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I forgot to post these, I’ve slowly been sewing away on petticoat bodies from caramel colored wool. Linen/cotton canvas interlining, linen/cotton lining. Sewn with the broken backstitch, running stitch and whip stitch in linen thread. The project has sat in the time out corner a few times.

First, when I trimmed the neckline corner down a tiny bit too far, I ended up darning it as a fix and reinforcing the area. Second I tried it on and it was too tight! Bah, I need to adjust my bodice block. Thankfully I had an extra large seam allowance in the back so I was able to let it out, but once I did that the back neckline started to have issues. After lots of basting, pressing, and re-basting I sewed up another 1/4 an inch and that seemed to fix it.

The lining is in, the armscyes bound, so it just needs eyelets and a tiny bit of clean up, oh and the petticoat. I have 5 yards of red wool (lucky e-bay find) which should be enough for a new kirtle *and* the petticoat if I am careful with my cutting.

 

petticoatbodiescut petticoatbodiceshoulderstrap petticoatbodiceshellside petticoatbodiceshell padstitchedinnerpb

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beltandshoulders

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After way too long here is part two of the manteo or petticoat (part 1 written in 2014 can be found here), to recap here is the layout suggestion I ended up using from Alecga.

Manteo de pano para muger

Since my fabric is 60 inches wide I did not need to piece the “B” section and was able to cut it as one curved shape.

Manteo de pano para muger_puttogether

 

manteo cut out

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Measurements

I changed the measurements to fit my own size.

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I have a friend who lives in the wilds of Oklahoma, her local medieval fair runs for only three days. She has needed a costume to attend just for fun but being a fellow history nerd wanted something that would work. Her fair set in 1360, it has a different flavor than my local fair that tends toward the 1540’s which means my go to comfy bodice and skirt kirtle wouldn’t really fit.

A few years before we got some lightweight wool suiting in plum color from Fabricmart and then I sat on it like an egg as we went back and forth over what style of dress she wanted.

  • Bliaut? (which we started to call a blablahblu because we were never sure of how to pronounce it..) It is earlier than the fair timeframe, but she liked the look of them (Possibly watching too much Brother Cadfael at a young age.) Buuuut large flappy sleeves can get in the way and being able to get dressed by yourself is a good thing.
  • Go for an Elizabethan kirtle anyways cause I can make those in my sleep? Fashion forward!

We pinned a lot of photos, used historical doll makers to share ideas and when she came down in 2014 for my wedding I got her measurements, drafted a block, and fitted a mock-up.

The best-laid plans…

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Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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A very very old project (6+ years maybe?) has found a new home. It is based on the circle cloaks found in Patterns of Fashion, made from many scraps of black cotton velvet and a scarlet linen/cotton/rayon blend for the lining. It is a bit shorter than the ones in PoF, in part because as it sat in my closet and the outer fabric grew, the lining grew. I ended up hand-basting all around the outside of the cloak and trimming everything as even as I could make it. Which left me with an uneven lining in some areas.

So I took the extra fabric I had from the lining (still had some!) and cut a very wide 4 1/2 yard long section of bias tape, sewed that through both the velvet and the lining, flipped it up, and hand sewed the folded edge down to the inner lining. (Phew!) That done I make a collar from the off cuts of the shortened cloak, lined it with more of the lining fabric and stitched it on.

But I was going through several layers of fabric, thankfully the whip stitch works great there, but it looked a bit messy and I didn’t want the stitched to rub. So I took more scraps of the lining fabric and made a narrow band to cover the join and hand sewed them on. Finally I bound the collar top with scraps of black silk taffeta, snipped along the edge to give it some texture.

But then the hem of the cloak did not match the collar edge (and I wanted a stop gap in case the cloak lining decided to grow again). This meant more silk taffeta! I cut 4 strips of it about 4 inches wide, folded them horizontally and machine sewed them together. Then I hand sewed the strips down along the hem of the cloak twice. Once to the red lining and the second time through the velvet to keep the taffeta band from rolling up.

More edge snipping to match the collar, a set of twill tape ties and it was finally done.

