Saturday, February 18, 2023

The Ren Fest, a Linen Petticoat, and Fairy Houses

 My sister came to stay with me for 3 days last fall, and it was absolutely delightful. The weekend began with a trip to Joann’s where we bought fabric for Christmas dresses (both hers and our niece’s) and ended with her coming along when my husband and I went to look at a house - the house we wound up buying.

In between, we went yarn shopping, made fairy houses, went to estate sales, and went to the Renaissance Festival - twice! 

And clearly, we dressed up for the Ren Fest!

My sister wore the “Zelda” overdress I made for myself several years ago, over a thrifted white dress she’s refashioned and worn for several other costumes.

I decided to take the opportunity to wear my Augusta Stays. I made them two years earlier, and they still hadn’t had an outing!

So, stays, shift, apron, pockets, bum roll (still un-blogged, but it’s the Francis Rump from Scroop Patterns), and a plain 18th century petticoat.

There was only one issue. I was rather short on “plain” 18th century petticoats. The majority of my 18th century petticoats are silk, and silk is not well suited for Ren Faire life.

Thus, a new, washable, 1780’s petticoat was an order. Thinking through my stashed fabric options, I decided a navy blue linen petticoat would be just the thing.

I pulled out the linen I had left over from this skirt. I had just over 2 yards - perfect! But there was an issue.

I’d also used this linen for part of the sash of my Wildwood Wrap dress, so it was missing a good sized chunk out of one corner. 

Some piecing was required to fix that problem. Good thing piecing is period!

Once I fell-stitched the piecing in place, I had two large rectangles on fabric and the rest was easy!

I sewed up the side seams with a running back stitch, and left the top 10 or so inches open on each side for pocket access. Then the bottom was hemmed, the pocket slits were hemmed, and the top  was pleated.

I basted the pleats in place, then tried on the petticoat over my Francis Rump and had my sister help me level the hem. (Yes, this was the day before we were planning on going to the Ren Fest.)

Once the shape the top edge needed to be was marked I settled back in the recliner with my hand sewing to attatch the waist ties, my sister took over the couch with her crochet, and we proceeded to watch about half of the 1995 Pride and Prejudice.

And with that my petticoat was done!

Costumes ready for the next day, my sister and I took a walk around the neighborhood, gathered up some sticks and pine cones. You could get two free tickets to the Ren Fest if you showed up with fairy houses for their contest, so, as my sister and I planned to go two days in a row with different groups of people, we decided we might as well make fairy houses and get in for free!

Sticks, pinecones, hot glue, after a couple hours our fairy houses for free entry were done and we were ready to meet our aunt and cousin at the Ren fest the next day!

They too had made fairy houses to get in, and we enjoyed looking at all the different houses in the fairy garden and gathering ideas for the next year.

Some people got really detailed with their houses!

After admiring the fairy houses we spent the afternoon visiting different vendors and such.

Day one was for shopping! The following day we returned with another friend, and once again began in the Fairy Garden to show her our houses.

A Fairy in the Fairy Garden!

And then proceeded to watch different shows and do more exploring. Breaking up our visit into two different days definitly made it more relaxing and enjoyable than trying to fit everything into one day. Highly reccomend!

As a final note, since the linen petticoat I made for the weekend happened to be navy, it worked for the September 2022 Historical Sew Monthly challenge - Blue!

What the item is: 1780’s Navy Linen Petticoat
The Challenge: Blue - it’s Navy Blue!
Material: linen
Pattern: none, it’s just two rectangles sewn together, pleated, and leveled over my false rump.
Year: 1780’s, due to the rump I leveled it over, but could be passible for other decades as well.
Notions: Thread and linen tape.
How historically accurate is it? I’d say 90%, at least. The material and color are both good for this era. It’s all handsewn using what I know of sewing techniques from the era. It’s pieced together, which is fine for this era. The only issue was my thread was a poly/cotton blend - it should have been linen.
Hours to complete: Maybe about 10 hours. That includes piecing back together the corner of the fabric that had been cut into for a different project a while back.
First worn: September 24th, 2022 for the Ren Faire
Total cost: Nothing! Everything was stash, most of it given to me at some point in the past.

1 comment:

  1. What an awesome project. The stitching fascinates me. Your very creative.