We will be holding an 18th century sewing weekend on Saturday Feb. 11 at historic Carroll Baldwin Hall in Savage, Maryland. If you are a historic costumer/reenactor, we suggest dressing in period dress to make this a more authentic hands on experience but this is not a requirement for participation.
The day will begin at 9:30 am with a meet and greet session. We will then be treated to a presentation by Carolyn Dowdell about how women kept warm during the 18th century.
We will then have 3 hands on workshops:
Mitts were an important accessory for women in the 18th century. They were important for warmth during the colder months and sun protection during the warmer months. Our mitts workshop will focus on mitts for the winter. We will be using fitting muslins in a variety of sizes prepared by the instructor using the pattern in Costume Closeup to find the right fit . We will then cut out and stitch a pair of wool mitts with an optional silk lined tip. Participants will learn to do the herringbone and edge herringbone embroidery stitches as part of constructing their personal mitts.
Participants will bring a half yard of light weight wool--preferably something fulled like flannel or lightweight broadcloth with matching sewing thread (typically silk or cotton quilting). If they'd like a lined tip, they may bring a scrap of silk with matching thread as well. They will also need embroidery needles. The instructor will supply silk stranded embroidery floss in a variety of colors. She will also have some scraps of silk taffeta on hand in several colors for those who may need some to line their mitts.
Vicki Embrey will teach this workshop (Hey! That's me!). She has been sewing since she was a child and she studied French hand sewing and English smocking before becoming involved with the reenacting community. She recently taught the caps workshop at the Sky Meadows weekend hosted by Mrs. Boice's Academie Historie.
Muffs have been a popular winter fashion accessory for hundreds of years. In our muffs class, we will be exploring example of 18th century muffs then we will begin making a muff cover as well as a simple white muff insert. Participants will bring precut rectangles of their chosen fabric as well as trims they may wish to use for decoration. They will also be given a link to purchase a premade muff insert if they prefer to do so. These details will be on our supply list which will be uploaded early January.
Our instructor for this class will be Sarah Cooper. Sarah has over 20 years' experience sewing everything from pajama pants to historic ball gowns. Sarah has worked and volunteered with museums that cover the 18th through early 20th centuries and has created her own clothing collection to match, as well as sewing for customers, coworkers, and friends. Although she would be hard-pressed to pick a favorite era, Sarah is most interested in working-class clothing throughout history. She is currently creating the costume collection for the Agricultural History Farm Park in Derwood, MD, which is set to kick off their season next year focusing on 1917.
Although we think of hoods attached to cloaks, they did exist as a separate garment in the 17th & 18th centuries. Most popular for Englishwomen in the late -17th century, American utilitarian extants do exist that are dated in the 18th c. Earlier style hoods are fitted close to the head and with, or without, a small cape like the gray silk one dated from 1750-1790 in Sharon Burnston's book "Fitting and Proper". By the 1770's they would be fashioned with room for bigger hairstyles of that era, like the 1776 quilted black sarsenet extant in LACMA's collection which also features a small cape. However, references to hoods do not appear in runaway adverts in either "Had On Took With Her" or "Wenches Wives and Servant Girls", leaving us to speculate on their actual value as a fashion accessory. However there is no doubt that a wool hood adds warmth when worn over a cap but without a cloak for 'hands free' working OR under a hooded cloak for extra warmth. Bring 1/2 yard, 54+" wide wool and 1/2 yard of silk taffeta (black or any 18th c. color), matching thread, 2 yards ribbon or plain linen tape, to fashion your own plain OR lined hood, with OR without a small cape. Choose from either the earlier, fitted hood style OR 1770's large hood style during the workshop - with or without a narrow cape.
The event will include lunch and dinner will beverages and snacks available throughout the day concluding at 8 pm.
If you choose to arrive early, we will meet for dinner at the Rams Head Tavern at historic Savage Mill which is across the street from the venue and we will tie up any loose ends over brunch Sunday morning.
A supply list will be uploaded to the registration page the first week of January.
For those who must travel--a list of hotels is available on our REGISTRATION PAGE.
Payment information is also available there.
The fee is $100.
We MUST have 20 people registered by12/29/16 in order for this event to take place as we have to pay for the venue by the end of the month. If we fail to get enough people to register, we will refund the registration to those who paid,