February 25, 2013

Simplicity 9769

For Civil War, a new chemise for myself. There is something so lovely and peaceful about sewing simple whites like this. Just a bit of lace and dainty shell buttons, some puffy white sleeves and simplicity (no pun intended!).

My old chemise is sadly ragged and gross, and quite plain (I've been longing for a lovely puff-sleeved, whitework-trimmed chemise for simply ages). I made it up hastily out of scraps, right before my first event, from the free Elizabeth Stewart Clark pattern (which is quite a handy pattern, if you're in need). But I wanted something more. Simplicity 9769 seemed just the ticket.

Isn't the front fastening pretty?
I had no issues figuring out the gores, fortunately. There are two long gores on each side and then a wonky-looking gore under each arm. The sleeves and neckline gather into a wide band that sits on the edge of the shoulders. It fastens in the front with buttons and button loops. The lace is from my grandma. She bought it at a yard sale during the 70s, I believe, and it's apparently hand-tatted.

^ funky sleeve gores ^
The pattern calls for french seams on all of the gores to ensure a clean and comfortable finish for this innermost garment. I omitted the armscye seam facings because I'm not that much of a fanatic about "clean finishes" and armscye facings seem to be taking the principle to a ridiculous extreme. In other words, I knew it would be too frustrating to sew and decided to skip it.

inside back of the neckband: 19th c. laundry mark next to gigantic tuck
Also, I ended up taking two 1" pleats/tucks at the back neckline in order to keep the neckline from slipping off my shoulders. I chose the size of this chemise based on my measurements but now feel that I could have gone at least a size smaller...who knows. It's not overly big on me and the chemise is meant to be a loose fitting garment anyway. Perhaps it's just the neckline band that's big. I know I shall enjoy wearing it, at any rate. :)

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