Exactly a year ago, we did a cursory rummaging around in the costume closet and I uncovered a green/blue taffeta 1870s-inspired evening gown I'd made about ten years ago for a Victorian costume event. It was one of the very first historical "costumes" I'd ever made, and though I was sad to see it go, it was time to bid it farewell and send it off to a new home to make some room in the closet for new creations.
While Ashley was visiting a couple of weeks ago, we finally got around to doing a more massive purge of the costume and fabric closet and uncovered the gown I'd made for her for that same event back in 2005. This one is made of a stunning ruby red satin fabric. At first, she was tempted to keep it, as it's always been one of her favorite pieces in her absolute favorite color, but after she tried it on and found that it no longer fit, she decided she's ready to part with hers as well. It is now listed on Ebay!
As I mentioned in last year's post when the first gown was listed, this gown was made before Ashley and I really got serious and nit-picky about historical fashion on a research-oriented level. This means that if you'd like to bid on it, please be aware that this is very much a costume
- not a meticulously researched "reproduction" piece like those
we typically share on the blog. The gown is entirely machine sewn. Like the blue/green gown, this red one was one of my very first sewing endeavors and
as such, it certainly has its flaws, though Ashley still adores it and I do have to admit that it came out looking quite pretty.
As you can probably tell, I made this gown using the same pattern base as mine, though it was so long ago now that I honestly can't recall which pattern it was. The gown comes in three pieces: bodice, skirt, and bustle. Please forgive the lack of detailed photos this time around; the dress is too small for my dressform, so we've opted to just use the original pictures because they give the best sense of how the dress drapes when worn.
The sleeveless bodice has a deep V-neckline in front and back that is trimmed with matching patterned red satin ribbon. It is stiffened with interfacing and plastic boning and fully lined in red as well. The armscyes are bound in the same red ribbon that surrounds the neckline; this same ribbon also edges the bottom of the bodice, following along the center front point that dips several inches beneath the natural waistline. The back has a short peplum that flounces out over the bustle and the back laces closed.
The skirt hemline is edged with a row of red ribbon. It has an apron front that is attached at the waistband; its bottom edge, too, is finished with the same red ribbon. The bustle attaches to the skirt with hooks and eyes at the waistband and with a series of ties and plastic rings down the back of the skirt. The bustle is fully lined and is interlined with crinoline to give it fullness and body.
Four large deep red roses are suspended on a fabric strip down one side of the bustle, in imitation of period fashion plates (the other side of the bustle is left plain). Beneath the roses is a large, wide bow in the same coordinating ribbon.
Please see the listing for measurements, pricing, and further details. Let us know if you have any questions. We'll be thrilled to know that this is going to go to a new home!
And if you're in the mood for shopping in another period, we also currently have listed a couple of 18th-century pieces and some taffeta fabrics on Ebay!