Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Regency Stays of Doom

I am terrible at making stays.  Absolutely horrible.  I am particularly terrible at making Regency stays.  Here is the story of my failure--please attempt not to laugh too hard.

So, I began with the Sense and Sensibility Short Stays pattern, which I didn't think would be too difficult.  I got a yard of cotton twill from Joann's and decided to tackle them.  First of all, learn from my example and do not make your stays entirely out of cotton twill.  I had extreme difficulty in getting the gusset fabric not to separate from the bodice of the stays.  A week before we departed for the Jane Austen Festival, my friend showed me her soon-to-be-done long stays and listened to my woes about my stays.  She suggested that I use her self-drafted stays pattern, chop off the bottom, and turn them into short stays.  She gave me fabric (a very strong interlining fabric of linen and rayon, an outer layer of linen and rayon and lining of cotton muslin) and I started on the stays.

In my stupidity I didn't sew the gussets correctly and the stupid stays ended up flattening what little bust I have.  I was not, not happy.  What's worse is that no amount of padding fixed it.  I looked like I was completely flat chested.

See?  That was with padding, too. This greatly irked me.

So, once I got home from the Jane Austen Festival, I ripped out a good amount of the seams and threw them across the room.  Now that I want to make more Regency things, I've decided that I ought to fix them now.  I despise them, but they must be fixed.

So, I began on them last night.  The good thing about they gussets having already been sewn down is that I was able to rip only one edge of the gusset and leave the other edge intact, making it much easier to sew.  I sewed with a really wide and uneven backstitch (my sewing machine is at home) and I will be reinforcing the seams with my machine once I get home.  I can already tell, however, that this pair is going to help me a lot more.  I'll be back with the results once I sew everything back together!  Tata for now!

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