Extremely large puffed sleeves were highly fashionable during the early Victorian Era, but as these sleeves reached their greatest proportions, they began to deflate and droop eventually giving way to gently sloping shoulders. By the 1850s the fullness of the sleeves had dropped from the shoulders to below the elbow. This evolution of fashion took place just as the Industrial Revolution was gaining momentum so fabric was still very expensive and clothing still time consuming to make. Practical women kept up with the latest fashions by having their old dresses altered. To tame the excessively large puffed sleeves, dressmakers often pleated the excess fabric around the upper pushing the fullness more toward the elbow.
Extra instructions are included in this PDF pattern by Thimbles and Acorns for special details such as the smocked sleeves, pleated skirt, and piped seams.
Skill Level: Intermediate; The basic pattern itself is not too difficult, but some sewing experience is helpful.
What You Get: One 17 page sewing pattern that you digitally download as a PDF file so you can start your project immediately! The PDF sewing pattern provides step-by-step digitally drawn illustrated instructions and full size pattern pieces. A PDF reader is required to view and print the files (example: Adobe Reader or Preview for MAC). The download link is received immediately after the transaction is complete. Print copies are NOT available.
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The pattern is fabulous. I am delighted with the finished dress. Although I have sewn off and on my whole life, I found several parts of the instructions confusing.
As always, Thimbles and Acorns makes me (and my dolls) look good. I love her "it's all in the details" hints. This pattern is special because of those shirred sleeves. I just have to save Shari's styles for when I feel like I want to take my time, to do the pattern justice. This designer is a treasure!
The finished dress is very beautiful. Make sure you read and understand the instructions. I have a lot of experience dressmaking, and was a bit overconfident. I had to redo the bodice and sleeves because I didn't read carefully! Overall, I will be looking for more of these patterns. Really lovely.
I love the style of this pattern and it looks great all made up. There is one error, however. It is missing the written instruction to cut off 1/2 inch of the skirt facing from the proper left. Totally confused me until I really studied the illustrations. But, I have made two of them so far and they look fantastic.