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1860's Silk Taffeta Ball Gown Bodice with Bertha

  • PP715 front
  • PP715 back
Calculated at checkout

Product Description

The pattern for Past Patterns' 1860s Pink Silk Taffeta Gown is based upon a gown in the collections of the North Hampton Historical Society in North Hampton, MA.

Ball gowns of the 1860s were opulent and elaborate, reflecting the social status and tastes of the wearer, while also adhering to the fashionable trends of the Victorian era.

This garment was chosen as it had all of these expected traits including focus on silhouette, using taffeta (a common materials from the era), interesting sleeves, pastel in color and it was highly embellished (another standard of 1860s ball gowns).

Isabelle Lott, one of Saundra Altman oldest co-workers, was instrumental in getting this design over the finish line.  She followed Saundra's original instructions, built a test garment and resolved a few design errors along the way.

The result is a well-tested set of instructions that will allow you to build a unique, beautiful, period-accurate, gown.

Skirt length at Center Front for All Sizes is 42"
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Bust 32 ½" - 48"
Waist 24 ½" - 40"
Hips 34 ½" - 50"
Designs are included for B, C & D cups
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To make the bodice w& skirt using fashion fabric, purchase in 54" wide fabric:
6 1/2 yds. for sizes 8-14
8 1/8 yds. for sizes 16-20
9 5/8 yds. for sizes 22-26

The original garment's fashion fabric was a lightweight (but not thin) taffeta in soft, pink silk.  Avoid using plaids, strips, heavyweight fabrics such as velvet and upholstery damasks.

For the skirt underling, purchase in 54" wide fabric:
5-5/8 yds. for sizes 8-14
6-7/8 yds. for sizes 16-20
8-1/8 yds. for sizes 22-26.

The original skirt was flat lined with what could be described as a very stiff but lightweight, woven interfacing, much like a cheese cloth. Silk organza is a suitable substitute if a stiff, lightweight loosely woven interfacing is not used.

For bodice lining purchase in 45" wide fabric:

1-7/8 yds. for sizes 8-14
2 yds. for sizes 16-20
2-3/8 yds. for sizes 22-26.

The original bodice was flat lined with a fine, tightly woven, white linen which appeared "glazed."  A tightly woven, polished cotton would be appropriate if linen cannot be found.
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The package comes a copy of the original artwork on the cover, a sizing chart and alternate views on the back cover, 30 pages of extensive notes on fabric cutting and instructions for making the garment and 2 computer generated sheets of patterns, 1 containing the bodice and the 1 containing the skirt.

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