As you recall, last time I made a muslin to pattern out my Regency open robe to fit onto a 45×90″ silk dupatta. I ended up with paper pattern pieces for the bodice, but I didn’t want to bother making them for the skirt so I just ripped apart the muslin and laid out the skirt pieces on my dupatta, cutting around them. It was kind of a hassle trying to keep the pattern of tiny scattered flowers symmetric on the bodice– I hadn’t thought about that when figuring out where I’d place the pattern pieces originally, but luckily I had enough spare fabric to move things around.
I lined the bodice in burgundy cotton just to ensure a finished edge. However, since I didn’t care much about what the inside looked like I didn’t bother cutting separate curved side back pieces like I did on the outside– one big piece for the bodice back was fine. In order to keep the gold trim on the neckline edges looking nice, I used a 1/4″ seam allowance on them, but the remaining seams were done with my standard 5/8″.
Once the bodice was completed it looked a bit shorter than I’d planned– I think I may have inadvertently cut the front pieces about 5/8″ shorter than the pattern. I hemmed and hawed, and finally decided to add a waistband to the bottom, using the same inside/outside layer technique as I used on the dress. I thought it would work because there was already a waistband on the dress, plus it would provide a convenient spot for the strap across the center front.
I pinned and basted my skirt (which was just a bunch of trapezoids sewn together) to the lower edge of the outer layer only, adding pleats in the back to make the lengths match. And then I realized that while I’d added a good inch of total length to the robe via the waistband, I’d neglected to subtract that extra length from the skirt. I couldn’t hem it from the bottom because it would ruin the trim at the bottom. So I had to unpick the waist seam (such a pain, especially on silk) and start again.
Anyway, after getting the waist seam right I whipstitched the inner waistband down over the raw seams. Then I just took a strip of the extra gold trim, backed it with a strip of the cotton lining, and created the front waist strap– it’s tacked down by hand on one side and there are hooks and eyes on the other.
The whole thing turned out really well, all things considered. Here are some detail shots: