Feb 7, 2017

My Tidens Tøj Regency Gown (updated)

Original Gown

This Danish wedding gown has long been of interest to me, and this week I received the fabric that I'd had custom embroidered for it. The original can be seen at http://natmus.dk/historisk-viden/temaer/modens-historie/1790-1840/hvid-brudekjole/.

My version of the embroidery pattern

Closer up of fabric with white embroidery along the hem.

I've chosen a fine white cotton with matching thread for embroidery and will be making a size 12 using the pattern below, which is a screenshot of the pdf that is back online at http://natmus.dk/fileadmin/user_upload/natmus/historisk-viden/modens-historie/snitmoenster/hvid-brudekjole.pdf.


Below are the photos I took of this gown on my recent trip to Denmark. It was so fantastic to see it up close, right in front of me. Unfortunately, it was behind glass, so these are the best photos I could get.








Patterns you may wish to use to replicate this gown include:
  • Nehelenia's 1790 Chemise Dress Pattern (based on this exact gown) gives a good bodice base and overlay.
  • Sense & Sensibilities Elegant Ladies Closet Pattern is good to use for dress construction methods as this gown is constructed like the drawstring gown. I used the skirt pattern but adjusted the fabric widths to fit my gown - my front pieces were wider and I used 2.5m for the back panel. Another pattern you could try that I did not experiment with is the Laughing Moon Chemise Dress, but it does not have the pleated collar overlay and I am unsure how the front is gathered.
My recommendation for beginners/intermediate is to make the Sensibility drawstring gown with elbow length sleeves and add the overlay from the Chemise dress pattern.  It's not quite what I did but would probably end being a lot easier.

Dress Base:
I put together two of these from sturdy linen for the boned bodice
and one from fine linen for the lining. 

The bodice is boned with cotton cord.

The back is pleated over the top of the boned bodice.

Laced at the front.
Eyelets are sewn by hand using a thick linen thread
from Burnley & Trowbridge.

Back view of laced bodice.

Bodice Overlay:

Pleated overlay with cotton stay tape as mentioned in the pattern instructions.

According to the instructions the ends are mounted onto cotton stay tape.

Tape pinned for sewing down.

Once the tapes are sewn down the back is sewn together by hand. 

Overlay is attached to the front skirt panel.
I made a french seam for tidiness and then ran a cotton tape through the casing.
Don't forget to sew the ends into the side seam before you finish constructing the gown.


Pleating the back and finishing off the gown:

2.5m fabric pleated onto the back.
Using 2" pleated I make a pleat facing towards center back,
pin it, then measure 1", stick in pin, and do next pleat to that pin. 

Starting to look like a dress at last!

3am selfie after sewing all night to get it finished. 

Front view with proper camera - must check my son's camera
settings because my iphone photos ended up a lot better than this.

Back view.
My husband wouldn't take the shawl away
so its a bit hidden.

Close up of the back. I must say white
is a really bad colour to photograph outdoors.



Jan 17, 2017

Preparing itinerary takes longer than expected

Every time I plan a new overseas adventure I am surprised by just how much time I have to spend on the computer bringing it all together. Over the Christmas break I seem to have spent most of my time organising my trip in June, tidying up my sewing space and planning the program for JAFA in April. Very soon I'll be back at University and I haven't had a chance to do any sewing yet!



Before Christmas I thoroughly enjoyed our Christmas Carol Ball and love this photo that Dylan took of John and I doing a candle dance. Every year we dance the dances from John's Christmas Carol Dance Book and its so nice to have all our friends around us.



However I can now report that my flights are booked! I'm going to be in the UK from 4 June-31 July spending four weeks researching and photographing costumes in museums for my book "Trims, Frills & Furbelows" http://www.tinyurl.com/tff-kickstarter and then I'm planning to attend needlework classes at the Royal School of Needlework, a textile conservation workshop in Glasgow and then a 3-day Jane Austen event in Winchester. From 1-16 August I'll be attending a historic textile summer school in Denmark, details still tbc.

I really must thank my husband John for staying home this trip to look after our adult son with disabilities and to making sure our younger teenage son gets his homework done and exam preparation completed and my English friend Jane for offering me a room, giving me a home base to come back to when I need it, companionship and encouragement to keep on track.

Dec 29, 2016

Trims, Frills & Furbelows Pre-order



Pre-order your copy of Trims, Frills and Furbelows
This is a pre-order to reserve your copy of the book "Trims, Frills and Furbelows". Delivery is planned for December 2017. Subscribers may follow this project between January-December 2017 in the private Facebook Group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/trims.aylwen/

"The finishing touches of the Georgian Era - padded hems, furbelows, rouleaux, piping, ruffles, soutache and fly fringe - oh my!" 

