Search results for ‘gold and ivory gown’

Gold and Ivory Gown, Photos

Here is the photo set that I promised! I didn’t think I would have these finished until tomorrow, but I got them done a day early (this may be the lamest Christmas miracle ever) so here they are.

For the third year in a row my dad and I went to a Christmas Tree Farm and asked if we could take photos. The people that own the farm said yes, so we spent a good hour taking pictures and looking for the best clusters of trees that would make a nice backdrop.

Last year our trip there wasn’t very successful since the dress didn’t really suit the environment. But this time it went wonderfully! I think the contrast of the white dress against the green is striking, and the headpiece works nicely with the surroundings. Plus it was a really nice day, which helped.

Usually I only post eight or so photos, but I couldn’t narrow it down this time so i’m posting double that!

If you’ve missed my “The Making of” posts about this project, they can be read here, here, and here. I also have videos about making it which are posted here.

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These ones turned out a little odd thanks to shadows from a tree that I didn’t notice until we got home. But I still like the pictures!

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And that’s it! This is definitely my last post before Christmas, and mostly likely my last post of the new year. I hope you all have a fantastic holiday (or week, if you don’t celebrate any of them) and a great start to the new year!

Thanks for reading!


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Making a Gold and Ivory Gown, Part Three

We are onto the final post about this dress! This one will cover the process of making the skirt. The first post about this dress can be read here, and the second is posted here.

The skirt is really pretty basic, since it’s just a giant rectangle. I had four yards of fabric leftover after making the sleeves (which is weird since i’m 90% sure I only bought four yards) and my material was sixty-one inches wide. That was a little long, so I trimmed five inches off the bottom.


Then I folded the bottom edge inward by a half inch and sewed it down with basting stitches.


Then folded the edge up by an inch and a half and pinned it in place. This way the raw edge was hidden and I had a wider hem, which will look smooth once ironed.


I sewed that down with a cross stitch, which is my favorite hemming stitch. I think it’s a lot of fun to do, but I don’t like how much thread it takes up.


I decided I wanted the skirt to close with hooks and bars at the centerback of the dress. But I didn’t want the stitching that attached the bars to be visible from the front side of the fabric.

So I made a facing for the back sides of the skirt out of a rectangle of cotton. I turned over the edges, then sewed them onto the back edges of the skirt, with the right sides of the fabric facing each other.DSC_9711

When the rectangle of fabric was turned over and pinned down I had a nicely finished edge and a base to mount my hooks!


That got sewn on with whip stitches.


Then I secured my hooks/bars onto that. These are spaced between one and a half and two inches apart, and I used black size 2 hooks. I would have used silver ones, but I didn’t have any.

The stitch work on these isn’t the prettiest, but at least you can’t tell from the outside of the skirt!

I really need to get better at sewing these on, I find them really frustrating, which shows in how the stitching ends up looking. My main problem is the thread getting tangled/caught on them, and how difficult it is to hold them in place while sewing them on. Any tips for that would be much appreciated!


The back of the skirt got sewn up with a half inch french seam. I left the top few inches (that have the facing and hooks attached) open, and tapered the stitching down from that point into the half inch seam allowance. This way it doesn’t look abrupt or wonky from the outside.


Then I gathered the skirt down. This part didn’t go very well. Even though this brocade is medium weight, it has a lot of body to it which made it a pain to gather. I did it by hand the first time, but my thread broke when I got to the end.

So I switched to doing it by machine. It took three passes to get it down to forty-five inches, then I used upholstery thread and gathered it down by hand to get it down to twenty seven.



The gathers looked pretty decent but unfortunately I messed them up. I sewed the skirt onto the bodice from the backside, and ended up shifting some of the gathers around so they looked good from the backside. That was a mistake, because from the front they looked really lumpy and uneven.

That’s why it’s a better idea to sew densely gathered skirts on from the front side. And I should know that, I just forgot the day I sewed this skirt on…

The brocade used for the bodice is pretty delicate, and I didn’t want to damage it by removing and resewing on the skirt. So I left it as is. Which is another silly decision because the lower inch or two of the bodice is covered by ribbon, so if the brocade got a little banged up it wouldn’t matter, the ribbon would cover it.

It seems really obvious looking back at it, but it didn’t at the time. So that’s why my gathers don’t look great on this one 😦


I sewed the ribbon around the waistline of the bodice.


Then I made the bow! I cut my remaining ribbon into three pieces, then sewed them together so I had a much wider piece of ribbon. This got sewn into a circle, then I pressed down in the center of the circle to create two evenly sized loops. I secured the loops with thread, then gathered the middle slightly and wrapped a scrap of ribbon around the center.

I love this bow. Maybe not as much as the ones on the cuffs, but it’s pretty close!


I sewed one side of the bow onto the bodice. The other side is secured with a small snap. One half of the snap is stitched onto the underside of the bow, and the other onto the ribbon at the waist of the bodice. When the bow is snapped in place the center of it alights perfectly with the center back of the bodice.


And that’s it! When I wore it for photos I put two fake cardinals on my shoulders. My wig kind of ate them but I thought they looked cute.



I paired this with my wigfashion lace front (I wouldn’t recommend this wig, but I like how it looks here) and the Christmas Crown I made last year from things I got from Michaels. I actually have a tutorial about that crown here, if you’re interested. The full photo set of this ensemble will be in a few minutes, but here is a preview.

Angela Clayton Gold Dress 16

Overall thoughts: I like how this turned out. Especially when it’s worn and paired with the headpiece and red lipstick. I think the contrast between the ribbons and the brocade is lovely, and I adore the bows and bodice detailing. It’s not my favorite thing i’ve made this year, but i’m happy with it. Especially considering it was made in a week from (mostly) things I already had, and without a clear picture of what I was making in my mind.

It isn’t as grand as my previous years costume, but it’s definitely better made! I don’t think I had any major construction or fit problems this year. If I did it again I would be more careful when attaching the skirt, and probably bone the back of the bodice a bit more heavily because I had some buckled bones at that point (oops) but there aren’t any raw edges or loose threads or issues that had me stumped for days on end. So that’s progress!

Thanks for reading! I hope you are enjoying the holiday season so far, or the time of work if you don’t celebrate any of them.


Making a Gold and Ivory Gown, Part Two

It’s time for the second post about making this years holiday dress! Part one can be read here and is about making the bodice. Today i’ll be going over how I made the sleeves, which i’m excited about because they are my favorite part of this dress. I wasn’t expecting to like them so much, since they are really simple, but I adore how the cuffs turned out. They have little bows on them so my wrists feel like presents!

I started by drafting a full length puff sleeve pattern. They flare out more at the bottom, so they have a slight bell shape but are pretty full at the top too. I probably would have made these wider but I was working with fabric limitations. I’m kind of happy the fabric restricted me, because the shape worked out really nicely and they probably wouldn’t have looked right if they were any bigger.


I turned the bottom five inches of the sleeves edge inward by a half inch and sewed it down. Then turned it inward again so the raw edge was hidden, and sewed it in place with a whip stitch. I did this because the lower few inches of these sleeves have to be left open to allow my hand to pass through.  My hands are too big to fit if they are sewn closed all the way to the wrist cuff!