 

cloakfull copy cloakedge collarcloseup collarbias

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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The majority of the inventory excerpts are transcripts from http://www.anastasiorojo.com however, the translations and missteps are my own. I’ve found a handful of cueras mentioned in inventory lists. Some are made of leather, others of fabric, they are cut, trimmed and in one instance lined in velvet. This is by no means exhaustive and in some entries, I’ve included non-cuera garments as they were listed.

 

1585 TESTAMENTO E INVENTARIO DE BERNARDINO VIZCARRETO, NATURAL DEL PIAMONTE Y REGIDOR DE VALLADOLID

cuera: yten una cuera de cordovan con beinte y dos botones de oro;
One jerkin of leather with twenty-two gold buttons

yten una cuera de cordovan bieja aforrada en bayeta negra
One old jerkin of leather lined with black baize

http://www.anastasiorojo.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/1585-VIZCARRETO.pdf

1570 INVENTARIO DE SEBASTIÁN DE SANTA CRUZ, MERCADER Y HOMBRE DE NEGOCIOS DE BURGOS.

quera: yten una quera de raso negro sajado;
a pinked/cut jerkin of black satin

yten una quera de terçiopelo negra forrada en felpa parda;
A jerkin of black velvet lined with brown plush

yten una cuera de terçiopelo berde;
An old velvet jerkin

yten un jubon de raso negro picado y pespuntado muy roto;
A very old doublet of quilted(?) black satin

una cuera guarnezida de pasamanos de oro aderezada con anbar
A jerkin decorated with gold lace and trimmed with amber(?)

yten una cuera de raso guarneçida de terçiopelo
A jerkin of satin trimmed with velvet

yten sus cuera y mangas de lo mismo
Another jerkin and sleeves of the same

http://www.anastasiorojo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/1570-STA-CRUZ.pdf

 

1595 TESTAMENTARIO, INVENTARIO Y BIBLIOTECA DE GASPAR CLAVIJO, CARPINTERO MORISCO VIEJO

quera: yten una quera tapetada de cordoban bieja
An old black leather jerkin

http://www.anastasiorojo.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/1595-GASPAR-CLAVIJO.pdf
1571 INVENTARIO DE BIENES DEL MARQUÉS DE TÁBARA, EN SUS CASAS DE VALLADOLID

cuera: una cuera de cordovan llena de pasamanillos aforrada en terciopelo negro con mangas de lo mismo;
A leather jerkin with narrow lace lined in black velvet with sleeves of the same

otra quera de cordovan camuzada llena de rebeticos de raso negro aforrada en tafetan negro;
A leather jerkin of ( Camuzada, possibly Gamuzada – Chamois color?)  with black satin and lined with black taffeta

otra cuera picada con un pasamano biexo.
An old pinked jerkin with trim

http://www.anastasiorojo.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/1571-TABARA.pdf

 

“Richer than We Thought: The Material Culture in 16th Century St Augustine”

2 cordovan doublets

Goods of Dona Mayor de Arango (1570) http://elizabethancostume.net/cyte/node/239

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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BWcoifshot1

2 faux blackwork coifs which are for sale! Mixture of machine and hand sewing.

Hand sewn linen apron hem

Hand hemmed sage green linen apron

Brass buttons for the jerkin project

Butttons for the Curera project

 

 

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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Long have I coveted Scott Perkin’s leather jerkin, which is based off the jerkin at the Museum of London and written about in Janet Arnold’s “Pattern of Fashion”.

Scott's Leather Jerkin

Scott’s Leather Jerkin

Leather Jerkin from the Museum of London

Leather Jerkin from the Museum of London

But I am not a leather worker*, I didn’t want to get a very nice hide and ruin it with my amateur attempts. So I filed the idea away in the back of my head until one night I came across some leather on eBay.

dark brown leather for the jerkin

It was cheap and looked like there was enough to make a jerkin, one press of the buy now button and I good. The blitheful glow of a new project set in. I started planning out how I wanted it to look, what buttons I would need, to slash or not to slash?

But then I realized an important question needed answering, did women ever wear leather jerkins?

The common assumption is that it’s a male garment with origins as armor, and possibly evolved into the 17th-century buff coat. (I am not an armor historian if this is incorrect please let me know.)

leatherjerkinMor

In “Patterns of Fashion”, Arnold mentions:

“Alcega gives pattern diagrams of some petticoats or skirts (‘saya’) with ‘a jerkin, a little cassock such as women use in Spain’ as Minsheu translates ‘sayuelo’; others are with a ‘cuera’, translated by Minsheu as ‘a Spanish leather jerkin’. The latter is a bodice which has apparently taken its name from the leather from which it was once made.”

