After the lesson I learned with the previous challenge about starting too late, I decided I was going to plan each project well in advance. With this challenge being focused on underpinnings, I decided it's time to make proper 18th century stays for that ideal conical shape so integral to the era. I then decided to combine this challenge with our next challenge focused on embellishments. This is due to the fact that I need a little bit of a slower pace with my sewing, and I'm handsewing these stays so I wanted a little extra time to work on them and really make them special.
|One of my favorite sets of stays from the V&A museum. It shows the embellishment of thin ribbon covering the seams. It is also an example of partially boned stays with exposed channels.|
|Another favorite of mine. This set also shows the ribbon embellishment over seams, and a more dramatic contrast color for the casing channels. This set is partially boned with exposed channels.|
size provided would fit my form without getting the stays almost to completion, and I don't know how to make the changes necessary to get it to fit my form. Plus, I really wasn't looking forward to making a gazillion muslins to get it fitting correctly. I finally decided to go ahead and buy a pattern that was relatively close to the shape of the patterns in the book so that I would have a decent base line and reference for any future stay making when it comes to my measurements.
|The pattern by J.P. Ryan I'm using.|
1) Shoulder straps. I prefer the look of stays with shoulder straps, but would like to eventually make a set sans shoulder straps as you can get a better range of shoulder and arm motion with them.
2) Back closure. I like the cleaner front, and that it prevents a lot of bumpiness.
3) Between 4-6 pieces. This is mainly due to my sanity for right now. Some stays have many pieces, and the channels cross multiple pieces, which means a lot of lining things up. That's a headache I don't feel ready for as yet.
4) The basic shape of the stays. The shape of this pattern is one of my favorite shapes, and it's extremely versatile. There are a lot of future variations I want to be able to do, and having a foundational shape to compare everything to is important.
5) Half boned. Again, my sanity is the basis of this decision. I'm not ready for backstitching my way through channel after channel.
1) As these are half-boned stays there is a lot of blank space. I found some extant examples of stays that were half-boned with visible channels and had some backstitching designs in the blank spaces to, I assume, prevent any shifting or unnecessary stretching of the fabric. Some examples even incorporated cording in a wave pattern in the blank spaces. I found that fascinating.
2) Most of the decorations I found on stays were the result of them being made out of either a brocade, already embroidered fabric, or a considerable amount of trim being added to front lacing stays. I assume the reason for the trim is because the front lacing stays were intended to be shown.
Tomorrow I will be posting my progress with the set of stays I've been working on as this is meant as an introductory post. I am planning on doing a progress report next week sometime, and then the final reveal the following week during the embellishments challenge. After that I will be doing a pattern review. If I finish these in good time I'd like to possibly do some little embroidery touches to my other two undergarments: the chemise and underpetticoat.