FOUNDATIONS REVEALED COMPETITION ENTRY
Outline the story …
In Chapter 3 of Jane Austen's "Northanger Abbey", Catherine Morland and Mrs. Allen meet Mr. Tilney again at the Lower Rooms in Bath. Upon learning that Mr. Tilney "understands muslin," Mrs. Allen asks him what he thinks of Miss Morland's gown. He responds that is was "very pretty," but may fray.
When creating Catherine's muslin gown, I took into account her age and naivete. She's only fifteen, and, being from the country, has never been out in society. This white gown, with small blue embroidery, is what I feel she would have chosen when first in Bath. Its simplicity echoes her own simplicity and romanticism. Perhaps it is the kind of gown that she dreamed about when she first started to fantasize about going to balls.
Though I hope it won't fray, as Mr. Tilney suspects!
Outline the construction…
I used the Regency Gown from Sense and Sensibility pattern to make this dress. The outer material is muslin and the lining is linen.
One of the challenges I had was easing the center back and the side back seams. Making the curved seams fit together took several tries. I had to video call a more skilled seamstress to walk me through the steps.
The button holes were also challenging. Setting up my sewing machine correctly and getting them to actually look like button holes took several practice holes, as well as several re-readings of my machine's manual.
I also decided to pleat the back instead of gather it. I watched a couple of videos on YouTube about pleating, and then read in the Reader Digest's Complete Guide to Sewing.
I decided to hand fell the seams on the bodice, to keep them from fraying. This idea and the execution of it came from the the multiple sewists and costumers I watch on YouTube.
The placket in the back of the skirt was difficult to understand from the directions in the pattern. Fortunately, the creator of the pattern had a video on her website explaining how to do it.