apart and started from scratch (sort of, since all pieces was already cut.)
After removing all (hand-stitched) seams I pressed the pieces flat with the new iron I got from my boyfriend for my birthday a month or so ago.   quite the difference

Even though the dress originally was completely hand stitched, I decided to use the machine this time since the few days I had was quickly running out.

I started by stitching together and tried on the lining (as you would a mock-up) to see what I could do to make it fit better.

It needed to be taken in a bit, and the under arm needed to be lowered, but other than that the fit was quite good.

This time I decided to baste a cotton interlining to the bodice pieces of the fashion fabric (instead of just to the lining as done before), and I think that made a huge difference in the way the pleats and fabric looked once stitched.

The pleating of the back was a bit tricky but, after some fiddeling I got it to lie nice and flat.

Then I stitched on the sleeves, added some boning at the center back and front, attached the skirt and rows of hooks and eyes for the clouser.

Lastly I re-pleated and attached the trimmings around the neckline and cuffs.

And then it was done (and I even had a *whole night to spare before the event) Worn with a white fichu, petticoat and cap as it would during the light party.

The finished dress:

Worn with the skirt down:

The facts:

What: Re-make of a 1780s Robe anglaise made from IKEA fabric/bedsheets.

Original blog posts: Construction and photoshoot

Additional fabrics and notions: 0,5 m of white cotton from stash and thread. Accessorized with a red velvet ribbon and a old brosch.

Additional costs: about 20 Sek for the cotton sheet

Time: 8 hours ro re-make

First worn: On August 26 (2017) at Ljung castle Light party

Final thoughts: I’m so happy I took the time to re-make this gown because I love how it looks now, and I feelt so pretty wearing it. Hopefully it will be worn several times more.

*That “whole night left” part wasn’t completely true since I also decided I wanted a Bergere hat, and needed to re-hem the petticoat. But the dress itself was finished one day before 🙂

18th century Spring Anglaise En Fourreau

Here in Sweden November’s been darker then usual and it seems we just broke the record for less hours of sun, counting only 2 hours of sun during the whole past month.
No wounder we all feel and look like living dead by now. (and Winter is coming…)

So today I decided it was time to get some costuming sun, by showing of my newest gown – inspired by fresh spring flowers…

Last year I bought this fabric from IKEA (hm, must be my, 5th dress, or something made by fabric/curtains/bed-sheets from that store).IMG_0739And a month ago I dug it out from my stash determent to make it into something 18th century.

Inspiration came straight away.
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I used an old pattern and made some minor alterations like moving the shoulder seam, and remade the sleeve.

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I tried the paper pattern on my dress-form to get a better look of how it would look.
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Then I made and tried on the mock-up.
After some minor alteration I was ready to cut the fabric.


Since I didn’t had any deadline for this project, I decided to make the whole dress by hand.IMG_0916

I basted the lining to the interlining and stitched the bodice together for a try on.
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After lowering the neckline a few cm, I put the bodice on my dress-form and started covering it with the fashion fabric.

The En Fourreau pleats was a bit tricky to get to lie smooth, but after once re-pinning I stitched everything down from the outside using back-stitches.
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Then I set the sleeves, gathered and stitched on the skirt, cut the length and hemmed it. And finished of with some pleated trim and hook and eye for closure.IMG_0912

The Finished dress:
















What: a 1780s robe Anglaise

Pattern: I drafted my own using a old self made pattern as a starting point..

Fabric: 1 white flowery printed cotton bed sheet from IKEA (approximately 3,5 x 1,5 m), 0,5 m regular white cotton for lining and 0,5 m heavy upholster fabric for interlining.

Notions: Thread, 11 pair of hook and eyes and 1,5 m of plastic boning.

Time: Since it is completely hand stitched the amount of time is much higher then my usual projects. I will take a educated guess at 25 hours counting low.

Cost: About 200 Sek (32 Usd). Everything from stash.

Final Thoughts: I’m not thrilled about it.
The back pleating looks a bit sad, and the en fourreau back is not one of my greatest accomplishments. I think I will have to re-make the entire back of the gown before wearing it for real.
I also think the front point should be longer and more pronounced, even if that’s something I can live with for now.
I do however like the shape and setting of the newly drafted sleeves. And the fabric of this gown just look so soft and beautiful.

