August 10, 2010

Blue Silk Polonaise

This is the 1880s gown I have been working on for the last few weeks. The lady it was made for will be going to a formal event at the museum next weekend, and hired me to make her dress.
The blue silk was so lovely. It is soft and drapes, but there are no slubs like dupioni. Along the neckline is a ruffle made from silk organza.
The back has these cute little tails which we trimmed with a beaded fringe. The flash on my camera made them appear very shiny, but they are much more dull in person.
The back of the skirt is drawn up in lovely drapes which will go over a skirt and bustle. The bottom edge is trimmed just like the peplum.
The sleeves are 3/4 length, and there is a pleat at each elbow. The buttons we used on each pleat are replicas from 1880.
Here is the inside of the skirt showing the tapes that draw up the skirt. They are just tacked in place and could be adjusted to make it more or less full.
The skirt that goes under this polonaise is made from a lightweight wool woven in a houndstooth pattern. It is hard to see in these pictures, but the weave does have some of the blue from the bodice, and so it matches quite nicely. For the trim on the skirt, I copied an original dress. It helps tie the two pieces together, but it could also be removed for a more basic skirt. Right now I am making a second bodice for this skirt, out of the wool. This way it can also be worn as a less formal dress, and during the winter when it gets cold.

1 comment:

Kathleen S. said...

Oh how pretty! I am so hoping you get pictures of this ON the recepient! :) Looks lovely on a hanger, but it must be stunning on a model!