Tuesday, 17 May 2011


...and so I have finally reached my last garment for the National Theatre's Hire Department, and once again I found myself with a bit more of a challenge than I had been given with the waistcoat and certainly the chemise.

I originally started with a quick tutorial with Dexter to outline the basic process for making the shirt: First the front opening would need to be constructed, then the back would be gathered and applied to the yolke to then be attacked on to the front. The sleeves and cuffs would then be constructed and sewn together before sewing the godae onto the main body of the shirt and attaching the sleeves. Finally the collar would be constructed and the shirt would be overlocked and hemmed. I was advised by a fellow student to take care when attaching the yolke as the stitch lines needed to be as straight as possible and it was very easy to mess this up.

The shirt was gathered at the back......and the cuffs.The collar had a pleated detail, and the front was buttoned up with four buttons.
The added godae allowed for extra arm movement during the 18th Century.

I had not anticipated the amount of work that would need to go into this garment - if I had forseen this I would have tried to allow myself more time to make this, like giving myself two weeks rather than one. This sense of short time is what has pressured me into leaving more mistakes than I would have liked - where faults occured I did my best to rectify them, but if they persisted I left them in the best state I could as I would rather hand in a more completed shirt than have a partially completed shirt with highly bruised fabric and the signs of last minute stress on it! Again, the best way to resolve this would be to plan my time much better and refer to my time plan constantly to review whether I am on track with my work or not.
Once I had completed my shirt I unfortunatly noticed that the front piece was uneven and would bulge out once the shirt was buttoned up. To rectify this I feared I would have to pull apart the entire shirt, so I decided to leave this error.

It comes as a relief to me that after our hand in we shall recieve further feedback from our tutors to rectify any issues with the garments so that they are at an acceptable standard to hire out.

(Luckily I had my housemate's Coffee Viking on hand to borrow to model the completed shirt...I feel that Apocalyptic Metal and pillaging and the 18th Century don't fit so well together).
Overall I am pleased with the outcome of my shirt, though I look forward to seeing which areas I need to improve in order to make it a good enough quality for the National Theatre Hire Department.

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