(Sport)Autumn Anglaise – Photoshoot

This picture post contains even more photos then usually, since I insisted on a second photshoot after I’d properly shortened the petticoat. You can actually see the skirts different lengths in many of these photos.

And once again a big thanks sis, for always helping me photograph and never complaining (even when I get frustrated at my own lack in modeling skills, and crappy wig work ;-)) I really appreciate it.



















IMG_1375Photos: Maria Petersson

The Sport Anglaise finishing up

Iv’e been sewing a lot lately, crossing several new and a few old projects of my list.

One of those “old” projects was the “Sport- Anglaise” which I’ve started in January. Then in Mars I gave you an update, and last week I managed to finish and photograph it properly.

I stated, when first starting this project – I will only sew, while my boyfriend watches sport on our Television.
Well that didn’t last very long…
I had way to much to do during the spring, and there was no way I could set aside all the other projects just because there was some game playing in the other room.
But to my defense this year I’ve endured both an Olympics and a World Championchip in football, so I’m pretty sure the dress would have been finished long ago if I’d stucked to the plan.

Anyhow, lets take a look at my final construction notes and finished pictures:

Where I left of last time I had just cut the fabric and begun to put he bodice together.IMG_0486I basted the side and shoulder seams. Stitched the three back seams down, doing small back stitches from the outside.IMG_0487The back stitched down.

Then I laced on my corset, and pinned the bodice shut for a try on.
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As you can see it is a bit snug at the waist, causing the fabric to buckle under the pressure. But otherwise the fit was fine.

So let the side seams out a bit at the waist to get a smooth line.IMG_0488

Then I stitched the lining to the front and back piece.IMG_0732

And put in the sleevesIMG_0737I stitched them right sides together under arm and, from the top over the shoulder. Attaching the shoulder strap along the way.IMG_0728

And carefully pining the lining into place.IMG_0729

I put boning in the center back and front seams to help reduce wrinkles.IMG_0731

And stitched on hooks and thread bars for closure.IMG_0785

This is all that left of my 2,5 m fabric once the dress was complete.IMG_0764Thank goodness I didn’t need to make any bigger changes to it.

The Finished dress pared with the golden skirt:
(lots of photos, feel free to scroll down)IMG_1470









And a la polonaise:IMG_1435









And a mirror selfie of me dressed for the photoshoot:IMG_1419

Dress facts:

Pattern: None, I draped my own.

Fabric: 2,5 m of printed cotton, 0,5 m brown cotton for lining and 0,5 m thick canvas for interlining.

Notions: Thread, hooks and eyes, 0,6 m plastic boning for the front and some small pieces of ribbon for the “bustle effect”.

Time: I would guesstimate about 20 hours, but I started it in January (working on it only while my boyfriend watched some kind of sport on Tv) so I can’t be sure.

Cost: About 100 Sek (16 Usd) since the fabric was on sale.

Final thoughts: I really like this dress. I think it looks lovely and make me feel good wearing it. I’m already dreaming of going to a 18th century masked ball dressed in this gown and posing as “Autumn”.

Although looking at the pictures of me wearing it, I notice the huge amount of wrinkles occurring at the under arm/bust era, and at the back waist. I think I will have to go back and re-check the fit.

Artistic Anglaise – Photoshoot

Yesterday I went to the beautiful park by the castle Haga in Stockholm to attend a costuming picknic (wich I will tell you about in my next post). And as it was the first outing for my new striped Robe Anglaise I made sure to get some good photos of me wearing it.

So here you go – my newest gown beautifully depicted by my sister using the enviroment of the park as a backdrop.

Wearing the skirt bustled up, and paired with a long fichu.IMG_8733





Then I let the skirt down and removed the fichu.IMG_8763










IMG_8818Trying to pose with a harp, but with a tree…


IMG_8829Crazy sillyness…
My new profile picture, don’t you think….

Photo: Maria Petersson

Artistic Robe Anglaise

When the 10th HSF challenge – Art, was announced I didn’t need to think for long. I emetetly knew I wanted to make the Rose Adélaïde Ducreuxs dress fom her “self portraite whit a harp”.tumblr_lk71wnynCC1qbkn6io1_500I even took the opurtunity to make the skirt and fichu from the portrait for a previous challenge, to be able to only focus on the dress for this one.

