1850s Swedish Heirlome Farm-dress

Last months HSM15 Challenge was “Heirlome”, and as never inherited anything suitable and knew nothing about my ancestors I had some trouble deciding what to make for this one.

Basically, I could make whatever I liked as long as it heirs from Sweden.
Initially I thought about making another piece for my national costume – like the jacket, embroidered shawl or headpiece, but since time was short (starting 1 week after deadline) I decided to go with a more classic (and fast) alternative.
The 19th century farm girl.

dalsland4I love this pic of a girl in her finest clothes in front of her home. So refreshing an “real” from all the fancy dresses you see in fashion plates and preserved garments.

Since almost everybody in Sweden heirs from farmers, it seemed logical to assume that so did me and my ancestors.

I found this fabric, 3 m blue plaid cotton flannel, at an online auction site for a real steal of a price.IMG_8614

I used my 1840s fan-front dress pattern and cut the fabric down to scraps, carefully matching the plaids.20150903_183856_resized

Then I sewed the dress together.
I made it all in three nights, altering between the sewing machine and hand stitching before the TV, and unfortunately “forgot” to take pictures. The sewing was pretty straight forward, so really noting to write in dept about (read about my last dress like this here)

I did however change a few things, from the original green dress, like:
Using darts to shape the front bodice, instead of fixed gathers. IMG_8635Adding the bodice to the skirt as to make a “whole” dress, and switching the buttons for hooks and eyes.IMG_8638

The finished dress:
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Just the facts:

Challenge: nr 8/2015 – Heirlome

What: A 1850s working woman’s dress – As my ancestors might have worn.

Pattern: Self drafted about 2 years ago.

Fabric: 2,6 m of plaid cotton flanell, 0,5 m of white cotton lining.

Notions: Thread, hook & eyes, 2 m bias tape.

How historical accurate: So so, the look and fabric is plausible, but I sewed most of it on machine and put in some modern techniques. Maybe 6/10

Time: About 10-15 hours

Cost: About 150 Sek (22 Usd)

First worn: For photos September 12.

Final thoughts: Unfortunately I do not love this dress. I like the idea of it much better then the dress itself.
I’t came out a bit to big for me, and being made to work without a corset I feel a bit frumpy wearing it.

IMG_8583Accessorized with apron and head-cloth from my national costume

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