The Regency period has slowly been building in my estimations, ever since watching and reading ‘Norrell and Strange’ which really captured my imagination. Susanna Clarke is a literal genius and I recommend you all to buy the book even though it is a brick, but it’s just so wonderful and worth it!

614gUYKUj2L._AC_UL320_SR226,320_

I also recently joined a group called the ‘Jane Austen Dancers’ in Bath which I sadly won’t be able to continue if I head off to uni but I will definitely return during my holidays as it’s so much fun and they’re such a lovely group of people. I mean, how can you not when you adore Jane Austen?!

Anyway, they’re the ones that turned me onto the Jane Austen festival happening in September and finally gave me the excuse to make my own regency dress! I’d always wanted to but never had enough time or inspiration.

13726671_1169101089819036_7345579374021048067_nI started with a little sketch of what I wanted to make. I already had an idea of what I wanted based off of this lace I’d found on Etsy and fallen in love with instantly. I knew that I’d need a darker base colour as the lace was black with white feather embroidery, so it was a choice for me between green, navy blue and red. I hate green and blue didn’t seem appropriate, so red it was!

13729195_1172772282785250_1957580682266766445_n
Sourced from NortexMill on Ebay.

Then onto the pattern! As I humorously put on Facebook:

‘This stupid pattern is just like Ikea instructions. Step one: make the entire bodice 😣

13612108_1165938653468613_4094868644144066753_nThere was literally no reference to pattern pieces, how to put them together or anything. It wasn’t quite rocket science, but still, I’d prefer it if the pattern specified as I’m still an anxious sewer.

13775771_1172772302785248_4731724871607119085_n

13902752_1180661981996280_785066179028209405_n13895460_1180662028662942_5774493110582567671_n

As you can see I figured it out, sewed it together then made the lining, which is basically just making a copy of the bodice. As I’m working with taffeta it didn’t matter which side was the ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ side of the fabric which was kinda awesome as that’s always where I slip up, putting things the wrong way round, especially zips!

13769596_1172772332785245_8238599757472097506_nThe skirt is rather uninteresting, just a lot of sewing and re-sewing thanks to French seams (taffeta really frays) so I won’t post any pictures. I also sourced some perfect buttons from my local haberdashery, pictured below.

13775372_1172772356118576_8757617041914795825_n

This is the first time I’ve used the buttonhole foot and I thoroughly recommend it. I was always scared of it, but I have created the most professional-looking buttonholes since using it. It also helps If you practice on your fabric. Taffeta is a lot different than other fabrics so I liked to experiment first.

13781897_1172772382785240_4067592611794562403_n
Me ‘experimenting’.

I’m going to create another post after this one showing detailed shots of my final regency dress, and possibly another after that if I get any good shots during the Jane Austen Festival, so keep an eye out!

sig 2

*Completed Regency dress pictures can be found here*

1 comment on “Making a Regency Dress”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *