I have not written about the progress on the ropa since after Crown, so I thought I would do that today. Last time I updated about this project was just after crown to say that I did not quite finish it in time. Well, I had marked off the hem length accurately and at the event I spent some of Friday evening sitting next to my goods for sale, in the good light, and basted the overly long seam allowance in place. It looked fairly horrid, but since I didn't wear it at all that didn't matter.
The following weekend we had sewing circle so I brought the neverending project with me and there cut off the excess and folded up a double-fold hem and stitched it into place on the shell wool. Sewing in this wool is no task at all and it went swimmingly.
However, when I had the ropa laid out on the floor to cut off excess I noticed that my lining did not match the shell in circumference at the hemline. That bothered me a bit since that means I could not do both in one fell swoop. So I did only the shell there and cut off the extra length in the lining and that is now just awaiting inspiration to run a zig-zag on the raw edge and a straight stitch on a seam allowance on the machine and the ropa will be all done. (Minus any decoration, braids, etc I might decide to add at a later date).
Pictures? No, no pictures. It's just a big black robe with vividly green sleeve linings. Besides you've seen the old pictures
already, right? Right.
I think that once I have worn the ropa to an event and have had a good pictures taken with me in it I will update my site with a post-mortem diary of the making of it. It is quite a different thing to do a dress diary while you sew as opposed to typing it up after the garment is done. I'll see what I think about the experience and perhaps do a re-design of the current state of my site.
Another progress report is due on the gothic army dress. Instead of regular Tuesday shire meeting this past week, myself and Princess Filippa had a tea-and-sewing get-together at my place. We had tea, gossiped as usual, and I managed to hem the gothic army dress which means that all that is left to do on that project is buttons and buttonholes on the lower sleeves. Sitting with that dress in my lap I fell in love, all over again, with working in linen. It is so responsive, so smooth, so lovely.
Anyway, the 'all natural' theme continues with that dress, as I have used only linen or silk thread to sew it up all by hand, the hem I did in silk since it doesn't really need to be any thicker than the fabric itself, also silk thread of an appropriate colour is much better at hiding than my thick
black linen or thin white linen threads. Should I want to I can now wear that dress as is and simply roll up the lower sleeves to disguise the fact that buttons and buttonholes are missing. Of course, I have plenty of time until the next event I want to attend, so if I decide to do buttons there is plenty of time to do that last bit as well.
As far as the embroidery question goes, (if you remember I had pondered adding embroidery around the neckline of this dress) it has pretty much been dropped. I haven't thought about it at all, and I've no idea what I could do to beautify the dress. Speaking periodically (pun intended) there is no evidence what-so-ever of embroidery on such a prominent place on frocks from around 1410, so it wouldn't be authentic, but still a fun and pretty idea.