There are many books available with a broader scope of different fashion eras, but Aylwen's goal is to focus on trimmings of the late 18th century and early 19th century. She will expand on the details of application and technique using original garments for information. There is a growing group of historical costume enthusiasts and textile conservators who wish to enhance or repair their Georgian, Jane Austen, Regency, Empire and Biedermeier gowns and learn how to make all the lovely trims you see in the pictures.

This full-colour A4 book (21.0 x 29.7cm OR 8.27 x 11.69 inches) will study the construction details of historic trimmings so they can be added to skirts, bodices, and sleeves. You will see close-up photographs of both the front & back of the trimmings and step-by-step pictorial instructions showing how to make the trimmings so you can add them to your garments without needing to buy any new patterns.

"it will become a standard reference for those who study such material..." 

Aylwen already has permission to conduct research in collections in the United Kingdom (including the Charles Wade Collection from Snowshill Manor, the Hereford Museum and the Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum) and private collections in Australia to take photographs for publication and if funding is generous will be able to pay for rights to use photographs from other institutions and the UK National Trust. Aylwen brings an immense knowledge of historical textiles and professional desktop publishing experience to this project. She will be combining Adobe InDesign's professional layout and design features with book planning project management software to ensure the book is completed in a timely manner and stays on schedule.





Dec 19, 2016

Last chance to support new book on historic trims from 1730-1830




Why is this project different?


"The finishing touches of the Georgian Era - padded hems, furbelows, rouleaux, piping, ruffles, soutache and fly fringe - oh my!"

There are many books available with a broader scope of different fashion eras, but Aylwen's goal is to focus on trimmings of the late 18th century and early 19th century. She will expand on the details of application and technique using original garments for information. There is a growing group of historical costume enthusiasts and textile conservators who wish to enhance or repair their Georgian, Jane Austen, Regency, Empire and Biedermeier gowns and learn how to make all the lovely trims you see in the pictures.

This full-colour A4 book (21.0 x 29.7cm OR 8.27 x 11.69 inches) will study the construction details of historic trimmings so they can be added to skirts, bodices, and sleeves. You will see close-up photographs of both the front & back of the trimmings and step-by-step pictorial instructions showing how to make the trimmings so you can add them to your garments without needing to buy any new patterns.

"it will become a standard reference for those who study such material..."

Aylwen already has permission to conduct research in collections in the United Kingdom (including the Charles Wade Collection from Snowshill Manor, the Hereford Museum and the Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum) and private collections in Australia to take photographs for publication and if funding is generous will be able to pay for rights to use photographs from other institutions and the UK National Trust.

Aylwen brings an immense knowledge of historical textiles and professional desktop publishing experience to this project. She will be combining Adobe InDesign's professional layout and design features with book planning project management software to ensure the book is completed in a timely manner and stays on schedule.


What are the benefits for pledgers?

As a very special thank you, Aylwen has made e-books and hardcover books available to Kickstarter subscribers only and will not be offering them for sale after this project closes.
E-book and printed book subscribers do not have to wait until December 2017 (or April 2018!) - all pledgers will be able to access a password-protected website where they can follow Aylwen's journey and see most of her book updates AND be invited to join a private facebook group where she will post updates.
Stretch Goal #1: reaching $10,000 activates an extra chapter in the book: Reticules, pockets and purses. [UNLOCKED]

Aylwen will add an extra chapter for no extra charge for ALL BOOK BACKERS on reticules, pockets and purses and will include lots of colour photos, embroidery designs and patterns for making your own.
Stretch Goal #2: reaching $15,000 activates a new companion book: Gentlemen's Fashion of the Georgian Era [LOCKED]

Once this goal is unlocked Aylwen will offer you a completely NEW REWARD - a long awaited and requested "Costume in Detail" book on Men's Fashion of the Georgian Era - 1730-1820. Aylwen will take photographs of men's garments both inside and out and include close-up photos of finer details and trims. This book will be available for pre-order as soon as this stretch goal is unlocked. A 10% discount will be offered to subscribers of Trims, Frills and Furbelows.
How will the book be set out?

This A4 book will contain
  • Full-length colour photos of each garment 
  • High-resolution close-up photos of trim showing both front and back (where possible without damaging a garment) and inside the garment showing how it was attached
  • Step-by-step construction tutorials using photographs of an actual reproduction






About the Author



Aylwen Gardiner-Garden is a historical costumier, experienced historic dancer and professional events organiser based in Canberra, Australia. She is Director of Jane Austen Festival Australia and is currently studying textile conservation. She has won awards for costuming at Your Wardrobe Unlock'd, and was especially pleased that her first costume to win an award featured an intricate regency trim. Aylwen sometimes thinks others must think her rather weird when she describes one of the greatest thrills in her life is to be working out how a particular trim is made. Aylwen teaches regular historic sewing workshops from her home studio, at Jane Austen Festival Australia and has taught in the US, UK and Germany.

