Monday, May 8, 2017

Petticoat From An Old Dress

One of the reasons I like using historical methods in garment construction is ease of reuse.

Consider my second-ever cotton dress:

Reproduction cotton plaid day dress with narrow coat sleeves, c.1862-1865.
Cotton "homespun" dress of red, blue and white plaid.

It doesn't fit my needs anymore. The coat sleeves post-date my main time, while figure fluctuations have affected the bodice fit in irreparable ways.

Fortunately, I made this dress as a finished bodice and skirt, so snipping a few basting threads gives my a perfectly functional working petticoat:

Gauged petticoat of plaid cotton, for mid-Victorian working wear (reproduction).
Colored petticoat. Cost: $0, 30 seconds of labor.
I flat-lined the bodice with white cotton, so both it and sleeve seams can be picked out, and the fabric used for patchwork or other small projects (doll clothes, sewing accessories, scrap-fabric hem facings). Modern techniques such as cutting out darts, serging seams, or using iron-in interfacing would reduce or eliminate this utility--I've remodeled a couple dresses with interfacing, and despite multiple washings, the fabric remained stiff and retained a gummy residue.

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