Tiny update

This is how the partlet looks on me. I dunno, I guess I'm okay with it, it works, you know. But I think I will make a circle-shaped gollar as well, just to have more things to choose from.

The things I have left to do on the kampfrau outfit:

* Finish the wrist part of the sleeves. Haven't figured out exactly how to finish them off yet.

* Barett. I want a BIG round hat with loads of feathers on! Weeeee!

* New underskirt in linen, I have one but it's all tattered and torn after the last Medieval week (:P)

* New shirt, or attach smocking to the neck on the old one.

* Hose

* Shoes, maybe.


I will keep posting here when I make all those things!

Partlet, done

During the last few days I've been making a partlet, like the ones on these woodcuts (however, mine is a bit shorter and does not reach below the breasts), to hopefully keep me a bit warmer on stormy nights :)

On the paintings I've seen they were usually black but I decided to go for the same  green wool that's in my dress.


The pattern I used can be seen here. It was really easy to trace, I just measured around my bust and then used about 1/4 of it as length of the bottom of each one of the pieces. And tried to sketch the rest of it to look like a perfect scale of the pattern. I'm lazy, but it worked.







The partlet will be tied together with strings under the armpits, I haven't attached those yet so there will be no pictures of it on me yet. But still! =)


Some references of mine

A veeeeery (read: extremely) limited selection of my references can be seen below. There are literary dozens and dozens of woodcuts of kampfraus(/trossfraus) out there and spending hours researching I'm sure I've seen them all. However, I have chosen to use Cranach paintings of Saxon women and Holbein sketches as inspiration as well, and even though many of them are not images of actual landsknechts or kampfraus but of nobilities - they are contemporary, and in my opinion - if a certain kind of neckline or sleeve or whatever is documented from the same year or the same decade, it is likely that they were worn both in the landsknecht camps as well as in the german cities by regular hausfraus at the time.


I also found that for example, in the Erhard Schön woodcuts, the kampfrau's clothing is more detailed and flashy than in most of the pictures others I've seen, but at the same time they're the ones that has really clear view of acutal kampfraus and documents the life in the actual camps, as opposed to many other contemporary paintings that depicts life in the towns with some landsknechts just happening to be in it, mixed with the villagers. Which makes it kinda hard to separate the kampfrau from the female villagers wearing clothes similar to the ones in the landsknecht camps.

The differences and similarities between Saxon women, Hausfraus and Kampfraus are explained better at this page.

Now I kind of wish that I made some more slashings in the skirt and so on, to be more obvious, but I hope it will be clear to people that I'm into landsknecht fashion once I've lifted the skirt up and is wearing a huge barett and so on. :)


Do keep in mind that God knows I'm far from an expert and my point of views here can be seen as naïve, but I think I have a somewhat good knowledge basis.

Anyway, that's why my references are kind of shattered. And here is a small selection :)


Almost finished, with photos

I have now finished one of the sleeves, a normal person would probably do the both at the same time but for some reason I didn't... Anyway, as you can see I attached the raw edged wool stripes to the underarm, and the puffing sticking out is actually the shirt underneath. It takes a bit of arranging but is definately worth it. The shirt is sewn in raglan style with the top of the sleeves and the front and back banels gathered into a neck line. It's like XXXXXXL. It's actually a linen/cotton mix so not 100 percent period, but then I always sew with polyester thread so I guess I failed to be that accurate long time ago, heh. Maybe some time I will post instructions on how to sew the shirt, but I think I'm gonna learn how to properly smock first. (Smocking is super period for women, a simple pleated neckline like mine is more men's style.)

The dress with the skirt lifted up:

Click on these thumbnails to enlarge!


I am just SO happy with the outcome with this dress, it's much much better than I ever imagined. I think I got just the right silhouette, shape and look very close to the 16th century ideals. I find that with the shirt underneath the fit is better, so I won't have to take it in. As you can see on the back of the dress it is very closely fitted to me which I'm really happy about, having no pattern constructing skills what so ever!

Of course this dress is not nearly finished yet so I will keep posting pictures, references, etc, and then there's hat-making and new underskirt-making as well!


More photos

Some close-ups!

