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1915 Drawers 1915 Underwear
1915 underwear 1915 underwear

 

This is a set of undergarments made for a 16" fashion doll, inspired by actual fashion plates and patterns available in 1915, including those found in Gimbel's Illustrated 1915 Fashion Catalog and Russell's Standard Fashions, 1915-1919. The set includes drawers, a petticoat, and a corset cover, all made of a very fine white voile and trimmed with antique heirloom lace, which I inherited from my grandmother.

Doll: The doll I chose is 16” Nu Mood Jess, by Tonner. She came with a short, modern wig, which I replaced with the honey blonde “Contessa” wig, from Facets by Marcia. To finish her look, I gave her black Oxfords (also purchased from Facets) and a simple pearl necklace.

Drawers: Edwardian drawers were shorter and fuller than their Victorian counterparts. The style continued into the mid-teens, but during the war, the fullness decreased as fabric became scarce. My drawers are fitted through the waist and hips, with flared legs. I embellished them with faux pintucks and lace. To finish the top edge, I used a waist facing. It fastens at the back waist with a tiny hook and thread bar.

I did encounter a slight problem when I made the drawers. I forgot to stabilize the fabric when sewing the faux pintucks, so the voile was pulled down into the feed dogs and ran afoul of the bobbin thread. I actually had to unscrew the throat plate in order to cut the thread and pull the fabric free! The first drawers were ruined by this, so I had to cut a second pair.

Petticoat: Petticoats of this period were A-line, neither too full, nor too straight. My petticoat is layered with an extremely functional voile lining—not only does it neatly finish the top edge, but the lining possesses a ruffle at the hem, which adds extra support. The outer layer of the petticoat has three rows of gathered heirloom lace ruffles at the bottom, which was quite fashionable for this period.

Corset Cover: Corset covers of this era could be fitted or loose. Square necks were very popular, as were surplice necklines. My corset cover is fully lined, so there are no raw edges. (The voile is thin enough that the lining doesn't add unwanted bulk.) It fits snugly at the bust and falls straight down, with the excess fabric gathered to a narrow binding at the waist. I used the same lace as the other pieces to edge the neckline and create the shoulder straps. To make it easier to get on the doll, it fastens down the back with the world's smallest snaps.

Dress Diary

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Jalea
These are so dainty and sweet! I think people underestimate how tricky it is to get proportions right on clothes so tiny, well done.
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pollyanna
I am in awe of your patience and delicacy of hand! I don't think I could have the patience to do this - I have enough trouble with life-size costumes - but your delicacy of touch and even, miniscule stitching are astounding. This entry is testament to your skills as a costume maker. I'm sure some little Edwardian girl would be over the moon to see her dolly dressed in these beauties.

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