Life has been a whirlwind for the past 6 weeks, and it's just finally starting to return to a more expected routine. Just about the only constant has been my blog schedule!
I have no reason to complain, though- the reasons for my busyness have been of the Christmas Ball(s)-attending, Williamsburg-traipsing, Foyle's War Party-planning, Friend-visiting nature. :-)
We took a trip to Williamsburg for a week at the end of the year, and were joined by Kathryn, Tara, and their parents.
A wonderful time was had by all (unsurprisingly!). :-) This was my family's 13th visit to Williamsburg, and I'm beginning to think that this town truly *is* magical. We have yet to experience an unenjoyable trip!
This was our first time to go in the winter, and we enjoyed all the festive wreaths ornamenting all the homes and shops. The whole town felt festive, but in an understated and tasteful way. It proved a great backdrop for outfit photos, so we took the opportunity to photographically document all of my 18th century projects from over the years. Consequently, there will be some Christmas wreaths adorning the blog over the next few months- but they were so pretty that I don't think it's too much of an issue. ;-)
This dress was one of my very first 18th century garments- I made it 8 years ago. It has some aspects that aren't my favorite, and I feel like there are a few areas that need changing to accurately reflect the period. But I'm having such a hard time putting my finger on what exactly it is that needs to be changed! So, if you have any ideas or tips, please share! I'd love to hear from an "outside" source- I feel like I'm so blinded that I can't look at it impartially!
I used J.P. Ryan's Robe a l'Anglaise pattern for the dress, and it went together rather well! The ensemble is formed by a dress and a matching petticoat. The dress is polonaised in the back with loops and ribbon inside.
I love how the apron adds just the right amount of interest! Of all my accessories, I think this apron is one of my favorites! I made it in April 2013 as a last-minute addition to my wardrobe, but it has turned out to be one of my best ideas!
The 18th century just had some of the most. amazing. ideas. ever!! Those curving back seams that end in that wonderful pointed waistline that connects with those amazing pleats in the skirt. Perfection.
Also, the 18th century had the most amazing shoes and stockings. Period.
Shoes- "Kensington" by American Duchess
Buckles- "Valois" by American Duchess
Stockings- Jas. Townsend
The dress closes with pins down the front- another reason to love the 18th century! No need for sewing in closures!! Yay!!
Also, I can't resist drawing attention to that pattern matching across the front.... isn't that great?! When I first made the dress, it overlapped too much to allow that, but I guess increasing in girth does have a few advantages! ;-)
Maybe I'm just spoiled by a plethora of outfit choices for our trips to Williamsburg, but I will admit that this dress is one of my least favorite outfits. It is lovely, but something just feels "off".
It does however, have wonderful connotations to go along with it! Years ago when I first made it, my dad posted about it on his blog, and we got a random comment from a stranger asking where we purchased the fabric. Well, that stranger kept in touch, and we started following her blog too. Over the years, we've been able to meet up in Williamsburg several times, and have had the delightful pleasure of getting to know her and her sister! Those strangers ended up being Rebecca and Ashley, of Fashionable Frolick fame and how very glad I am that they are no longer strangers! :-)
Of all the wreaths around town, this was my definite favorite, so I knew I'd have to get pictures by it!
Isn't it lovely?!
· A big thank you to Kathryn for sorting through all the goofy poses I was giving her and coming up with a surprisingly demure-looking representation of how I was acting. ;-) ·