Tuesday, January 7, 2020

circa. 1864 Crinoline

About 5 years ago I was gifted a strange crinoline that had no sides and tapes inside.  The owner was also gifted it and was unable to work it out.  After playing with inside tapes I found that it created an awsome shape that could be adjusted for circular or eliptical use by tightening on the tapes.  After using this crinoline for 5 years I needed to replace and upgrade it.  The original was made using hard plastic instead of wires.  A few years ago I had also spoken to the person who had made it and had explained the design and it's reference for construction.

The design came from Norah Waugh's Corsets and Crinolines. This is an amazing reference book.  The book has a diagram and drafting instructions for this crinoline. 
This is the diagram,  I have not included the drafting pattern. 
Side View
Rear View
View looking upwards inside the crinoline. 
The inside tapes that adjust the front and back curves.
Front view with petticoat.
Side view with petticoat.

I absolutely love this crinoline.  It has a beautiful drape with the slight eliptical rear that can be adjusted to create more of a bustle if required.  As it has gaps in the side it collapses easily and is very comfortable for traveling. It is also very stable when walking.  We took it to a hilly botanical gardens to test run it. 
I've never had so much room wearing a crinoline in the car. I was able to get in and out without assistance and touch my feet.  It was also amazing walking up hill as the tapes caught on my legs and automatically lifted my skirt just that little bit that I could safely walk up an incline without man handling/lifting my skirts by hand to avoid tripping. Amazing to not have to touch my skirts or kick my toes out to walk up stairs, feels way more graceful and stable. 
This crinoline was time consuming to construct all of the channels.  I also discovered that the earlier one I had was a smaller circumference (probably as the original seamstress is short) and that with the plastic it had only half of the boning channels. It is currently too large for most of my dresses as you can see by my blue dress pulling on the bottom wires in the photos.  This is not really an issue as I'm in need of new garments anyways. 
This is definately my new favorite crinoline. 

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