New camera, unfortunately no Photoshop on this computer that I'm on, so the colours on photo 2) and 3) are not even near accurate. The flash is a bit too much :P



1) The slashings at the elbow in their current state. That is, just prototypes ;P
2) Unpretty but efficient hooks and eyes solution.
3) The whole thing inside out. Imagine having a dress that looked like this!

Seam allowances, hooks & eyes and sleeve ideas!

So, this is what I have been doing the last couple of days!

Made the waist a couple of centimeters higher.

Tacked down ALL the seam allowances on the bodice and arms, except for those who were already fastened to the lining. The only functions are, as far as I know, that the raw edges will not fray and it is more aesthetically appealing without the allowance sticking out everywhere. Also, it gives a flatter and more "clean" and less bulky look on the outside of the dress.
I haven't decided yet if I'm going to do the same on the skirt seams as well, but since I will have a lot of time on my hands until the next SCA event, I will probably do this sometime when I'm bored.
From this I learned that the more seam allowance - the better! It looks soooo much better and I don't have to panic that the seams will stretch towards the edges and break if I gain a few pounds. (I hope I won't anyway ;P) I'm always a bit nervous about that in other cases.

Changed the positions of a few hooks and eyes to make the front opening more even, and it is close to perfection now! No wrinkles or curling out anywhere, and that is because the hooks and eyes are just about one centimeter next to each other - some would consider that unnecessarily close but I swear that does the  trick! They are also, as I have mentioned, attached to really stiff linen that won't give in to the stretch.

I have changed my mind about the sleeves. I'm now thinking of putting slashes of raw-edged wool between the upper and lower arms ant NOT lacing. This is because I realised that the dress looked too simple, too much "average 16th century german woman" and I AM dealing with landsknecht fashion after all. I didn't slash the skirt - MAYBE I will do this later on but for now I think two clean green panels are just about enough. So I will go for the new sleeve slashing idea. Landsknecht clothing is not supposed to be humble and shy at all in my opinion ;)

Pictures will come in a couple of days! 'Til then, here's a couple of yummy pictues :)


Skirt attached to the bodice!

The pictures that follows are taken with a cellphone, hence the crappy quality, haha, but it's better than nothing I guess!
I'm at my mum's house and I have so much spare time here I thought I might as well continue sewing and finish the thing while I'm here!

The skirt:
- I have now attached the skirt to the bodice. I used box pleats, equally divided between the front and back pieces although a little bit wider on the front (due to the fact that the skirt is more than 3 times bigger than the waistline, and box pleats always use 3 layers of fabric when pleated narrowly. So I had to make a single stacked box pleat on the back to make it even.
- The skirt is made of 10 pieces, divided on two rectangulars, and about 1,10 m from bottom to waistline (I'm 1,74 m tall :) ) 
- It's not hemmed of anything yet - it's not supposed to touch the ground.
- Also, importantly, I will make the waistline higher than it is now, because I find that once the skirt is on it sort of stretches the fabric just a little bit and I might also have to make the bodice tighter around the waist to prevent from stretching even more. So really, this is a bit temporary :)

Also, the lower sleeves are not laced on on these pictures :)

Short break

My camera has vanished, so there will probably be no more updates until I get a new one / find the old one, but I'm currently pleating the skirt onto the bodice. Will take som pictures at my mum's house this weekend!

Skirt pt 2

I have now sewn half of the 14,2 meters of seams...


The not as neat inside.

(One backstitch is about 5 mm wide, so there are 200 stitches per meter. That means I will be sewing ~ 3000 stitches, well, probably more. :D)

Cutting aaall the skirt pieces

On to the skirt! I have two pairs of each of these pieces. All in all it's 3 meters of skirt. On my first dress, I had about 2,5 m. I was hoping to get more skirt this time, that's why I ordered an extra meter of the red fabric - also to avoid having to put too wide green panels in. The thinner the panels the prettier in my opinion :)


Small update

I have now attached the upper arms and put in the hooks and eyes, on bits of stiff linen that I put close to the front opening on both sides. Otherwise the soft wool underneath would stretch and it would all look awful. I seemed to have done something wrong though because the area around the the boobs was a bit too big when I tried it on. Oh well, nothing I can do about that now and it looks good anyway.

