Sunday, December 9, 2012

An 1870 Pretty Pink Plaid Day Gown

A year or so ago I asked my Aunt Dot if she would like to try a knitting challenge.  She said yes, and I showed her the pattern for these knitted patterned undersleeves from 1865.  They are made of fingering weight mohair yarn in a light purple.   This is a super fine - super thin yarn.  It took her a couple of months, and she told me later that she was cursing my name as there where 200 stitches per inch!  They turned out great and are super warm and soft, not itchy at all!  I worn them this weekend with my most recent sewing project, an 1870 Ensemble. 

1870 Brown Silk Day Gown - two piece
I had seven yards of a cotton/rayon dusty rose moire taffeta, which matched perfectly with the two yards of a poly/wool plaid, both of which were in my stash.  This 1870 brown silk gown is my inspiration.  What drew me to this was the clever way they used the rushing to imitate an apron/bustle combination.  As I did not have enough fabric to actually make my apron/bustle, I used the same trim treatment illusion!  I also liked the pagoda sleeves at 3/4, so my knitted undersleeves could be seen and appreciated!

This is my finished ensemble.  It took about seven days to complete from cutting to wearing.  I used the Burda Foundation skirt (see my prior post "Burda Foundation Skirt") with my prior Civil War bodice patten (see "Flirting around with Civil War Fashions").  Lastly, I used self fabric trim to keep costs down.  Total expense was approximately $30 for everything, but as all the fabric, buttons, and thread was already in my stash, technically it did not cost me anything!
Lastly, I topped it off with an 1870 Bonnet in the matching dusty rose moire taffeta.  The bonnet is 75% hand-sewn, and 25% machine sewn.  The bonnet took approximately five hours start to finish.  Enjoy!


  1. Very nice...indeed the gold/brown original is to die for, in more my own color range as pink is not, but the dress you did is virtually identical. The bonnet really cute. And good for you "digging in your stash", being on a major budget myself, it's amazing what you can do with materials you already have. Congrats!

    1. Sandra, Thank you for your comment! Yes, shopping the stash during the Holidays is key! Take care.

  2. Oh how pretty! Can't wait to see you in it! Love the bonnet too.