Costume College is just days away! Yesterday I finished my Victorian bathing suit for the Thursday night pool party.
I was inspired by this bathing suit from the Met Museum.
I made mine out of a gray and black wool/polyester blend. I didn’t have time to order red petersham, so I used grosgrain ribbon for the trim. It looks nice on straight lines, but doesn’t curve as well as I would have liked for the collar and sleeves.
Here are a few quick photos of the outfit!
Oops, I didn’t notice I put my belt on off-center. I didn’t have time to make bathing shoes, so I bought some cheap $6 flats from Amazon and used up the rest of the ribbon I had left. This photo looks like it was taken by someone else, but really I leaned over, then turned it upside down!I used Ageless Patterns #1410 to make the dress and bloomers.
The pattern isn’t awful, but I can’t really recommend it. Ageless Patterns are traced from extant patterns and magazines of the period, which makes them historically accurate, but lacking in directions and specifics about size. This pattern was simply listed as “medium.” (I think it fits more like a large). The arm holes are also strangely big, the shoulders are rather low, the sleeves didn’t quite fit right, and the collar piece was completely useless. It was a bizarre shape and didn’t fit. I eventually gave up and just bound the neckline.
The good thing about the pattern, aside from the sleeves and collar, is that it is ridiculously easy to put together. The dress consists of one back piece and 2 front pieces, and you gather at the waist. The bloomers consist of a front and back for each leg.
Since the pattern was large on me I was able to cheat on the closures. I put an elastic channel into the waist, which is covered by the belt. The dress from the waist down is sewn shut, and the top half closes with hooks and eyes. The buttons are false! No making buttonholes! I just pull this dress over my head, put the belt on, and then hook up the top. Super easy, and comfortable, too!
- 4 yards wool blend: $54.35 including tax (hooray for the clearance table at Britex!) – I still have more than 1 yard left
- 3 yards Kaufman Duet Linining: $6.86 including tax and shipping (with a coupon and free shipping from Fabric.com)
- 2 rolls of grosgrain ribbon: $5.23 including tax (with a coupon from Michael’s)
- 10 buttons: $0, kit left over from my maid dress
- shoes: $6.27 including free shipping from Amazon
- pattern: $15 + $4.85 shipping from Etsy
(Edit: Post updated! I forgot to add in the price of the pattern).