18th Century Feathered Hat

This project was a bit scary but lots of fun (and surprisingly easy) once I got going. You don’t need much besides patience to complete.

Head of a Girl Wearing a White Hat by William Hoare, ca.1760-70. V&A Collection. Source.

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Woman’s Feathered Hat from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Collection, English or French, 1750-1775. Source.

School for girls by Philippe Mercier, ca. ~1750, Possibly in the collection of Admiral Sir Eliab Harvey. Source.


Hat: Burnley and Trowbridge

Silk: Renaissance Fabric. Diamond White Silk Taffeta

Feathers: Moonlight Feather. 1/4 Lb – White Goose Coquille Loose Feathers Wholesale (Bulk).

Hours Labor: ~11 Hours

And here’s my version:


HSM 2015 #4: 1779 Virginia Regimental Coat

I struggled with an appropriate project for HSM #4 (War & Peace) until the perfect opportunity fell into my lap. My boyfriend has been in need of a properly fitted regimental since he started reenacting and decided to pony up the money for a Henry Cooke workshop that was being held in Winchester. Which of course really meant that I was taking the Henry Cooke workshop. I have to give him credit here though; he did quite a bit of the grunt work on the internal seams.

With “A Call to Arms” at Mt. Vernon scheduled for the first weekend of May it was the perfect deadline. I finished putting on the buttons the Wednesday before. Confession: the buttonholes have not been finished. They’re not even whipped. But the coat is 100% functional!


HSM 2015


I’m taking the plunge this year and I’m going to attempt to do the Historical Sew Fortnightly 2015. Which is really the Historical Sew Monthly. Thank goodness too; I’ve been putting off participating because Fortnightly was a little too much for me. Wish me luck!

Here are the challenges and my potential plans.Of note: I’m doing this challenge in part to complete things that I keep putting off. If it seems like I’m stretching the category a little bit it’s because I’m trying to get a specific garment made.

January – Foundations: make something that is the foundation of a period outfit.

  • Regency Stays, though I need a shirt too…

February – Colour Challenge Blue: Make an item that features blue, in any shade from azure to zaffre.

  • Sleeved Waistcoat
  • Edit: Or I’ll finish the evening bodice for my natural form gown.
  • Or maybe make wool gaiters. I’ve been threatening to do that for a while too. Apparently I have a lot of blue things to make.

March – Stashbusting: Make something using only fabric, patterns, trims & notions that you already have in stash.

  • Breeches

April – War & Peace: the extremes of conflict and long periods of peacetime both influence what people wear.  Make something that shows the effects of war, or of extended peace.

  • Jazzberry Linen Anglais for Reenacting. Not that I don’t have enough already.

May – Practicality:  Fancy party frocks are all very well, but everyone, even princesses, sometimes needs a practical garment that you can DO things in.  Create the jeans-and-T-Shirt-get-the-house-clean-and-garden-sorted outfit of your chosen period.

  • Waistcoat. It’s not fancy and I just need to get the darn thing done.

June – Out of Your Comfort Zone: Create a garment from a time period you haven’t done before, or that uses a new skill or technique that you’ve never tried before.

  • Spencer Jacket. I know I’m making Regency stays for the first challenge, but this will be my first real foray into 1800s clothes.

July – Accessorize: The final touch of the right accessory creates the perfect period look.  Bring an outfit together by creating an accessory to go with your historical wardrobe.

  • Pin Ball

August – Heirlooms & Heritage: Re-create a garment one of your ancestors wore or would have worn, or use an heirloom sewing supply to create a new heirloom to pass down to the next generations.

  • I’m going to finish my Edwardian shirt that I started at Costume College a couple years ago.

September – Colour Challenge Brown: it’s not the most exciting colour by modern standards, but brown has been one of the most common, and popular, colours throughout history. Make something brown.

  • Silk Gown. It’s not really brown per se, but it’s an orange-y rusty color and it’s close enough. Plus I need the gown.

October – Sewing Secrets: Hide something in your sewing, whether it is an almost invisible mend, a secret pocket, a false fastening or front, or a concealed message (such as a political or moral allegiance).

  • Hidden Message of some sort.

November – Silver Screen: Be inspired by period fashions as shown onscreen (film or TV), and recreate your favourite historical costume as a historically accurate period piece.

  • Blue Pet en l’air based on a jacket I saw in “Perfume”

December – Re-Do:  It’s the last challenge of the year, so let’s keep things simple by re-doing any of the previous 11 challenges.

  • I think I’ll redo challenge 1 and make either an 18th century man’s shirt or a regency shift.