Archive for April, 2009

Fashion tips – message from the 18th century

April 30, 2009

Found a very cute and interesting blog via 18th Century Blog. It’s called History of American Women – 18th Century and it’s about what it says it’s about; go figure! ;P It’s filled with beautiful paintings for us lazy  peop’s. And for you with a lot of time on your hands, the author “B” provides a vast mass of text with background in primary sources about being a woman in the 18th century.
   While browsing through the blog very quickly my eyes stuck on a passage of text (my eyes tend to do that when the form looks like a poem)… It turns out it’s three 18th century texts about women’s fashion:

London’s monthly Universal Magazine of Knowledge and Pleasure ridiculed the constant changes in female fashion,

Now dress’d in a cap, now naked in none;
Now loose in a mob, now close in a Joan;
Without handkerchief now, and now buried in ruff;
Now plain as a Quaker, now all in a puff;
Now a shape in neat stays, now a slattern in jumps
Now high in French heels, now low in your pumps;
Now monstrous in hoops, now trapish, and walking
With your petticoats clung to your heels like a maulkin;
Like the cock on the tower, that shows you the weather,
You are hardly the same for two days together.

In 1754, a New York newspaper published the satirical view of the extravagance of women’s fashion from a poem published in 1753 in London.


Hang a small bugle cap on as big as a crown,
Snout it off with a flower, vulgo dict. a pompoon;
Let your powder be grey, and braid up your hair
Like the mane of a colt, to be sold at a fair.
A short pair of jumps half an ell from your chin,
To make you appear like one just lying in;
Before, for your breast, put a stomacher bib on
Ragout it with cutlets of silver and ribbon.
Your neck and your shoulders both naked should be,
Was it not for Vandyke blown with Chevaux de Frize.
Let your gown be a sack, blue, yellow, or green,
And frizzle your elbows with ruffles sixteen;
Furl off your lawn aprons with flounces in rows,
Puff and pucker up knots on your arms and your toes;
Make your petticoats short, that a hoop eight yards wide
May decently show how your garters are tied.
With fringes of knotting, your dicky cabob
On slippers of velvet set gold a-la-daube.
But mount on French heels when you go to a ball,
‘Tis the fashion to totter and shew you can fall;
Throw modesty out from your manners and face,
A-la-mode de Frangois you’re a bit for his Grace.

In 1756, a New York newspaper offered this satirical fashion advice, 

The dress of the year 55 that was worn
Is laid in the grave and new fashions are born:
Then hear what your good correspondents advance,
‘Tis the Pink of the Mode and dated from France:
Let your cap be a butterfly slightly hung on
Like the shell of a lapwing just hatch’d on her crown
Behind, with a coach horse short dock, cut your hair
Stick a flower before Screw-whiff ‘with an air,
A Vandicke in frize your neck must surround,
Turn your lawns into gauze, let your Brussels be blond;
Let your stomacher reach from shoulder to shoulder,
And your breast will appear much fairer and bolder.
Wear a gown or a sack as fancies prevail,
Hut with flounces and furbelows ruffle your tail.
Let your hoop show your stockings & legs to your knees,
And leave men as little as may be to guess.
For other small ornaments, do as before,
Wear ribbons a hundred and ruffles a score;
Let your tail, like your dress, be fantastic and odd,
And then you’ll show a way in taste A-la-mode.

Wait… and ye shall… recieve…

April 29, 2009

Eeeehrm… Yeah…

So I’ve finally uploaded the pics of the stays to my computer, maybe now you can stop nagging?! ;P Before you look at the pics and start wondering about the total wierdness of it I’ll explain:
   When I first started to explore historical corsets I came across a technique for elizabethan stays that included hemp cord boning. When I was going to make my own I felt the hemp cord I found was a liiiiiittle bit too soft for keeping my somewhat heavy rack at bay. I figured: why not use plastic cord commonly used as clothesline (I had found a pretty stirdy cord)? It was super cheap and it worked so well that I ended up using it as boning in all corsets and stays I made:

corded pvc


This is also what I used this time! The only problem is that the cord I bought this time was rolled into a reel and not an oblong thing as the cord I used for the more modern stays in the top picture. Here’s a close up on the cord (It’s not hollow, it just looks like it, it’s just got a softer core):


The fact that it was on reel and shaped thereafter made my current stays in progress curl up like this:

stays 1

stays 2

Ya, that’s what happens when you’re CHEAP! XD I’m thinking that the only part that will curl up when I’m actually wearing it is the tabs and mainly the big front wedge tab. If that is disturbing I might be able to heat it straight since it’s plastic, maybe with steam…
   The good thing though is that it’s reeeeally stirdy and great and it’ll do it’s job when worn! =D
   Right now I’ve gotten a little further than the pics show, I’ve finished the bottom bias tape and evened out the cord sticking out at the top. Now I just have to find the time to finish the top. I’m going to Sundsvall and Härnösand for school again on sunday… I might bring the stays with me on the train if I don’t find it too ungainly to work with, with passengers sitting next to me and stuff, hehe… XD

Pouf power!

