Yesterday Year 6 in my children’s school had a Tudor Day which meant my middle daughter needed to go to school dressed in a Tudor dress. If you remember, I made a Victorian dress for my eldest daughter’s Victorian Day a few years ago (you can see it HERE). I was very disappointed back then when her school’s Tudor Day was canceled in favour of an Ancient China Day. So, I couldn’t miss this chance to finally make a Tudor gown for my other daughter, especially, since she asked me for it.
I bought yards and yards of fabric: wine red polyester taffeta for the gown, wine red cotton for lining the gown, artificial white fur for the sleeves, blue-and-gold polyester brocade for the kirtle insert, natural calico cotton for the kirtle skirt and white cotton batiste for the top of the kirtle. Again, I simplified some things for 2 reasons: it was a child’s costume was just one day (and not for some serious reenactment) and she needed to be reasonably comfortable to survive through an 8 hours long school day.
Again, like last time, I decided not to invent a bicycle on such a grand scale (even though I’ve made so many Tudor gowns for dolls), so I bought 2 patterns from the Tudor Tailor.
So, the gown consists of two separate layers: the kirtle and the gown itself. I did simplify quite a few things to make it more manageable and less heavy for my daughter (but it was still very heavy!). The kirtle has a simple white top (made of cotton batiste, self lined) and a skirt with a brocade insert (the rest of the skirt is calico cotton). The kirtle has lacing on both sides. The gown is made out of polyester taffetta with cotton lining in the matching colour. It also has large sleeves made out of white fur (and those are really heavy!). The skirt of the gown is 3 metres long and is fully lined. I had to stretch it on the floor in my living room to be able to pin the lining to the skirt! The gown has a lacing at the front which is the covered with the front placket (which fastens on one side with 5 skirt hooks). The decoration at the front is the only thing in this gown which wasn’t made by me. I figured it was cheaper to buy a handmade one than buy all the necessary supplies in bulk and using just a few pieces to make it. I bought it from Etsy and it arrived all the way from Canada! Here is the shop where I found it.
I have also made a simplified French hood. My daughter refused to wear a proper authentic one I was planning to make so we settled for a simple version with an elastic at the back.
Finally, I took some photos of my daughter with Matilda, A Girl for All Time doll, dressed in Tudor finery. You might remember that gown I made a couple of years ago. It is a cover gown for one of my patterns.