Florentine Overgown | From Elizabeth's Needle

That would be me, doing a little happy dance, because I finished an old, old UFO!

Inspired by the Historical Sew Fortnightly Yellow Challenge, and KCRF buddy Raven’s own yellow Ascension Day ensemble, I dug out a  project I started waaaay back in, oh, 2006 or so. I had abandoned it when I realized I’d made the bodice straps too narrow to cover the straps on its undergown, my brown Botticelli dress. But I have newer Italian garb with narrower straps, so I decided it deserved another chance. It’s worn here with a dress from Sofi’s, because I wasn’t sure if it was worth making the sleeves to go with it, until I’d test-worn it.

The Challenge: #17 Yellow!

Fabric: butter yellow cotton (?) damask from Fashion Fabrics Club, called “Coriander” (It does not behave entirely like cotton; I now suspect a much greater synthetic content than I was lead to believe.). Bodice is flatlined in canvas and lined in cotton broadcloth.

Pattern: My own; draped on myself

Year: late 1400s Florence

Notions: Lacing rings from Renaissance Fabrics and gold soutache to lace with

How historically accurate is it? Um… I’m happy with the silhouette, the color, and the woven-in diamond pattern of the damask, but it’s been through so many crazy incarnations, pattern-wise, and I seem to have arrived at some loony hybrid of a giornea and a cioppa (I’m not even sure what, if anything, the actual difference between those is, but to the best of my understanding: A giornea is one unbroken piece of fabric, open up the sides; a cioppa has a waist seam and usually opens at the front). I will wear it, and cheerfully, but would not like to send it up before judges for anything. There’s also, strangely, quite a bit of invisible hand-sewing and visible machine stitching!

Hours to complete: Unknown

First worn: KCRF, yesterday

Total cost: Again, I bought the fabric in 2006, so I don’t remember, but if I had to guess (based on my fabric buying habits!) I probably bought about 6 yards (I have almost 2 left over, some of which will go toward the sleeves) and wouldn’t have spent more than about $8/yard on it. So ~$50 US.

Florentine Overgown | From Elizabeth's Needle

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