Sunday, August 12, 2012


Square necked chemise based on the smock pattern generator at the Elizabethan Costuming page
The center section is 90" long by 19" wide, there is a square underarm gusset 7" square, there are two triangular gores at each side.  The sleeves are 30" long by 28" wide.  I put 5 box pleats at the top of the sleeves, ran the wrist area through my pleater, narrow rolled hemmed the length edges, and then turned the wrist edge over twice and stitched with a decorative machine stitch. 
For the square neck, I wanted a neck opening 7.5" wide by 8" long.  So I cut another piece of fabric larger than the desired opening and turned under the edges.
I pressed a line down the center and another at the shoulder.  The neckline opening is lower in the front than the back 5" from shoulder to center front opening, and 3" to center back opening.  I pressed marks into the facing to indicate the placement, matched press marks with the facing on the wrong side of the fabric and stitched.

Cut out the center, press, and flip the facing to the right side.  I used the same decorative machine stitch around the neckline as I used at the edge of the sleeves.
I narrow rolled hemmed all pieces and attached them together with a machine faggoting stitch.

First, I attached the square underarm gusset to one edge of the sleeve, then I stitched up the underarms starting 5" up from the wrist edge and pivoting at the gusset.  Next I assembled the triangular gores.  Then starting at the top of the shoulder, I attached the sleeve from the top of the shoulder down, at the end of the underarm gusset, I attached the side gore.  Finally I turned the piece around and starting at the same shoulder top, stitched down the rest of the sleeve, gore and gusset.

Here the left side is assembled, and the right side has the sleeve and gore placed where they will be attached.
As you can see, I cut the gores much too long.  They will be cut off and the bottom will have a narrow rolled hem.
To finish I will hand smock the wrist opening, add some small buttons and make button loops for closures.

So over a year later, I finally finished the chemise - here is a photo of the hand smocked cuffs.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks, this was really helpful (though discovered slightly too late...). Following the directions at the elizabethan smock generator I've sewn the gores onto the sides of the smock, but they hang slightly oddly. Looking at your illustration I can see I was meant to sew the longest (i.e. bias) side of the triangle to the side of the smock, whereas I'd sewed the straight side on instead (tell me that's not what it looks like in the illustration!). Of course, I have already french seamed AND sewn the sleeves on, so reassembly is going to be a pain in the derriere. Maybe I'll just trim and hem it straight, but at least I'll know for next time!