I alreay had the fabric IMG_8367 8m of striped cotton, bought on sale about a year ago.

I put my corset, bumpad, and petticoat on the dressform and started to drape the bodice pattern.
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Then I cut the toile, sewed it togeter and tried it on.
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Then it was time to cut the fabric.IMG_8361 Besides from the striped cotton, I used a bleached linnen fabric for the zone front and a white cotton twill for interlining.

My original plan was to make the gown entierly by hand, but time ran out and life interupted, and on top of that I’m starting to think it is a waist of time to hand stich a gown in the wrong material. so, after some back and fort, I decided to make it by machine. (And boy am I happy about that decision now…)

I started the sewing by basting togeter all the different layers – so yes, I did do some handsewing. IMG_8364

Then I shaped and stiched the back pleats in place, usin tiny backstitches. IMG_8371back piece and back lining.
IMG_8372IMG_8378Close-up on the stiches.

I then sewed the bodice togeter and tried it on to check the front closeur.
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And as you can se the front lines dont match up. So to fix that I needed to adjust the center front line and make a buttonhole placket. This metod is usaly a big no no in sewing but time was sparse and I’ve already manadged to mach the stripes pretty good, so I did’nt want to adjust the side seams.

Then I started on the button and buttonholes, also hand stitched. IMG_8539 They are not as neat and pretty as I would have liked but they will have to do. And I even needed to use some fabric glue on the buttons to keep them from snapping apart.IMG_8557

It was about here I noticed that something was of with the front piece interfacing. While basting the layers togeter I’ve manadged to put the interling as outer fabric, then stich the hole bodice up like that and on top of that make the buttonholes. Darn it.
Well there wasn’t much to do then go on pretending that the twill was supose to be the outer fabric. Fortanly, no other part of the bodice was white so the only thing revealing my mistake is the linnen covered buttons… IMG_8582

So I continued by cuting and setting the lining, using a regular white cotton fabric.

Before the next try on I pinned the sleeves on losely to get a grip on their placement.
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Unfortanly the sleeves were the last things I noticed when I put it on – The stupid bodice was way to smal. I tightened my corset all I could, and did manadged to close all the buttons. Only now the bodice looked horrible and the stresslines were pulling all over the front.

So back to the sewing machine I whent, using the alowence in the side/back seams to make the bodice a total of 2,5 cm bigger. IMG_8591

Then I pinned and sewed the sleeves. The insertion was an easy one, but the deciding on the sleeve trim was a bit harder. In the end I decided to stepp away from the inspiration and go with my guts and use a smaler design then originaly planed.

Now it was time for the skirt. I sewed the pannels together and  hand stiched lines of gatering thread, to get them nice and even al over the skirt. IMG_8542 Then I pulled the skirt waist togeter and pinned it to the bodice, using the zone front as a mark were to start the skirt.
The sewing was abit tricky, geting all the fabric to lay smothly. IMG_8620

The final touches was to finish of the arm hole, tuck down the lining and stich on some Busteling-ties to make it an “Polainese”.

Finished dress:


















Just the Facts:

Challenge: nr 10 – Art

What: a 1780s robe Anglaise.

Inspiration: Rose Adélaïde Ducreux “self portarit with a harp”.

Pattern: I draped my own, using Arnolds “Pattern of Fashion” as a guide.

Fabric: 4 m of striped white/green cotton, 0,5 m of white linnen, 0,5 m of white twill for interlining, 0,5 m of white cotton sheet for lining and 0,3 m of white dotted organdy for sleeve cuffs.

Notions: Thread, 10 self covered buttons, 1 m plastic boning, 5 cm cottin string.

How historical accurate: The shape and look of the garment are ok, but it is compleatly machine made with modern tecniques. I dind’t had the time or the money for a compleatly hand made silk dress.

Time: On and of for two weeks – maybe 15-20 hours.

Cost: about 300 Sek (48Usd). All fabrics were stash and bought on sale.

First worn: Not yet, but will be (pared with the White entries) next weekend for the huge historical picknick i the capital.

Final thoughts: The dress are not an exact copie of the one in the portrait, but I do think it looks pretty good. I’m a bit anoyed about the stress wrinkels on the front bodice, but with the time constriant am glad I manadged to finish it of at all. Tomorrow I will give it a real try out and se if it passes the test.