I love Regency – the clothes are just so comfortable… and I wanted to make a long sleeve chemise based off one I saw in a painting. 

Statens Museum for Kunst: Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg: The Nathanson Family 1818

As the chemise in the painting is sheer – and I’m going to be wearing it under a (probably) poly velvet dress I got at a festival fundraiser last year – I decided to use Indian cotton.  I purchase my fabric at a local Indian food store in in town at about $2/yard.  I’m sure the owners think I am crazy for all the turban fabric I buy…  

Since I was going for fast and easy, I used a pattern I’ve had for a while as the basis.  I went ahead and cut out full widths of fabric for the front and back pieces and pieced it together following the patterns instructions (from memory) and then measured my neckline.  After cutting out a rectangle about 30 inches long and 5 inches wide, I started to gather the bodice.  I used the “zigzag over thread” method of gathering that my Mam-ma used.  

I was worried about getting the armband tight enough to stay up until I decided to use elastic cord and the place the lace over it.    Check it out!

The Challenge: Lace and Lacing

Fabric: Indian cotton and cotton lace from my stash.

Pattern: Butterick 6196 (the shirt part)

Year: 1818

Notions: Lace and elastic cord

How historically accurate is it? Its mostly hand sewn and the fabric is cotton – but I used elastic cord so I wouldn’t have to tie it every time…

Hours to complete: about a day

First worn: Not yet

Total cost: <$10