The diagram referenced in the quote

Saya y cuera de pano
Language is a living thing, the meaning of words change. In my look through the English translation of Alcega’s book, I found some of the translations questionable, but I am inclined to agree. Paño or cloth, being mentioned in the layout means it is not being made from leather.

 

Lexicon Tetraglotton, an English-French-Italian-Spanish Dictionary 1660 lists the following:

Jerkin
1660 definition of jerkin
Cuera
1660 Cuera leather jerkin 1660 Cuera Cow Leather
Cordovano
1660 cordovano

 

Part 2: Digging through some Spanish and English Inventories.

 

*I did make a leather jerkin a long time ago out of chrome tanned suede cut from skirts from the thrift store. I looked like a badass female Iago in it, but I’ve learned a great deal about sewing since then.

References

http://blog.museumoflondon.org.uk/leather-jerkin-well-examined/

http://garb4guys.blogspot.com/search/label/Leather%20Jerkin

The Mauritshuis collection Anthonis Mor van Dashorst (and studio), Portrait of a Man, 1561

Libro de Geometria, Pratica, y Traça

Lexicon Tetraglotton, an English-French-Italian-Spanish Dictionary 1660

 

 

 

Originally published at Centuries-Sewing. You can comment here or there.

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When you take out an old unfinished project to work on and have no idea what you were thinking. Why is my kirtle neckline rounded? I know I cut half sleeves for it but I have no idea where they have gone. I stitched around the edges of the interlining that is fraying like mad but why didn’t I overlock it?

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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I haven’t sewn the past few days, some of it was taken up by a 5 hour “clean all the things!” urge. My sewing area is a little better, but I still have some things to go through. My bathroom however, is spotless.

 

mink-brown-poly-cotton-satin

 

I ordered 6 yards of this poly-cotton satin to make a petticoat as what I have for underpinnings is all 16th century based. It should be here Monday and the dark brown will give the black a tiny bit of color. It shall have ruffles! I need to find my ruffle foot and my rolled hemmer foot.

I also hit up pinterest to try and find some examples of petticoats for 1889 – 1891.

 

 

Petticoatpattern

“Der Bazar 1889: Striped petticoat; 75. front part in half size, 76. side gore, 77. back upper breadth in half size, 78. back bottom breadth in half size”

I found a few more petticoat drawings from catalogs, but I have not found many extant ones, most seems to be dated earlier or later. But so far the drawstring and yoke seems to be a feature. Since this is not my usual era I have no idea if this is a carryover from the bustle or not, does anyone know?

 

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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My inspiration dress from the Met

 

Metdress_1888

 

The pattern I’m using for the skirt I found on Pinterest,

1889dresspattern

 

IMG_1251

What the back of the bodice currently looks like, I decided on a swallow-tail back. More inspiration pictures and trimming ideas can be found on my Penny Dreadful Costume pin board.

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Close up of the pleats
Pinning the pleats into position
The calico section pinned to the bodice pattern

Fussing with calico to form the pleats, they are backwards in this image. Opps!
Bodice pieces ready to be flatlined to some cotton sateen
Back of the pattern on the dress form

Pattern test on the dressform, I moved from two darts to one

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Four videos today, this weekend I’m going to shoot some more.

Pressing and prep for the sleeve seam allowances

 

Pressing the seam allowance with a seam roll when the sleeve is too narrow for the board.

Sewing in the lining at the top of the sleeve.

Hand sewing the bottom of the sleeve shut.

 

 

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Marking the eyelets out for spiral lacing

Cutting out the sleeves (the wool is from my stash and the wrinkles would not steam out)

First pass of sewing the sleeves together.

 

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Sewing in the lining around the top edge

Clipping into corners and trimming

Edge stitching the seam allowance to the lining along the top

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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Pleating the skirt down with knife pleats and a box pleat in the back

 

Basting the pleats in place

Ironing the pleats down to keep things from moving around when I sew the skirt to the bodice

Originally published at Centuries Sewing: Historical Costumes and Clothing. You can comment here or there.

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