The Great Houppening

I lied when I said I’d get things up on the site on tuesday night.  A combination of beautiful weather, my running club and exhaustion got the better of me.  It’s getting into serious training time for the summer, aided by the gorgeous weather.  Wednesday nights I usually kickbox or lift weights, so I’m not as bone tired as I have been.

So, when we last left the Houppe, it was languishing with one sleeve on the muslin, and the maroony purple color had the body sewn together.

Last night’s agenda:

  1. Finish marking and measuring the last part of the body.
  2. Sleeves for all the layers sewn up and ruffled.
  3. Fix necklines
  4. Cut out the cuffs and collars

Let’s not save the best for last.  Here’s how to mark out and cut your houp quarters.

Find the point.  The middle of your houp pie, where you’d put your head, right?  Wrong.

Measure your shoulder from where you want it to hit on the shoulder from the shoulder to the neck.  This measurement (on one side!) is what you want to cut.  This becomes your shoulder seam.  Now, measure how far down you want your v to go on the garment.  This will become your second line.2016-03-10_1228_001

Measuring the V is basically going from where you want the neckline to start on your shoulders down to how far you want it to go.  Note that you don’t need it as wide as a burgundian or anything like that.  It’ll mostly be filled with other fabric. Measure that diagonal, and then measure from the hollow of your throat to where the diagonal ends on your chest.  You’re measuring this so you know how far up to sew when you’re putting pieces together.

As far as arms go, I went with 9 inches because my arms are not huge and it provides more than enough room to move.


wp-1457617286618.jpegAll in all, pretty good for a work night.

I’m going to get into sleeves.  SO MANY SLEEVES.

First thing, I’m not an expert on sleeves.  Sleeves are terrible and I hate them but since rapier in a tanktop is a no-go, sleeves are happening.

I did the same ruffling thing I did on the muslin because it seemed to work out well.  Now that I’m getting to the outsides of the garment, I’m starting to get more concerned about looks  This means testing.

The left sleeve in this image is part of a test I did to see if I liked having a gather on the sleeve bottom as well and if that would be an effective way to cuff the sleeves.  It looks a bit messy and I decided I wasn’t the greatest fan.

I also decided that my sleeves needed cuffs, which is a divergence from my inspiration image.  This seems like a good idea for a few reasons:  it means I can stuff my sleeves into my gloves more easily because that is a pain in the butt, and I can have pleats instead of gathers at the wrist.  wp-1457634072952.jpegIt also means I can have different colors on the cuffs. Doing it this way will also use up a lot of extra fabric I have at the end of the sleeve.

Fixing the neckline is an ongoing process.  Every time I put the houp on the dressmakers dummy, I find another way to bring in the neck.  It’s starting to look the way I want, so a few pins, some sewing, and hopefully that problem will be solved, then I can add the mandarin-like collar.

I also tried the muslin houp and the linen houp on together as a set, and it makes that lovely sort of pleating at the bottom when they’re together, which mitigates that fact that all 3 of my fabrics are quite light and wouldn’t quite do the thing justice on their own.  If I’m gonna dress like a 15th century italian boy, I demand to be a stylish one.

It’s coming together.  I’m quite proud.


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