Market Fair Preparations

With an event (the Market Fair in Dover, DE) in early November coming up, I’m under the gun. I need to clothe 2-4 people c.1770 from my meager stash of costuming, and I need extra clothes to display and to demonstrate with. So now comes the big push: I need to finish *all* my sewing projects and complete a handful of new ones within three weeks.

First up was reworking a checked linen shirt for my dad. I had made the collar too small when I finished the shirt. Instead of making a whole new collar (which would mean I’d have to sew another buttonhole … I hate buttonholes … ) I took the collar off, cut it in half, and added a piece to the center back.

Widening a shirt collar. I took it off and cut it in half, then added a strip down the back & re-attached it.

Widening the shirt collar: the original cut in half, and the addition about to be added. Also the iProduct playing Mozart – you’ve gotta have that atmosphere.

The finished shirt, with the collar and back of the body both pieced. If I had been more careful, I could have lined the checks up and made the seams almost invisible.

The finished shirt, with the collar and back of the body both pieced. If I had been more careful, I could have lined the checks up and made the seams almost invisible. More on me and my accuracy in sewing later.

Except for the button rings, this shirt is 100% linen, and 100% handmade. It feels sooooo good.

Except for the button rings, this shirt is 100% linen, and it’s 100% hand sewn. It feels sooooo good. And looks sooooo bad all wrinkled and droopy.

My second project was for myself. I have needed a muff for a while because my hands get cold easily, so I made one from a leftover bit of wool from my red wool cloak. I also made a cover for it, to make it a little more versatile. It was a nice project because it wasn’t difficult sewing, and it took only an hour to get the actual muff done. The cover took a little longer.

The muff, with the cotton and silk cover on. It'll look better in context. I hope.

The muff, with the chintz and silk cover on. It’ll look better in context. I hope. And yeah, I know how to sew a straight line, I was just making this up as I went / too lazy / not caffeinated enough to do it.

So what’s next? I have a mental list of things I want to make, but I’m not sure how many I will be able to actually finish. I’d love to make a small child’s set of clothes, with a pudding cap and stays, to demonstrate with. I really need to get a few more petticoats, short gowns or jackets, chemises and shoes (eek!) made. A pair of stays or jumps to demonstrate with would really make me happy, but I probably won’t be able to do that in time. We’ll see how much I am able to do before the end of the month!

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About Amanda Goebel

I'm an Anthropology / Fashion History and Material Culture graduate from The University of Delaware, currently working on a Master's in Museum Studies. I'm a living historian interested in costume and culture from years before. I love researching the mundane and the everyday that has changed or disappeared since. I re-enact the 18th century, and I recreate clothing from that time. This blog is where I'll write about my research and projects. View all posts by Amanda Goebel

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