Sew ALL the things

Guys… The project ADHD has not improved. I’m taking a couple low-key days because on Thursday and Friday of last week it got to the point where I felt like a human sewing machine, not a person.

Last Monday was finally the day in which my kirtle would get sleeves. I pulled out the Medieval Tailor’s Assistant and some pattern paper and jumped in.

Sleeve pattern 1: Forgot to halve my wrist measurement. Completely the wrong shape. Redo.

Sleeve pattern 2: Waaaay too big, couldn’t set it in. Redo.

Sleeve pattern 3: Fits, but….

That’s the limit of my arm movement, which is unhelpful.

After a cry for help on the facebooks Mistress Sylvie correctly diagnosed the problem as the armhole seam being too far out on my shoulder. I cut it in about an inch from these pictures and added the length to the top of the sleeve cap. Voila, use of my arms.

The kirtle is now getting a hem and eyelets, at which point it will be done other than hand-felling allllll the interior seams. Ugh.

Darrin came to visit on Tuesday and we had a fun day touring all the fabric stores in Berkeley. I picked up some wool twill to make bias hose, more pattern paper, and some example trim pieces for my lace class at GWW. I also slightly bullied Darrin into getting 3.5 yards of clearance wool/cashmere coating to make a cloak so he won’t freeze. It was massively discounted because I am a good friend.

We also spent a good hour at Moe’s Books looking at illuminated manuscript compilations.

14th C German

Darrin also tried on his new garb!

The drape on the surcote is a little odd without a belt but the cote looks awesome and the fit is perfect. I grabbed at the chance to mark the sleeve length while he was wearing it, too.

I then fell of the straight and narrow slightly…. I said only 4 new garb pieces for me for GWW but I really am sick of my stupid rayon velvet cloak, and I’d been handsewing all day at work and wanted to use the machine, and….

Patterns of Fashion 3 #45b, loose gown 1570-1580. This particular one is German but it’s a style that originated in Spain.

And I need to squee for a second because that is scaled exactly from the book, plus seam allowances. I did not resize it at all. Whoever owned this gown in 1575 was exactly my size. It was almost a magical moment.

Those sleeves though…. Those sleeves are nuts. For one thing they’re not gathered

Those are my picked-apart mock-up pieces. Getting the shape right is dependent on having the right pieces in front and in back because they’re similar but not symmetrical. I had a moment of terror when I set the first real sleeve in because it didn’t look as good as the mock-up…. only to realize it was upside-down.

The gown itself is a Italian coatweight wool I got at Discount Fabrics for a steal. It was originally a funny teal color but some black acid dye and a lot of water turned it charcoal grey. The sleeves are interlined with a lightweight buckram and lined to the hip with the mock-up, which I made from an old sheet, probably linen.

My sewing machine wears part of a sleeve as a hat

It feels a bit like having beetle carapaces on your shoulder but I feel badass. This is getting beige silk bobbin lace motifs on the back where the original has couched cord designs.

T declared this my pimp coat (he was trying to convince me to make a Slavic one like Brekke has, but I’m sticking to Spain for now) and I can live with that.

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