Sewing · Victorian

Trimmed with Tartan Part II

While reaching somewhat of an impasse with my bodice (See Part I here) I turned my attention to constructing my overskirt in the hopes that once I could see both together, it would help me decide how to proceed with the sleeves and such.

Trying to figure out the end design of the dress on a post-it note at work…

I chose to work with the Truly Victorian August Overskirt (TV365), which is the same pattern as my black ball overskirt. From what I remembered it wasn’t too difficult to put together so all going well it wouldn’t be long before I would be back deliberating my sleeve choice.

I cut and flatlined the pieces first and, deciding that it would be easier to add the tartan as a trim to the separate pieces before assemblage, I cut the fabric into strips, trying my best to make each piece as identical as possible. When it came to the trim for the side pieces, however, I tried to be clever and cut those on an angle, with the idea of the pattern becoming even with the underskirt’s when the overskirt was pleated up. It was a risk since if it went terribly wrong I would have even less fabric to work with but I took it anyway.

The trim pinned to one of the side pieces

I also chose to add trim to the vertical edges of the back piece because I thought that with the pleating it would look really good. I had a heart-stopping moment when the trim on the back piece not only mismatched but also came short but, to my relief, I was able to manipulate the trim so that the ends matched up even if the pattern didn’t.

Sewing the trim on the back piece after matching the lengths properly

Once the trim was sewn on to each pattern piece I was ready to assemble the overskirt.

Following the pattern instructions, I pleated the sides and back piece and sewed everything together.

Sewing the pleats in place

And then I was done. Well, I still need to attach some twill tape to bustle up the back a bit and, as usual, it’s still waiting on the hooks and bars to be attached as well, but I could now have a much better idea of what the overall outfit looked like.

I had a fair idea now of which direction I was going to head for with the sleeves now. It seemed that the best decision to make was to make up white sleeves and add a tartan cuff.

Decision made, I wasted no time in cutting out and flatlining the sleeves from the Truly Victorian French Vest Bodice pattern, and also Cuff V from the TV104.


Sleeve pieces cut and pinned for flatlining


I assembled the sleeves first before attaching the cuffs.

Then there was nothing to do but gather the tops of each sleeve down and sew them to the bodice.

The bodice as it is now

Another couple of steps closer to the finished garment, I’d love to actually complete it but now I find myself waiting for a delivery of bones. Fingers crossed that they’ll arrive soon. Which I found were waiting for me when I got home from work this afternoon – yay! It now looks like I can finish it after I get back from my cousin’s wedding this weekend…

Looks like there’s going to be a Part 3 coming soon!


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