I also gathered the lower edge of the sleeve down to my wrists circumference by hand with a running stitch that was pulled taught as I went.


Then I cut out the lining for the cuffs, which are just rectangles of quilters cotton. I marked guidelines an inch away from each edge, then folded the raw edge up so it touched that line and sewed it in place.


This way every edge of my cuff was finished.


I pinned my sleeves onto the cuffs, with all the raw edges facing upward. Then sewed it down with my machine.


The gathered edge was quite bulky so I topstitched over it several times until it became relatively flat. The backside of these did not look pretty, but they are functional, which is what matters most when it comes to the interiors of garments!

Since these cuffs are very fitted I decided to use hook/eye closures. I sewed two of these into each cuff – one at the top, one at the bottom.


My cuffs fit perfectly at this point, but I realized later that I actually made them too small. The cotton had a tiny bit of stretch to it, so they eased nicely over my wrists. Once I added the top layer of fabric (which didn’t have ANY stretch) to the cuffs, they became much more difficult to hook up and I was left with some red marks after wearing them for long periods of time. Silly mistake on my part.


Once the hooks were sewn in I trimmed the frayed edges at the cuffs.


Then I cut out two pieces of ribbon and stitched them over the top side of the cuff, so all the ugly bits were hidden.


Doesn’t that look so much better?


Now it was time to make the bows for the cuffs. Here are the two lengths of ribbon I cut for them – I’d say I used around ten inches of ribbon for each one. I sewed the ends of the ribbon together so I had two circles, then pressed down in the center of the circle so I had two even loops.


I wanted to use the same ribbon for the centers of the bows, but this ribbon is awfully wide for the centers of such small bows. So I folded the velvet part of the ribbon towards the gold trim and sewed it down. This created a quarter inch wide fold that made my ribbon a half inch smaller, and much more appropriate for these bows.

(I take bows very seriously, clearly)


Then I wrapped the smaller ribbon around the center of each bow and sewed the ends together. And tah-dah, perfect little bows!


I was going to put these on the backs of the cuffs, but they were so cute that I decided to sew them onto the front instead. Here they are pinned in place.


And sewn on!



Then I sewed up the side seam with a french seam. Like I mentioned earlier, I left the lower few inches open so I can fit my hand through.


I sewed the bottom half of the sleeve on first, then gathered the top half so it perfectly fit into the arm opening. Then it was sewed in place with a whip stitch. I’ve been doing puff sleeves this way a lot recently because it lets me better visualize how dense I want the gathers to be before sewing them, which I like.


At this point the interior of the bodice wasn’t looking great. It isn’t that bad, but there are some frayed edges and knots of thread which aren’t nice to look at.


So I cut out a layer of lining from quilters cotton.


Pinned it in place.


And sewed it in with a whip stitch.


Then my bodice, and sleeves, were complete! It still doesn’t look like much. I think this bodice really comes to life when it’s worn, it’s quite…flat looking when it’s just laid out. Luckily I will have worn pictures to share very soon – they should be going up on Wednesday or Thursday.

DSC_9744The final “The making of” post and video about this project will be up tomorrow! And that will be followed by photos of the finished ensemble. I got behind on my Christmas related posts, so you will be getting a lot of posts at once (I hope you don’t mind too much)!

Really quickly I wanted to mention the Christmas themed headpiece I made. It isn’t exciting enough to get it’s own post, but I’m really happy with how it turned out so I wanted to share it with you guys. A tutorial on the process of making it can be watched here, and photos will be below!





Thanks for reading!


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Making a Gold and Ivory Gown, Part One

It’s that time of the year again! The time where I make a dress inspired by my favorite holiday, which is Christmas.

In case you are new to my blog, this is my third year in a row making dresses with this theme. My previous two holiday inspired dresses  can be viewed here and here. And like last year i’m filming the process of making this, the videos about it will be posted here.

This years dress has proved to be more of a challenge than ever. Not because it was difficult to make, in fact the construction was a lot more straightforward on this dress than last years. The challenge was coming up with an idea, which is weird for me, usually the idea is the easy part!

The ideas behind my previous Christmas dresses were very solid in my head for a few weeks before I started working on them, which made the lack of inspiration about this years project all the more frustrating.

After a lot of consideration I’ve decided to make something simple. I think my problem was  trying to overcomplicate this project and come up with something really impressive. But I don’t feel like making a really complicated this year. I want to make something quite simple and pretty that goes with this headpiece that I made last year.

I’m making the design somewhat Angelic once again, with a fitted bodice, full length puffed sleeves, and a full skirt. It’s kind of a throwback to the Renaissance inspired dresses I made when I first got into historical sewing a couple years ago – but the construction will be much better.

Today i’ll be showing you my materials and how I made the bodice.

I’m using fabrics I already had around. The bolt  of striped brocade was picked up earlier this year, and the other brocades were bought last year. I’m also using a bit of off white chiffon. Ideally this dress would be made entirely out of the striped brocade, but I only have four yards. That’s enough to make a relatively full skirt and pair of sleeves, but not enough for the bodice. So that’s where the gold brocade on the left side will come in.

The chiffon is for a gathered panel at the front of the bodice, which will make it look like i’m wearing a chemise underneath the dress. The did this with a lot of Lucrezia’s dresses in “The Borgias” which is one of my favorite series and probably why i’m so obsessed with this style.


Once I selected the materials from my stash I went on a little trip to joanns and browsed the Christmas selections with hopes of finding inspiration. I didn’t find too much, but I did get these cute little velvet birds, a gold cage, seasonal sprigs, and some braided trim. I really loved the little birds, and the contrast between the doves and cardinals. That was something I wanted to incorporate into my dress.

Once I got back home I discovered some red and gold ribbon that I bought a few years back (for 70c or something crazy, thanks to sales) which matched the little birds perfectly! So I chose to feature this ribbon prominently in the dress at the waist and cuffs. I also pulled some gold sequins, seed beads, and 4mm fake pearls from my stash which i’m going to use around the bodice neckline.


With all that settled, I got to work on the bodice. Instead of drafting a new pattern I used a vest pattern I made a few years ago to wear with my Pretty Pirate Project. I altered it quite a lot but the shape is still the same. The main changes were making the neckline wider and deeper, lowering the waistline, and removing the side seams.

Then I cut out a layer of cotton and marked all the boning channels. I drew these out randomly, with most of the bones at the center and sides of the bodice. I went a little crazy with the boning channels, but i’m using all plastic bones, and to get a nice shape with them you have to go a bit overboard.

Also, since i’m using brocade which shows every flaw I wanted the bodice to have a very stiff, smooth base, which is the effect lots of plastic bones give you.


I cut a layer of twill out and pinned them together, then sewed all the boning channels. This took a while but I like sewing boning channels, it becomes relaxing after a while.


