Sunday, May 7, 2017

Project roundup: Leine, waistcoats, and...stuff

So, I kind of promised that I would work on dress diaries more often...obviously, since my last blog post was over a month ago, I slacked.  Shame on me, I know.

But, here it goes.  In the last month or so, I've been working on three major projects, plus some others; testing my glove drafting (which I later taught a class on, and will write a post on later) with a trial pair in upcycled leather, sewing on the 16th century Irish Leine, and both developing a house waistcoat pattern for myself and making the first piece from it.

The photos are in approximately chronological order, and jump between pay attention:

To start, gloves.  Since I've been playing with 1560-70s Northern Europe, I wanted to work on a pattern that would be appropriate to was both easier, and more challenging than I expected.  Actually drafting them wasn't that difficult...finding examples from the correct period which show any detail was.  Still, I managed, even if I'm still not certain of whether there should be a gusset into the thumb.

The leather is from a cut apart leather jacket I picked up thrifting--the same jacket as I used for accents on the airship jacket.

The authors talked me into buying this wonderful book from the Victoria Albert museum, after telling me exactly how much detail they put into the construction of the has X-rays of the garments, and I was ecstatic when it arrived!

Back to the gloves.  One of the things I discovered about the construction is that the gloves of this period are sewn wrong sides together--exposed seams, and no turning.  Either an extremely fine whipstitch was used, or an even finer prick/stab/double running stitch with microscopic seam allowances.  In several cases, you can see repairs in a coarser overcast stitch.  Both the stab stitch and repairs can be seen on this example in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

Normally silk thread would have been used, matching the leather in colour.  Here, linen, since I didn't have silk of the correct weight and colour

Beginning on the construction of the leine.  Here, I was assembling the first gore.  All of the seams were sewn with a somewhat wide running stitch (with back stitches every couple inches), then felled to one side.

The first draft of the waistcoat pattern: I self drafted and went off of personal preferences, rather than making it historically accurate.  Still, it's not too far off of Victorian era ones....there's only so much variation in waistcoat patterns, after all.

Trying on the second draft--I did have to make a few adjustments from the original, but not too many.

This is an older project, which I brought out because I was bored...  The Patchwork Paletot, a faux fur lined overcoat matching the Frankenfrock.  Here, I was drafting out the pattern of the patches...I remembered after the photo that using the blank card doesn't work...the ruler works much better.

Some hours later, I finished with the sleeves, and decided on the exact patterning order of the pieces.  Only 400+ rectangles to cut out and precisely fit...and mirror image between the two sides. 

Fustian! I got samples from Period  These are lovely examples of the 50/50 linen/cotton blend, which was used for interlinings in late period.  I still need to order them, but I intend to use them as interlinings in the new 1570s suit (which I /still/ haven't started).

The second finished glove.  Fit is almost like...a glove.  I learned a lot making these--how to do the fourchettes, best way to assemble, how to draft the thumb (don't...just worry about the base, and drape the rest)....  The second glove actually only took half the time as the first.

More on the leine!  This was shortly after I picked up a tweed thrift store overcoat which will be stitchripped  (shortly) to provide fabric for the inar.  This will be a working version, both to test the pattern before using my nice scarlet broadcloth, and to give me an inar for less formal occasions (like fighting!).

A couple prospective waistcoat materials.  The green on the left is heavy linen from, left over from something or another; while the herringbone on the left is a heavy--extremely slubby--silk from fashionfabrics.  Too slubby, in fact, for anything of any period, and it only got worse with washing.

Somewhere in there, I spent a day doing clothing repairs, including the sole of this turnshoe...that was not fun at all, and I stabbed myself solidly with the glover's needle.

And the waistcoat again.  You can see the pieces here.  Both front and back are fully interlined with ticking, and there is a full front canvassing with cotton duck (bias cut) to support the front and give the structure I prefer.

The finished waistcoat.  Lining is a russet quilter's cloth I picked up thrifting; buttons are little Celtic knots, and I decided to use contrasting stitching for the buttonholes and fun little bar tacks to help support the pockets. 

The fit came out quite nice, and I love it.

This is the silk after machine reached epic levels of silk noil slubbiness.  Simply terrible.  I decided to try using the dry-iron to polish it into submission, which seems to mostly be working.  You can see the difference between before and after pressing.  I do still intend to make a waistcoat out of it...double breasted, with a moderate shawl collar, I believe.  The same base pattern as the green will be used and adapted.

Trying on the leine for the first time, to decide on the neckline--I didn't cut it out until this point so I could see how it draped.  The side seams aren't sewn up in the photo.  After much testing and pondering, I decided on a double folded the outside.  This was after I remembered that once I had a theory that the front of the leine was cut much wider than the back, and the extra draped into the neckline.

Too late for that there.

  A friend in California sold me this absolutely gorgeous wool suiting from her stash, and it was recently delivered.  Did I mention it is beautiful, and so soft?  It was purchased and is intended for a two or three piece (I'm all for /non/ matching waistcoats), double-breasted suit for myself.  But, you'll probably have to wait until almost next year for me to start in on that project....

This morning, I finished up the leine.  I think I will be fairly happy with it, but we shall see.  Completely handsewn, it only took 28.5 hours....I'm happy that I've gotten sew much faster at this, there is a lot of seams in there (for an idea, the garment is full fabric width in length--some 58 inches). 

The sleeves opening is about 10 inches deep....look for the documentation on this project fairly soon (by the end of the month, I hope)!

The last thing I worked on in the last month or so was some research and experimentation on late 14th century underwear (braies).  I ended up trying the wrapped loincloth theory published on HibernaatiopesäkeI believe it worked fairly well, although I did have some issues--with the short braies I wrapped, they kept pulling out of my chausses; so when I go to make my real pair of those, I'll definitely have to make them slightly taller, and definitely add linen lining to the upper thigh to prevent stretching of the opening.  No pictures of me wearing them, of course--far too immodest.

© John Frey, 2017. The Author of this work retains full copyright for this material. Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of this document for non-commercial private research or educational purposes provided the copyright notice and this permission notice are preserved on all copies.

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