Monday, October 28, 2013

Adventures in Regency: Part One- Unmentionables!

I think I can count the number of non-Elizabethan projects I've undertaken since creating this blog on one finger. For such a long time my costuming has been so driven by the Faire-purpose and the passion for that era that I could think of making little else. I'm sorry to say that this year something in me--not so much "snapped", but frayed out, rather. As I took on more and more projects for clients and I pushed myself to meet deadlines and create unique hopeful-showstoppers for elite and stellar performers I burned myself out.
For many months now I've been loath to even go near my fabric or workspace. While I told myself this will wear off and by next spring I'll be eager to sew again, a large part of me kinda hoped it wouldn't. Never having been fond of making day-to-day clothes or halloween costumes or other sewing crafts I started to wonder if this loss of my one main passion would deter me from stirring needle and thread again. I was almost resigned to never find out.
And then I was inspired. But not the kind of inspiration that entraps you and enslaves you to a project that gives you sleepless nights fretting over but rather the kind of inspiration that frees you. The kind of inspiration that returns you to the simplest pleasure that's at the heart of why you began this hobby in the first place. "That's pretty. I should like to create something like that and feel what it's like to wear something pretty like that." This phrase is what started me down this road nearly 10 years ago watching the beautiful Guilde of St. George at Bristol parade by. And lo, in the pit of my dispassion, it came to me again. Watching the BBC/A&E Pride & Prejudice for the 100th time I felt that inspiring, politely compelling desire to create and experience those clothes.
With no event looming, no performance to cater, no expectations (my own or others) to meet I'm just going to enjoy my way through some regency era garment-making. If this is the first, last, and only post  I make on the subject, I will bear no disappointment. One of the most profound and ofttimes heartbreaking axioms I have come across in the world of these hobbies is "If you don't enjoy it anymore, it's time to stop." I don't believe that time has come entirely but I can't fight it if it does.

So with no more ado, the palate cleanser of my costuming ennui beginning with UNMENTIONABLES!!!
I have now made a shift/chemise and Regency era "short stays"

 Front view of chemise with short stays over. Chemise comes to just below knee length.

 Back view

Angle showing the "shelf" effect the stays create


  1. lovely! I'm also on a Regency kick in hopes to stir sewing inspiration! Can't wait to see more!

  2. been loving Regency from afar for a long time. you are inspiring me to move closer. thank you. lovely work :)

  3. Is this from a commercial pattern, or is this your own draft?

  4. Haha, I'm kind of sick of making up my own stuff. I'm taking a break (especially for a period I'm not familiar with) and using the patterns to start.

  5. Looks great. Check my progress on Regency on my blog if you will... I am chronicling my Regency wardrobe for the Jane Austen Festival in 2014. I do other stuff as well. keep up the good work, lady. Cheers.