Hello and welcome to my first vlog! Is it my first vlog? Not sure. I’m Lauren and I’ve been blogging at American Duchess for like ten years at this point, but my video skills despite Having a degree in animation suck This project is a pretty quick and simple one. It is this beautiful 1894 Shirtwaist from Truly Victorian. Recently, I was on a desert island, Lanzarote, for vacation and I was completely ill-equipped With my wardrobe. All I wanted was to drape myself in linen and I had, like, a tweed suit. So I immediately started thinking of this pattern. I got this pattern at Costume College in 2019 and I always intended to make it for a Summer blouse just to wear all the time not necessarily just for a costume. I would like to wear this just for fashion or #historybounding if you will. Big big big leg of mutton or gigot sleeves are all over high fashion runways this year So I thought well I’ll at least be on-trend while I being a very nerdy dork at the same time. I spend a lot of time outside in the summer. It’s sort of diametrically opposed to how I feel about the sun. I really don’t like being hot. I don’t like the sun on my skin. I sunburn super easily as most fair people do. I don’t tan and I don’t want a tan. How did people in the past keep cool? while spending you know, time outside, and I always come back to the 1890s and the Edwardian period because you have these wonderful videos and videos and photos of women in, like, full dress walking on the beach in high heels… in the sand That aside… I think…aren’t they hot in that? Which is a question that, like, everybody who’s ever worn a historical costume has gotten from somebody at a historic site or when they’re out having a picnic, “aren’t you hot in that?” and the fact is they weren’t hot in that and the reason they weren’t hot in that is because it was made out of Natural materials like linen, wool, silk, or cotton and (silk is really hot.) But linen and They were fully covered. That’s the thing When you have Sun beating down on your skin and on your face like constantly It’s actually extraordinarily hot and there’s no protection there and sunscreen will only take you so far. Sunscreen doesn’t keep you cool. But linen does! One of the things I really like about Truly Victorian patterns is that they have this really clever sizing system where you choose your size based on your measurements and you can see the ones I’ve circled here pour moi and I’m all over the place when it comes to what letter of pattern piece I should cut. On the inside here there is information about how to find your pattern piece letter based on your measurements and it tells you how to measure and then a little system of How to choose which size to make. I now have all my pieces cut out and I just need to check a couple things It looks like the side seam is actually going to match up I was a little worried about that because of my back piece being a significantly different size than my front piece but this seam on the shoulder looks like it’s nowhere near matching up, so I will make a shoulder adjustment here. I might do that through the armhole which would be a little bit tricky or I may just gather this to fit that. The last alteration that I’m planning on doing is to extend The length of both of these pieces down. I don’t want to make the waistband with the peplum. I want just a nice long tail so I can just tuck the shirt in and this ends exactly at the natural waist. So I’m just gonna add probably about six to eight inches onto the bottom of this and Let it be free and floaty and then just tuck it in. I’m just gonna tear my linen off from the bolt, serge across the ends, and then wash it so it doesn’t fray too much, give it a good press and then lay my paper pattern pieces out. I’m marking these down from the bottom edges of the back and the front piece. I’m just doing it the same amount on each so that I can add a tail here too so I can tuck the shirt in. In order to fit my sleeve pattern onto the fabric I have to fold it another way. Normally, you would fold it selvage to selvage but I folded it in the other direction so I can fit this on here. So, this is a tip from the 1830s gigot sleeve. We noticed in Workwoman’s Guide that the lower part of the arm, the forearm here, was usually cut on the bias. And the reason for that is so that you could get a nice really tight, stretchy fit which helps keep the puff from doing things that you don’t want to do like falling down too far. You need this to be pretty tight so I’m trying to decide if I want to cut this forearm for the 1890s sleeve on the straight or on the bias, and I think I want to do it on the bias. Because I used such different sized pieces for the back and the front with the adjusted sizing that Truly Victorian gives us the instructions for, I definitely want to pin this together and try it on to see if it’s even… …to see if I need to recut that back piece because