May 1, 2011

Sewing tempters for JAFA 2012

Jane Austen Festival Australia has released news of some of their hands-on, limited-attendance sewing classes for 2012. This festival is run in Canberra, Australia, every April and features something for everyone - from sewing, costume analysis, talks about Jane Austen's books, Jane Austen's life and letters, Jane Austen's love of dance, dance workshops, soldiers, balls, food, teas, concerts, theatre and more!


To tempt us, the list of workshops below with a variety of teachers from around Australia  looks very comprehensive. And because of their popularity, in 2012 you will be asked to choose just 2 workshops before putting your name on waiting lists for the others. 




Beginning Embroidery – Regency Reticule (limited to 15)
Students will learn the basics of surface embroidery while making a regency-era monogrammed reticule. We will cover backstitch, whipped backstitch, chain stitch, detached chain (lazy daisy) and outline stitch. Do the embroidery in class and make up the reticule at home.

Make a Regency Dolls Dress (limited to 10)
Cut out and start sewing your own regency doll's dress.


Adapting Sleeves for the Larger Figure  (limited to 15)Many of us no longer have the sylph-like figures of youth.  Learn to manipulate a sleeve pattern to fit larger upper arms.  (This method is also suitable for gentlemen with large biceps, but we will be looking primarily at ladies styles.) 
BYO paper, paper scissors, ruler, sticky tape, pencil, eraser, pen, and tape measure.  I will bring a basic ‘puff sleeve’ pattern and a more fitted long sleeve for you to alter, but please feel free to bring your own sleeve pattern to work on.



Make a Plume (limited to 15)Working on the information from the demo on Feathers last year, this is your chance to make a feather Plume for yourself.  A plume is generally constructed of 2 or 3 feathers sewn together and often wired, and then curled.  Feathers and wire will be supplied for a cost of $10.  Feathers will be either white, black or natural.  You are welcome to bring your own feathers (you’ll need 3 ostrich feathers/drabs of approximately 30cm/12”)


Make a Regency ‘Saque’ Hat (limited to 15)Regency saque hatThis is a hat that comes under Turbans and I think it is the Regency version of the Beanie – always a good hat for those bad hair days (as are most turbans).  A Saque is made in a similar fashion to a mob cap or caul, so it can be easily sewn by hand (there’s really not much sewing) so there’s no need to bring a sewing machine along to this workshop.
BYO 50cm length of fabric (115-150cm width)*, matching thread, sewing needles, pins and scissors.  (Optional tassel or bead dangle. Other decoration to be discussed during the workshop.)
* Choosing Fabric: The fabric you choose will depend on whether you plan to wear it in the day or evening.  The Saque works best in a fabric that has some body, but still drapes well.  Some acetate brocades will work well for an evening Saque, but for day wear look for something less shiny, like a wool challis, or crepe.  A stiff cotton, or a taffeta won’t work well.  If you want a pattern, stick to middle eastern styles rather than a floral.



Regency 'Betsie' or Neck Ruff/Frill (limited to 15)

Fashion follows cycles, and so we see the Elizabethan ruff influencing the wearing of neck ruffs and frills during the regency period. This ruff earnt the names of 'Betsie' from Elizabeth I and 'cherusse' as the name given to starched lace collarettes. It was worn with high-necked gowns and as decoration with lower-necked dresses. In August 1815, Mirror of Fashion, a section of the Ladies' Monthly Museum mentions "a double Frill of worked muslin round the neck". 
Class members will make a single neck frill from white lawn and ribbon.

The Cure for "Gaposis" - Methods for closing the back of your regency gown (limited to 15)
Frustrated with trying to figure out how to close your bodice? Students will learn a method for installing and will hand sew an example to take home with them.

Pre-festival Regency Bonnet Workshop (limited to 15, 11-12 April 2012.)
A two-day workshop featuring a sewing demonstration by a historic costume maker, followed by the opportunity to make a bonnet using Regency sewing techniques.
Cost for class & materials $150 (This class is not included in the Jane Austen Festival Australia Season Ticket)   BOOK HERE


Corded Stays - Close-up Analysis & Demonstration - (limited to 15)
Regency corsets were not as restrictive as their Georgian and Victorian relations, and many featured corded supports. Have a look at an antique full-length corded corset from the late regency period and see how it was made. Learn how you can make your own modern reproductions of full length or short stays and make a cording sampler to take away with you.

Quilted Regency Coats - (limited to 15)
Regency coats were worn to keep the wearer both warm and dry. Stitching patterns were used to hold the wadding in place, and often these stitches were just as beautiful a design as the garment itself. See an antique regency coat up close and study how it was put together. Workshop participants will then make a copy of its collar.


Pre-festival Regency Dress Making Workshops - (limited to 6) 
BOOK HERE
Under the eye of historical costumer, Aylwen Gardiner-Garden in her Canberra studio, make your own regency gown to wear to Jane Austen Festival in April.
26-27 November 2011
28-29 January 2012
24-25 March 2012

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