I bit the bullet and commissioned the lovely and talented Sarah to make this gown for me! She took my concept, tweaked the pattern she and Bridget made for my 1580s doublet, and *ta-da*, created a fabulous ensemble for 12th Night. She rocks and a half 🙂
All I made was that beaded girdle I’d been dreaming about for, oh, ever, plus a hat to go specifically with this gown.
This girdle should go with all my Renaissance gowns. I used real freshwater pearls that I bought in Kauai (great deal!). Can’t see them very well, but the flat ovals are garnets and the dark round beads are hematite. There are also tiny silver beads and gold knobby roundells.
And, yep, that’s the L’Occitaine Christmas pomander on the end, which I’m sure all us 16th-century fiends will have. I’m tempted to take the dremel to the logo on the side; it’s not horribly noticeable, but just a bit. I also had a wild idea about epoxying flat red glass beads all over it (should I find some). Some day.
Unfortunately, the pomander broke off when I kneeled on it at 12th Night early in the day. But I caught the girdle before any beads came off. Have to do some restringing…
Just before midnight on New Year’s Eve, I made a long-sleeved 16th-century chemise to go under the gown. As the sleeveless chemise (intended for 18th-century use, but I oft wear it under 16th-century gowns) seemed lacking. Once again, I made the body too wide (using the whole 45″ yardage) because I’m always afraid it’ll be to skimpy. And I put in the arm gussets wrong and had to unpick them and resew. Ugh.
The hat went together easier. It’s made of two layers of thin buckram I found a year ago at Jo-Ann’s (doubled it, sewed together for strength). I covered in the striped burgundy fabric from the gown, piped it in black, lined it in black, and trimmed the hat with buttons that I clipped and sanded the shanks off, plus a ton of beads (pearls, hematite, silver) including the last of the flat oval garnets that are also on the girdle.