Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Two-fer Tuesday: Summer linen edition

Summer is a time for lightweight linen garments so when Burnley & Trowbridge got in some lovely lightweight pastel linens, I couldn't wait to get my hands on them!  I decided to use my favorite pattern to make a couple of summer gowns. This pattern is incredibly versatile so I decided to make a mid 1770's and and early 1780's gown.

First up the 1770's gown.  I made the gown exactly following the pattern instructions.  I added horizontal strips to one side of the stomacher and faced the wrong side with the fashion fabric to make it reversible.  I can wear the plain side out or I can wear the side with the strips showing.  I really like the way stripes show on a traditional English gown.  They are set off nicely in the robings and back facing.

Here is the gown as it was being fit tested:

While I hope to make a matching petticoat, I decided to wear this with an indigo one for this photo shoot.  I also have a white linen petticoat which will work with it. Here is the final result. The gown is also worn with a lightweight linen apron, an Indian block print neck handkerchief, and a ribbed silk market bonnet made from the Fashions Revisited pattern.

For the second gown, I decided to make it with a center front close and a shorter length.  I cut it out using the bodice I altered in this post.  I also decided on a shorter length adjusting the hem to accommodate a generous bum pad.

Here is the gown as it is being fitted:

And with the skirt pulled up at the side seams:
In order to determine where to put the ties, I placed the gown on my dressform and experimented by pinning it up various ways at the seams. I ended up sewing tapes at the waist at the side seams and the back seams.

The second set of ties were placed 18 inches below the waist ties at the side seams and 20 inches below at the back seams.

The ties are simply tied in bows to draw up the skirt.

Here is the finished result.  The gown is worn with a tambor work neck handkerchief and apron, both made from vintage linens, white linen mitts and cap.

I'm ready for some summer garden parties!


  1. Wonderful! Looking at your posts make me so happy. I see that you decided not to sandwich the skirt between the FF and lining of the bodice on the pink gown. Did you do the same on the blue gown?

    1. No. The blue linen is heavier so it wasn't an issue. That pink linen is much lighter weight--to the point that you could see the skirt through the bodice front which is why I ended up not sandwiching it. I still need to whip the edges. It's very ravelly! It's really a nice summer weight.

  2. I'm obsessed with the strips across the stomacher on the blue!! Amazing work, as usual.

    1. Thanks! I just made the strips and stitched them on the edge of the stomacher so I could stick my neck handkerchief behind them.