The last month or so I've been working on assembling a set (a pair? I don't know what the proper term is!) of late-Victorian combinations and now they are finally done and my sister came home from vacation so I could make her take photos and then it FINALLY stopped raining so we had some decent light, so here they are! (Phew.)
I scaled the pattern up from the one given in Patterns for Theatrical Costumes. We've had the book for a while but I've never made anything from it before. It was surprisingly easy - I don't have a projector, but I just photo-copied the pattern page overtop of graph paper at the appropriate scale, and then laid out muslin over my mum's dressmaker's cutting board which has a 1-inch grid on it, and drew directly onto the fabric. I cut out half the combinations - one front, one back - with enormous seam allowances, and basted them together to check the fit, then made a few alterations, marked the darts, and used those pieces as the pattern to cut out the actual fabric. The pattern actually fit me very well with just a few alterations. I took in the sides a tad, added two darts to each side of the back (which was unfitted in the book), and cut the neckline down and squared it off, figuring that would be more versatile than the high neckline of the base pattern. I also shortened the legs considerably and added flounces to the cuffs.
|Impossible to take photos in a corset and flouncy underclothes and *not* pretend to be a girl from one of those naughty picture postcards ;-P|
I knitted all the lace to trim the armholes, neckline, and leg flounces. Just fairly thick crochet cotton and a couple simple patterns from Barbara Abbey's Knitting Lace. I wanted something sturdy, but plain cotton underthings are so much more fun if you make them a little frilly!
|The best of the inside photos. (Protip: put on stockings BEFORE the corset next time.)|
I also crocheted some lace to trim my petticoat, which I made about 6 years ago and have been wearing ever since, but never properly finished! There were still some raw edges and loose threads, and one of the flounces had gotten caught up in the seam so it hung oddly. I fixed that, finished the edges, tidied it up, and gave it some lace. It's much more fun after its makeover!
So there you go! Nice new frilly undies for stage and any other excuse I can come up with to wear them :-)