Saturday, August 20, 2011

1785 Robe a l'Anglaise of Chintz

Tonight's project. I've had the fabric and I just felt like starting something new...



This robe a l'anglaise of painted silk is from the Kyoto Costume Institute. The dress is from 1785, but the fabric is from the 1760's. Originally from England. It is boned at the center back and has a trim of pleated sheer fabric (maybe a organdy - and it looks like it's got a rolled edge), folded in half, and wine-colored ribbon. Ignore the neck ribbon, thats not actually part of the original dress. It is also shown with a fichu that blends a bit with the trim.




The front is in the compere style and is is ornamented with small dark buttons. I assume the center front pins closed. The ribbon extends down the front and follows the edge of the bodice, stopping a little past where the overskirt starts. 


I found some similar reproduction chintz fabric from William Booth Draper. It's cotton, not silk, and its a bit brighter and more dense of a pattern, but it has the same feel to it. The grey fabric is for the lining.


I cut the pattern pieces using a J.P. Ryan anglaise pattern that I have previously altered and redone for my body. I then assembled the bodice with modern construction. I would love to do up a bodice in a totally period correct way - assembling each piece of fabric with its corresponding lining piece and then putting it all together - but I haven't found enough info on how exactly this was done. So for now, I sew the lining, then the fashion fabric, and then press the seam allowances to one side and go over each seam afterwards with hand stitching to give the piece a more authentic look. 

And so far...

The planning sketches.

The pattern pieces laid out.

The lining is now attached to the fabric at the neckline.
Back view of the previous stage.

Sleeves pinned on just to see.

Some similar, if iffy, trim pinned on.
After pinning some organza ribbon I had on, just to see what the trim might look like eventually, I noticed that the trim on the exant dress does not show above the neckline. Its folded down, under the ribbon, and shows two layers sticking out from the one side. Just to note. More to come later. 

Cheers!

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