Finished the smock. Seems like such a little thing — it’s just underwear! And, indeed, most of it went swimmingly. I used my pattern from ye olde smock generator from Drea Leed’s site. I remembered to add some width to the body, but not too much (I have a history of not trusting this pattern’s body width & then wildly over-calculating, which ends up with a massively huge smock; however, the one time I used the measurement as-is, the smock fit, but I ended up with side back seam rips after the first day of wearing — smidge too tight). Basic rectangular construction, & I had 75% of it done in one evening. I even used linen because I had about 2 yards of relatively fine stuff, prewashed, just laying around (see, I usually use cotton because it feels better next to my skin, & yes, I know I’m an historical heretic for saying that).
But then there was the collar. I wanted the pretty, ruffled wide collar like in the Isabella de Medici portrait. In the section on partlets in Moda a Firenze, it notes that, as collars rose up behind the neck in the 1550s, partlets did too & could feature elaborate decoration. Well, I wasn’t going for that effect, but I wanted the ruffles at least. Moda goes on to describe the partlet ruffle in the 1560s closing at the bottom to form a ring around the neck. The Isabella portrait shows the ruffles meeting at the base of the neck, & I quite liked that. But how to achieve this?
I’m sure there are 15 ways to make this collar that would have been faster & simpler than what I finally did. At least I had all of the day after Thanksgiving to work on it! A lot of handsewing (ew) was involved, & some of the facings are a hack job, if you look too close. But if anyone’s up *that* close when I’m wearing it, either they’re kissing me or I’m punching them.