How will the funds be used?

The funds raised with this Kickstarter project will enable Aylwen to
  • travel in June 2017 to conduct research and take photos of a wide range of garments in the United Kingdom - including garments from the Charles Wade Collection, the Hereford Museum, Victoria & Albert Museum and the Chertsey Museum,
  • pay for some of her accommodation during the research period,
  • take close-up photographs of both original and reproduced trims, 
  • reproduce trims for how-to-do-it instructions, and 
  • self-publish an A4 (21.0 x 29.7cm OR 8.27 x 11.69 inches) full colour 100+ page bound book, to be posted out to Kickstarter supporters in December 2017 before launching it to the general public at Jane Austen Festival Australia in April 2018.


How will you keep the subscribers updated?

I am setting up a subscriber-only section of my website and a private facebook group where pledgers to my Kickstarter costume-in-detail book can follow my research. So, just for the price of a book you can follow my journey, too.
How can I help?

Thank you for your help! There are a few things you can do:
-Keep sharing this Kickstarter project on facebook, blogs and other social media platforms,
-Send emails to family and friends who may be interested and explain to them that you really want this book (and the new extras!) to be published and that we need more backers to reach our funding goal, and
-Keep this Kickstarter campaign going - we'd love your ideas on what we can do to spread the word.

Dec 15, 2016

Kickstarter Update: Trims, Frills and Furbelows - only 5 days to go!

Thank you for helping me get this project past the first stretch goal! I am so happy to be adding purses, pockets and reticules. Here is the latest draft table of contents for my Kickstarter Book, 'Trims, Frills and Furbelows' . As one subscriber said,

"it will become a standard reference for those who study such material"

Even though I enjoy sewing historical costumes, I have found over the years that I much prefer researching the finer details of trims and am so looking forward to sharing all my research with you.

I still need your help funding this project - every cent will be used towards the project and all the extra costs of camera lenses, tickets, accommodation, car hire, travel insurance, and more!




I am looking forward to making fly fringe and tapes for this project on a reproduction English tape loom this summer. This will be a nicer alternative to my clover beading loom. This box is patterned off one in Colonial Williamsburg.



Dec 10, 2016

Kickstarter Update: Trims, Frills and Furbelows - only 9 days to go!

Thank you so much for your support of my project - and for getting me so close to my first stretch goal - if you can help spread the word who knows where this project will end! It would be absolutely amazing if it ended up with both an extra chapter and a second book.

As you can see by the table of contents image attached below, there is a lot that will be included in this book, including scale patterns you can use for your own projects. Please let me know of any other trims you would like to see added to this book. Curators in the UK are working with me right now to identify the best garments from their collections to use as examples and I welcome all of your suggestions of other collections to visit.

Remember, as written in the original campaign information, this A4 book will contain
  • full-length colour photos of each garment used, 
  • high-resolution close-up photos of trims showing front, back and inside the garment showing how it was attached, and 
  • step-by-step photographic and written construction tutorials for each trim 
A few extra tiers have been added to the pledges and you now have the chance to add a 2018 Calendar to your rewards.

Many thanks, again, for joining me on this journey!
Aylwen Gardiner-Garden 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1245085016/trims-frills-and-furbelows


Dec 2, 2016

Wait, there's more?

I'd like to announce two new goals that I am going to try to reach with this Kickstarter Project. 

To reach these goals I need your help spreading the word about this project with your friends or reaching out to blogs who might be willing to let its readers know more. All the help I can get is very much appreciated and I've enjoyed receiving your feedback for this project.

Please share this link: http://tinyurl.com/kickstarter-tff


Stretch Goal #1: reaching $10,000 AUD activates an extra chapter in the book: Reticules, pockets and purses.

Once this goal is unlocked Aylwen will add an extra chapter for no extra charge for ALL BOOK BACKERS on reticules, pockets and purses and will include lots of colour photos, embroidery designs and patterns for making your own.

Embroidered silk reticule to be included in extra chapter


Stretch Goal #2: reaching $15,000 AUD activates a new companion book: Gentlemen's Fashion of the Georgian Era

Once this goal is unlocked Aylwen will offer you a completely new reward - a long awaited and requested "Costume in Detail" book on Men's Fashion of the Georgian Era. Aylwen will take photographs of men's garments both inside and out and include close-up photos of finer details and trims. This book will be available for order as soon as this stretch goal is unlocked and will be selling at the same price structure as Trims, Frills and Furbelows. A limited 10% discount will be offered to those subscribing to both books before 19 December 2016. 


Amongst garments already selected for the book on
Men's Clothing is a rare pair of men's drawers from the 1780s.

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