I'm not sure how these would have been done in the 1780's. Every extant 18th century garment with scalloped edges that I have ever seen has raw edges that were cut with a pinking tool, but this seems a poor choice for a hem that drags along the ground. Perhaps the whole edge was finished with buttonhole stitches, like cutwork. But these are just guesses. Neither one of those would work on my fraying-prone rayon anyway.
I couldn't find any extant examples of this type of petticoat (plain white petticoats aren't the sort of garment people generally save) so I really have no idea how those hems were made.
Since there wasn't much hope for historical accuracy with this project, I just copied the look as closely as possible. In order to get the hem I wanted I would have to sew some kind of facing to the hem so that the scallops could be turned and all the raw edges hidden away.
I made my first sample with two pieces of the rayon.
|Nope. Wrong fabric. Making samples is always a good idea for this very reason.|
I had recently received several big bags of fabric from my mother's friend and amongst all the fabulous natural fibers was a piece of this stuff:
|Yay! Much better.|
It only took 3 strips of the crispy stuff to go around the entire hem. One straight piece for the front and two curved pieces for the back/sides. I had cut the hem to length in a swooping shape so the two curved pieces were cut to match.
Then I sewed along the whole scallop-y line using a very small stitch length.
|7 down, only 99 to go!|
When I stopped sewing there was still a one scallop wide space at the center back where the two free ends of the facing were.
|Only one scallop left.|
I sprayed the hem with water and turned the scallops inside out.
|They bore a strong resemblance to cartoon dinosaur toes.|
If I had known that earlier I could have done a better job ironing it. No wonder it took so long to get the wrinkles out on the synthetic setting.
|The scallops being ironed.|
I was afraid that the scallops would pucker and begin to turn inward again the next time they got wet so I went around the hem with edge stitching. It was no fun at all but it made the scallops more secure.
|Structurally sound scallops.|
|This picture shows the wobbliest scallop.|
I'm so glad it's an even number!
The hem is a bit lower in front than the ones in the fashion plates but it should be at the right level when I eventually get proper 18th century shoes.
Does anyone have any advice on making shift sleeves fit under outerwear sleeves?
#15, Colour challenge-White
Fabric: 3.5 m of rayon, 3 not-particularly-big strips of silk organza, 2 very small rectangles of tightly woven cotton.
Pattern: None. I cut the swoop of the hem based on the measurements of the purple petticoat, but with a slightly shorter train.
Year: Late 1780's-early 1790's
Notions: 3.4 m of cotton twill tape.
How historically accurate is it? Not very. The only hand sewing is in the waistband, the pocket slits, the ends of the twill tape and the inside of the hem. The materials are not accurate either. The only accurate thing about this petticoat is the look, which is based on the fashion plates I posted a few days ago.
Hours to complete: 24 hours and 40 minutes. No surprise there.
First worn: July 15th.
Total cost: $0
I am quite proud of the fact that I only spent 3 days sewing this 24 hour petticoat. The 22 hour cap was also done inside of 3 days. I'm not normally able to work so efficiently because I am usually quite sleep deprived (I have terrible insomnia. I can go to bed at 10:00 and still be awake at 2:30) but I slept in that week and so was able to catch up on the challenge.
I finished the petticoat on July 9th which put me 20 days ahead of schedule. The extra time is important because the project I am working on for the next challenge is my first jacket ever and it will take a while to figure out. I am convinced that I can do better in the second half of the HSF than I did in the first. I missed a bunch of challenges, finished a bunch of things late and created some new UFO's. I will make an effort to procrastinate less on the remaining challenges.
I'm working on the second toile now and the pattern is starting to resemble something reasonably decent.
That's all for today. More on the jacket later.