Monday, March 5, 2012

Another pair of stays in progress

In an earlier post I mentioned that I had already picked another pattern for my own 1780s stays and now I've started to work on the second pair to which I'm going to make all the cahnges needed. I already had a pair of stays which fitted me quite well but those had unfortunately began to look really worn so I drafted a new pattern from the old pattern. I didn't base the pattern on any stays in particular but on several 1780s stays on the internet. The stays probably look the most like this pair:

Stays ca. 1780 from the MET
I realized I had never posted pictures of my old stays on this blog so here's the pair I was talking about above. I wish they still looked as good as they used to... This was a surprisingly well fitting pair of stays, actually, because I couldn't do the fittings that well when I made these two years ago.The only problem was that they pushed my waist down because I have a short back so they were a bit uncomfortable.

I managed to put the new stays together really quickly and I had the chance to try them on on Friday. This was the result:

Due to the stretching of the fabric, they were slightly too big and the edges met in the back even though I had planned the usual 5cm gap when drawing the pattern. Unfortunately it seems I forgot to take photos of the back view during the first fitting.... Anyway, I removed two bones, one on each side panel (see the photo above in the middle) and took in the seams where I could. I also added more curve to the sides of the front panels to archieve a better curved figure of the 1780s. I did the second fitting today and was happy with the results, even though the gap in the back is still a bit less than 5cm.

Notice the difference in the curve, compared to the photos of the first fitting...?


This time I remembered to take pictures of the back as well. The edges don't meet perfectly evenly because I had to lace myself in the stays by myself. Next time I'll take pictures when my partner is at home so it'll be easier.

Tomorrow I'm heading off to town to get some binding tape so that I can finish these during this week. I'm on vacation so it means I have the time to make it if I just pull myself together to have the patience with it. Oh, and I'm also going to be looking for a new sewing machine. The one that I have now is a cheap one and I fear it will break down any time, which would be terrible because it's borrowed from my grandmother. I really need my own machine anyway.

P.S. You may have noticed that cat in one of the photos :) It seems there's a craze for sewing cats on costume blogs so I guess I'll have to give my two sewing cats their own post some day... Because they just love to "help" me with my sewing and always sneak into the photos... They're adorable.