It’s here! It’s finally here!

patternThe dress pattern in all it’s glory arrived in the mail today. The instructions seem thorough and easy enough to follow, which is a plus. Now all I have to do is find some cheap fabric so I can start making the practice garments. Oh, and get the sewing machine. And buy a tape measure.  This could take a while…

Published in: on August 31, 2009 at 5:33 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , ,

The perfect pattern! Or, you know, it could have been.

I was so looking forward to making something in a mid-30s style that it kind of threw me for a loop when the writers decided to go for 1930. I’ve been doing a bunch of research lately and had found some awesome stuff, but none of the patterns I had fallen in love with were earlier than from 1933. What to do? Intentionally make an outfit that’s all wrong for the time period? Put hours and hours into a project I wasn’t completely sold on? I decided to go for option one, which in this case would be the lesser evil in my mind. I’m fairly sure most of the participants at this particular LARP wouldn’t even be able to tell the difference between a look from 1930 and 1940, much less one that’s “only” four years off. They’re lovely people and dedicated LARPers, but costume geeks they are not. I figure I might as well make something I absolutely love, and then find other uses for it. Although I kind of cringe at the thought.

1399So what does this affront to historical correctness look like? Why, here it is!  If I will in fact use the cape for a coat, I’m going to have to find some sort of cardigan to wear underneath if I don’t wish to freeze to death. I’ve seen some cool coat patterns, but I’m trying not to get ahead of myself here. This is going to take a while, especially if I go by the book – which I absolutely intend to do (Me? Control freak?), and I’d rather not be sitting in a giant pile of unfinished rags tearing my hair three days before the big night. Better try to finish one garment at a time.

Anyway. I ordered the pattern from Eva Dress today. They have a beautiful collection of reproduction patterns ranging from 1800s to 1950s – it’ll be interesting to see if the pattern is any good to work with. Oh, I hope so! If it comes out a tenth as beautiful as in the picture, it’ll be my favorite outfit EVER.

Published in: on August 17, 2009 at 6:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , , ,

Finding a Nice Dress Pattern – How Hard Could it Be?

Ah, the dress. The icing on the super amazing cake that will (hopefully) be my costume, the source of my future fellow LARPers’  jealousy and respect. Or something. I don’t have any hopes for finding free dress patterns, and I’m certainly not going to try to make my own – I’m a decent hobby seamstress, but let’s face it, I’m not going to apply to Project Runway any time soon. Again, perfect historical accuracy is not the priority, so all I had to do was go online, and find some nice shop that carries reproduction patterns to make a stylish, mid-30s outfit which comes in my size and works in cold weather. Should be a snap, right? Wrong, apparently. Astoundingly enough, genuine 30s looks do not dominate today’s fashion industry. That, or I’m looking in all the wrong places.

After going through quite a few sellers of very pretty vintage dresses that are way too valuable to be worn to a LARP, I eventually found Folkwear, a company that sells patterns for “vintage and ethnic garments”. Apart from some nice but not terribly useful patterns (like a cute Russian peasant outfit that I would never find use for) they have a retro department with some good stuff.

249groupThis pattern is called 1930s Day Dress. Pro: It’s a dress! Which is pretty! From the 30s! Con: Well, not so much from the 30s as in the imagined style of. I’m not going for prefect period accuracy here, but it would be nice to know what year I’m almost, kinda dressed for. Also: That dress in October? *Shudder*.

236viewsHere we have something a little more season-appropriate. The Sophisticated Lady (yes, that is what the pattern is called) isn’t specifically dated, or super interesting for that matter, but it’s something. I can’t help but feel that it looks a bit matronly, and possibly not like something a dashing old time investigator (or cultist) would wear if given the choice, but hey – it’s not like the internet has been real forthcoming with providing good alternatives.

I was pretty tapped out from hours of toiling fashionservice1931.08.front1away with search engines, when I finally stumbled on something that was really worth getting excited about: The Magic Bias Slip at Dressmaking Research. This beautiful undergarment from 1931 even comes with construct-it-yourself pattern directions! Suddenly I remembered why I started this project in the first place, and decided to not give up on trying to find a dress pattern that excites me as much as this pretty little thing.

There’s sill a bunch of stuff to do before I can start sewing – for instance, the machine I plan on using resides happily at my sister’s apartment an hour’s trainride away – but at least I have a plan (well, a start) and I can begin the search for fabric. I still don’t have a clue what I’m actually going to look like, but I have a feeling that what’s on underneath is going to make me feel pretty fabulous.

1930s Fashion: a Year by Year Chart


I found this incredibly helpful chart over at Unsolicited, but Useful, Advice for LARPers. I love how you can follow the way the lines of the garments gradually change. Look out, here comes part two!


Published in: on August 11, 2009 at 8:56 pm  Leave a Comment