It’s Biedermeier, Baby

Finally, an 1830’s outfit! It’s Biedermeier, baby!

For my stays I took the pattern and inspiration from Koshka the Cat’s 1820-1840’s corset project. I adapted it to my own body, and browsed around for cording patterns online to complete my own vision for these ‘corstays’. A friend of my parents made a busk for me, which I carved with a burning tool. I used American Duchess notes on fan lacing, which I can recommend. Some snapshots:

For my corded petticoat I took inspiration from many places, and came up with my own version. I started out handsewing, but after a while switched to machine. I was afraid I would never finish it! It was my first time starching clothing as well.

For my gown I used the Truly Victorian pattern TV455, which I did change a bit mainly to change the gathers on the bodice to more of a pleated bertha look. I found an antique Victorian belt buckle for my belt on Etsy. My pelerine was made following a pattern in Workwoman’s Guide. I also cross checked many of the other things I made with the information from this book. The lace is vintage, I found it in an antique shop and I am guessing it came from a petticoat. And after having worn a makeshift turban for one event, I was able to buy a pretty bonnet which I lined and decorated.

So far I have worn this outfit twice, and I really enjoyed it! The stays are reasonably comfortable with only cording and a wooden busk, and the dress is light and not long. Future improvements would include sleeve adaptations for decent daywear, and good shoes for this time period. And of course some little mistakes here and there that I’m not going to mention in detail. Note that the pictures with turban were taken by Martijn van Huffelen, and the picture with bonnet by Irina Krutasova.

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That’s it for my 1830’s adventure… for now! If you have any questions or comments, please let me know.

with love,

juul victoria

Striped Italian Gown

A striped fabric, purple-ish red and white, had been patiently lying in my stash for a while. When I got my copy of the American Duchess Guide to 18th Century Dressmaking, I knew that this fabric had to become an Italian gown. One of my first all handstitched outfits, except for my stays which I had already made previously and an existing underskirt I used. I don’t have the best pictures of this gown, but I still want to show what I do have!

This outfit is where I started to take the historical approach more seriously, but I wasn’t yet very comfortable with it. And to be honest I am still finding my way in this area of sewing and costuming, and trying to feel more at home in my costumes again in general.

Some workroom snapshots:

Worn at the second edition of Salon de la Societe Raffinee:

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And worn at a picnic organised by ‘the Hedgehogs’:

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with love,

juul victoria

Lady Victoria(n) Batman

A Victorian Fancy Dress Ball, organised by my friend Shari from La Rose Soiree, inspired me to create a Victorian Lady Batman. The concept was to make an 1860s ballgown that could either be dressed up as a Batman cosplay, or styled as a historically passable gown. There are a lot of parts to this outfit!

But first, let me share some snapshots from my project notebook:

Underthings first: I handstitched a new chemise and a pair of drawers from a free pattern from The Sewing Academy. I used my ‘generic’ Victorian corset, previously made (by machine) at a corset workshop. I built a cage crinoline, after the Truly Victorian 1858 Round Cage Crinoline pattern, and stitched the parts by machine. Then came a large petticoat after the accompanying tutorial, stitched by hand.

For the real, visible part of the outfit I had a lot of help from actual Victorian bat-themed costumes, here are some inspirational images I found on Pinterest:

For the actual gown I handstitched a grey silk skirt and bodice after an 1861-4 ballgown in Janet Arnold, Patterns of Fashion I, and fashioned a  Batman logo from the same silks and attached it to the bertha. I hemmed a yellow silk sash, to mimic Batman’s yellow belt and to be worn in a big bow at the back. I also made a dark blue velvet day bodice with pagoda sleeves, draped to the body by my friend Desiree. Then a pair of separate sleeves to peep out from under the pagoda sleeves, with tiny grey buttons at he cuff. For the fancy dress ball I had a fascinator, covered with black silk which I gave tiny bat ears and small veil. For a day hat, I covered a small bonnet in dark blue velvet with trimmings.

Some sewingroom snapshots:

My mother knit me a pair of long black evening mitts, as well as short blue day mitts. I also had a fan which I took apart and covered in matching grey silk with Batman logo. For jewellery I bought a reproduction mourning locket, with pictures of a Victorian couple, to represent Batman’s parents. My stockings and boots I found at La Rose Passementarie, which sells American Duchess historical reproductions.

Here are some pictures from the Fancy Dress Ball (by Lux Immortalis) , and one at the end of another event where I wore the day version of this dress (by Martijn van Huffelen).

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I hope to wear this outfit again soon! If you have any questions or comments, please let me know.

with love,

juul victoria

Musical costumes: Princess Fiona

I made three princess Fiona dresses for my sister-in-law and two other members of ‘Theaterkoor Nutsz’. The song is performed by the same character in three different stages of her life, which meant three the same dresses in three different sizes. I based these on a couple of patterns I altered, and worked with a tight budget. I love the outcome!

Some pictures from my sewingroom:

I will soon update with some pictures from the actual performance.

Find out more about Theaterkoor Nutsz on their Facebookpage!

 

Theatre costumes: Teuntje en de Zeemeermin

WARNING: This is some ooooolllllld stuff!!

One of my first experiences in making costumes for others was when I was asked to help out PIT theatre company with their lastminute costume troubles. With little time and very little means left (and not a whole lot of experience either) I did the best I could, and we were all happy with the results.

Some progress pictures:

 

 

Some pictures of one of the performances:

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Dance Costumes: Bellarck

I made these costumes for this year’s production of New Dance Company Eindhoven, called ‘Bellarck’. The piece is very dynamic, filled with contrasts and takes a lot of inspiration from the baroque era: the costumes had to reflect that.

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Making costumes for dancers is a very specific trade and, as often, I had to be ‘creative in the funds-department’. Also, there were 10 different dancers and a couple of costume changes, which meant quite a lot of pieces. Taking all this in consideration, it was a great opportunity to work with them and a very educational experience!

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PR flyer featuring the choreographers wearing the prototype skirts

Some proces snapshots:

Pictures from the performance (by Bas Haans):

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All of the dancers had a set of green over- and underskirts

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I also made three shorter red skirts

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…and 3 black skirts with a gold waistband

Find out more about New Dance Company Eindhoven on their Facebookpage!

Theatre costumes: De Weermeisjes

Five costumes that I designed and made for children’s theatre company PIT: a King, a Queen, an astronomist lackey and 2 weather girls. Working with PIT is always a grateful job! The piece is called ‘De Weermeisjes’ after the two magical creatures inside the King and Queen’s old weatherhouse. Alledgedly, these girls can do more than just predict the weather…

These were the concept drawings:

 

Here are some pictures from the performance (these were made by Kees Cligge)

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The Queen is sad after the King has disappeared
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The lackey turns out to be an astronomer/magician, who might be able to solve the problem
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The Queen reading from the big book
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Consulting the weathergirls
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The King fighting the evil weather girls

 

And a couple of work-in-progress pictures:

 

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