Monday, June 11, 2012

Angels Camp Gold Rush Days 2012

This year I gave three presentations on Women's clothing of the 1840s and 1850s.  My twin sister was gracious enough to let me dress her up and flash her underclothes to complete strangers.  At each presentation there was a collective gasp when she took off her wrapper to reveal her petticoats and corset, which I thought was entertaining.  She got lunch and dinner out of it, so no complaints! On the tables in the background are a number of dresses that I reproduced over the years and I printed out the inspiration images (dags) that I based their design on.  I even brought out my wedding dress and accessories, which people really seemed to enjoy. Jesse (far left) wore her 1850s dress, which worked out nicely to show the evolution of sleeve width, bodice length, and other elements of dress that were transitioning between the two decades. At the end of my talk and I welcomed people to look at the dresses up close and handle them and I received some very nice complements from the public.

Demonstrating the layers that go under the dress for the 1840s silhouette
For my hair I was adventurous and did Spaniel curls on a whim the night before the presentation. I used this tutorial for the curls and I think they turned out pretty well for my first attempt. In the image below, Heather is wearing my McCalls pattern bonnet that I worked on the weekend before. I redid the bavolet and added blackberries, strawberries, and paper flowers to the interior of the bonnet to frame the face. I've been meaning to work on this bonnet since I made it in 2005, and I think it looks great now with the new updates.

1844 Truly Victorian Dress
Ian and I (Past Patterns Fan Front dress)
In closing, here is a picture of Ian and I at the end of the day.  He was demonstrating mining techniques in the creek all day.  And yes, it's a real mustache.


  1. My very favorite is the red Truly Victorian, it's a stunner!

  2. Gorgeous pictures & wonderful insight into your museum's presentations, thanks for sharing! Your work is stunning!!!


  3. Does Ian also do 1860s? I think I recognize his mustache...

  4. What pretty dresses I like the red one especially.

  5. I know this is an old post of yours but I'm reading backwards on them right now. I have the TV pattern but had yet to make it or see it made on someone. Your's came out so pretty and that's encouraged me to try it now. I'm currently working on my 1830s dresses but will need one of these in the future.


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