Victorian Commission

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In February I was commissioned to work on a rather exciting project – a set of 7 Victorian dresses, ranging from late 1860 to 1885,  with a couple of sets of underwear.

 The  clothes will be used in a rather exciting venture – a set up photography studio where people can book a complete victorian make over – dress up in all the layers and have their photos taken by professional photographer, resulting in high quality photos of themselves transported into another century. What a cracking idea! 

 The budget limits and the target audience of the clothes  meant taking a few shortcuts and freedoms – the client, in order to save time and money suggested using an overlocker on the inside seams and edges; petticoats sport elasticated bands to fit most sizes. Corsets will be mostly purchased online – a few suitable vendors were recommended, where the client can get cheap corset that will result in approximately silhuette, and which woudl be easily replaced with wear and tear.

 after a few emails and sending over different pictures, I received a set of pictures I was to base the dresses on.  The pictures were to serve as  guidlines only: the aim was to reproduce the look  and the feel within the budget specified for each garment.

 I must say, that was a perfect solution for me – as it also allowed me to use my ideas and creativity – and in the end the client actually got a better deal out of it as i was using far more lace, nice buttons and quality trims etc simply because I enjoyed working with the items and was making sure they are pretty!

 Even before we have signed the contract for the frock, the client bought the first Victorian gown I have ever made – my mother’s outfit for my Victorian wedding:-)

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Mother of the Bride outfit in silk brocade and taffeta

  We have arranged for the undergrments to be made first and then each month i would complete 2 or 3 gowns,.

  the first batch: the undergarments:

 bustle cages and pads ( 2 cages and 3 pads altogether):

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steel boned bustle cages, decorated with lace

 
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one of the pads

 

cotton petticoats – 2 flounced ones, one Natural Form era petticoat

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2 flounced petticoats worn on the bustle cages

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Natural Form slim petticoat with lace and pintucks, worn on a pad

The dresses were next.

1. a dress in green silk

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inspiration photo…

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the rendition – in green silk, detachable lace cuss and optional belt. size 14

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2. A dress in black and gold silk

 

 

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black silk satin, gold taffeta, gold antique braid. size 12, so could try it on!

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3. A polonaise

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polonaise – the client requested cream instead of navy, and lace

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skirt in silk taffeta, with lace overlay, polonaise in cream silk brocade, size 14

 

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back unbustled

 

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or bustled up

 

4. a Natural Form era dress in ivory and navy

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the inspiration

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rendition – silk taffeta in ivory and blue, size 14

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too big, but had to try it on!

 

5. 1885 walking dress

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the inspiration

 
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rendition_ silk velvet and ivory brocade with pink pattern. size 12

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and the inevitable happened..

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6. a dress in red velvet…

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the inspiration

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red velvet, cream moire skirt, white lace

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7. the same dress, but in black velvet, size 18

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black velvet, white satin skirt,

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 As a freebie, ii enclosed 2 hats – two boaters and 2 visiting, flashier ones.

 the boaters:

 

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  Altogether, a very iinteresting commission that was a pleasure to work on – the client is very happy and we are currently discussing a similar order, for children’s clothing, also Victorian – so there may be a follow up!

 

 The moment the studio starts thier Victorian make overs, will post a link here too:-)

 Hope you have enjoyed  lookign and the results of the work as much as i have enjoyed making them!

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3 thoughts on “Victorian Commission

  1. Pingback: Victorian Commission part 2: Kiddies’ stuff! | A Damsel in This Dress

  2. Pingback: Managing big projects | A Damsel in This Dress

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