First, let me introduce you to a wonderful site created by a lovely woman on
Venice costumes. Just in case you haven't seen it yet.
Comments after the question.
Which of course brings me to the major questions I have...
1) With the open "V" front gowns, do you wear a corset or pair
of stays under it to keep boobage and belly from squishing through
*That is under debate. I believe Belle says there is a corset and I say the
support is in the bodice of the "V" dress.
When you say "V" dress I am thinking of this style
or are you talking about this style
In which case, no corset. The under dress's bodice gives the support. In the
last example the red is an over dress that has a "V" opening and is belted
under the bust. The black is the underdress.
2) Assuming there is a corset, is it reasonable to assume it's
something like the tudor or Elizabethan style (but shorter in the
* I am not sure what you are asking. Why would the corset be shorter in the
3) Are the gown's skirts always attached to the bodice? Or are
they ever done as 2 separate pieces?
*I'll let Bella answer this. I've always thought it was one piece but
recently I was told that there was exceptions. I don't know how you can get
that look with a separate bodice and skirt. Now there is this
she has an underskirt.
4) About the gown's skirts (if they are attached to the bodice):
how do you (any seamstresses on here!) make them open wide enough to
either fit over/past shoulders/hips/breasts/ depending on how you put
the dress on? (and for those on the group--which way do you
personally put on your gowns?)
* I may not be describing this well. There is a seam that runs down the
front of the skirt. You leave the seam open from the waist to about whatever
length you need to get it over whatever body part and sew the rest to the
hem. Then hem the opening and add hooks and eyes for closures. Others may be
able to give you a better description or technique.
5) I've read that spiral lacing is the way to go for gowns in
this period that lace up the back (with the closed fronts). Most of
the ones I have seen photos of done in this method have lacing on
both sides of the back just past the under arms
can Anyone explain
to me how that would allow it to open up wide/large enough to
accommodate the bulk of either my shoulders or hips or waist (again I
guess it depends on how you'd put it on?)
*See previous answer. Seam of the skirt meet at the seams of the bodice.
Okay, well I'm sorry to have asked so many questions, but really, I'd
appreciate any ideas, comments and things of the sort!