Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Fail Blog

This blog is starting to sound depressingly like Fail!Blog.  But to my credit, I did call it.

I did get started on the Edwardian, but I just didn't have time. I got it a good way towards completed, then when I tried on the bodice I found... that the pleated applied shoulder stuff was off. Not just a little off, but one-crawling-up-my-neck, one-hanging-off-my-shoulder off. Fixing it meant ripping everything apart and starting over, and I literally threw myself on the bed and wept in frustration and exhaustion. Not a pleasant feeling at my age. At least now I can have a pisco sour when things look black and sad.

At work we do this thing called "Five Whys" which is basically a business process for identifying failure points and correcting them.  If I did a Five Whys on this disaster dress, it would go something like this:
  1. Spent most of my enthusiasm on the corset.
  2. Consequently started on the rest of the ensemble later than I should have.
  3. Never got a good working brassiere figured out. The camisole thing didn't work for me, and I was bound to be disappointed any time the line suffers.
  4. Went for accurate and fiddly over simple and evocative.
  5. Didn't have a clear design in mind when I started.
  6. Didn't have a clear structural pattern in mind when I started, which you simply cannot get away with when you bust is this size.
  7. Didn't take the time to pad out my old Uniquely You dress form.
 Really, in the end, #7 was the one that killed it. If the bodice shell hadn't been hanging crooked on a dress form that represents me in 2005, I think I might have been able to salvage the thing.  But there's a lot here that I need to think about.  I have so many different things I want to do, and so little time for them, and I realize now that I am not realistically scoping my projects. This has happened at least four times now.  So: No more outfits where I don't already have the underwear.

So I need to make more undergarments. :P  I need to figure out an Edwardian brassiere, a 1920's bandeau that doesn't make me look like I am smuggling a batch of hamburger, and a set of combination underwear and slips.  This is to say nothing of the 1930's stuff I'd like to do... but what DID full figured ladies wear back then?  The beautiful surviving examples are clearly delicate lingerie for... delicately boned ladies.

And all of this has to wait until after Kentwell.  More on that in a bit.


  1. I think that full-figured ladies went with the Super Elasticized Girdle of Doom in the '30s. Actually, I think that most ladies of fashion wore a girdle during the decade. Have you scoped out the Sears catalogue for any of the 1930s?

    1. I'm afraid you're absolutely right. All of my sources point to giant girdles and heavily engineered structural bandeax. I'm just not up to making those right now - I need to find someone who I can pay to do it for me.