Progress, Setbacks, and the Home Stretch

I can’t believe that it’s already the last week of the competition! I have so much left to do!

I had a bit of a disappointment this week… I spent an entire day working on the sleeves. I bound the edge of the armscyes, faced the cuffs and edges, and flat felled the seams. I was so excited, I found these lovely flat buttons to use and I thought they’d look gorgeous on the red kirtle with the little bit of teal around the edges of the openings.

Alas, it was not meant to be.

Draping on oneself is difficult. Unfortunately, I miscalculated the dimensions of the sleeve, and once I completed all the finishing, I tried on the kirtle. Much to my chagrin, I discovered that there was not enough room to use the buttons with buttonholes. Some of my friends suggested sewing on some type of loops to hook around the buttons, but I simply didn’t have the time to figure that out, especially if it ended up not working.

I ended up making the very sad decision to make it short sleeved. There may or may not have been some whining and gnashing of teeth. It looks fine, but I was very disappointed that I had wasted all that work on finishing the sleeves only to have to cut them off. Here it is with short sleeves as well as an the inspiration. The image is from 1470, and my dress is supposed to be from the 1480s, but I believe the time period is close enough. This also makes it so there is less fabric on my forearms, since there will now only be the shift layer and the cotehardie layer, which is definitely preferable as I hate having a lot of stuff bunching around my arms.

Oh, I also finished the shift, except for the hem, finally. I haven’t gotten any pictures of it on by itself yet, but those are coming. You can see it here under the kirtle.

I also got started on the cotehardie. I decided to forgo lacing in the interest of time and sanity, and make it a pull on style. In my original inspiration, many of the cotehardies do not have any lacing on the front, so I felt it was reasonable to omit it. Especially since I am getting my support from the kirtle underneath. Thus far, I have the body of it assembled and one sleeve on. I shall be finishing the second sleeve today.

There is still so much to do! I am worried I won’t be able to get it all done in time. I still need to hem all three layers, attach the second sleeve and face the neckline and wrists on the cotehardie, and make the hood, hose, and pouch. On top of that, I found a lovely kit from billyandcharlie.com that I decided to use to make my alms pouch, but it hasn’t arrived yet!

I think that I will have to forgo my original plan of finishing everything visible by hand and machine sew the hems. I will still hand sew the facings on the cotehardie, though. It’s not like anyone looks that closely at hems. I hope.

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2 Responses to Progress, Setbacks, and the Home Stretch

  1. Ciara says:

    I hope you saved the sleeves to rework them later, I love the color combination, and the buttons are lovely.

  2. Aurelia Stellari says:

    Hi Kitta,
    Having to make the decision to cut off the sleeves must have be difficult and disappointing. Your buttons are lovely and I hope you find another project for them..

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