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Re: fabric for Victorian gown

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  • serenpoly
    I would concur that you probably don t want acetate, and most polyester taffeta has more of a shine than silk did/does. (Oh, how I wish I could find more of
    Message 1 of 12 , Jan 5, 2004
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      I would concur that you probably don't want acetate, and most
      polyester taffeta has more of a shine than silk did/does. (Oh, how I
      wish I could find more of the dark forest silk taffeta I had for the
      opening of the 1984 Olympics!) Don't get anything that has
      a 'metallic' look at all.

      On the other hand, I just made a quasi-medieval (oh, all right, yes,
      a Lord of the Rings costume...) with some red/blue shot poly taffeta
      that would work just fine if you don't mind it not breathing. Got it
      at Joanne's, too, in the evening/bridal section.

      But you might try

      http://www.originals-by-kay.com/

      for both information and fabric. She often carries quite nice stuff
      at quite good prices, her site has lots of information and pictures,
      and she's really pleasant to deal with. I got some silk plaid
      taffeta from her a while back, an excellent transaction.

      HTH.

      -- Emc^2
    • Siebel San
      All I can say is stay away from acetate at all costs! Horrible stuff. Water will stain it, weather conditions will change the color, storing it wrong will
      Message 2 of 12 , Jan 5, 2004
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        All I can say is stay away from acetate at all costs!
        Horrible stuff. Water will stain it, weather conditions
        will change the color, storing it wrong will change the
        color, it's horribly uncomfortable to wear (too hot in
        summer, too cold in winter), looking at it will change the
        color, snag it once and you'll have a run before you know
        it...
        Jessica

        > I've found online and brick-and-mortar places where I can
        > get taffeta
        > fabric in acetate, polyester, or real silk, plain, moire,
        > or
        > changeable. Can anyone provide insight into how the
        > acetate or
        > polyester wears in the kind of situation I've described?
        >

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      • sarahgelberg
        Hi all, thanks for the helpful responses! All of this will definitely help as I continue to scout for ideas and consider my options. I ve looked at the threads
        Message 3 of 12 , Jan 5, 2004
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          Hi all,

          thanks for the helpful responses! All of this will definitely help as
          I continue to scout for ideas and consider my options. I've looked at
          the threads recommended on this subject and given that I plan to be
          doing a lot of dancing, I probably really do want something that
          breathes and wears well, which means that some sort of silk really is
          the best choice. The can-can thread mentioned some advantages of silk
          dupioni over taffeta. To my understanding, dupioni is a slubby,
          relatively stable, heavier silk than other types. Dupioni does seem
          to be available in a good range of colors at more reasonable prices--
          any thoughts on its historical accuracy/suitability? The information
          I've found doesn't mention dupioni one way or another.

          Also, someone mentioned getting an upholstery-weight fabric--how can
          I tell if a fabric is upholstery-weight or not? (other than its being
          in the upholstery section of the store) I did (comissioned) a
          renaissance-type vest for a dance performance a couple of years ago
          and used a beautiful upholstery-weight brocade fabric with great
          success, but I can't imagine using a fabric that heavy over an entire
          dress.

          Anyway, thanks!

          Sarah

          --- In TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com, Siebel San
          <siebelsan@y...> wrote:
          > All I can say is stay away from acetate at all costs!
          > Horrible stuff. Water will stain it, weather conditions
          > will change the color, storing it wrong will change the
          > color, it's horribly uncomfortable to wear (too hot in
          > summer, too cold in winter), looking at it will change the
          > color, snag it once and you'll have a run before you know
          > it...
          > Jessica
          >
        • K Murphy
          I ve had good success with both drapery and upholstery fabrics (and yes, the only way you ll know is that they re not in with the dress fabrics). I built a
          Message 4 of 12 , Jan 6, 2004
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            I've had good success with both drapery and upholstery fabrics (and yes, the only way you'll know is that they're not in with the dress fabrics). I built a suit (bustle, train, the whole deal) from a pink drapery moire about 11 years ago that's been in several shows and been cleaned five or six times and still looks fabulous. Many of these fabrics are not heavy at all -- just avoid the dreaded "sticky back" vinyl coating used to prevent slippage. It helps to know fabrics when shopping -- can you take your dressmaker along? Sorry, don't know about the dupioni --

            Kate Murphy

            sarahgelberg <sarahgelberg@...> wrote:
            Hi all,

            thanks for the helpful responses! All of this will definitely help as
            I continue to scout for ideas and consider my options. I've looked at
            the threads recommended on this subject and given that I plan to be
            doing a lot of dancing, I probably really do want something that
            breathes and wears well, which means that some sort of silk really is
            the best choice. The can-can thread mentioned some advantages of silk
            dupioni over taffeta. To my understanding, dupioni is a slubby,
            relatively stable, heavier silk than other types. Dupioni does seem
            to be available in a good range of colors at more reasonable prices--
            any thoughts on its historical accuracy/suitability? The information
            I've found doesn't mention dupioni one way or another.