I used the twill/cotton layer as a guide to cut out the brocade layer of the bodice. Then I pinned them together with the right sides facing each other and sewed around each edge. This should have been really easy, but I did it wrong. Or at least I thought I did it wrong. So I cut a few slits in the brocade layer, then began seam ripping the stitching. Only to realize a minute later that I DID sew it the right way.

Would have been nice to realize that before I cut the fabric…


Anyway! I redid it and it turned out fine. Then I added some lightweight fusible interfacing to the back edges of the bodice, so the eyelets will sit better in the brocade.

I also trimmed the curves and corners so everything would look sharp when it’s turned the right way out.


Speaking of turning things the right way out, I spent half an hour doing just that. I used pliers and colored pencils to speed the process up but it still seemed to take ages. When I was finally done I pinned around the edges, making sure that none of the twill/cotton/base layer was visible from the front side of the bodice.


I sewed around each edge with a whip stitch so the brocade layer wouldn’t move around and reveal the base layer. You can avoid doing this if you make the lining slightly smaller than the top layer of fabric, but I didn’t want to risk doing that when boning channels were involved.

I only grabbed a few threads from the top layer of fabric so none of these stitches are too visible.

When that was done I added boning to the bodice and tried it on – luckily it fit!


Then I stitched all the eyelets. I had the realization last week that you can use embroidery floss for sewing eyelets and it is way easier to work with than regular thread. I don’t know why this never occurred to me – it’s so obvious! Embroidery floss for embroidered eyelets. Makes perfect sense.

With this newly discovered process I decided to be brave and sew eyelets in a contrasting color. I went for a cheery red shade that matches the ribbon i’m using at the waist~

Fun fact: Totally pricked my finger when I was doing this and now it’s infected (though the doctor I saw insists it’s a bruise – despite the swelling, redness, and pain). I have my fingers crossed (the ones that aren’t infected) that it will resolve itself soon.

But hey, that barely matters because the eyelets look super pretty!


I also trimmed the bottom edge and sewed on bias tape to cover it.


To create the gathered front panel I cut out a strip of chiffon. Then I folded it in half and hand stitched across the folded edge so it wouldn’t shift.


I gathered it by hand at two points – one is three quarters of an inch away from the top edge, the other is half an inch away from the bottom edge.


Then I sewed it into the bodice with small whip stitches.


I liked how it looked, but when I tried it on the gathering stitches at the top snapped. So I regathered it down to twelve inches (instead of the eight it was gathered down to originally) then sewed some thin elastic at the gathering point. This holds it close to my body but gives it the ability to stretch if it needs to.


With that done it was time to add the embellishments to the neckline.


I alternated between 4mm fake pearls and gold seed beads, then whip stitched the strand in place. Below that I sewed a spattering of gold sequins on. It’s subtle, but I think it’s very pretty!


I didn’t extend the beading to the back of the bodice because I didn’t have enough pearls. And beading on the backs of dresses is kind of a pain, hair gets caught in it so easily.


And here it is with the shoulder seam done up! I did sew lining into the bodice but that step came after attaching the sleeves, so i’ll show that in another post.



And here is a preview photo of what the whole thing looks like finished, because the details are so much clearer in this photo and I wanted to show how smooth the brocade looks. I’m quite proud of that!

Gold Dress Resize Angela Clayton

More photos and The Making of Posts about this project will be up soon!

Thanks for reading!


The Making of a Sakizo Inspired Historical Gown [Part 2]



jeff potoSo, two things about this costume, the first being that the titles have changed! I originally thought it this some French inspired design, but peoples insisted upon Italian Renaissance, and then others were saying it looks Russian so now i’m not even sure. I give up on attempting to label this dress.

The second thing is that this dress is technically unfinished. It isn’t accurate to the artwork I based it off of at all, but I like how it looks now and there isn’t much I want to change. Some might view this as lazyness…but honestly i’m just pleased with it. I feel like adding more stuff will take away from it and I don’t want that. So I suppose this is a Sakizo illustration INSPIRED design instead of an actual cosplay of her work.

Check out the previous the-making-of post relating to this costume!

[Part 1]

With that said….Moving on. 

Sleeves! These were by far the most difficult and time consuming part of this costume. The sleeves are made up of five main pieces, two small ones that lay over the shoulder, two puffy sleeve portions, and the elbow-to-wrist piece.

I put on the bodice and measured over my shoulder to find the length the top two sleeve pieces needed to be.  Then a drafted out how I thought they might look and hoped for the best. I made a mock up and altered it a little bit, but for the most part it was good!


The top most piece is actually a base that piped strips get sewn onto. It looked like this when cut out.


I cut out 2.75″ strips of my red sateen and folded over 1/2″ on each side giving me a 1.75 inch strip. Then I sewed piping onto each side. This part killed me since I actually had to use pins (so many), which I try to avoid as much as possible.


Each strip was cut to the proper size, and eventually, sewn into place by stitching across each end.


I machine stitched lace onto one side. The other side was folded over and hand sewn down, so no stitching actually shows.


The second piece was much easier to deal with, as it was quite simple. It’s made from interfaced silk with an overlay of the same gold lace I used on the skirt. It was hand sewed to the other pieces lining so once again, no stitching is visible.



Piece three and four were the most challenging, and took many frustrating hours to create. The actual pattern for these is a very simple one, and was drafted quite quickly and easily. I once again kind of lucked out on the pattern I drafted, I had to make it a little smaller, but for the most part I was happy with it.

Each sleeve was cut from red sateen and has two darts added to remove a bit of volume. Lines were marked out  four inches from eachother to create seven even rows. A gold x ivory twisted cording was hand sewn over each line.


Then it came time to add poofs! Puffed trim, although quite simple in theory is one of my least favorite things to make. Here is a tutorial sheet describing how they can be made.


For the sleeve puffs I used seven inch wide strips of silk that were double iron-folded on each side, creating a five inch wide strip with finished edges.

Then I hand gathered the strip every four inches to create very circular puffs. It took a lot, and I mean A LOT of testing to get a size that looked okay, but in the end I’m pretty pleased with it.


The puffs get pinned in place



And then sewn down. Once they are sewn into place I lightly press my iron over them, this way they stay more orderly.


Each side of these were gathered with the zig zag method, and eventually stuffed with “doughnuts” made of quilt batting. They are like pillows which is kind of awesome.

The final, and easiest piece of the sleeve was patterned via draping. I took a piece of muslin and laid it over my arm, then pinned it until it was tight.


Super pro patterning method right there.


I cut that out of my red sateen and added cute little organza ruffles, trim, and piping to the point that lays over my hand. I also hand sewed a six inch zipper into the wrist so it fits tightly.

This is how one of the sleeves looked all sewn together



The bodice of my dress finally got fancied up, I added three mm rhinestones down the center of each red stripe and sewed on a pretty organza ruffle.


Then I created MORE puffed trim and sewed that on, with pearl trim covering the gathers. I also created a properly sized flower trim, made of fake flowers that I cut apart and re-glued together. Flat backed pearls were glued down in the centers, and between the petals to make it look fancy.


And how they looked sewn together.


