The tabs are finished :)

Umph and hurray, I finally finished finishing off all the round bits of the tabs at the bottom edge!


I decided to go for a bias tape around the edge, because it is the most historically accurate way to finish the bottom edge, especially on tabs and anyway this is the easiest way to make it look nice, if you use a coloured bias tape. I didn’t have any at home, so I just cut up the skirt of an old dress, that I had saved for its fabric; actually I had thought about using some pink piping/bias tape, but I ended up using the blue-dark blue checked fabric from the old dress.

It was so much work!

First I cut off all the layers along the pattern outline and pinned the bias tape along it, stitched along with some millimeters distance from the edge, folded it over and stitched it down by hand. Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures, but it’s just the normal way to apply a bias tape properly. The annoying part was, that the lining fabric is such a tightly woven one, while the fabric from the skirt was a really lose one, so that getting the needle through the one without disintegrating the other into single threads was quite a task… But I did it! 😀

Now it’s only the straight bits, that are left and I think they should be a lot more easy; I’m going to cut the strips straight and not diagonally for this, I think.

So here just another closeup of the finished tabs:

Oh, and I forgot to mention: I used a separate strip of bias tape for each tab; that made cutting the bias and pinning it on a lot more easier and is responsible for the strange gap that you see on the inside 😉


Tab on the outside


Tab on the inside

The bottom edge; inside on top, outide below

The bottom edge; inside on top, outside below



Right on the next day I finished the piece that is to lie on the shoulder – but my internet connection was so bad since, that I wasn’t able to post it:










I sewed it by hand, because I was to lazy, to set up the sewing machine for such a mall piece 😉

As you see better in the detail picture, I put it into folds, so that the shoulder piece would be wider than the rest of the handle. I sewed it from inside and then closed the seam along it length from the outside with tiny, nearly invisible stitches.

The arm doesn’t fit! Oh, it does…

After one side-seam to try the sewing by hand on the real dress, I did the one arm I had already cut out and when I tried it on, it didn’t fit! And I had already done all the cutting of the seam allowances and flat felling of them, so that it would have been difficult to change them… But then I remembered, that I didn’t yet put in the gore that was to go into the uppermost 10 cm of the arm 😉 so the whole thing was all right, as the lower bit of the arm was already fitting perfectly.


As I had planned, I now used a smaller length for the stitches – they are about 1 to 2 mm long. I mainly used running stitch and every 10 cm or so I used backstitch for about 2 cm, so that even should th thread break, it would not leave a big whole. I think the 10 cm are more than enough though; on the next seams of the skirt I’ll use much less, because I do not think it that necessary and it will take less time.

On the Arm I used the backstitch for reinforcement around the wrist, witch is narrow and gets some strain when I put on the dress, on the elbow and the Armpit/ back of the arm, as the seam runs behind and not under the arm.

Beginning the Burgundian Dress…

On Saturday I found the time to make the pattern for the dress – but I couldn’t bring myself to really starting to cut up the fabric…

When I woke up the next morning, I suddenly had the question in mind, how the two Layers were treated – were they, as you would do it today, sown separately with the seam allowances in between or together, the colour of the outer layer showing as on the brown one on this page, or some other way? Good that I thought of this before cutting, as I would cut the seam allowances accordingly…

I looked through all my pictures and didn’t find an example of the colour of the outer layer showing in seam allowances on any of the lifted skirts that I found, so that I came to the following conclusion: I’ll sew both layers as one and use the flat felling technique – but I won’t divide the seam allowances and stitch them down respectively, I will just fold them over to one side and by sowing so the lining will lay on top and the green of the outer layer won’t show. I tried the hole thing on a test seam and this is, what it looks like:

Probenaht In the top pic you can see the colours nicely.

The middle one is a closeup of the seam – the green stitches are about 2 to 3 mm in length; for the actual dress I want to use a little shorter ones if possible. Here I used backstitch, which I will use at the top of the dress and at all the points, where a lot of stress will come onto the seam/ where I want it a little stronger, like at the top of gores.

In the bottom you see a diagram of the way I made the seam – I always find diagrams much easier to understand than the explanation (like the one I gave above 😉 ).


So I decided, to cut all the pattern pieces with a seam allowance of 2cm, wich will make it easier in sewing together, because I won’t need to look at the lines but just align the edges and sew along. After sewing the actual seam, I’ll cut of three of the layers to 1 cm and fold the remaining long one around, stitching this one to the fabric of the lining.


The fabric is only 110 cm wide, which is much closer to the average width of the medieval cloth than the 150cm that you usually get, so that I could just use the whole width of the silk, without having to think about too wide pieces in the pattern. As I always try to think and plan the way I would have, had I lived in the time in question, I used the space that appeared between the front and back part of the pattern to make one more gore, so that I will use up all the fabric and have some more width in the skirt – the only thing I’m a little concerned about with this one is, that it is cut diagonaly and might tend to strech…however, it is not very wide (40 cm at the bottom) and I think it will be ok.


For the Layout of the other pattern pieces I tried to use the edge of the fabric as much as possible, to use the form stability this will give – at the center back and the center front seam, the latter also being the edge of the V-Neck, so that that won’t stretch. As soon, as I have a proper sketch of the layout and pattern, I’ll post it here 🙂

Basicaly, the pattern consists of two front pieces, witch have some additional width in front, because the V-Neck line continues into the front seam, two back pieces, witch just go straight down in the center back, two center back gores witch will be set in at the hight of the belt and one enter back witch will be set between those two gores a little further down, as that one is a little shorter, because it is cut across the width of the fabric. The dress will have a slight train in the back; just enough to lie on the floor, but only just trail behind; I put an extra length of about 15 cm in at the back.