1810s Capsule Wardrobe · Black Snail Ball Gown · Historical Sew Monthly Projects · Regency Era

Progress on Black Snail 0119 Regency Dress

In my last post I introduced my newest project for the Historical Sew Monthly’s June challenge. (It doesn’t actually matter in what order you do the challenges.) The cutting out, as usual was the most difficult and time consuming step. I did cut one sleeve wrong, and I accidentally cut the skirt with the train, which is more appropriate for a JASNA retreat anyways, since trains were popular for longer in England.

Once it was cut, I re-wrote out the instructions, with a side column marking “hand sewing” or “machine sewing.” I am pleased with this method, because I can quickly pick a step based on what I feel like I have the energy and hand strength to do at that point in the day. Writing out each individual step also helps me manage my expectations as to how much I can achieve when I sit down to work. Black Snail instructions tend to put many steps together in a big paragraph, and I find that I lose my place and miss things sometimes.

One step which I found a bit confusing was attaching the center front bodice panel to the lining, so I took photos to remember how it is done and am sharing them here for anyone else who is struggling with it.

In this first image, you are looking at the right side of the lining and the right side of the front bodice panel.

Photo by author.

Here it is pinned (the right side is already sewn).

Photo by author.

Here it is sewn, and flipped over. So now you are seeing the wrong side of the lining and the wrong side of the front bodice panel. The lining pieces then get flipped over.

Photo by author.

I’ve assembled the skirt and started applying the fashion fabric to the lining of the bodice, so progress is slow but steady. I am learning that it is better to make a thorough plan, and do a step or two every day (I admit this is easier with a designated sewing space), even if it is just to pin something, rather than assume I can do huge chunks of sewing at a time. The cutting out, for me, though, does require a lot of mental energy and a big chunk of time, so as long as I can plan that accordingly my sewing is becoming much more of a source of enjoyment than a source of stress.

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