            Also, someone mentioned getting an upholstery-weight fabric--how can
            I tell if a fabric is upholstery-weight or not? (other than its being
            in the upholstery section of the store) I did (comissioned) a
            renaissance-type vest for a dance performance a couple of years ago
            and used a beautiful upholstery-weight brocade fabric with great
            success, but I can't imagine using a fabric that heavy over an entire
            dress.

            Anyway, thanks!

            Sarah

            --- In TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com, Siebel San
            <siebelsan@y...> wrote:
            > All I can say is stay away from acetate at all costs!
            > Horrible stuff. Water will stain it, weather conditions
            > will change the color, storing it wrong will change the
            > color, it's horribly uncomfortable to wear (too hot in
            > summer, too cold in winter), looking at it will change the
            > color, snag it once and you'll have a run before you know
            > it...
            > Jessica
            >




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          • Sue Lee
            Also, someone mentioned getting an upholstery-weight fabric--how can I tell if a fabric is upholstery-weight or not? I bought the fabric that I used for my
            Message 5 of 12 , Jan 6, 2004
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              Also, someone mentioned getting an upholstery-weight fabric--how can
              I tell if a fabric is upholstery-weight or not?

              I bought the fabric that I used for my Victorian frockage from a curtain
              suppliers (In Maidstone Kent if anyone wants the details any time). I chose
              the stuff from the fabric books and then was supplied it on the roll. Was
              reasonable value for money, and is much better wearing that buying dress
              fabric.

              It's my intention to use this route for doing all the frockage I can from
              now on....

              Good luck
              Sue


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • sarahgelberg
              Hi, Thanks for the input re: using upholstery/drapery fabrics. When I started searching online for drapery silks, a lot of options started popping up at much
              Message 6 of 12 , Jan 7, 2004
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                Hi,

                Thanks for the input re: using upholstery/drapery fabrics. When I
                started searching online for drapery silks, a lot of options started
                popping up at much more reasonable prices (and a bigger variety) than
                when I was looking for dress-weight fabrics. It sounds like it is
                worth it to ferret out a good deal on silk, (especially in drapery-
                weight) and that both taffeta and dupioni are options, depending on
                where I find the price and color I like. OK, that really helps.

                Re: bringing my dressmaker along--haven't gotten that far. :-) I did
                find someone locally through a local costumers' guild who sounded
                like she had the skills and interest to do it, but it's way early now
                and I need to do more sleuthing to get a better idea of what I want
                before I start making demands. :-) I did find a local fabric shop
                that has _huge_ piles of notions, fringe, ribbons, lace, etc. at rock-
                bottom prices, which will help enhance the Victorian "over-the-top"
                effect. :-)

                Does anyone have any other thoughts on the subject--advice on shoes,
                underpinnings, patterns, etc? I already decided that the Simplicity
                Civil War gown with the peplum and tulip-type sleeves is out--it's
                beautiful, but I saw at least 8 women wearing recognizable versions
                at the fair!

                Anyway, thanks again!

                Sarah

                --- In TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com, K Murphy
                <costumerkate@y...> wrote:
                > I've had good success with both drapery and upholstery fabrics (and
                yes, the only way you'll know is that they're not in with the dress
                fabrics). I built a suit (bustle, train, the whole deal) from a pink
                drapery moire about 11 years ago that's been in several shows and
                been cleaned five or six times and still looks fabulous. Many of
                these fabrics are not heavy at all -- just avoid the dreaded "sticky
                back" vinyl coating used to prevent slippage. It helps to know
                fabrics when shopping -- can you take your dressmaker along? Sorry,
                don't know about the dupioni --
                >
              • Chris
                Hi, Try this site for patterns, etc... I haven t used them yet, but they look great. I do plan on acquiring some of their patterns for a trial run. They re
                Message 7 of 12 , Jan 7, 2004
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                  Hi,

                  Try this site for patterns, etc... I haven't used them yet, but they look great. I do plan on acquiring some of their patterns for a trial run. They're not expensive for what they offer.

                  http://trulyvictorian.netfirms.com/

                  Best of luck to you :)

                  Chris

                  sarahgelberg <sarahgelberg@...> wrote:
                  Hi,

                  Thanks for the input re: using upholstery/drapery fabrics. When I
                  started searching online for drapery silks, a lot of options started
                  popping up at much more reasonable prices (and a bigger variety) than
                  when I was looking for dress-weight fabrics. It sounds like it is
                  worth it to ferret out a good deal on silk, (especially in drapery-
                  weight) and that both taffeta and dupioni are options, depending on
                  where I find the price and color I like. OK, that really helps.

                  Re: bringing my dressmaker along--haven't gotten that far. :-) I did
                  find someone locally through a local costumers' guild who sounded
                  like she had the skills and interest to do it, but it's way early now
                  and I need to do more sleuthing to get a better idea of what I want
                  before I start making demands. :-) I did find a local fabric shop
                  that has _huge_ piles of notions, fringe, ribbons, lace, etc. at rock-
                  bottom prices, which will help enhance the Victorian "over-the-top"
                  effect. :-)

                  Does anyone have any other thoughts on the subject--advice on shoes,
                  underpinnings, patterns, etc? I already decided that the Simplicity
                  Civil War gown with the peplum and tulip-type sleeves is out--it's
                  beautiful, but I saw at least 8 women wearing recognizable versions
                  at the fair!

