As I do have the blue satin and it is the only blue I have in the remnant pile, the Historical Sew Monthly Challenge #2 - Blue is the perfect time for me to make an accessory for this gown. M'lady absolutely needs an evening bag and I shall make one for her.
From the moment I saw the inspiration I knew the gown should have crystals - Swarovski crystals! The history is that Daniel Swarovski's father owned a small glass-cutting factory. Sand, burnt limestone, and soda are melted together at extremely high temperatures to create glass. If lead is added a stronger and highly refractive glass is created which can be cut and polished like any gemstone. The secret to Swarovski crystals is in the cutting and polishing. In 1892 Daniel Swarovski patented an electric cutting machine that facilitated the production of crystal glass and so it seems perfectly understandable to me that the lady having her Worth gown made in 1894 would have Swarovski crystals embroidering her gown. And her reticule!
Like most things, purchasing in bulk is least expensive and 1,440 Swarovski crystals come in this envelope from Austria. This envelope is approximately $75 or $.052 per crystal.
The first thing I do is enlarge the inspiration and study the design. This will be the design I use for the reticule.
In my online searches I locate a used purse frame. It is bent and has lost some of its glow, but I feel that this is the perfect frame for my reticule. With a blue satin remnant, a blue silk velvet fabric, crystals and the plan, I'm ready to begin.
With 199 beads sewn, the design is finished.
My pattern for this reticule s a simple half circle. I cut both the satin and the velvet on the fold.
With right sides facing, I sew both the satin and the velvet from the fold up leaving the tops open just slightly larger than the frame opening. (1/4" seam allowances on the entire reticule)
The satin is turned right side out and slipped into the velvet.
The velvet lining is then turned down into the inside of the satin outer layer. I've pressed the upper curved edge and now that edge is ready to be sewn to the frame. At one time the frame had holes for sewing the fabric onto the frame, but those were then covered with another piece of the frame.
Modern reproduction frames with holes work well and in this wild hot pink silk velvet reticule I made a while ago, I used seed beads inside and outside to anchor my fabric and thread.
What It Is: Satin and Velvet Crystal Embroidered Reticule
The Challenge: #2 Blue
Fabric: Satin and silk velvet
Notions: Used reticule frame, Swarovski crystals, bead embroidery thread
How historically accurate is it? Completely hand drafted and hand sewn using historically accurate materials
Hours to complete? 6 hours
First Worn: Costume College 2015
Total Cost: Fabrics were remnants, crystals approximately $11, used frame $4