Last week was our final week to get most of the tudor dress made including a day of making the hats. Monday and Tuesday I spent making the sleeves, Wednesday I made the chiffon partlet, Thursday was hat making day and Friday I started making the tabs to fit onto the bodice.
Below you can see the dress as it was in the final fitting. I still have the chiffon partlet to finish on the inside and the fastenings on the cuff to sew. The braid around the neckline is pinned on and the cap sleeves I made up but decided the dress looked better without them.
I used the same gold hem fabric to make the cuff pleat detail to make the gown design consistent.
The partlet was made using a silk chiffon, notoriously tricky to handle I think after some practice runs I managed it without too much frustration. The neckline was gathered and ribbon stitched over about one inch down from the neckline edge. I finished the edges by using a very small zig zag stitch on the machine.
I made the partlet long enough to ensure it sat nicely under the gown without coming loose. A channel using cotton tape was stitched along the bottom edges to create a tie around the waist.
The finished partlet
Making the headdress
The headdress is based on a pattern from the Tudor tailor book with the crescent shape adjusted to best represent the Mary Boleyn design. The main structure was made using buckram (cloth stiffened with gum) and millinery wire. I blanket stitched around the wire to attach it securely the buckram.
I stitched the main fabric over the foundation using stab stitch close to the millinery wire. Black cotton lining was added on the inside, the edges turned under and slip stitched to make a neat finish. (If it's possible make sure to add any embellishments before this step so you can hide any stitch marks on the inside)
I added some sparkly braid to the crescent and attached it to the main headdress. Ideally I would do this before adding the lining on the inside but I found it too awkward to stitch the lining on afterwards. I just stab stitched through to the lining using a matching thread and very small stitches so it hardly shows on the inside.
For the bag structure on the back I cut a large circle of fabric and pleated around the edges to create the fullness as shown in the design. I stitched it to the underside of the crescent positioning the pleats as I went to make it symmetrical.
That's it for now but my next post will be about our visit to Harewood house as promised in my last post.
Bye for now