The Teens is one of my favorite eras! So many whimsical touches and dramatic changes from the restrictive clothing of the Victorian era. Women in the workforce during The Great War needed clothing that was more functional, with shorter hemlines.
This skirt and blouse was inspired by a House of Worth tiered gown from 1913. The blouse was self drafted with kimono sleeves and a front insert that is cut in a “V” to the belt. The skirt is self drafted with asymmetrical tiers that are slightly gathered and longer in the back. The gathering hides the closure at center back; the lining is boned to maintain the high waist. The fabric is forest green cotton voile over a royal blue lining. The lining fabric was pleated slightly longer at the sleeve hems to add texture. The blouse insert is pleated silk. The belt is silk taffeta that closes with hooks and eyes in the back. I attached the taffeta to a canvas lining so that it would hold its shape.
The color combination is designed to mimic a peacock’s colors, with the blue lining glowing through the sheer voile. To continue the peacock theme, I drafted the hat and made it in gold silk taffeta with peacock blue silk trim on the crown. The feather medallion is made of peacock feathers with long curled feathers pointing up from the crown. The hat pattern and construction were completely new to me. I used #300 Fosshape formed with a heat gun. I love this material for millinery! It will hold its shape in all kinds of weather. The hat only has two pattern pieces! Curling the feathers was also a first for me; feathers are much more flexible than I imagined. Shoes were spool heeled black day wear style with ribbed stockings.
Photography by Andrew Schmidt