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Forum > Patterns and Notions > Reconstructing History Pattern 810: 1800-1820's Waistcoats ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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Reconstructing History Pattern 810: 1800-1820's Waistcoats
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Nikki S.
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Nikki S.  Friend of PR
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Date: 12/22/09 5:35 PM

I'm working on a costume that will include the single-breasted version of this vest, and I was wondering if any of you fine ladies and/or gentlemen had sewed this particular pattern before. I have a muslin for fitting, but I have an incredibly finite amount of fabric to do the final in, so I don't want to take any chances . . .and the directions are, well, they're scarce.

Thank you!

Sue Anfang
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Subject: Reconstructing History Pattern 810: 1800-1820s Waistcoats Date: 12/23/09 2:51 PM

Probably any commercial vest pattern would be similar in construction details, do you have a regular fitted vest pattern(lined or unlined -- whatever matches your historical pattern) for reference? Maybe handworked buttonholes for authenticity?

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http://sewstashsew.wordpress.com/

Sue who used to be Sue Wilson

Nikki S.
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Date: 12/27/09 10:08 PM

I've made a few vests in my time. You're probably right, it's probably not rocket science comparatively. I read through the directions and it just didn't click in my mind, and that makes me really wonder about it, if you understand what I'm saying.

I posted in the yahoo group for that website as well and no one is really biting, so I suppose I'll just . .give it a go. OY. I hate this when I don't have extra!

DianeB1864
DianeB1864
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Date: 1/15/10 10:07 PM

Although I've never made this pattern, I have made a number of 19th century dresses and childrens clothing. In studying existing garments, people back then did not have access to the yards and yards of fabric like we do today. They were masters at cutting to make every inch of fabric work. The modern tissue pattern wasn't invented yet, so they relied on their skills. Also, don't be concerened with matching plaids, etc. Many garments exist and photos of clothing with unmatched patterns in the fabric. I know in our modern eyes it is hard to look at and were taught to match plaids, but back then only if someone had more money and fabric, did they have the luxury of matching plaids and other designs. If you are striving for historical accuracy, this would be one way of conserving your fabric and looking accurate. Also, many of these mens vests also had a layer of quilted padding in the front, for and added stylish girth to their chest, and for warmth and health issues. I would also call your local state or county historical society to inquire if there is a vest in their textile collection that you could study, with a staff person present! These garments in this era would all be hand sewn, btw. A helpful website is www.costumes.org. There are many links to the Regency Era for clothing. Sorry if I couldn't give directions on sewing this pattern, but I hope this will help somewhat! Good luck!

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I sew, therefore I am.

Michele Demko Murphy

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In reply to Nikki S.


Date: 2/16/10 11:49 PM

Did you finish your waistcoat? I'm working with the same pattern now. I'm making four waistcoats for costumes for a local community theater. I'm struggling with the fit, especially around the sleeve openings. Did you experience any fitting issues?

Thanks!

Nikki S.
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Date: 3/16/10 10:22 PM

Oh, gosh, so sorry, I really forget to check back here.

I made a muslin for this vest, which was a disaster, and I was really despairing of ever figuring it out. In my *opinion* the directions are a complete disaster. I only call them directions so that you understand it's the bits of paper that come with the pattern. They don't go in any order at all and are just generally useless. I've got patterns that are repros from 1910 that have better, more comprehensible directions.

I ended up just biting the bullet and making the dang thing out of the fabric I had. You can see the end result here (Photo) - please ignore the terrible wig. Anyway, I actually ended up with the collar misbehaving terribly, so I tacked it down, and then somehow, I think because the actor had uneven shoulders that I wasn't accurately correcting for, I ended up with the 1/2" difference in the length of the front pieces.

The armhole fit in the finished product was not an issue. It was terrible on the muslin. That might be because she is assuming you are going to use bias tape and that's not totally evident in the beginning.

anyway, I'm sorry to be responding so late, and I hope your vests turned out. I'd love to hear your take on the pattern, as I was less than satisfied with it at 35.00. However, apparently because I am a glutton for punishment, we've just ordered two more patterns from this lady for another show. If they're just as terrible, though, I'm swearing off her product. I can't deal with paying 35.00/pattern and dealing with such inadequate directions.

Michele Demko Murphy

Michele Demko Murphy  Friend of PR
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In reply to Nikki S.


Date: 6/2/10 6:59 PM

Hi Nikki,

In the end, I made 6 waistcoats from the pattern. All of the vests were too short for the actors - not that the men were extraordinarily tall. I had to make a whole new vest for one young man who was fairly tall. The other men just kept adjusting during the performance. I think I'll go a size smaller next time too which is what I did with the remake vest and it fit him much nicer. I also ended up removing an inch of fabric from the top of the side seams to get a much neater fit.

I too wasn't satisfied with the pattern, especially at $35.00.

I'd be curious to hear about your successes/setbacks with the other patterns from the same designer.

Nikki S.
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Date: 6/13/10 9:16 PM

I should check up on my threads more often. In response - I reviewed the men's pattern that we got from her here: RH Persian Man.

Underwhelmed - with this an the companion women's pattern - does not begin to cover it. Also, when I attempted to correspond with the company, no response. That's the last $35 she gets off of me, ever, unless I'm extraordinarily hard-up for a pattern.

kip1
kip1
Member since 11/23/11
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Date: 11/23/11 10:42 AM

I've recently been a fool: I've bought the regency morning dress from the company in question (RH). The pattern does not match. The armseye is too far back, the back piece is too small/short and the top pieces do not match up at all. Pictures here: reconstructing history

All responses from the company in question have not been helpful, but condecending. They keep insisting that the patterns are not even supposed to match each other: "Further, I wonder why you'd expect that all pattern pieces will mesh together exactly. The paper bits are often different sizes for any number of reasons - fitting, easing, gathering, etc. - so expecting them to always match up is unreasonable."

Please don't waste your time and money on this company. It's a sham.
-- Edited on 11/23/11 10:43 AM --

Elona
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In reply to kip1


Date: 11/23/11 11:56 AM

All the major pattern companies, including Burda's special "Fasching" issue, now offer rather good historical patterns in their "Costumes" section, like this one:

http://butterick.mccall.com/b3072-products-180.php?page_id=916

I should think that for a theater production this kind of thing would be adaptable--and a whole lot cheaper.



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