Once the bodice was finished I created a “roll” to go beneath it. This was made the same way as tier one of the sleeves. Strips of sateen with folded edges and piping machine stitched on each side.


After each edge was secured, the 30″ strip was stuffed with a bit of quilt batting encased in sateen to make it poof out.

This was then sewn onto the skirt.


Meanwhile, the skirt got a bit of fancy lace and cording sewn onto each front most red section. Both of these were hand sewed into place.  In addition to holding the trim on, the same stitches also secure the ivory portion of the skirt to the red ones.

The gorgeous lace was purchased here and the cording from here.


The bodice was hand sewn on to roll/skirt, since there was so much boning I couldn’t do it by machine without breaking needles every two seconds. (trust me, I tried)

Eventually the sleeves were hand sewn onto the dress too. So much hand sewing.

.I also added a heavy duty zipper to serve as closure (not the one seen above, one that actually matched).  I had to hand baste it in place, then sew it down, which was kind of hellish but worked wonderfully.


Once that was done I made the headdress super quickly. It has a structure of plastic boning, which was covered in quilt batting and a layer of red sateen.



Then tiny puffed trim was made and sewn onto the front. And 8mm pearsl were sewn into the center of each poof.


I also sewed on two organza ruffles, because ruffles are awesome. The gold trim was made from lace, which I cut apart and spray painted gold. Each circle of lace was threaded onto a piece of wire and glued from behind. The pearls are fake, flat backed, and glued down.


And finished!


I had several photoshoots with this costume, and the previews look amazing, but none of the actual photos have been posted. So here is a hall shot from yesterday to give you an idea of how it looked all finished. I seriously cannot wait to see photos of this from my shoots.


Thanks for reading! I’ll have the final post on Royal Milk Tea up soon.


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Sakizo Inspired Renaissance Gown

A very detailed dress created in just under three weeks. The original design was based off of Sakizo artwork, but  I ended up taking it in a different direction. 

It’s made from seven yards of red cotton sateen, four yards of ivory silk, and a bit of gold spandex. The bodice is boned hand basted, and beaded. The skirt was all hand sewn together and hemmed, it was quite the task. 

The patterns were all made by me, as was the entirety of this costume.


I have two posts about creating this 

           Part 1

         Part 2




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The Making of a Sakizo Inspired Historical Gown [Part 1]


Since I am apparently insane, I’ve decided to make another costume before Katsucon, which is less than three weeks away. It’s not even a simple costume – it’s actually pretty difficult and elaborate.

But it is also very, very pretty! 

This costume is of a Sakizo design…but it’s a very detailed oriented one so what I have sewn so far doesn’t look much like it (at least not yet). Because of this, I’ll post the reference picture i’m using in the next post relating to this costume.

I will probably have one or two more posts about this. It shouldn’t take me long to finish since everything is just detail work. The next post I made will talk about sleeves and beading so make sure to check back for updates!

I had draped a sweetheart neckline princess seamed bodice pattern a few weeks ago, which I decided would work well enough for this project. I actually took photos throughout the draping process since I get asked about pattern drafting a lot and plan to make a tutorial later.

Here are a few pictures, all you really do is pull, pin, draw, and cut the fabric until it’s the shape you want.





When removed from the form the pieces looked like this.


Once seam allowances were added I had a pattern!


I know that seems like a lot of work, but it only takes twenty minutes or so.

I cut the pattern I had made out of muslin and measured out 1.5 inch stripes onto the pieces. I also sewed a mixture of metal and plastic boning into the bodice. Then I drew out the neckline I wanted.


This is how the boning placement looked when flat. Most of it’s plastic but I did add a few metal stays.



Once the boning was removed everything got labeled to make reassembly easier.


And then each stripe was cut apart.



And then I used those as a pattern for cutting out my fabric! I choose red cotton sateen, gold spandex, and an ivory silk satin for this project. All the materials have really nice textures and drape beautifully, plus I had them laying around. The spandex was reinforced so it doesn’t stretch.


Once assembled it looks like so!




I cut out the same pattern for lining and drew out the boning placement.


With boning sewn in~



Then it was attached to the bodice.


And here it is just pinned, also ignore the flowers, they were a stand in.


I had to go through and hand sew each seam down. This was made slightly less tedious by the fact I watched disney movies throughout working on it. And then pearls were sewn over each seam.


At this point I cut out my skirt, the front consists of two 30×56″ panels of cotton sateen and a 40″x56″ panel of silk satin. I made the panels longer than they needed to be so I could add a large hem later on. I didn’t want any stiffening in the hem so this is a substitute to make it heavier.

I’m not sure why the stripes look uneven on the form…they are fine when worn.


Then I cut out the train! I have never made a dress with a train before this so it was quite the experiment. I sort of marked out various measurements and then cut out what I thought looked okay, it wasn’t a very technical process.


In the end I’m really happy with it, I think the shape is quite pretty!

[Please ignore how the top looks here]

UntitledNow that the base is done I can start on details mwaha. I got a bunch of trims on etsy which I’m super excited to add to this costume!


One of the ones I bought was this cute flower trim, which I took my sewing shears to right away and separated the flowers from the main trim.

Also shout out to The Store, who sells all these gorgeous hand dyed gold venice lace.




I took the flowers and pinned them onto the upper portion of the skirt in a randomized pattern that faded down

I didn’t like how it looked at first, but it grew on me. I ended up [i’m embarrassed to admit this] hot gluing them all into place. Hand sewing 100 tiny flowers on didn’t seem appealing at all, and I didn’t think it would look that great. The glue ended up working really well.

Then I pinned the hem and pinned on this gorgeous lace that I ordered from here.


Sooo that’s everything for now.

Thank you for reading!


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Historically Inspired

Welcome to my historically inspired page! Here you will find all costumes that are historical recreations or garments  influenced and inspired by historical fashion.

This page only includes completed projects that were made entirely by me. If something seems to be missing it was probably removed due to poor documentation.

I’m constantly making new things and trying to keep this updated, so if there are any dead links they are probably for projects I’ll be posting about soon!

Each link leads to specific pages for the costume mentioned, which includes links to every post related to that costume, along with a brief description and photos of the completed project

1890’s Day Dress, the “Pumpkin” Gown


1830’s Plaid, Pleated, Dress


18th Century “Undress” Costume


Sybil Inspired Edwardian Ensemble


Pink Sateen Ball Gown, 1860’s 

Angela Clayton Evening Gown 1860 -7872

Cycling Costume, 1890’s

Angela Clayton, Cycling Costume resize-6839

Plaid Walking Ensemble,1890’s

Plaid_1890s_Angela Clayton5

1790’s Round Robe

Yellow Dress Resize 2

Grecian Costume, Chiton and Crown

Angela Clayton Grecian 3

Grey Plaid and Velvet Ensemble, 1860’s


18th Century Riding Ensemble 

Angela Clayton_ Riding Coat_ 1

Gold and Ivory Gown – Holiday Dress 2015

Angela Clayton Gold Dress 14

Maroon Medieval Dress & Escoffin


Civil War Era Dress


Taffeta Kirtle & Hat

Ana de Mendoza 3

Gold Foiled Dress, Heinrich Inspired

Harvest.Red Foiled Dress.5

Damask Print Medieval Gown

Gold Medieval, Resize 1

Pleated Navy gown


Silvery Blue Dress

Blue 8

Orange Tudor Ensemble

P5 image one

Brown Beaded Doublet


Structured Chemise a la Reine


Dewdrop Series


Isabel de Requesens


Blue Taffeta Hooded Dress


1830s Floral Dress


1830s Pleated Red Dress


1840’s Pleated Floral Dress


Christmas Costume, Glittery Gown


Maroon Dress


Striped Taffeta Dress


Black and Grey Dress

Black and Grey III

Pretty Pirate Project


(Posts below were are projects, which are not very well documented or fully completed)

Red Renaissance Gown


Red and Silver Gown



Fabric Haul, April 2016

Today’s post is an exciting one…or at least it’s exciting for me, because it’s a fabric haul! Which means new materials and new projects to work on.

