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I had a lovely time this weekend - I hung out under a tent with people I normally only wave at, and it was an awesome experience of fun.


chargirlgenius, I apologize for the renditions of "Elizabethan Man" and "(The King) What'd he Say?" - we have a habit of managing to lower the tone wherever we go - and I deeply appreciate the loan of cloth to cover the fencing bag that I forgot the cover for.) 


chargirlgenius was (see above) a patient and welcoming hostess, and I had a really good time, despite the mad, mad heat. I got to give the two new Laurels Attack Laurel bumper stickers, which (thankfully) amused them, I got to meet  tashadandelion (who looked smashing in her boy clothes), and generally enjoyed myself.

I also got to give His Majesty the Coral Branch medallions I commissioned from  ccunning - look for them at an event near you - but I was absent-minded, and failed to get a picture of them before I gave them to his Maj.  They are awesome, and I got to yell out ccunning's name in court, so that rocked.  :)  I love being a muse for other people's creations - I told him "coral branch medallions - make some", and he came up with a great design.

I also got to wear the pink and green outfit for the first time:


The skirt turned out incredibly well - the pleating method (hang on, I'm getting to that) worked exactly the way I hoped it would, and the "floof" was as good as I get with a cartridge-pleated petticoat (which I am beginning to think, they may not have cartridge pleated; see below).  The green and pink went together like the most beautiful rose bush ever, and while I left off my hat and coif for most of the day, and I was astoundingly hot, the outfit held its shape and didn't wilt at all (these pictures were taken at the end of the day, after the worst of the heat).  I am ecstatic about the look.

Now, about the pleating:

I cut the waistband much thinner than I have done previously, and left only enough space for lacing holes after folding in the raw edges.  I then pinned the skirt in tiny pleats to the waistband, much like I do for cartridge pleating, but while I was sewing at the edge of the waistband, I was not sewing at the edge of the petticoat folds:


Yes, those are tiny pleats.  They are close together, and I had over five yards of width to work with.  You can make the pleats wider, the same sewing method will apply.  Note (this is important!) that the pins are pinned in so that the heads are pointed away from the waistband.  This is so that the pins can be left in place until both sides are sewn - it helps to keep the pleats in place.

Then, I sewed along the face of the waistband (opposite side from where the pleats were pinned; this is the side that will show on the outside of the skirt when finished), taking care to only sew the side of the pleat that touched the waistband, never going all the way through:

Yes, I really did leave the pins in place the whole time; since I was only sewing one side at a time, the pleats stayed in place better with the pins left in.   The I turned the waistband over and sewed the other side down, again making sure that I only sewed the edge of the pleat.  Sorry, I didn't get pictures of this bit - I was moving along, and didn't think of it at the time.  The end result was a very neat even pleat that sat in a rounder shape than knife pleating, box pleating, or gathering could provide.

It also looks a lot more like the picture and the one photograph of the Czech petticoat.  I am really thinking it might be possible that they didn't cartridge pleat petticoats to waistbands, only to the bodices of gowns; the big issue with pleating something into a bodice is the line of fabric at the top of the pleating that is eliminated by cartridge pleating.  This is not an issue with separate petticoats, since the fabric is underneath all of the bodice, not sandwiched in between the layers.  It's just a thought, mind you; I'd have to see a lot more evidence before I'd state this with anything approaching conviction.  It's just that what scant evidence I have seen shows petticoats pleated into a waistband, with no sign of cartridge pleating.

I also found that this double sewing method is neat, looks like the originals, and doesn't have the flattening issues of flat pleating, nor the uneven issues of gathering, as seen here in the periwinkle petticoat, which I gathered (by hand), to see which method worked better:

See the difference?  The gathers were sewn down using one line of stitching, and they're not nearly as elegant-looking.  There is a distinct lack of even-ness to the pleats, and the "floof" factor is severely curtailed.  Yes, it's extra work, but I highly recommend using the two lines of stitching method.  I'll post pictures of the finished waistband on the pink petticoat tomorrow, and put them side by side, so you can really appreciate the difference.

(Note the lacing holes; the pink petticoat has the same holes, and is roughly the same width.)

Speaking of the periwinkle petticoat, it is done, but I have not taken pictures of me wearing it yet.  However, I can show you pictures of the trim I finally decided on - I got totally obsessed with the idea of gold trim, and it took me a while to find a trim I liked:

It's laid out like that because I could only find one length of the narrow trim - if I get around to it after Pennsic, I might order more of both trims and make it five rows instead of three, because hey - the more, the merrier, right?

Of course, both skirts are entirely hand-sewn from start to finish.  I used Halcyon Yarn's gemstone silk in pink and green and purple and yellow, respectively.  The basic sewing time for each skirt was about a week, then another 4-5 days to put the trim on the periwinkle skirt, and more like a week and a half for the pink skirt, mostly because the green trim was tough to sew (and there were five lines of it).  You definitely want to pin the life out of trim before you sew it on silk - it loves to crawl, and I was constantly adjusting.

