Saturday, May 3, 2014

Completed 1870s Bustle

I began the bustle in September of 2012, and worked on it on and off throughout the past few months, finally finishing it in February. It is made in an unbleached muslin from Truly Victorian Petticoat with Wire Bustle 101. I made the ruffled overlay because the bustle will be used in my next mount at the Kearny History Museum: an 1870's olive green silk gown! The ruffled overlay will help support the heavy weight of the gown, of which the bodice back and skirt back are cut all in one piece.

I loved the pattern: the paper was thick and it was easy to fold back the sizes I didn't need. The bustle went together less than smoothly though...bottom line, don't tackle a new pattern with boning when exhausted!

It started going downhill with the boning. I sewed the horizontal casings to the wrong side, causing great frustration when it was time to apply the arched bone.

Then, with the ruffled overlay, I cut the ruffles all the same width...and sewed them on...then D'OH spent hours unpicking stitches. Finally I got the ruffles right, but realized that my overlay had one less layer of ruffles than it was supposed to. By that time I didn't want to take everything apart again, and left it. Then, I was possessed to unpick the waistband and sandwich the overlay between the waistband....what? For the sake of sanity, don't sew when tired! Because of silly mistakes, I used up 3 spools of thread: first white, then beige, then darker beige!

Side Back
My biggest error was in sewing the overlay to the waistband. I now realize that it should've been sewn above the first bone. I'm not concerned about the short overlay, however, because I can supplement the shortage of ruffles with netting and more muslin when I'm mounting the gown.

There is no waistband fastening as the bustle will be sewn to the dress form, preventing points of stress between the silk gown and the hook.

Ack! Another whicker dress form! This gown already has a dress form being carved for it.
This is my first time using a cover photo for a post. What do you think?

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