Sunday, December 20, 2015

Blue Waistcoat (v4.0) "Now with Ruff!"


I hope you're not bored of my blue waistcoat yet...cause here it is again!
This time with the ruff I just completed.

This version was originally intended for my first trip to the new-ish Nottingham festival in Simi Valley back in November. I wasn't able to go in the end, but at least I've finally got some photos to prove the outfit exists!
(Though my old computer finally gave up the ghost and very nearly took all of them with it...).
Why another variation on this piece? Mostly because I was procrastinating on another project...No, not the 1590s gown (again), this time I'd actually gone back to the English fitted gown that kicked off this blog.  But I got half-way through the foundation kirtle when I got sucked into the blackhole that is Pinterest and got a bit distracted (I swear this fitted gown is never getting made).

I started noticing that a lot of period paintings featured women in a blue (or possible black or grey) waistcoats/bodices and red skirts, usually with black guards.  This is often paired with a blue apron and a tall pinned-back hat.

Of course I already had the waistcoat and when I found the perfect hat on Esty I just had whip up a quick petticoat and apron to finish the look.

I was debating between a collar and ruff to complete the outfit (which I go into a bit on my ruff post) and ultimately opted for a ruff...mostly because I'd been wanting to try one for a while and now seemed as good a time as any.
I really like the way the ruff turned out, but in the end I don't think this style works very well for this look. Only a couple of the reference images feature a large-ish ruff (as opposed to a standing collar) and none are really set this wide.  Part of the problem this is that the ruff turned out a little too well. I was actually anticipating on failing quite a bit in my first attempt and that the ruff would have ended up a little floppier (as on the first on the two sketches above).
Another issue is that the petticoat has WAY too much volume! I tend to add extra fabric when making skirts out of linen in order to keep them from looking too anemic, but I think I wend a little overboard this time...also for this late in the period the skirt panels should be straight rather than shaped, which is making the silhouette look a little more "bell" shaped than it should.

Still, it's a look that I'd been thinking about trying for a while and at a glance I think it got pretty close to what I was going for!


And here is a bonus underwear shot of the partlet and ruff!