I love them both, and now want a wardrobe of silk petticoats in many colours (what am I talking about?  I already have five silk petticoats in burgundy, periwinkle, pink, orange, and black - that should really cover every contingency).

But - I have to make 12 pairs of painted blue and white silk garters and a matching sash before Pennsic, and trim out a doublet of Bob's.  I have more than enough clothes.  I'm just indulging in a silk frenzy.  Mmmm, silk...



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Jul. 14th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)
Oh My!!
That green and pink outfit is definitely worth coveting!!!And the pleats look awesome! :)

Wow... I wonder what the green and pink would look like in purple and yellow...*starts to plot a project*
Jul. 14th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)
wild... I love the double line of sewing method. Must try that. I've been doing something similar... hmmm, thinking. And the pink petticoat is perfectly precious.
Jul. 14th, 2008 01:41 pm (UTC)
The pleating method is fascinating and timely. I spent part of my weekend cartridge pleating to the bodice of a gown and still have pleating on the brain. I'll have to give this method a try sometime!
Jul. 14th, 2008 01:44 pm (UTC)
I think I understand the pleating method. It's basically like sticking the cartridge pleats up into the waistband rather than on the face? I like the idea of not having to finish the edge of the pleats.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:06 pm (UTC)
Yup, that's it - because you only sew the outside of the pleat on each side, it doesn't crush the pleat.
(no subject) - peteyfrogboy - Jul. 14th, 2008 02:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - attack_laurel - Jul. 14th, 2008 02:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 14th, 2008 01:51 pm (UTC)
the other thing you get with this method, are the nice full pleats that go all the way the floor in the same way they do in paintings. Often with other methods one looses the crispness, and you just sort of end up with a wavy hem not a set of hip to floor lines.
Jul. 14th, 2008 01:57 pm (UTC)
You are SUCH a fashion plate! I now fear to stand in your brillance... (Although, those bumper stickers may actually make me take up Arts! Don't make me want a Laurel!!! I'm a service junkie! Nooooo!)

*sigh* I hate cartridge pleating... Yes, that method produces the best results (would never imagine I'd done it, would'ya?), but dang it takes for-freakin'-ever. I tend to cheat (don't ask!!!). But then again, I'm not you, am I!?!?! Bwahhaha!
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:03 pm (UTC)
I saw a picture of you included in someone else's photos of Storvik. You looked fab-u-lous! I especially love the trimming on the green jacket. Very squee-worthy.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:12 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:04 pm (UTC)
You looked lovely, and not wilted at all in a wilting kind of day. :-)

BTW, where did you find the trim for the periwinkle petticoat. And, did you use silk ribbon for the guards in the rose skirt? I didn't get a chance to see it closely and I was wondering. I usually make bias tape out of contrasting fabric, but if ribbon works, that's great. Less work, good results.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:11 pm (UTC)
The periwinkle skirt trim came from Jo-Anne's, and there's roughly 15 yards on the skirt. The pink skirt trim is dyed grosgrain ribbon of "undetermined content" that I got in a sale bin for $1 a roll. There are about 26 yards of that.

Ribbon and lace get used a lot on skirts as trim - woven stuff is consistent in size and lace allows the colour of the skirt to show through, so both are popular, especially with multiple rows.

Edited at 2008-07-14 02:11 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - belfebe - Jul. 14th, 2008 02:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:13 pm (UTC)
The skirt looks like it rustles nicely :) You look like a cool mint cotton-candy confection :) (I mean that as a compliment!)
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:14 pm (UTC)
:) It rustled quite satisfactorily against the grass.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:15 pm (UTC)
Oh wow. You look, as ever, fantastic. Those colors are outstanding on you! Someday, when I grow up, I want to sew like you so I can look that fabulous, too. :)
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC)
I am jealous of your silk stash. But really looking forward to seeing the trim on the perewinkle petticote - the pictures hardly do the trim justice.

I got a close-up of, well, your rear at morning court (for pleating and jacket detail). I'll email it over to you, if you like.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:32 pm (UTC)
Heh. I'm afraid my home e-mail is dial-up, and chokes on images. I got some more pictures from Bob, so I'm good, but thank you. :)
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:24 pm (UTC)
Long time reader, first time commenter.

How do you think this method of pleating would work with a heavier material (wool or linen)? It seems like it would be sturdier than cartridge pleating.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:33 pm (UTC)
I think it would work very well, and would also eliminate the "cutting" problem that thread does to wool in cartridge pleating, since the fabric is better supported. You probably couldn't do it with super-thick wool, but that kind of wool isn't meant for skirts.
(no subject) - raving_liberal - Jul. 14th, 2008 08:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:40 pm (UTC)
Lovely Lovely Lovely....as always.
Jul. 14th, 2008 02:41 pm (UTC)
You looked terrific at the event (but then you ALWAYS look terrific at events :-)
Jul. 14th, 2008 03:01 pm (UTC)
You looked marvelous. The pictures don't do justice to the outfit in person. Very pretty!
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