We keep meeting here. I’ve often joked that every time I fit myself for a new self-supportive kirtle I lose 50 lbs (friends have also remarked that if that really worked then they would never stop fitting themselves for new kirtles). So here I am again. I am (yet again) faced with the fact that I’ve shrunk out of all of my dresses. In the last year I’ve lost 60 lbs and all of my dresses are too big (and completely not supportive). Add to that, I don’t have time to make a new dress. I will once again be making a kirtle to go under my kirtle.
Happily this time I have finally stumbled on an easy way to get the initial fitting (using the methods from Mr. Gnagy’s book and Facebook page) BUT I don’t currently have time to make a full dress. Instead I need a stop gap to get me through the next few months. So here we are again. I’m making a simple bodice that will just act as bosom support. I will not be adding a skirt to it. Learning from my last underbodice I WILL NOT be doing side lacing on both sides (SO MANY EYELETS!!). I’ll do a simple center front lace instead. In fact I’ve even decided to use machine-done eyelets (*gasp* clutch pearls). It’s underwear. I can be ok with machine-done eyelets on my underwear. Don’t laugh. I can totally do it.
I have limited proof that this was a medieval thing. The Lengberg finds support something like this.. but I’m doing this for practical reasons (because I don’t have time to make a new dress), not to mimic the time/place/fashions of Lengberg.
(done) Cut out two layers of linen. For this I’m using some natural linen that’s probably been in my stash for the last 10 years.
(done) Sew up the side seams and strap seams of the inner and outer layers.
(done) Prick stitch the seams open.
(done) Cut a 1.25 inch wide bias strip of silk taffeta to reinforce the eyelet area.
(done) Attach the silk bias reinforcement strip to the lining layer using a small tight running stitch at the front edge and a crosshatch (herringbone) stitch at the back end.
(done) Baste the inner and outer fabrics together around the edges.
(done) Work the eyelets along the front edge (there are 26 total eyelets that are 0.75″ inches apart set 0.50″ from the front edge of the garment marked with my Eyelet Template).
(done) Cut a 2″ wide bias tape of the same linen as the body of the garment.
(done) Bind all the raw edges around the armseye and outside edge.