The week before my birthday my dad and I went into the garment district and this is what I got during that trip – plus a few Jo-anns purchases since I couldn’t find everything I wanted in NYC.

This post is a bit different than usual, since I don’t have many sketches to share. Most of my future plans are in the idea stage and haven’t been transferred to paper yet, or are based off of paintings. But i’ll do my best to describe each project and include my inspiration photos!

Here is my swatch sheet that I made after getting home. I managed to get (almost) everything I need for seven projects which is fantastic.


Now lets go through them in detail!

The first fabric I bought is for an Elizabethan ensemble based on this painting of Anne of Denmark. I plan on following the silhouette and detailing quite closely, but i’ll be making a few changes, as I always do. I’ve been wanting to take on an Elizabethan project since I got “In Fine Style: The Art of Tudor and Stuart Fashion” for Christmas, and this seemed like a good piece to start with.

I’d hoped to find a fabric with a larger, more subtle pattern, but I didn’t see any others that were green so at the end of the day I came back to this one and bought eight yards. It isn’t quite what I had in mind, but I do really like it! I just hope it isn’t too overwhelming once I make a full dress out of it!


To go along with that I bought buttons! I don’t think metal buttons are very accurate for this period, but I fell in love with the shape and details of these so I bought them anyway. I thought I would have to order buttons for this, so finding ones in person was a pleasant surprise!


This costume will mostly be trimmed with lace, which I already own and small gold ribbon, which i’ve ordered online. But I came across this gold/green cording which I thought would look nice on the bodice, so I got three yards. I also picked up two yards of velvet ribbon for the rosettes and two orange pheasant feathers for the hat!


For the partlet and ruff I got a sheer cotton fabric. This is a really neat fabric considering it’s weight and color. It has a subtle plaid pattern  woven through it and parts of it have a sheen almost like mirror organza.


From Diana Fabrics I got a plain cotton striped shirting, which is for a cycling ensemble I plan on making soon. I already have the other materials for this project (buttons for the shirt, plaid for the pants, and wool for the hat) so now I can get started!


Also from Diana Fabrics I bought three yards of this striped silk taffeta. I love this fabric, unfortunately I didn’t buy enough of it to actually use it. I thought it matched another fabric I bought and would work for an 1880s bustle dress but it doesn’t at all. Hopefully on my next trip in they will still have it, then I can get another two yards and have enough for an 18th century Robe a La Langlaise!


Speaking of the 18th century, I got a whole bunch of fabrics for an ensemble from that period. This is based on a few paintings from the late 1700’s and incorporates the loose wrapped headpiece (“turban”) trend that was popular at this point in time.


I wanted this costume to have a warm color scheme and incorporate textured metallic fabrics, so when I saw this I grabbed it up right away! It’s a striped organza made from pink and gold threads so it has a two tone shift. It’s really striking in person, and might be a bit overwhelming, but I love it a lot.


I tried to find a striped material that would compliment the organza, but they were all out of my price range. And the silks I found were a little more textured or pink than I wanted, so I went for a polyester shantung instead. It’s a light copper color that looks gorgeous with the organza. I got this at Amin fabrics, along with a few yards of pink taffeta which is a base for the organza.


Since I couldn’t find a striped fabric I went back to the shop where I bought the organza (Zahra fabrics) and got two yards of a similar material, just in a different print. I’m going to use this for ruffled trim, which will hopefully jazz up the slightly boring shantung!


Here are the materials all together, and you can see how the striped fabric looks over the pink taffeta.


At a trim shop I found some pretty organza ribbons that were a dollar a yard, so I bought two yards of each. I think one of these might work as a sash for the costume,  and even if they don’t I’ll find a use for them someday!


At Zahra fabrics I got four yards of an orchid colored satin faced chiffon. This is for a grecian inspired project I want to make soon – it won’t be historically accurate at all, but it will be very pretty!


They also has a textured silk that I really liked, and matched the color scheme I had going, so I got a yard of it.

The final fabric for this project (on left) is a plain linen that I bought from Jo-ann’s. I’d hoped to find a foiled linen that had gold flecks in it, or something more interesting, but didn’t see anything like that. And when it comes to plain linen, it’s cheaper to buy it from Jo-ann’s with coupons than in the garment district.


For the same project I got a bunch of beads and sequins from Beads World. I’d like to make a crown or shoulder piece with a floral pattern, and I thought these would work well for that.

Even though i’m not completely sure what this project will look like I really love the color palettes and fabrics I ended up getting for it. It’s made me realize that I don’t work with purple fabrics often enough!


These things weren’t on my list, but they had them in the sale section at the front and I couldn’t resist. I use gold beads all the time so I thought these would be a good addition to my collection, and the leaves were too pretty to pass up! Ecspecially at $2 a bag.


I also got some red beads and a tiny crochet hook. I’m going to attempt to teach myself the process of crocheting a beaded rope, and thought these would be good to start with!


At Hamed Fabrics I came across a striped home decor fabric and fell in love. I had no idea what to do with it until I remembered this fashion plate. This project was on my list of tentative plans, but I didn’t think I would find a fabric in my price range that would work for this.


But clearly I was wrong, because this is perfect. It’s a dark pink organza with opaque stripes that are outlined in gold. It’s such a pretty color, the texture is lovely, and looks gorgeous when it’s gathered.

Best of all is that it’s 120″ wide so I only had to buy five and a half yards, which came to a total cost of fifty five dollars.


To go underneath that I bought a polyester taffeta (on left) and as a contrasting fabric for piping and bows I got a pinstriped gold fabric. These all look wonderful together and i’m really excited to use them.


From the same shop I found a striped polyester organza with opaque off white stripes. This was another fabric I was happy to find, since it reminds me of the ones used for this Chemise a la Reine. I plan on making something inspired by that painting and some of my favorite John Hoppner works from that period (like this and this). The end result will probably be a very light, yet structured dress.


I bought some shantung to go underneath it, but I might use a  lighter weight fabric as a base to keep the gauzy effect.

