Red German Gown

Winter 2009/2010  - Inspired by the saxon style gowns

Fabric -  Dark red, brown and black 100% cotton velveteen for the gown, heavy cotton fabric for lining the bodice, and white muslin for the blouse. All the fabric I worked with is pre-washed and line dried inside out. Even thought the velveteen was dry clean only, I did test swatches to see if it would mess it all up.

Pattern - Alteryears - PMM-046 Women`s German Slash & Puff Gowns 1500-1545 AD), note I took major liberties with the bodice. I had read about the saxon princess gowns not being appropriate for developed women, however some of the paintings I have ran across has made me rethink the article I read that in.

Corset - Alteryears - PAY-002 Easy Renaissance Corset (tabbed version Elizabethan) Version.  I bought a kit from then the very first one I made in 08/09 for the English Gown, it worked out really well just following the directions. Now I buy the steel bone, eyelets, and fabric whenever I need to make another one.

Shirt - Is the usual gathered blouse on the top and sleeves that can be adjusted around the bodice.  Once mistake was I made the sleeves to long and gathered which made it hard to tuck it in the lower sleeves.  It did work well for extra fabric flouncing between the sleeves.

Bodice - I attempted a rounded style bodice first, see picture.  I was not happy with the fit, so I fell back on my old faithful of english square neck, with lacing on the side.  I added wide black trim using the black velveteen to give it more of the appropriate look. The front of the bodice has black pipe trim in the front, around the bottom, and around the arm holes.

Skirt - The skirt stripes are sewn on the top of the red velveteen, it gave the flounce with gathered in a belt the right look.  I had since decided on the blue german gown to sew the strips together instead.  I did not do cardiff pleats, instead I knife pleated it and used a thin waist band.  I used hooks and eyes for closures.

Sleeves - For the sleeves, I used the pattern.  I made a forearm band and the lower sleeve, sewing 6 loops out of black satin cording on each edge attaching each piece to the next. I melted the black loop ends with a lighter.  I also sewed these loops on the bodice, between the red velveteen and lining. 

Hat -  I made a brim using that crafting foam, then made a large multi colored bag cap out of the red and brown velveteen, which I attached to the brim.  I sewed red fabric onto the brim and ran a wire around the outer edge, so I could curl the edges up. Then about ever three inches I sewed a clump of short ostrich feathers and rooster feathers in a clump, accenting it with some awesome antique buttons I had.  Then to finish it off I used about 20 ostrich feathers sewn into some bias tape and stitched into the back of the at along the crown.  I then used an antique hat pin to hold it in place the way I wanted.  I later made a venetian style hat with ostrich feathers.

Shoes - I bought Landsknecht shoes from NativEarth in black with red trim and red slashes.

Accessories - I also made a feather fan with ostrich feathers and pheasant feathers. I glued it all together using hot glue. I cut a wood dowel and covered it in ribbon, and added a fancy decorative wood cover over the base of the feathers. I made a chain-mail box pattern brass chain out of 3/4” rings, so it was huge and looked prefect.  The jewelers brass looks pretty good if you keep it polished.

References - I really found a ton of great information on the web, such as The Frazzed Frau.

For more detailed photos visit the Close-up Photo Gallery.

Red German / Saxon Dress Details