I have a super super narrow back and I’ve never really adjusted pattern pieces in this way, so I’ve pinned my my front and back together, and I’m just gonna Stick it on for a sanity check real quick, and see how…oh my god it actually does fit. Okay There’s the back nice and narrow alright, and I do have a lap so Sweet, okay The first step is to put the facings on both the left and the right front pieces these are the button stands, they’re what I’m going to sew my buttonholes into So here I’m just turning under the edge of one of the facings before I stitch it on to the front. Pinning that facing piece on to the wrong side of the shirt front Now just stitching it. This is wrong sides to wrong side So I’m going to turn it to the right side and then top stitch along with the front so I have a nice placket. I like to do the button holes before I do anything else once I’ve got the front placket sewn on Before I do the side seams or the shoulder seams. I just find it easier to get that on and straight. I have this very cool little tool. It is a buttonhole gauge. It’s really quite fun. However many buttonholes I have I will put this on here and mark these. After the buttonholes are sewn I’m just gonna cut them open very carefully Then I’m going to mark where my button placements are underneath and then sew the buttons on Buttons are done and now I want to take care of this issue the front is shorter than the back of the blouse and so I’m just going to stick it on the dress form and Level that up Next fun little bit is I need to get this edge to meet this edge So this is my super narrow back narrow short shoulder measurement and on my front piece, you can see it’s nowhere close. I I thought I might ease this in but because linen is so wibbly bubbly has some body to it I don’t I don’t want it to be wibbly bubbly. I want it to be nice and clean So I’m just going to do a dart. I’ve measured in two and a half inches here and I will keep this measurement for the other side over there and then I’m just going to along that line or somewhere close to it. I’m just going to dart that Okay, just going to pin that and then I will taper this dart out To roughly Where it needs to be – ish – there’s no shaping in this blouse at all It’s big and blousy which is totally fine, but if you want to have some shaping a dart is a really good way to do it. So I’m going to get a here. I’m gonna mark this and then I’m going to use this For the other piece as well so that they are the same Okay, I’ve sewn my fronts to backs and I’m just going to do a little try on. Just to make sure everything is Actually still working before I serge the inside Seams. Oooo, it’s a little tight, a little tight. I mean I do have Movement. I was hoping it would be a little bit blousier. I’m gonna let some out here These are half-inch seam allowances, so I should be able to pick up at least a little bit. I mean, it doesn’t look bad… It’s just not very relaxed Because I’m going to serge the seam allowances on the inside of this blouse I’m not all that concerned with my seam allowances being way too narrow Normally 1/4 inch Which is what I’ve done here instead of 1/2 inch would kind of make me nervous because of washing and fraying But in this case, that’s what I’ve done. I’ve looked the two side seams out for a total of 1 inch in circumference on the whole Body of the blouse and that should ease across the chest quite nicely It’s not going to be a huge change, but it should make it a little bit less tight in the chesticular Region, okay, try-on number two. This is after I’ve let this out for a total of an extra inch up here And I’m also trying this on without another t-shirt Because I would not be wearing another t-shirt under this and as you can see it is much much much better It’s really quite nice. It’s again not like… it’s not pigeon breasted. We’re in the 1890s. Not in the 1900s So it is a little different than I was expecting and if I make this blouse again I might… I might alter that a bit. I might let it out, you know put some more Seam allowance here on the side seams just so I could have that option if I wanted I like to have options. But right now I’m feeling really Really quite good about this. And so I’m going to go ahead and serge the side seams and the shoulder seams Okay progress so far I’m about halfway through my Saturday and It’s looking pretty good. I mean it looks way better on me than it does on the dress form as usual But I’m very happy with how this is going. I Managed to fit it decently. There was a little problem with the bust measurement because boobs But fixed that and I’m ready to do the collar. honestly the collar kind of feels like… This is a collar… collar kind of feels like that thing I have to do before I get to the sleeves Which is really the point. I’m not good at collars. Collars for me go on crooked. I haven’t really done a lot of collars in the, like, ten…twelve… fourteen… how