April 29, 2009

Some time ago Vivien put up an excellent “Georgian Pouf” tutorial at Fancy Girl. In it we can learn how to make our very own super cute curly pouf to match our super cute 18th century outfits. When it’s done you just secure it on your head and style your own hair around it! It looks great! And it sounds reeeeeally easy with easy-to-find-materials! So some day I might make my own pouf! =D


Snuff box vs. locket

April 26, 2009

At the moment I bought the locket I was little concerned about how autenthic it would look, but the past couple of months I’ve been thinking about it more and more. But today I read 18th Century Historical Trekking,1680-1760 (Australia). There Kieth has a snuff box that looks somewhat like my locket (does it, or am I just seeing what I want to see?). Anywhoooo, I feel more confident about wearing the locket now! =D








My locket to  the left, snuff box to the right…


April 20, 2009

So yeah… My wonderful other half Robbie got the great idea to go buy some new book shelves this weekend, so we spent the weekend putting them together and filling them with stuff. Ergo not so much done on the stays… XD The good news are that I haven’t lost my productivity, the closer I get to getting the stays done, the more motivated I get! =D Last night and this afternoon I’ve almost finished the bias tape at the bottom (probably will finish it tonight), yaaays! =D And that’s the tricky part with all the tabs! Tho top is the easy part! ;D
   I’ve been thinking on the outer texture of the stays. I have a strong suspicion that the stripy boning texture will show through outer layers of robes and pet-en-l’airs and such… I know it sometimes was custom to use an outer layer of fabric to cover that, I’ve just never thought of that – until now… =/ I think I might make an outer layer of a more fancy fabric, one that’s really easy to change. I’ve found so many great fabrics with this shabby chic trend that’s going on, but I don’t know if I could afford to buy the quantities of a robe, half a meter for the stays might be affordable though! 😉

Like someone pulled a plug

April 18, 2009

I think I’ve gotten over a big threshold! The stays are fully boned and the “only” thing I have left is the bias tape on the top edges, the eyelets (can’t say I’m looking forward to that though) and the shoulder straps! =D I took some photos last night, but then the camera ran out of battery, so right now I can’t upload them to my computer, hence no photos today. =/ I feel very creative and productive today though, so it might be finished even berfore I get the pics up, hehe ;P Uhm, ok, maybe I’m not that productive, but I sure as hell will get the bias tape all done and maaaaybe start with the eyelets! ;D


April 9, 2009

Since I have uploaded the pics to my computer and I promised to put them up, here’s the bands I was talking about:


The left one is in wool and the right one is in cotton, I think…

Another Award – WOW!!!

April 9, 2009

Another quickie to announce that I have recieved yet another award! *FAINT* This I was so kindly given from Swillvill at Swillvill’s 18th Century and it’s originating from a blog I’ve been following for just a short while – Tempus Fugit.


And these are the criteria:

The TEMPUS FUGIT Award is given to writers & living historians whose journals represent the best aspects of the 18th Century. These writers aim to inform and entertain the public with tales from events, historic research & experiments and highlights from 18th Century arts and culture. It is the hope of TEMPUS FUGIT that this award will forge a web of friendship and knowledge that will aid in creating a tight community of reenactors and living historians on the internet and beyond. Winners of the TEMPUS FUGIT Award should pass this award along to six other 18th Century blogs that meet the above criteria, and include this text with the Award, as well as a link back to the TEMPUS FUGIT blog.

Gosh, I’m so honoured! Unfortunatley I don’t know how many reenactors I can find that haven’t already gotten the award… =/ But I’ll give it a try! =D

Coolest award EVER!

April 9, 2009

Just a quickie to announce that I have recieved the Zombie Chicken Award from Ms. Lucy at Enchanted by Josephine!


It must be the coolest award ever! =D I’m very honoured! I have no idea where the award originally came from, which is kinda sad. =/ But these are the criteria:

The blogger who receives this award believes in the Tao of the zombie chicken – excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all…

So… I wouldn’t want to upset the Zombie Chicken! ;D Here’s my nominees:


April 2, 2009

I feel a little bad for not keeping up here, mostly for myself, cuz I really miss the blog, hehe… ^^; But I have my reasons – I’ve just started my practical training in the teachers program, this is my final year of 5 and it’s a pretty big deal for me, hehe. I’ve been coming home from the school where I have my training and just sat myself down on the couch and then I’ve just been like glued there – I’ve been so mentally tired I haven’t been able to decide if I should put on the tv or make myself some tea, so I just don’t do either. But it’s a good fatigue! I’m haveing such a good time with the students, both the students and the other teachers are becoming like a family to me, hehe.
   Anywhoooooos! I’ve anwsered all comments and read some of all the posts on other blogs. Right now I don’t feel much like reading, but I thought that since I’ve had photos of me in that wig I bought for like forever, at least I could touch them up a bit and put them up here!

wig 2

wig 1


When I first got the wig I was horrified! It was so small, way too small for my head… And then it hit me that it might be one of those wigs where you actually aren’t supposed to have it cover your like hair line in the forhead (what ever it’s called in English). So I put it a bit longer back and tried to comb my bangs up. My bangs are black though, so it looked kinda awful, then I thought: “Why not do it the 18th century way and try some powder?” – I had no great expectations that baby powder (don’t ask me why I have that at home!) would cover the black very good, but it actually blended in very well, the wig is a bit dark itself. As you might notice my bangs are a bit spiky there too, but I bet it’ll look better if I try to curl it a bit to follow the waves of the wig. =) I used my handmade jewellry to top the whole thing off! ;D
  Whaddaya think? ;D
   Oh, here’s a bonus picture of the wig and the hat! ;D

wig + hat

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