Regency Dress for Linda Bair Dance

A costume that wasn’t for Halloween

Here’s my semi-recap on the costume I made in October that had nothing to do with Halloween! I did start doing a spookyish costume for me that I could potentially use this 31st if I get it done. But all the kids’ costumes were purchased this year. Bad designer! Oh well.

So as I mentioned, my friend Linda Bair of The Linda Bair Dance Company was asked to dance in Barbados. What a dream come true! And she asked me to make her costume. Another dream come true! A semi-odd request- a Regency gown for a young woman in mourning, and she can dance in it. Challenge accepted!

Simplicity 4055

 

I chose to use Simplicity’s #4055 Regency pattern. A good jumping off point. Easy pattern, fits well, and fairly close to accurate. The style I went with was the A view on the left of the envelope. A bit more youthful looking. I altered the sleeve design to use a lace with a scalloped edge, fitting a little less puffy than the original. Rather than use a lace overlay, I used a cotton underskirt to line the dress under the silky fashion fabric. I wanted a lightweight feel for the islands of the story’s setting, but didn’t want the fabric to cling to her legs when she danced. Some lace trim at the neckline to tie in the sleeves and braid sewn along the neckline finished it off. Hemmed to ankle length for being able to dance barefoot, with enough turned up to let it out to dance in heels at a later occasion.

My challenge making this was with the buttonholes! I haven’t done enough on my current machine and doing them manually without the included “one-step” buttonhole attachment was giving me grief. I’d misplaced the attachment, but luckily have found it now. The day after I finished the dress. Oh well, I took the opportunity to learn how clothing construction of the day would have made buttonholes- by hand! It was a pretty fun experience, and something I would do again if needed.

 

And here’s the dress completed! In my hurry to get it done and over to Linda before her plane flight, I only got cell phone pics. I’m really hoping for event photos! Or at least I’ll get out my camera and take a picture of it on her at some point.

Regency Dress for Linda Bair Dance