The more research I do, the more I’m falling in love with period middle-class costume.  My ensemble is still very much a work in progress, and is only semi-accurate. Some of the pieces are historical in construction or silhouette or materials, but probably not all of the above, all at the same time. The goal was something that looked more or less right to the casual observer.

(I don’t know this dog; I just can’t help myself.)

September 2012

I have finally gotten around to making a proper middle-class skirt. I’ve been wearing my pink corset with that random blue cotton skirt (and its handy-dandy elastic waist!) since 2009, because I couldn’t decide what color went with pink. It took me three years to come up with… black.

The skirt is four yards of linen, cartridge pleated to a waistband that closes with hooks (because I cannot commit to a waist size). The guards are made from some fabulous faux pinked suede I found in the clearance bin a few years ago and pounced on, because it was screaming, “Sleeves! Guards! Pinked suede doublets!” at me. I bought the whole bolt. Ahem. (I know suede is an early 20th century mania; really, I don’t know what took us so long to fall in love with it. The appeal of faux-pinked microsuede requires no explanation.)

Making the guards with the brilliant Clover 2″ bias tape maker.

(Poor quality, alas) closeup of guards

It only just now occurred to me that I never posted pictures of the hat and partlet I typically wear with this ensemble. Thus rectified:

The hat is the too-adorable Henrician coif from The Tudor Tailor, and the partlet is the freebie from Margo Anderson. Both are just cotton broadcloth (from stash), and that’s a little bit of machine blackwork on the collar stand of the partlet. A quick note on the hat: With my hair pinned up, I find it almost snug, and I have thin hair and a smallish head (many hats, to my everlasting sorrow, are too large on me). Interested parties may wish to make alterations before attempting to construct their own. Which they should absolutely do, because the hat is beyond adorable, and everyone should have one.

Unless, of course, you’re lucky enough to have this hat, the “New Biretta” from Lionheart Hats at KCRF:

It’s a bit of a cross between a muffin cap and a Tudor bonnet, and the milliner said she was inspired by the Landsknecht, which inevitably now makes me want a Cranach gown.

A few more gratuitous skirt shots!

Swish! (And a peek at my favorite Fair shoes, my maryjanes from Travelsmith)

Do these cartridge pleats make my butt look big… enough?