Monday, November 28, 2011

Progress and a saccocia

I spent yesterday sewing round and round my petticoat, attaching the lining, sewing two cording channels and putting three rows of trim on. I'm planning to take it to fighter practice tonight and have someone help me mark the waist so I can trim the top, pleat it, and add the waistband. I think I solved some of the problem I had with my last petticoat by making it quite a bit shorter and less full. That should solve the issues my gold one has with slipping down and showing. There's also more fabric in the petticoat than the skirt of the dress so the red skirt doesn't hang as well as I would like. Part of the issue is that I made the gold one intending that it could be worn separately with an Elizabethan jacket. The new one is just a plain old petticoat. I'm sewing it by machine rather than by hand like the first one. I even did the cording channels and trim by machine in the interest of time. I'm not really that pleased by it, but it should be functional. Its at the bottom of the picture. Salmon colored linen I bought for 97 cents a yard at Handcock's last year with the rest of the chestnut linen I used for the lining of my gold petticoat as lining. I corded it with the cotton clothesline rope I had left over from the gold petticoat. The trim is green cotton ribbon that I sewed down with the honeycomb stitch on my machine. The ribbon is actually ribbon yarn. I bought it on super clearance at my favorite knitting shop for 99 cents a ball several years ago. One of the cheapest ways to buy really nice trim is the have a look at novelty yarns. Even really expensive yarn can be very cheap trim once you calculate the yardage.

I also spent some time working on the sleeves for my zimmara. It's the blue and yellow fabric with pomegranates in the picture. I cut it out in January (or maybe February?) with the intention of doing a loose gown to wear with my blackworked coif. Its cut using the diagram for the "Learned man's gown of cloth" from Alcega dated 1589 as pictured on page 6 of Janet Arnold's Patterns of Fashion. Since then, I've read several reviews of people using the giant bag top sleeve in the Reconstructiong History pattern (which is basically the Alcega sleeve) and HATING it. I got rather worried by that. I didn't have enough fabric to re-cut the sleeves into the round sleeve that I would have preferred for the zimarra, but I had plenty of leeway to futz around with the top of the sleeve I had cut. I ended up trimming some of the sides away so it wasn't as unstructured and cutting the top section in panes. I still need it to have quite a bit of fullness as it will be worn over the puffy baragoni of my Italian gowns and I think it should have it this way. I guess we'll see how it works. At present I have 2 somethings resembling either badly drawn trees, tentacled monsters, or possibly cubist squid. The panes are cut and sewn to the interlinings and I'm trying to determine if I'm going to catch the panes at intervals and pull out false puffs or what. I'm also staring at a silver fabric for lining and trying to determine preferences. A deeper blue or possibly a crazy yellow are also in consideration.

Then we coma around to something I actually did complete. I made a giant saccoccia. My previous pockets have been much smaller, mostly because I just don't have much to put in to them. I have to carry a diaper bag with my twins anyway, so I haven't had much need for a small bag. Decided to try one out anyway, especially as I will be attending Solstice and 12th Night by myself. This is closer in proportion to historic examples, although the shape isn't as long of a teardrop. For that matter neither is my tasseled bag. I just prefer a broader bottom and a more blunted shape. Not sure why, but that's what keeps coming out. Looking at the various pockets we have from frescos and paintings as well as the extant Spanish example (assembled for easy viewing by the fabulous Anea)it seems like one of those items that is decorated to the wearer's taste, and the Spanish one is shorter and more blunted.

I absolutely don't have time for embroidery right now. I'm already doing blackwork garters, couching cord to sleeve panes, and stitching pearls to the mantellino so something pretty for the pocket just wasn't going to happen. I looked instead to the trim application of the gold and black saccocia that is most often reproduced. Since I'm using the orange silk of my dress I considered making piping from the blue silk but then I found about a yard of crazy orange and gold trim a friend had sent me. It really wasn't enough to do much with, so I figured this would be the perfect project. I laid it out, matched it up, and the trim determined the pattern. I like the trillium effect the tiny triangles near the bottom of the opening create. The pocket is lined in a navy linen and I had a package of brown bias tape so that's the strings for tying it on. Looking forward to trying the larger size out at the upcoming events.

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