Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Steampunk update

... so now it is raining heavily... Portland rain.... AND the wind is blowing, so there will be no fancy outdoor pictures of my Steampunk outfit until May.  I have this picture that my brother-in-law snapped and tweaked.

You can see the corset and skirt... and my fabulous vintage kid leather gloves in a TAN!!!  How unusual is that?!?!  Note the side arm that the spouse is carrying.  He made that himself.  The sepia picture doesn't show all the brass detailing.  At some point I will get around to taking some color pictures.

Here are some detail shots from the wedding:

This is the bride!  How gorgeous is she in all blue!  Even her hair!

This was taken shortly after we all danced the Timewarp.  It was a most fun wedding.

Friday, November 04, 2011


I was invited to a Steampunk wedding in October.  I spent most of the month constructing my ensemble as all guests were invited to dress in Steampunk style.  If you don't know what that is... click here or here.

Of course I needed a corset.  I haven't made one since college and was dying to test out my vintage pattern that I had ordered on line.  The pattern was a tracing of a vintage pattern... but the tracing lines were not straight and the person providing the pattern had added 5/8" seam allowances to everything (even where they were not needed) AND didn't provide a measurement chart.  After working through all of this... I basically re-drafted the pattern.  I made a muslin for test....

Each panel has two layers of muslin to stabilize.  If it stretches, it doesn't do the job as well and the measurements will not remain accurate.  The side seams were also pulling too far forward, so I adjusted that.  Many vintage corset patterns have seams falling in different places from modern clothing.  Some of my corset books have corset styles with seams wrapping from back to front or with very steep angles.  In this case, the seam that I needed on the side (or slightly in front of the side) was clearly on the front.  So I made a few pattern adjustments.  Things looked good, so I placed my order for the real stuff... including extra boning.  I ordered from Corsetmaking.com which has the most amazing supply of things.  Even the general sewer should check out their items.  Very affordable and the shipping was very fast.

This is the black coutil flat lined with a black cotton sateen.  I couldn't find the twill tape/Prussian tape in black so I contrasted with red.

I purchased a vastly-superior-to-Dritz grommet setting tool and awl (which I love!!!) and went to work. Grommet setting is so easy... I need to make more things with grommets.

This is the first fitting of the final corset.  I don't have the top and bottom binding on yet, but the panels are laying flat.  I will post pictures of the full outfit soon.  I don't have any yet.

There is also a really full skirt that goes with the whole thing.

See!  It's a full circle!