Thursday, 26 August 2010

Smocks and petal bums

This is just a quick post really on 2 items of C18th clothing.

Firstly the smock. I made this from cotton sheeting which is really wide and so when folded in half it can make a smock cut from one piece (with the fold along the sleeves) so it is like a T shape. As C18th smock sleeves only come to the elbow, I needed to adjust the pattern sleeves:

I then sewed and neatened both side seems. I cut a slit in the neck hole and when my stays were finished I tried it all on and put pins in to where I wanted the smock neckline to come and then hemmed it. I had actually made the back of the neckline far too low so I had to add in a piece of cotton to make it higher! Luckily this wont be seen as the gown will cover it.
After this I had to sort out the cuffs. As said before, the sleeves came to the elbow, so to make the cuffs I had to measure the crook of my elbow, which was 11" and make the cuffs accordingly. To do this I gathered the cuff, but left and inch either side of the sleeve seam and I then bound it with some leftover cotton fabric. Simple really.

Now, the petal bum. This is actually a bum pad that, obviously, goes over the bum and looks like petals. The pad makes the bum fuller and causes the gown to stick out at the back. The pattern was the middle piece of the paper pattern for a bum roll I made which was conveniently the right size and shape for a petal bum pad. It measures at the top 11" (the point on your torso where the hip bone is and is the measurement is from [about] kidney to kidney), at it's widest part 18.5" (width of bum) and is 7" long (from hip bone line to about half way down bum cheek!).

I cut the pattern from 2 pieces of cotton fabric, adding an inch seam allowance. With the right sides together, I sewed the sides and bottom seam, sewing in some cotton tape for ties. I turned the pad the right way round and drew on 2 curved lines (see picture) and then sewed along them using backstitch. I used some polyester stuffing for the padding (can be bought from haberdasheries) and then sewed up the top seam.

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