Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Step By Step: A New 18th Century Dress Pattern

Ok, I will go on record to say that I'm more than a bit excited for the new 1760-1770s English Gown pattern from Larkin & Smith. I've been wanting to try their mitts pattern for a while now, and when the gown pattern was recently released, I made up my mind to order both.

Not from the usual time frame that I currently obsess over, but this is the style that made me fall in love with the 18th century, way back when.
I do love the cut and versatility of these particular gowns. The clean lines and fitted back lends itself well to all figures and types of trimming. Another good thing about the English gown; if you have an event or reenactment to attend that is set somewhere during the latter half of the 1700s, you can rest assure you will be dressed accordingly should this ever be the only frock you have. It was worn well into the 1790s by some in the middle/merchant classes, and in the Americas.

"There are 34 pages of step by step instructions, with 20 pages of color photographs, spiral bound.  As you can imagine this bumped up our printing costs quite a bit.  So our pattern has to be more expensive than other patterns.."

That is a small price that I'm HAPPY to pay, considering that too many historical patterns out there have less than ideal instructions. There are even some with incorrect instructions that never get edited, and some are practically nonexistent! The primary focus is on hand sewing, but I'm sure machine sewing is still an option.
I'm really looking forward to trying this pattern out, and making some lovely things inspired by the below images.
Extant gowns from the KCI Archives:

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