Its a beautiful gloomy day, so it’s perfect to work on the princess coat I am sewing for myself to replace the one I burned up last year.
Funny story – I made myself a princess coat almost a year ago. The very next day after I had finished it, I went to the annual Christmas event at the Littleton Historical Museum, where my mom was working at the time. Its a living history museum, and they have two working farms on the grounds from the 1860′s and 1890′s. During the Christmas event, visitors come and tour the farms, listen to Christmas carols, take hayrides, and watch period demonstrations, stuff like that. They also offer concessions of cider, pie and cookies, which was what my mom was doing. However, it’s freezing cold in Colorado at that time of year, and since it’s primarily outdoors, they have bonfires and heat lamps to warm guests as they walk from place to place. Well, I was talking to my mom with my back to a heat lamp, and I got too close and caught my coat of fire. I didn’t even notice because the skirt was so poofy – but my mom yelled out, “Rachel, you’re on fire!” and rushed over and started beating the fire off! I didn’t get hurt at all but there was a nice big hole burned in the back of the coat! We started laughing uproariously, because what else can you really do in a situation like that? And all the ladies my mom was working with stared at us in shock. I guess they didn’t have a sense of humor about it!
Anywhoo, its about time I got started on a new coat to replace that one. I already did all the boring stuff like pattern correction, muslining, and cutting, so I can write about the fun stuff, like sewing. Here’s some more sketches of it -
They style I’m going for is sort of romantic fairy tale meets Victorian gothic. I am using a modified version of Butterick 5425 to make it.
I am making the knee length version, so I can wear it with cute tights underneath. Also, it’s not that cold in CA. I did some mods to the pattern, like adding a hood and cutting the sleeve into three pieces so I can put flat piping in the seams and embroider on part of it. I will also be adding loops to the back panel similar to belt loops in construction, to lace a ribbon through for a corset effect.
I’m making it out of grey wool with a BRIGHT pink lining. I will be using black microsuede to make flat piping for the sleeves, the hood, and the princess seams on the front and back. Right now, I have all the body panels cut and fused, and I am embroidering on the sleeve panels.
I considered doing machine embroidery, but I like the not-factory-made look of my own,less than perfect hand embroidery. It looks more fairy tale that way. I am drawing on the swirls in colored pencil, and then chain stitching over them. I am not going to match them on the other sleeve, but make a different pattern with the same basic look. It’s taking forever, but I love doing it!