many years of the have I been sewing? In all of those years I really haven’t done very many blouses or Collar shapes, so I hope it really goes well It’s pretty straightforward. There’s a collar stand and then the collar… it goes on top of it. I have decided I’m going to interface the collar stand So I have my collar stand Two pieces here. This is so it adds a little bit of stiffness To keep that collar on top of it from kind of flopping over. This is pellon Fusible, it’s very lightweight, so it’s not going to add too much stiffness Just a little bit. And I also don’t want this to stretch. Linen can be very stretchy and stretch out of shape So I’m just going to fuse this and then carry on like normal This is where it usually oh falls apart… Of course it’s not… I’m going to baste this collar on because all collars are always a tenuous situation and I don’t want to deal with the pins. Just in case, always baste. Collar is on. It looks good. I’m happy with it and we are ready to move on to the next part. I have a Sleeve on, kind of, and it is like way too baggy here So what I’m gonna do is get this in roughly the right place. I am going to lay my arm down here I want this to be tight so I’m going to mark it as best I can if I repin this… All right, and I stick this on it’s a much much tighter fit. I think this is key in this type of sleeve Otherwise, you’re just not going to get the right look And we want to be huge Yeah, nice and tight I’ve run the gathering stitches for one side of the sleeve seam And I’m just gonna gather that up match it to the other Side of that sleeve seam, give them a little bit of pressed pin it and stitch it in place Before I stitch the sleeves seam, I’m just going to leave about two and a half inches on the end This is so I can get my hand in and out of this sleeve and I’m going to mark that with a double pin So I don’t stitch past it. All righty, here are the sleeves before they’ve been gathered on the top. They have They have some gathering here on the…I guess this is the crook of my arm I think this is the backside. The pattern’s not totally clear… Here’s the underarm curve and it’s very difficult to tell right now kind of What’s going on with this. I feel like this is, like, an elephant, or an organ… If I were to to put this on right now, I’ve got a nice tight fit Around my forearm, but I can’t really tell what’s going on up here because it’s just so massive The only way to really get a sense is to just go ahead and gather it up So that’s what I’m going to do and then we’ll have some sleeves. Now I’m gonna gather the top Arc of each sleeve. I’m gonna run two lines of gathering stitches from the points Marked on the pattern so it’s not quite all the way around. You do want to have your underarms Smooth because having gathers under your underarms is never really a fun thing So to set my machine up for doing gathering stitches, I will adjust the tension wheel up here So I’ll put it at negative three – you can do positive three as well But it doesn’t really matter – and I’m going to extend the stitch length as far as it can possibly go. Then I will do one of the lines of stitching as close to the edge as I can and then I’ll do the next line of stitching parallel to that Like an eighth of an inch, a quarter of an inch away from it. This is in the seam allowance – it’s a half inch seam allowance So the gathering stitches need to be within that so that they don’t show. I mean, I guess there’s so much gathered It doesn’t really matter but you don’t really want them to show outside of the seam or the stitch line. I’m going to back stitch here quite securely because I’m going to put a lot of tension on this and then go all the way to the other end where I will not do a back stitch because that’s the end that I’m going to Pull on to gather this up I’m gonna give myself Plenty of tail there. This is not gathered up yet. So that amount of tail is not really necessary But sometimes the machine will kind of stuff gather as it goes and in that case if you’re loosening, you don’t want to run out of thread for it to For the fabric to be on. At the ends here one side of this will be Tighter stitched than the other, so it looks like my underside is the looser side so I’m gonna grab both of these threads together The parallel lines, the ends. I’m gonna go out to the end and I’m just gonna tie these together it’s easier to grab this and to know which line of stitching I need to pull on and One’s going to be easier to pull on the other So if you start pulling on one side in my experience, you can’t go back and pull on the other side It kind of gets stuck. So you have to kind of commit to whichever side you want to Do your gathering thread on. I like to use the iron when gathering like this, I find it really helps to control the gathers Otherwise they get a little bit bubbly and unruly as you’re going along Since you’re gathering in the round, when