The 1495 Italian Dress, Part One

IMGP4071I’ve finally started my first ‘big’ costume project of 2015 (only a few months in!). I decided on a Renaissance gown from Italy in the late 1400s, because it’s one of my favorite periods. The garments from this period are all gorgeous, and I’ve been wanting to undertake one for a while. Before I could start on the dress, though, I needed to work on the undergarment – a chemise. It was a fairly easy and pain-free process, and this post will cover making it.

To start, I cut out four rectangles and two squares. Two of the rectangles would eventually become the front and back, while the other two would be sleeves. The squares were cut in to four triangles, to be gussets. The pattern looked like this.

Screenshot_8I cut out all the pieces, and sewed the gussets on to the front and back rectangles.


Then I added the sleeves on, and gathered the neckline with two lines of stitches.


At this point, it was reminiscent of a spooky ghost in a movie, but that’s ok, because that’s exactly what it was supposed to look like! I made some one inch bias tape for the neckline, and finished it off.


The sleeves and hem were ridiculously long at this point, so I trimmed them with scissors, and ended up with a slightly more wearable garment.


Then, I added a pretty embroidery trim to the neckline, which will match the final dress, and it was done!


I should have a post up soon on the actual dress, which is a lot more interesting to make than a bunch of rectangles. I’m happy that this part went so smoothly though, and hopefully the rest of the project goes just as well!



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