Saturday, April 18, 2015

Parapet: the Edge of Style

Linen Shift, Pair of Silk Stays, Bustle Skirt
Photograph: Robert Lucy, 2015
From the wardrobe I've made I find myself gravitating toward certain garments. This skirt and the white linen shift worn with it are a semi-uniform. The silk covered corset/ pair of stays is newly completed.

The first skirt of this design was paired with a slip. The next incorporated a lining. This version has a deep ruffle added to the lining's lower edge, widening the circle of the hemline when the skirt is worn. An additional development was to come...

A long skirt amplifies movement and cozily blankets one's legs when one is seated. Nevertheless climbing up and down subway stairs required lifting this long skirt's hem--graceful or a bit of a nuisance depending upon whether or not my hands were already full. (In tandem with living in a pedestrian city with fluid public transportation is the tendency to tote along a day's worth of provisions, pack-mule-like.) It's awkward to raise the skirt an inch or two off the ground when carrying packages. Eventually solved the dilemma: bustled the skirt!

Detail: Ribbon Tie at Front Shoulder
Photograph: Robert Lucy, 2015
The pair of stays (i.e. corset) evolved from a previously made pair. Recently had modified the original in ways that made it unexpectedly comfortable and wonderful to wear. Those adaptations are present in this pair. Seen here is the marine blue silk taffeta exterior. But this pair is reversible! There's scarlet silk taffeta on the other side. It's structure is comprised of eighteen steel bones inserted into channels in a muslin core. There are thirty hand sewn eyelets. At the most rapid each eyelet took about 10-15 minutes to sew. Many subway journeys were spent sewing eyelets and hand-stitching the edge binding over the course of three months. Decided to modernize and grommet the front lacing holes of which there are twenty-two. Wearing this I feel utterly myself.

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