Nothing moreto say, really, so here's a picture of the progress, you can see a bit of the sleeve as well. (And some unwanted wrinkles that needs to be taken care of.)


Had to try it with the chemise and arms too, looks just the way I wanted it! Yay! The threads are photoshoped obviously ;)

That's all for now!

Sleeve update :)

I panicked a bit over the sleeves, because I didn't decide until yesterday how they were going to look and I wanted to go on with the project, compulsively over-enthusiastic in the aspie way as I am ;) But then I decided on this look:


Arms held together by lacing is hinted in this woodcut, and in these, although being a completely different style and not actually _landsknecht_ fashion per se, but contemporary Cranach paintings .


I made the patterns (turns out it much easier without the mean elbow thing!) and cut the pieces:

The flat seams (ah, what a beautiful sight!):


My cat wants to help sewing as well, biting the scissor and sleeping on the fabric which makes all the wool full of cat hair, not very easy to get rid of :P



Sneak peak

The front quickly sewn together, had to check... (Looking awesome!) The colours to the left are the accurate colours.


Picture of the lining

Sweet! My fully lined kampfrau bodice (the colours are a bit different in real life, haven't fully figured out my new camera yet) :D

Now to the sleeves, and not looking forward to it. The sleeve-making is the most boring part. :P

Lining practically finished

I have now finished the interlining (or really, lining, because there will only be one layer of lining) of the bodice! I was a bit worried at first because I have failed with lining garments before, making the pieces too small or too big or not saving the pattern pieces to use at all. But this time I'm pleased with the result. There were also some hesitation about which type of stitch to use, and determining which one that looked the best. I ended up using a catch stitch (as you hopefully know I'm hand sewing!), folding the seam allowances down and attaching them to the linen fabric. Looks good and decorative too. :)





The "main" seams on the bodice is now done and I have cut and sewn the green contrasting pieces onto it. :)

In the beginning I wanted to make the green pieces separate but then I decided that it would be worth the headache to instead sew them ONTO the red, because it looks better. (Ehh... hope you understood that, it's hard to explain.)

My flatiron was broke so I had to pin everything down. It took about six-seven hours or so to finish the three pieces (the back included). Thank god for TV.

Anyway, I'm not gonna do anything else until I've figured out the best looking way to line the bodice (with some cheap dark blue linen I bought yesterday) because I want it to look good inside as well. :P We'll see!

Starting on the bodice

This is what I have been doing:

- Cut the mock-up apart along the seam lines, then drew with a pen around the edges on the pattern paper. Then I added the seam-allowance, and at least two centimetres of it, since I'm always bad at adding seam-allowances. (I promise, there's a system in the chaos :P)


- Cut the main fabric, and the real fabric this time! Both a terrifying horror and a nice moment at the same time - there's no turning back now. :P Thankfully nothing went wrong.


- Loosely stitched the parts together just to check and voilá! Fits better than I had expected, obviously there's a few wrinkles here and there that needs to be sorted out and there's lots of extra fabric around the armpits.

The front is sewn together during the process but in the end there will be hooks and eyes. Also I haven't added the lining nor the green contrast pieces in the front and back yet either.

The neckline will be lower, since about 1-2 cm will be folded in.

This arrived in the mail today...


With a new camera as well, yay! It was a good day.

Very pretty bodice mock-up, ahem.

First I seriously need to apologize for the sucky webcam quality, but my digital camera decided to give up commit suicide last week. Hope to get a new one, could be helpful in documenting purposes :P


I decided to make a mock-up in spare wool, since linen and wool doesn't behave the same way and I want to make sure I know what I do before cutting in the real fabric. I did the same thing with the other dress and it's a good way :)

I was lazy and used an old sleeve pattern I made for a red 15th century dress last year, and thankfully it fitted when I pinned it on. Fitting sleeves must be the most boring thing ever. :( On my first bodice mock-up the shoulder straps were angled strangely outwards so that the sleeve dragged the strap down on my arm which is something I get quite a lot. But now the straps stay on the shoulders as they should. I will angle them slightly more to my neck when drafting the final pattern, though.


There's a few changes that has to be made obviously but all in all I'm pleased :D


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