January 23rd, 2013
Like evil minions in a science-fiction film, they just keep coming. Here, after more hours of hand-sewing, embroidering, and tatting than I care to count, is armistice blouse number four.
I measured everything perfectly this time, so all the edges have drawn-thread “handkerchief” hems in addition to the tatted lace and fagotting. I also widened and lengthened the collar.
As I’ve said before, this particular design is more of a nod to the late Edwardian style than an accurate reproduction. But I’ve discovered historical precedents for at least two of my modern modifications. It seems that kimono sleeves were a popular style for ladies’ shirtwaists as of 1913. And I found an original “armistice” style blouse from the late 1910s that uses four pintucks over the front shoulder to control fullness around the bust!
Because this is a pull-over (no historical precedent found for that yet — all the originals I’ve seen or looked at in pictures open with buttons on one or both sides of the center panel), I didn’t gather the waist. Instead, I’m using a self-fabric tie, complete with tatted tips, to give the required cinching. I believe the originals with gathered or tied waists were meant to be tucked into skirts…so the tie was never actually seen, just used to control the blousing above.
Version four is the first I’ve felt good enough about to offer for sale. I planned to make lots more just like it, and in different sizes too. But sheesh, this was just too much work. I’d have to charge a fortune. So it’s back to the drawing board, this time for some sewing shortcuts. In the meantime, you can buy this one-of-a-kind blouse for a ridiculously low price right here.
Gotta admit, I’m starting to itch for an authentic armistice blouse too. Maybe once I get the “modern” version perfected, I’ll have to give an historically accurate one a go too.