The countdown to Halloween has begun. Only 50 days left until my favorite holiday is upon us. And I have decided to do the craziest thing I can think of. I plan on making an entire outfit from Frances Grimble’s book, Fashions of the Gilded Age, Volume 1: Undergarments, Bodices, Skirts, Overskirts, Polonaises, and Day Dresses 1877-1882
This decision is probably one of the most daunting, daring, deranged, and dumb things I have ever done. This is all of those things for a few reasons: I have never finished a full outfit in my life. I am one of those people who start something and then never finish for whatever reason…. I am working on this, which is one reason why I have given myself this impossible goal. I have a back-up idea if this doesn’t work, ’cause I can’t go through Halloween without a costume. A second good reason this is an impossible decision is that I have never made a corset in my life, and my entire outfit depends on having a good corset that works well and fits perfectly. The third reason is that I have from 9 am to 5 pm every weekday to do this. I am treating this like a regular job (seeing as my current one isn’t). The fourth and final reason why this may be the stupidest thing I’ve ever done is because I am trying to get a full layered outfit done in fifty days, with well made muslin mock-ups and streamlined final products.
This is how this is going to work: I am going to work, and at the end of my ‘work day’ I’ll post what I have done the previous day (so I can get my pictures all pretty), and briefly describe what my plans are for the next day. This way I can have a steady record of what has been done and what needs to be done.
So what prompted this crazy venture into something that is impossible for someone of my intermediate sewing skills? I recently purchased Fashions of the Gilded Age. It is a wonderful book with beautiful pictures and over 100 awesome patterns. Now, I have been sewing for most of my life, and I’ve made all of my Halloween costumes. Previously however, all of my costumes have been modified from existing patterns (mostly Simplicity) and I have not had much luck in drafting my own. After purchasing this book, I did a (very) brief scan online to see if anyone had made any of the patterns from this book and it came up surprisingly empty. So I plan on going through most of the patterns and making them with reviews on my struggles with the patterns and (hopefully) helpful tips to others trying these patterns. As previously stated, I have trouble finishing things, so I gave myself this deadline to kick myself in the rear to hit the ground running with these patterns.
Today I drafted and cut out “Corset without Gussets” on page 54. I have sewn together one side and since I took a three hour break to make pot-roast for dinner, am going way over my self-imposed deadline. I plan on working on the other side tomorrow, and order boning after it’s measured properly. So far I think it’s coming out wonderfully, but it may be a bit small.
Wish me luck and until tomorrow!