I also got two yards of silk taffeta to create a sash and trim the hat. This taffeta is the exact same one I used for my Royal Milk Tea costume back in the day, and was also used to trim a Chemise a la Reine-ish dress I made a couple years ago!


From Amin Fabrics I bought this soft dotted net, which i’ll use to make neckerchiefs for a few projects. And at Zahra fabrics I found the same maroon/brown material I bought a few years ago. When I purchased this the first time it was for an 18th century project that ended in total failure, then the remaining yardage was used for my 1890s Paid Ensemble. I loved that fabric a lot and was sad to use it up, so I jumped at the opportunity to get more of it.

I bought three yards and I think i’ll reattempt that 18th Century project someday – three yards should be plenty for a jacket.


Another good find from Zahra fabrics was this brocade. It’s the same type of material as the one I purchased for the Elizabethan project, but is in a much brighter shamrock green that my camera refuses to do justice. It has gold stripes woven throughout and is ridiculously pretty.

Unfortunately they only had three and a half yards, which isn’t enough for the dress I had in mind. But I bought it anyway and am determined to do something with it someday!


From the same shop I got four yards of dark green satin faced chiffon (on left) and two yards of a striped jacquard. I was going to use the chiffon for an edwardian dress, but didn’t find any lace that matches it. So I need to browse etsy for something that will work, or put the project on hold for now.

The jacquard was supposed to be for a bustle dress, but I didn’t find anything that matches it. So that’s on hold for now as well!


A project I did manage to get all the materials for is a very simple Victorian riding habit. I’d never seen one of these before but fell in love when I saw this picture. I’m not sure why I like it so much, but I think it’s very striking!


I must have looked at hundreds of black suitings before picking this one. I wanted something that would look nice when it was draped and this is the only one I found that had a subtle sheen to it and was in the weight I needed. So I got six yards, which should be plenty.

I also found some filigree metal buttons on etsy which probably aren’t accurate, but should add some Victorian flair to this simple design.


At Joann’s I got a yard of white cotton sateen, which i’ll use for the collars and cuff. And at Hai Trimmings I bought a bundle of rooster feathers for the hat. I fell in love with these last time I went in but didn’t want to buy them without a purpose, so I was happy to finally have a use for them!


From Hai Trims I also got more of these resin “stones”.I bought orange ones on my last visit to the garment district, and couldn’t resist getting more this time around. I picked up three packets of the blue ones…


And three packets of the green ones.


The last notion-y things I bought are fluffy ostrich feathers – three in a warm white color, one in ivory.


And a bunch of smaller ones in a warm white, plus two raspberry colored ones. I have a couple projects in mind that require light colored feathers, but I mostly got these just for the sake of having them around.


The raspberry colored ones were bought for an Edwardian project (inspired by this), but I didn’t find velvet in the color I wanted so that project is on hold for now. However I did find this lace, which is hideous in that kitschy way that makes it perfect for something from the early 1900s, so I bought a yard of it with that project in mind.


I bought a bit of red cotton sateen just for the hell of it. I thought this might be fun for an 1830s dress, similar to this one. I’ve used this material for a few projects in the past and it’s great to work with and super cheap, so getting more seemed like a good idea even without a plan in mind!


The final two fabrics I bought are for a dress based off this one. I came across this dress recently and was immediately obsessed with it. The shape! The flowers! The draping! And the ruffles…what more could you want?

I’m not sure why but right away I knew I wanted this dress to be made from velvet. I planned on using black velvet for the dress, but the draping isn’t very visible on black, and the other dark colors (brown, blue, purple) weren’t as elegant as I liked. I wanted green, but couldn’t find any, so I choose this dark raspberry colored one. If it looks familiar that’s probably because I bought some on my last trip for a different project.


To trim the dress I bought silk satin. The edges of this are slightly discolored, which I’m frustrated by, but it seems to be unavoidable when buying ivory fabric from the garment district (I swear the shop lighting hides all fabric flaws).

For the ruffles of this dress I bought matte black tulle, which I think go nicely with the silk and velvet.


That is everything from the garment district but I did make a few sneaky Joanns purchases that I wanted to include. On my most recent trip there I was really impressed by the new (summer?) collections and trim selection – everything was nicely stocked for once and I saw a lot that I really liked.

I ended up getting five yards of pink chiffon that has an iridescent vine pattern on it. When it catches the light it reflects all the colors you can imagine. It’s really, really pretty. Probably one of my favorite fabrics I’ve ever seen. I got two yards of it in an off white color as well.


Then to go with that I bought one yard of a textured organza. This has satin flecks in it, a mottled pattern, and glitter woven into the base. This one was ridiculously priced ($30 a yard!) but with coupons it was half that, and a little more justifiable. I have no idea what i’ll use these for but I see some sort of medieval inspired dress that looks like a bridesmaid gown in their future…


The last thing I bought was this trim! Which I was also very impressed with. I got two yards of it which is enough to edge the cuffs/waist of a dress. Not sure what it will get used for either, but I liked it enough that I didn’t care!


And that’s everything! I’m currently working on my Civil War Era evening gown and a few other projects so I won’t be using any of these materials in the immediate future, but they will be making more appearances on my blog soon!

Thanks for reading!


Posted by on May 6, 2016 in Reviews & Hauls


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Fabric Haul & Future Plans, January 2016

Here is the promised fabric haul! And I have to warn you, it’s pretty gigantic.

The majority is from the NYC Garment District.  I went there the week before Christmas and spent all of my Christmas money (and then some) on fabric. After I got home I went on a little etsy shopping spree with some of my youtube earnings, and the week after that I placed an online order for some sewing supplies I ran out of. So the pile of purchases continued to grow for a while there – but i’m done now! Officially on a no-buy until I finish a few projects.

Speaking of that in addition to this being a haul it’s also going to be a peak into what projects i’m planning for the next few months. I have sketches to share along with heaps of reference photos, which is part of the reason this post will be so long.

I went into the Garment District armed with a half dozen swatch cards and a huge list. I was mainly shopping for four ensembles: A 1890s afternoon dress and coat. A more casual 1890s ensemble that consists of a hat, skirt, and shirtwaist. An Edwardian evening gown. And a short 1920s evening dress. I was also shopping for plain fabrics that would work for the foundation garments to go under them.

Here are my swatch cards for the three most exciting dresses~


And my massive heap of fabric I got to gaze at on Christmas morning.


I promise there are lots of pretty fabrics to share but i’m going to leave those to the end. We’ll start with the ones I bought for foundation garments, since those will be the base for all these dresses.

Here is my stack of lightweight cotton fabrics (and shantung!) which I bought with that purpose in mind.


One of my favorites shops (Fabric for Less) is going out of business. That really sucks since i’ll miss visiting their store, but it worked in my favor on this trip since they were having a big closing sale in an attempt to move as much stock as possible.

They had two cotton fabrics which I fell in love with. I’d looked at similar fabrics in other shops but they were all too thick or too expensive. I was almost ready to give up and use muslin instead when I came across these! The first one has an eyelet pattern and light striping across it. It’s pure white and has a slightly gauzy/sheer texture to it which I love since it won’t add bulk under dresses.


