So many components go into creating clothing from the 19th Century. Going beyond the basics of line, proportion/scale, color and texture, these 5 Elements are crucial to successful historical costuming. Start with these Elements and adapt them to your specific project.
Element #5 – Construction
How to put it all together.
Making your dress-up box a reality demands that the design in your head actually gets made. Dreaming of a closet full of historical clothes only goes so far to satisfy your craving of experiencing the 19th Century. They still have to be sewn up. Element #5 actually covers HOW to make your dreams a reality.
Anyone can pick up a sewing pattern, some fabric and, with a little effort, produce an article. (I know because my Uncle Wilfred accomplished this for his wife when they were newly married in 1948.)
But for an amazing 1850s day dress, Civil War ball gown, Victorian corset or even a corded petticoat, proper sewing methods are the foundation of achieving the look you are going for. Your Regency ball gown couldn’t exist without someone knowing how to sew the skirt seams, tack up the hem and construct the bodice with darts and finishing with bias and drawstring.
Work on your construction skills. Before long you’ll be creating Awesome, Knock-Out, Yes-I-Know-My-Costume-Rocks ensembles. Use both modern and historical sewing techniques to pack that trunk full of dress-up clothes.
Tutorials to get you started.
Back to Element #4 – Fabric & Trim