you get to the end here it really helps to have a pressing tool like a pressing ham. Just stick it in that armscye and use the iron to Control it a little bit more Time to Stick the big thing in the small hole (lol) This is a danger zone because you can always get your sleeves in backwards How many times have I done that!? so I like to hold the garment Right sides out like it’s on my body and I’m gonna take my sleeve and I’m gonna kind of match them and then I’m going to Fold – this is right side out by the way, too – then I’m gonna fold the garment body over The top of the sleeve and I’m going to then get into this armscye here and start matching stuff up Then I’m gonna get in here and I’m going to start pinning So I always pin the underside first. It’s the smooth part – both edges are smooth – when we get to gathering That’s when things get a little trickier alright, here’s my shoulder top that I’ve marked Previously. I’m gonna put that at my shoulder seam and you can see I have some excess here So I am going to pull on these threads some more and just gather that up until it fits into that space I’m just gonna do a really quick check to make sure the sleeve is on the right way. So I’m going to very gently Pull the body of the garment to the right side, turn it right-side out, and then I’m just gonna have a little look-see it looks like This is in the right place So I’m gonna baste this and then I’m gonna put it on my body just to make sure Everything is exactly where I want it to be before I do the final stitching. Here is my first to sleeve fitting. It is… it’s in… but most of the volume is in the back and I don’t think that’s wrong. I just don’t love it. I would prefer there to be a lot of volume here as well. So I’m glad I basted this because I’m going to pull that out and I’m just gonna rotate the whole thing forward. Here we are. I have adjusted my sleeve I rolled the entire thing forward and the underarm seam is much further back. I like the front of it much better It just sort ofcomes in further on the back then maybe I think I anticipate but you know, it’s not bad It’s not bad See this face? This is my unhappy face I’m unhappy because I’ve just stitched in My sleeve So I just wanted to double-check before I serge the inside of this and so I pulled my sleeve pattern. This is the sleeve pattern… There’s one really big problem with this sleeve pattern and that’s that it doesn’t say on it if it’s What the front is and what the back is so I’m definitely going to be writing that on this sleeve pattern there’s also no notches along the top and So I’m quite frustrated Because of that. So I had made a guess and it turns out that my guess was wrong. I Pulled these instructions again Again, there’s no indication of what the front or the back is Except for – this is where reading instructions comes handy – Except where it says “match the sleeve seam to the notch on Front armpit.” So as it turns out those gathers on the front of the sleeve actually go on the front of the body Not on the back of the body and then I won’t have a twisted sleeve seam, and I should have full range of motion. I get to pick this out with my trusty, well-used, well-loved seam ripper and do it again I’m so excited! I’m so excited for that. I was almost done. At least I didn’t do both that way. Oh, well, I find it hilarious Just so hilarious that I warned you guys about don’t put your sleeves in backwards. And then I… I put my sleeves in backwards so Yeah My right sleeve has now become my left sleeve And to be honest, I’m not really sure I like it any better. Everything played a lot nicer When I put this sleeve into the armscye, so it was obviously… this is the way it’s supposed to go in This seam here goes up to here that makes all the sense much more than it going to the back But I think next time I make something with leg o’mutton sleeves, I’m going to adjust this sleeve pattern a bit, or a lot it is quite different from an 1830s symmetrical sleeve pattern and I’m not really sure that it needed to be. Now that I’ve realised and fixed my mistakes it’s time to put that second sleeve in. I’m gonna get it in there, pin it, gather it up, and Baste it before I stitch it The very last operation here is to hem the cuffs. These are too small to get on my sewing machine So I’m just going to get in there and do these by hand. So I’ve turned up the edge and basted it and I’m going to turn it up again and do a very nice fine little hem stitch for a lovely finish. Hey hey! it’s a finished blouse, something I can wear everyday or for a costume. I’m really happy with how this came out Even though I made mistakes, as usual, and I hope you enjoyed watching the process and learned something along the way If you liked this video or any of our others, please feel free to smash that subscribe button You can also find us on Patreon – American Duchess. Thanks for watching and we’ll see you next time.