This was three dollars a yard. I bought eight yards at first, then asked for another three yards since I liked it so much. This will be used for the chemise, bloomers, petticoat, and maybe the top layer of a corset.


From the same shop I got four yards of a similar fabric. It was the same price, weight, and color, but has a different pattern to it. I really like this one – I think i’ll use it to make a blouse/shirtwaist for the 1890s ensemble.


And also from the same store I got shantung! This was three dollars as well and I plan to use it for the petticoat. It has a stiffness to it which creates very full ruffles, which is exactly what I want. This will likely be used for one of the corsets as well.


I should probably share a sketch of what I have in mind for the underthings, but i’m not sure how accurate this sketch will end up being. I am going to be making a chemise, two corsets, bloomers, and a petticoat. But the construction and appearance of those things is something I haven’t settled on just yet.

I’m likely going to base the chemise off this one from the Metropolitan Museum archives. But I really like the more traditional frilly ones as well, so i’m torn. The Met has some good bloomer references as well, which I might follow.

I wanted to make the petticoat with three tiers (as shown below) but two tiered ones are more accurate, so i’ll probably do that instead.

For corsets i’ll be making one with a very cinched waist and flat front below the waist (as opposed to the bulge below the tummy which was fashionable in the 1870s). And a longer one with a straighter silhouette that can be worn with dresses from the first quarter of the 20th century.


With those in mind i’ve bought some trims! As you can probably tell, i’ve decided on a pink and white theme.

The middle trim is one I already had, I believe it was given to me by my grandmother. The embroidered one is from etsy, the ribbon is from, and the woven one is from Joanns. I think these will really dress up the foundation garments and add that frilly lovelyness that was so common at that time.


The last of the “boring” things were from online shopping adventures. I got steel boning for the corsets, heavy weight buckram, ribbon, and twill tape from The muslin is for mock ups and lining, and that’s from Joann’s. The busk is from CorsetMoment on etsy. I’m really pleased with all these purchases, though you won’t end up seeing any of them in the finished pieces!

Speaking of onlinefabricstore, I usually highly recommend them but this order was a huge mess. I made it on December 29th. Part of my order shipped out on January 1st and I received it a few days later. A week after ordering I got an email saying two of the items were backordered and wouldn’t ship until January 11th. Now it’s the 18th and though the shipping label has been created, my order hasn’t shipped. Really frustrating!


Onto fun stuff! This is the project I put most of my Christmas money towards. It’s an evening gown from the early 1900s, which was inspired by the first few seasons of Downton Abbey. I spent days browsing pinterest for references and inspiration before compiling ideas from a bunch of the dresses I liked into this sketch.

X . X . X . X . X

I want the focus to be on the bodice and hem, with elaborate beading and lace on all the edges. If i’m feeling brave I might attempt beaded feathers across the hem, like these ones.


My first task was finding elaborate lace. The shop I planned to buy from refused to go lower than $55/yard for the lace I was interested in, and that was way too much. So I went into a shop I’d never visited before, called Fabric Express and ended up falling in love with this black and grey lace.

All the beads are metal and glass so it’s very heavy. The embroidery is filled with metallic silver threads, and it has symmetrical borders on each edge of the lace, which can be fussy cut out and used as trim. The lace is almost fifty inches wide and packed with beautiful beaded appliques. I’m so in love with this fabric, I can’t even tell you. The depth of it doesn’t capture very well on camera which is a shame since it’s one of the most gorgeous fabrics i’ve ever seen!


This still cost more than I wanted to spend – at $30something dollars a yard it’s the most expensive cut of fabric i’ve ever bought, but since I had Christmas money I decided to put it towards something I really loved and wouldn’t usually buy.


To go underneath that I picked up some silk shantung in a greyish cream color. This was from the store that was closing so it was very well priced for silk – I think $7 a yard or so, which is cheaper than i’ve ever seen it before. This has a lovely sheen to it and texture. It’s heavy enough to support the weight of the lace, but still light enough to drape beautifully.


On the downside… It’s really badly water damaged. Somehow I didn’t notice this despite watching the shop owner roll out and cut the fabric right in front of me. The damage has horribly stained almost eighteen inches of the fabric all across the yardage I purchased. Which makes the usable width only forty inches. I don’t think it was a bad deal, considering forty inch wide silk of this quality usually costs more than seven dollars a yard.

But it’s not what I thought I was paying for. And I’m not sure i’ll have enough fabric to use this as the base for the dress. I’m hoping I can wash the damaged portion and hide it in the bodice or train of the skirt, underneath an overlay which will hide the color difference. But i’m not sure that will work, and i’m really annoyed by the whole situation!


For the overlay on this dress I got seven yards of english net. This has a similar texture to tulle, but is more durable and less prone to tearing. It’s what lace is backed on, and is often used for veils. I had an awful time finding this in stores, everyone though I meant stretch net (used in athletic wear) or tulle. Luckily one guy had an unopened bolt of the stuff in black, which I grabbed up!


This is the opacity it has. Very similar to tulle, just has a tighter weave and a bit of stretch to it.


To embellish this dress I got lots of beads and sequins. I’m planning on using some vintage blue/black sequins a reader sent me as the main embellishment for this piece, since they are the only thing I can imagine being pretty enough to pair with this lace.

But I wanted to try a few different colors and sizes, so I got a large bag of faceted ones that shift between gold/black and two small bags of flat blue ones…which I thought were black when I bought them. I’m not sure either of these will match, but i’m going to try to use them and see how it goes.

The beads are from a shop whose name I can’t remember, but it’s near Beads World. I got a large bag of glass bungle beads, and a bag of glass seed beads that are dark grey. These definitely match and will be used generously all over the dress.


The next project is an afternoon dress from the 1890s. It’s going to have huge sleeves and a matching hat. Most of my references for this were fashion plates and pictures from vintage Harper’s Bazaar magazines which were a gift from my Great Aunt.

X . X


For this I wanted a fabric that was stiff enough to keep it’s shape – it needs to be to support the massive sleeves and pleated skirt. I also wanted the fabric to be cheap, since I needed eight yards. A fabric that falls into both of those categories is polyester taffeta, so that’s what I went with!

I got this from Hamed Fabrics – I think they have the best selection of taffeta, but Amin Fabric is good as well. This was priced at four dollars a yard and I love it. The color is amazing. It’s purple but has a pink/grey shift to it depending on the lighting. Here it looks like it’s all one tone.


But when it’s gathered slightly and the sun hits it, it really shines. I think the amount of depth this has makes it look a lot more expensive than it is, which I appreciate!


For the buttons I bought the cheapest metal ones that Daytona trims. I spent almost as much money on the buttons as I did on the dress fabric, which was painful. I can’t remember how many I needed (I know I got more than a dozen), but I paid $24 for the bunch of them.


Since this dress has a lower neckline i’ll be putting a partial blouse underneath it. I’m planning on making it like a corset cover, so it will be sleeveless and tie at the waist. This means it won’t add any bulk to my silhouette, which I appreciate! This was from Fabric Express and is a bit stiffer than the other cottons I got. Other than that it’s quite similar – it is partially sheer and has a subtle print to it.

