Thursday, May 28, 2020

White Partlet (Complete)

Here is another project from my UnFinished Object (UFO) pile that I recently finished. It is a partlet made from a fabric that has square holes finished with machine embroidery. It reminded me of a close netting style. It is cut in the collarless Italian style that I like to wear with my 1530's-1550's gowns.
I cut the fabric out to my standard partlet pattern. I did a small zigzag stitch by machine along all the raw piece edges and then sewed the shoulder and side seams with a straight stitch on the machine. Then I turned all the edges under and sewed them down with tiny stitches by hand.
The next step was to do a hem by hand on all the raw edges. It was a lot more  tedious than my normal partlet hemming because the fabric wanted to distort where the holes were, especially if any of the edges of the hole itself were exposed.
Not my best hemming work, but acceptable. One part that I am considering re-doing is the bit that sits near my collar bone. The hem size is consistent, but because of the way the holes are positioned, the hem sticks out a bit from under the holes. I'm not sure if it will be noticeable while wearing it or not. 
I have two re-working options; unpick and re-sew, or add lace. I do have some lace that I purchased specifically for this partlet, but I am not sure it needs it. When it is time to finally get garbed up again, I will try it on with an Italian gown and decide then. Until that time, I will keep pottering along, trying to finish things, and keep trying to resist the urge to start new projects.
This meme popped up on my social media feed this week, and was too relatable!

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Heraldic Seahorse Napkin

I got the opportunity to take part in a couple of excellent online classes yesterday, and was able to practice my double running stitch. I finished embroidering my device on a napkin during the classes.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Partlet with Blue Knotted Embroidery (Complete)

I managed to get the blue knotwork partlet finished this week. This is another project which was postponed because I was not happy with how it was working out. I originally hoped that I would be able to use it as part of my suite of projects for my Heraldic Challenge work (details below) but the frettes were not as prominent as I had hoped. I also used this project as an opportunity to practice my double running stitch (Holbein stitch) and it did not turn out as smoothly as I would have liked. More practice needed!

This pattern was taken from Giovanni Ostaus' 1567 "La Vera Perfettione del Disegno" at
Cleaned image from: 
As always, I am indebted to Baroness Praxilla at Modelbuch Muse. Her page makes finding patterns so easy!
I think I will do some more patterns from this modelbuch in the future.

This partlet is a wide-fronted collarless partlet which was popular in Italy in the sixteenth century. Here are some progress photos on the development of the project:
All visible seams handssewn. I edge my fabric pieces with the machine before hand hemming to provide a bit of extra strength, especially as I usually machine wash my underpinnings.
I use a relatively wide hem, about 6 or 7mm.

The border edging of the embroidery on this chemise (held in the Museo del Tessuto, Prato), inspired the decorative edging at the centre front hem. Image from via Pinterest
 Similar decorative edging can be seen on this English coif c. 1610, held in the Glasgow museum. It is linen base fabric, embroidered in silk and gilt. Number 29.130
I was unsure as to which lace to use. In the end I chose a silver lace that I had overdyed with a blue-black dye to tone down the shade of gilt.
The base fabric on this one is cotton. Linen would be a better alternative but is expensive and hard to find where I live, whereas cotton is readily available and more affordable. Linen is MUCH nicer to embroider and sew though! Similarly, thread is cotton DMC embroidery floss; a more affordable alternative to the much nicer silk thread that I would prefer to use.

Heraldic Display Pentathlon Challenge CHALLENGE 2019-2020
Participants are challenged to create 5 (or more) items from the list below. Challenge runs from now until the 1st May 2020 (or the closest available garbed event.) Displays will be set up throughout the year to showcase the work of participants. At the end of the Challenge, the populace will vote for their favourite items and tokens will be awarded. Heraldry can be your own, or you can make something for a friend, or Guild etc. Be creative and enrich our game with your displays.
1. Banners, flags, pennants, standards and gonfalon etc.
2. Encampment equipment, furniture, tent screens etc.
3. Personal Adornment such as jewellery, favours, tabbards and clothing etc.
4. Equipment such as needlecases, napkins, crockery, water bottles etc.
5. Items for the Barony: any item(s) decorated with the Innilgard device to be donated to the Barony
This Challenge has been extended because face-to-face Lochac events have been suspended due to the Covid-19 crisis.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

UFOs - Sleeve Pile

One of my current challenges is to go through my UnFinished Object pile and prioritise everything,  and to start working through tasks. I still have a large pile of sleeves cut out and waiting to be sewn, so this is something I will be working on over the next several months.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Complete - Heraldic Seahorse Embroidered Partlet

I finally got my heraldic seahorse partlet finished, after leaving it sitting in the Naughty Corner for quite some time. I have not been happy with how the pale lilac thread looked, and I really struggled to see it. I think the below average quality of the embroidery reflects this.
When the split and running stitch embroidery was finally complete, I was disappointed with how it all looked. I added a line of split stitch along the hemline, but it didn't look complete. I added some pale gold cotton bobbin style lace and then added a line of matching gold thread to tie in the new colour.

The seahorses actually look paler than in the photo, and I felt they needed an extra motif in gold thread to tie in the bobbin lace colour and to fill in the negative space. I added the little 'sun/seed' motif found so often in Elizabethan pattern books like Shorleyker's 'A Scholehouse For The Needle'.
I am pleased with the extra motifs and the partlet turned out better than I thought it would. I'm not sure that I will ever love it, but it was a good exercise in perseverance.

Monday, May 4, 2020

Linen Partlet with Purple Flowers

Going through my piles of unfinished projects recently, I came upon this unfinished partlet in the Italian style. The embroidery has been started, but hasn't progressed far. It is worked in shades of purple and grey.
I will keep you posted!