This was a rather unexpected project, made with fabric bought for something else that it wouldn't work for. I realized I had no normallish 18c clothes--just the chemise dress and a court dress at the time, I think it was. Well, excepting earlier things that didn't seem quite right anymore!
In the above picture I'm wearing them with my hand knit cotton stockings. I used pearl cotton (not exactly period, but, well, compromise was in order because at least when I made them, there didn't seem to be an exact match. The pearl cotton was at least the right size and fiber!) and size 0000 needles on them. They were so fun to make. Of course, the Under the Redcoat after this I helped with ice cream making where they got so drenched with saltwater that I could barely get them off (my dress hem turned as stiff as cardboard too) and I've been afraid to put them back on since...
The shoes are my Burnley and Trowbridge mules. I love those shoes, and generally carry them in my gigantic 18c pockets in case I need to switch to more comfortable shoes :)
But back to the dress!
The pattern is the jacket form Costume Close-Up that everyone has made. And why not? It's a super cute jacket! The construction follows the first one I made from this pattern (seen here, please, please, please ignore the petticoat, stomacher and ribbon! I wish I had more fabric so I could make a matching stomacher, as I still do like the jacket). For the second jacket, I didn't even test to see if the pattern still fit. Fortunately, except for taking about 2 inches out of the shoulders (really?), it fit!
The picture on the right shows the only updated construction information. Many 18c techniques have the fabric and lining sewn together at the seams and then turned in at the edges--but how does that work if the seams are sewn together? Easy--for the last inch or so, sew them separately. I guessed this when I made my first jacket, but didn't include it online as I had no proof. Since then I was lucky enough to win a 1790s jacket (for about $30!!!) on eBay. And since it was missing a sleeve, I was able to see that this technique was correct. Hooray!
I have very few pictures of this at Williamsburg this year. Why? It was too hot to take pictures. 113F with about 95% humidity. Fun, that...
And this picture makes laugh--it's so typical of an event. The computer is out to share pictures, a frappuccino, as I am addicted during the summer, cell phone (my tiny cute one of a few years ago) to text and coordinate with all everyone there, a camera next to me, and a picture being taken of me with my other camera. Also, my amusement of newly pink stocking feet :)
I also wore the jacket to Costume Con in 2009 with a matching petticoat. The petticoat was too narrow, about 90 inches, I think? I think I only had about 3 yards of 45 inch fabric, so I disguised that with an apron. Also, my hair really, really doesn't like to tease in humid weather. Well, it doesn't like to tease at all, but humidity makes it worse. It rained heavily and constantly for the entire convention!
I wore it over a bumroll, which I didn't at Williamsburg. I wish I had another back picture to compare!