Sunday, July 10, 2011

Parisian Pet-en-l'air!

I just realized that I haven't posted pictures of the Parisian pet-en-l'air I wore on Friday of Under the Redcoat!

First, with the knitted pinball, of course :)

The Parisian Pet-en-l'air!

Parisian Pet-en-l'air Parisian Pet-en-l'air

I'd like to get a few more detail shots eventually. The cuffs have a round of pleated trim and then are shaped at the bottom with a covered button and a cord.

And a few before trim pictures.

Parisian Pet-en-l'air

Parisian Pet-en-l'air Parisian Pet-en-l'air

I used this pet-en-l'air from the Manchester Galleries as my inspiration. The fabric was bought in Paris in 2004. It's made over a fitted lining, using essentially the same techniques as the chocolate francaise. This doesn't have robings though, so I lined up the front edge to the lining and hemmed it.

I'm wearing it over a shift, 1770s stays, stockings, two linen under petticoats and my Burnley and Trowbridge shoes with William Booth Draper buckles. I had left my handkerchief at home, but fortunately had a length of silk gauze (that I wore in my hair with the Marie Antionette dress), which actually stayed better than the triangle pieces.

I did take pictures of making my black silk hat, though I claim no knowledge of how they made bonnets like this in the 18th century. The techniques I used are from 19th century bonnet patterns I've used. There will be a tutorial eventually :)

I didn't have the trim go all around the skirt--it's a slightly heavy cotton and I was worried it would disrupt the line of the pleats. The stomacher pins shut and the bows tie over it. This is different than the pet-en-l'air I copied; however, I wanted the bows to be more decorative and not have any gapping because the bows were sewn underneath. This happened with my Jacobean jacket, and I liked the effect there, but I didn't like the idea of it for this dress.


  1. That's a fun print on the fabric, and I love the sleeve trim. Looking forward to the hat tutorial.

  2. Beautiful outfit! What a great choice in fabric. I can't wait to see how you made the hat, I like those kinds of 18c hats! ;)

  3. I love it! It's so bright and fun and you look so happy wearing it :)

    I was looking and looking for the sleeve trim, then read that the pics were pre-trim, lol.

  4. That is adorable! Those red shoes look perfect for those colors! =D

  5. I just got these same red shoes today, for my birthday! I also received 6 yards of a Dutch chintz, in a floral print very similar to yours, with a yellow ground. I hope you don't mind if I use YOU as MY inspriation; I am making my own petticoat out of the chintz, as well as decorating a straw hat with scraps, and will have someone else make me a pet en l'air jacket to match!

    You look just adorable~

  6. In yet another overdue comment (I have no idea why I'm so bad about this!) thanks very much! It was a fun dress to wear :)

    And please, feel free to use me as inspiration! It'll be fun to see what you come up with!

  7. Dear Katherine,
    Just an update...I did make the pet and petticoat from the same print as yours which I received for my birthday over a year ago. (I posted at the time, adding a link to this post of yours, and saying how much I loved it, and how it was my inspiration). Mine has a few different design elements. You can see it on my blog,

    Many thanks again for the idea. You look so smashing in yours!

    PS I have since seen several reenactor ladies with jackets, etc., made from this same print---I think everyone is attracted to it's sunny and charming look!