No one that knows my love of Halloween would be surprised to know that I got dressed up in full hair and makeup, petticoat and corset bra, and my beautiful Marie Antoinette costume on my birthday to take these pictures!
I had a lovely birthday morning acting like a french princess, making my family wait on me and getting as pretty as possible so I could swish over to the park to take photos. It was a little warm, and a little ridiculous to be out in public like this, but it was my birthday and it was fun!
I had the honor of sharing my costume over on the BERNINA blog at WeAllSew.com. I explain how I made all that trim, which was so much less expensive than having to buy yards and yards of something I didn’t even know would match perfectly. This turned out just how I envisioned it.
I also entered it into the Pattern Review Costume contest. I’ll post the text of my review below, but if you’d like to go see my entry and vote on the amazing costumes, voting is open until tonight. Go check them all out!
Pattern Description: Misses’ 18th century costumes by Andrea Schewe. It doesn’t say anywhere on the envelope that you will need boning, but then the instructions call for it. I was not planning on it, so I just added stiff interfacing to the stomacher piece for stability. That worked great!
Pattern Sizing: I made a size smaller than my measurements, like I always do in Simplicity. I also slimmed down the sleeves. Of course I pin fit it before I put in the zipper, so I don’t know how perfectly accurate the sizing is in that way.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes it did, except for my twist on the trims. I made the ruffle trim and winged it on the bows in front. I like them smaller. I also needed to add in some pink for contrast. It is subtle but classic Marie Antoinette.
Were the instructions easy to follow? As usual, I didn’t follow the directions. When it mentioned the boning, I was like ‘What?’ So I just went my own way from there.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love the shape of the bodice, neckline and especially the sleeves. I made mine tighter, but the shape of the 2 pieces make it a great sleeve with a bent elbow.
Fabric Used: I went with a upholstery weight satin (I used the matte side) and crinkled taffeta for the stomacher and trim. The underskirt was a very perfect lucky find of pre-gathered/pinched fabric. The blue and cream color scheme was perfectly off-set by the pink ribbon I added to the side trim. Of course then I had to add a pink ribbon choker and a pink butterfly and flowers in my hair.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? If either of my daughters wanted a dress like this, I would use this pattern again. It is fun and goes together well. It is not historical, just easy with the right details to evoke the historic feeling. I lined the bodice, but mostly pinked my seams and wasn’t too particular with the insides since it is a costume. I spent more time on the trims, because that was the fun part!
Conclusion: As long as I can remember, I’ve wanted a dress like this! When I played with my Barbies, I made them fluffy gowns out of my mom’s scraps. I don’t know why it has taken me so long to fulfill this dream. I loved wearing it and pretending I was Marie Antoinette! I am looking forward to Halloween this year even more than usual (which is a lot normally anyway!) I think this is what sewing is all about! Having fun and dressing up, especially like this.