Monday, 6 April 2015

Lizzie (or how I realised this one might be a step too far)

Ladies and gents, I present the Lizzie dress.

Long ago in school when we were learning about the Tudors (every Brit will have studied the Tudors on an annual basis between the ages of 4 and 18), a kindly teacher showed us The Ditchley Portrait. "That's a nice dress." I said "I'd like to have a dress like that."

I'd also like to rule over all of Europe

So I made one. (The ruling over Europe bit is taking a bit longer to organise)

Admittedly, I knew then that getting hold of a dress based off Queen Elizabeth I's most famous apparel would be costly. Very costly. I lamented the potential process of acquiring and subsequently spending my life's fortune on such an exquisite creation. Seemed like a lot of effort when (frankly) there would be slim occasion to wear it without looking like a crazy lady.

So this fabric appeared on my doorstep and the Angels of Artistic Licence sang out from the heavens. A symbol of mercy for every penniless creative with lofty ambitions!

Using the mod dress pattern again, I traced a lining pattern and an outer pattern for a vaguely normal dress. The two are connected at the neck and shoulders, but nowhere else. They are different sizes/shapes and the outer has no fastenings, while the lining has a zip in the side seam.

You know, so the outer looks all floaty and theatrical

The lining fabric is butter muslin, so I'm sorted if I ever find myself needing to drain soft cheese (win!). B patiently cut the hems and he has also counseled in favour of wearing spangly tights.



  1. This looks so great. I love the fabric & the end result, wish you had taken some pics on you as well. Can't quite picture what you mean when you say the shell has no fastenings, but the lining has a zipper. But the dress is really great, and it does look like the EIR dress.

    P.S. I only got to study the Tudors briefly (twice) during school but never did anyone point out the paintings. We ofc knew the Armada portrait (I think?), but I learnt about the rest on my own, except I guess the Henry VIII ambassador one, which was pointed out as an example of the baroque

    1. Laura, I'll try to get some actual shots of the dress - my attention span hasn't stretched far enough to photos recently but I'll try to get hold of a few. It loses a lot of sparkle when on a hanger!

      Honestly, the Ditchley portrait and two of Henry VIII (young, then fat) are the only ones that had stuck with me. I think someone explained the significance of the map beneath her feet and it made the whole picture easier to remember. Ah Tudors.

  2. Hmm, not sure how well your farthingale will fit under there... Yes, sparkly tights will work well under that though, I am not sure anyone will see them, as it goes right down to the floor, as in that famous painting.... ;-) doesn't it?

    1. Oh it would go down to the floor if my ankles touched my hips! Alas, there are knees between

    2. Well, if you insist on having legs rather than going round on wheels...