                  Anyway, thanks again!

                  Sarah

                  --- In TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com, K Murphy
                  <costumerkate@y...> wrote:
                  > I've had good success with both drapery and upholstery fabrics (and
                  yes, the only way you'll know is that they're not in with the dress
                  fabrics). I built a suit (bustle, train, the whole deal) from a pink
                  drapery moire about 11 years ago that's been in several shows and
                  been cleaned five or six times and still looks fabulous. Many of
                  these fabrics are not heavy at all -- just avoid the dreaded "sticky
                  back" vinyl coating used to prevent slippage. It helps to know
                  fabrics when shopping -- can you take your dressmaker along? Sorry,
                  don't know about the dupioni --
                  >




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                • randy keator
                  Hi Sarah.. not sure just how authentic you are striving to be but for underpinnings you will require some type of corset and I strongly suggest for you to
                  Message 8 of 12 , Jan 7, 2004
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                    Hi Sarah.. not sure just how authentic you are striving to be but for
                    underpinnings you will require some type of corset and I strongly suggest
                    for you to obtain or have one made BEFORE the fittings and actual
                    measurements are done by the seamstress. For the period it would be of a
                    brocade or heavy silk also. Shoes would be of the button and loop closure
                    with somewhat medium stocky heel and could be of leather or very heavy wt
                    silk ; white if leather( no shine !) ,white ( actually closer to a shade of
                    linen) if silk or dyed close to the same shade of the dress. Underpinnings
                    shoul also include a chemise of muslin ( cotton) and stockings of cotton or
                    silk ,depending on how wealthy you want your lady to appear to be(~;


                    >
                    >
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                    >
                    > >
                    >

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                  • serenpoly
                    I have, and they re terrific. I ve never had any trouble putting one together, and we ve used several. Mrs. Darling in our 2003 production of *Peter Pan* was
                    Message 9 of 12 , Jan 7, 2004
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                      I have, and they're terrific. I've never had any trouble putting one
                      together, and we've used several. Mrs. Darling in our 2003
                      production of *Peter Pan* was gowned in a Truly Victorian evening
                      bodice and bustled skirt.

                      However, you _must_ follow their sizing and directions to get good
                      results. The patterns are not to ordinary pattern or ready-to-wear
                      sizes, so take careful measurements and choose accordingly.

                      The adjustment directions are also unlike anything you'll have done
                      before, but _they work_. Mrs. Darling required only _one_ fitting.
                      You'll get excellent results if you follow the procedures described,
                      and they're not difficult, just different.

                      For the necessary corset and underwear, I strongly recommend Laughing
                      Moon Mercantile. Truly Victorian (and every other reputable site, I
                      think) carries the LMM corset pattern, which is widely recognized in
                      both reenactor and costumer circles as both easy (well, as easy as a
                      good corset can be) and excellent.

                      HTH.

                      -- Emc^2

                      --- In TheCostumersManifesto@yahoogroups.com, Chris
                      <emeraldepona@y...> wrote:
                      > Hi,
                      >
                      > Try this site for patterns, etc... I haven't used them yet, but
                      they look great. I do plan on acquiring some of their patterns for a
                      trial run. They're not expensive for what they offer.
                      >
                      > http://trulyvictorian.netfirms.com/
                      >
                      > Best of luck to you :)
                      >
                      > Chris
                      >
                    • Joannah Hansen
                      I agree. It is possibly the prime rule for anyone wanting to do authentic costume re-creation: don t make your outerwear before you have the correct underwear
                      Message 10 of 12 , Jan 7, 2004
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                        I agree.
                        It is possibly the prime rule for anyone wanting to do authentic costume re-creation: don't make your outerwear before you have the correct underwear to wear under it. It makes so much difference to the silhouette and hang of the eventual clothing, and also to how you walk, stand, sit etc.
                        Have fun with your costuming!
                        Joannah


                        --- "randy keator" <randolphk@...> wrote:

                        Hi Sarah.. not sure just how authentic you are striving to be but for
                        underpinnings you will require some type of corset and I strongly suggest
                        for you to obtain or have one made BEFORE the fittings and actual
                        measurements are done by the seamstress. For the period it would be of a
                        brocade or heavy silk also. Shoes would be of the button and loop closure
                        with somewhat medium stocky heel and could be of leather or very heavy wt
                        silk ; white if leather( no shine !) ,white ( actually closer to a shade of
                        linen) if silk or dyed close to the same shade of the dress. Underpinnings
                        shoul also include a chemise of muslin ( cotton) and stockings of cotton or
                        silk ,depending on how wealthy you want your lady to appear to be(~;


                        >
                        >
                        .
                        >
                        > >
                        >

                        ---
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