I have been researching (or trying to ) the cardboard thing for a while. I
even had a chat to one of the authors of The Tudor Tailor re: cardboard, as
they had mentioned it possibly for some early Tudor also....
I have not got any definates on what was actually considered cardboard at
best I can get is probably linen stiffened with rabbit glue. I did try
buckram, last year. Initially it looked great.. but
as expected, does not stand up well to use (or bad posture) and crinkles...
humid or wet weather.
So am back to my original patterns as also mentioned in Moda a Firenze:
layers of wool felt/ felted wool in the bodice, with stiff layers of linen
(I use heavy denimn or cotton canvas for these).
I managed to chat to one of the conservators in Pisa, about the dress and
she confirms this. (no cardboard in any o fthe Pisa dresses or the burial
dress of Eleanora either). I am in the process of writing an article about
the info I got during the Costume Colloquium about this. I am also in the
process of making a new dress using the updated research.
If you are interested, you can see the 'first attempts' I have made using
this stiffening method (pre the latest research)... info and pics are at
more research is at :
You will also need the tight (non-boned) stays, like those found with
Eleanora's burial dress. This also helps to hold one in and help the dress
in making it look sleeker.
I will be updating my current research and recreation using it later which I
am hoping should look 'stiffer' again!
I hope this is of some help to you.
La Signora Onorata Katerina da Brescia, Innilgard, Lochac.
The Florence Files - http://gatewaytoflorence.purplefiles.net/
"Life may not be the party we hoped for... but while we are here we might
as well dance!"
>> 3. In italy (according to the author of Moda a Firenze), the smooth
> look of
>> the front of the dress was achieved with an interlayer of cardboard.
> not very washable!!!
>> suggestions on a more durable material to substitute? I had thought
> of light
>> weight plastic needlepoint canvas, with an interfacing over it so
>> wouldn't get the checked pattern coming through anywhere.
> I've used that successfully to imitate starched stocks and collars.
> When you cut it to an irregular shape you always get little "teeth"
> sticking out that tend to want to chew and saw through the fabric.
> I've foound the texture shows through the interfacing, so next time I
> do one I might try a thin felt or flannel to try and keep the texture
> from showing through.
panel on the inside of the bodice.