Regency Dance Weekend 2017

I’m combining these two dresses in one post since they’re essentially the same dress in different fabrics. Both were worn at this year’s Regency Dance Weekend in Salem, MA.

The pattern is Laughing Moon #126, and both dresses have the View A bodice front with the skirts cut on the short side for dancing. (Possibly too short–but, speaking from experience, I much prefer that to tripping over my hem all evening.)

Day1Ball

The first dress is my wearable muslin, made out of an old duvet cover. I was so pleased with the fit that I decided it was useable as a dress for the first night and for the daytime tea on Sunday. It has View B puff sleeves with detachable long undersleeves (as in, they’re attached by whipstitching). For daywear, I also added a chemisette, spencer, cap, bonnet, and shawl.

The second dress was made from a sheer chiffon sari (a gift from a former colleague) and white cotton lawn, and uses the View C puff sleeves. The sleeves are unlined, the bodice is both flatlined and lined (this made sewing that shifty chiffon much, much easier!), and the skirt is a lawn underskirt with a shorter split overskirt made from the sari. I loved using the sari–it’s just instantly more impressive with all that nice embroidery! Plus, it has built-in matching trim (that trim at the neckline and sleeve bands is cut off a different part of the sari). I wasn’t going to attempt to make self-fabric ties from chiffon, so the ties are a coordinating ribbon, which I’m pleased to say was a simple substitute (and I’d be tempted to do the same for future dresses just to avoid the extra work of making the ties).

InMirror

I’m also wearing a high-waisted petticoat under the purple dress, but I don’t have any photos of that because it’s the type that’s held up with just straps instead of a full bodice (like this one). I used the skirt from the dress pattern, but didn’t cut the front slashes, left an opening in the center back, and threaded a drawstring through a waistband. It’s got a couple of rows of cording and tucks at the hem to help it stand out a bit. The straps are just wide twill tape.

All in all, I really like this drop-front dress design. It’s kind of a wrap dress, with all the easy, flattering fitting that entails, plus you can get in and out of it yourself (though it’s always nice to have another pair of hands to make a neat bow in the back).

Long Time No See

As much as I hate summer, I confess the warmer weather is causing my thoughts to drift to making lightweight clothing. I have to take a look at my closet to see what should be retired, but I’m pretty sure the main lack in my wardrobe is summer tops. (That said, I’m already planning three new skirts [which I realllly don’t need, ha].)

I would like some tops with button closures and I’ve bookmarked a few patterns . . . but I’ve only had pretty disastrous results with my buttonholer (and forget handmade buttonholes). However, I know I read somewhere in the last few months that other people really like the buttonholer for the Featherweight, so maybe I need to try it again? Maybe it’s okay for shirting and the problem was trying it with canvas?

Anyway, this blog was supposed to be a chronicle of things I made and I haven’t been actually updating it because taking photos is such a pain. I’ll just accept that I’m never going to photograph the plain black turtleneck I made months ago (though it’s a very useful wardrobe staple). Aside from that, I’ve mostly been working on two Regency dresses in preparation for last weekend’s Regency Dance Weekend in Salem (write-up on those to be posted shortly).

Now that that’s done, my tentative sewing queue currently includes:

  • Ball/party dress for Pawling and Pinewoods dance camps
  • Short-sleeve top(s) (still deciding on pattern(s))
  • Short-sleeve dress (probably another M76349)
  • Black purse
  • Knit maxi skirt
  • Linen maxi skirt
  • Peasant skirt (look, this will be useful for the ren fair, so it’s totally necessary!)

Further out:

  • Costume for Pinewoods?
  • New top for JC Ball (stretch velvet)
  • New costume for ren fair?

I’ve also started knitting! I’ve finished two pussy hats, an Outlander-inspired capelet (just in time for warmer weather, haha), and am making good progress on a lace shawl. Of course, I really want to make a sweater . . . but not sure if I’m up to that quite yet. Find me on Ravelry under Sewfall.