And it’s white but i’m planning on tea staining it to an ivory shade.


Though the dress on its own should be quite pretty, it’s going to be paired with a cloak…coat…thing. I’m using advertisements from the late 1800s as reference, but it’ll be based off the one Edith wears in Crimson Peaks since i’m obsessed with it.

Finding fabric for this was a challenge. I wanted something that was heavier than a suiting, but lighter than a coating. I found a few ones that looked promising, but they were all more than $10 a yard, which was more than I wanted to pay since I needed so much of it.

I finally found what I wanted in Amin Fabrics – I didn’t even know they sold suitings, but they had a selection of them in the weight I needed hidden on the top of a pile (and by pile I mean wall of fabric – if I were any shorter I wouldn’t have been able to reach them, and i’m pretty tall!).

It’s a beige color, which isn’t very exciting.


But it has a nice weight to it which should lay nicely over the dress, while still being light enough to gather into puffed sleeves without becoming too bulky. It isn’t sheer, but i’m worried the dark color of the dress might be visible through it, which wouldn’t look good. So I may have to line it. I have some beige taffeta laying around that I can use for that if that becomes an issue.

The best part about this fabric is that the nine yards of it cost $68! Which is amazing for such a nice heavy suiting.


For the piping, bows, and hat I got two yards of velvet in this rich raspberry/dark fuchsia/ mulberry color. I really love this color and I think it looks nice with the taffeta I purchased (even though they don’t really match).  This is from Zahra Fabrics.


My other 1890s ensemble is pretty simple by comparison. It will consist of a cotton shirtwaist (I showed the fabric for that earlier) and a velvet skirt, with a matching hat. I like simple ensembles sometimes, and I like making separate pieces. I think this will make a very nice side project, and be quite pretty as a finished outfit.


The velvet is from Fabric for Less, the shop that was going out of business. I bought what was left, which is about six yards, and I think it was five dollars a yard. It looks linty as all get out because it’s velvet…that’s what velvet does.


The last project on my list is a 1920s evening dress in the famous flapper style. I don’t care for the silhouette of these (I know it will be really unflattering on me) but i’ve wanted to make one for ages since they are so different than anything i’ve made before.

Unfortunately I didn’t do a lot of research before shopping for this project. I realize now that I prefer the hand beaded dresses instead of ones made out of lace appliques. And the base fabric I purchased is way too stiff. These dresses don’t hang properly unless they are made from slinky materials (the opposite of what I bought).

I don’t think i’ll be able to make the delicate beaded dress that I dreamed out of the materials I got, so I may have to rethink this project until my next trip to the Garment District.


The lace for this project is from Fabric Express. It’s in a very pretty dusty rose/peachy color – quite similar to lace I bought for my birthday earlier in the year. The pattern is floral, with very wide borders at each edge and lots of appliques.


The beads are glass, and in a milky pink color. This lace is packed with beautiful copper colored sequins that really make the pattern pop.

Once again i’m a bit in awe that i’m in possession of such a pretty fabric! Everything about it is gorgeous and I feel very lucky to own it.


This is the stiff fabric I got to go underneath it. My reasoning for buying this material is that it would be easy to bead and could support the weight of beading. But it doesn’t have the right level of movement and was a really poor choice for this project.

On the bright side, it’s gorgeous. And I love having brocade around, since it makes the prettiest bodices. I’m sure i’ll find something to pair this with soon!DSC_0589

For the sash and skirt I got two yards of english net and four yards of chiffon. The chiffon looked like it matched really well in the store, but once I brought it home I realized it was too cool toned in color. So yet another fabric setback!


I only bought two trims on this trip (I managed to restrain myself for once). One is peachy colored pleated ribbon, which I plan on using to decorate the foundation garments. And the other is a really pretty organza based beaded lace, which I think will pair nicely with the fabric I have for a 1860s ball gown.


For hats I picked up some feathers. I wish I had bought a few more of these large ones but I wasn’t sure what colors to buy, so I held off and  only bought two. They are both in this purple taupe color, and they are massive! So floaty and wonderful!


Then I got two little bunches of two tone feathers. I’ve never seen anything like these before, they shift between two colors and are gorgeous. I bought a bundle of purple/green ones and green/black ones.


The last things are all for my 1890s dress/coat ensemble. I got a couple ribbon flowers and a fabric flower to decorate the hat.  I’m not a huge fan of how these look, but I wanted to get something and these were the cheapest ones they had ($2 a piece). The only reason I bought these at all is because I was worried I wouldn’t be able to find millinery flowers online.

I feel like millinery supplies are really overprice in the Garment District. Some of the fabric flowers were $12-$15 each despite being in poor condition and not the best quality. In future i’ll only buy feathers in those shops, and get my flowers online or from Michaels.

Speaking of feathers, I got more two tone ones! Though these don’t shift between two colors, they have more of a gradient to them. One bunch is purple and the other bunch is brown. I don’t think the brown ones match these fabrics very well, so i’ll likely pair it with some plaid material I got from Joanns.


That’s IT for things I bought in NYC! Here are some things I got online to compliment those purchases…

The first things are flowers! I made three flower orders, the main one was from SquishnChips on etsy. They have an amazing variety of flowers and they are all so pretty. I’m really happy with my purchases from them and would definitely order again.


I got some from Dames A La Mode and 32NorthSupplies as well. These ones are very nice, and arrived quickly, but it’s cheaper to buy through sellers outside of the US (like Squish) and the selection was much better from them, so i’m not sure if  would repurchase these.

They are all being stored in pretty pink floral printed box, and it makes me really happy!


From PrettyLaceShop I ordered some chantilly eyelash trim. I’m thrilled with this purchase, it was really cheap (three dollars for three yards!), is wonderfully soft, and has a gorgeous pattern. It also arrived really quickly. I would definitely order more, just to have it around in the future.

This is to trim the top edge of a corset.


This one is from the same seller and also to trim a corset. It’s also very pretty and well made.


From LaceTrimWholesalers I got five meters of this mesh based embroidered trim. This is for the shirtwaist i’m making to go with the velvet skirt. I looked at a lot of trims similar to this, but eventually chose this one since I loved the details in the edging!


This shop is also where I got the embroidered pink trim for the foundation garments. This one is really pretty, it’s embroidered with rayon threads that have a nice sheen to them and the pattern is really delicate.


And the last purchase was this trim. I’d hoped this would match the purple taffeta I bought, so I could use it on that project. It doesn’t (not even close) but I don’t even care because it’s really pretty. And i’m sure i’ll find a use for it some day!


That’s it!  This was huge and I have no plans to buy anything in the near future because of this. This is probably enough to keep me busy for a good long while. And I can’t wait to get started, because I’m really excited to work with all of these fabrics and to begin work on my new projects for this year!

Thanks for reading – a new The Making of Post should be up later in the week! 🙂

*edit put 2015 in the title by mistake and fixed it. OOPS.


Posted by on January 18, 2016 in Reviews & Hauls


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