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2008 Fal Workshops

In keeping with our commitment to the education and perpetuation of the interest in Historic Fashion, we founded and developed in 2001 a series of Hands-on Workshops.  Conducted in Williamsburg, VA, only 2.5 miles from the Historic District, our facility is a private and self contained environment where you can "immerse" yourself in the learning process.
Some of the Workshops we have offered over the years have been Gown cutting & making of all sorts, Stays, Underclothes & Underpinnings, Breeches, Coats, lined & unlined, 18thc Hair & Makeup, Lady's & Men's Jackets & Waistcoats, Riding Habits & Traveling Costume, Cloaks and Outerwear, Accessories of all sorts, Silk Hats, Caps, Sewing Details & Deportment. 
As always, your continued patronage & support have allowed us to bring you the best in Historic Workshops.

2020 Winter/Spring Workshops
About Our Presenters
Workshop Sewing Levels

A Time Traveling Workshop

“Machine-Sewn 1860’s Gored Corset”

A Hands-On Workshop
Friday Afternoon, February 14th, Saturday, February 15th, & Sunday, February 16th, 2020

The impact of the sewing machine on 1860’s fashion cannot be overstated. The ability to sew a garment swiftly by machine became a glorious reality. Dresses got bigger, fashions became more elaborate, and the foundation of it all was the corset. The sewing machine allowed for standardization and mass-production of corsets on a grand scale.

Cynthia Settje will begin this 2 ½ day workshop with a discussion of “the corsetry of this time period.” Following the discussion, students will make a machine-sewn single layer 1860’s corset in a plain drab/beige English cotton coutil, utilizing a modified version of Redthreaded’s popular Gored Corset Pattern.

Our version of this pattern will feature additional boning channels to mimic the beautiful lines of extant 1860s corsets, and we will employ historically accurate techniques of both construction and finishing. Redthreaded fit sample corsets will be provided so that we can skip the mockup sewing stage and get right to the real thing. Students will have an opportunity to learn corset flossing through a quick sampler demo.

Participants must choose their corset size as part of registration.

Note: Students must provide their own sewing machine - this must be a STURDY machine, capable of easily sewing through several layers of bulky fabrics like denim and/or canvas. We will only be using the straight stitch function, so no fancy stitches required. 

This is an Advanced Level 3 Workshop

*We’ve listed this class as Advanced Level 3. However, since this is a machine-sewn project, the criteria are a little different. You must have solid machine sewing skills, including accurate stitching to within 1/16” of an inch. Familiarity with general machined garment construction and machine sewing terminology is also a must. Some hand basting will be required.

Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $330

Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday.

 

A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

 

Class size will be limited to 10 Participants

Cancellation Policy

Register Here

 

A Time Traveling Workshop

Mid-19th Century Bodice Bootcamp:

Cut and Construction for the 1840s-1860s

A Hands-On Workshop

Friday Afternoon, February 21st, Saturday, February 22nd, & Sunday, February 23rd, 2020

 

Knowing how to properly fit and assemble a basic bodice for the mid-19th century is the foundation for creating hundreds of different styles of dresses from the 1840s to the 1860s. Changes in the level of the waistline, drop of the armscye, and height & number of darts all contribute to the specific styles that were fashionable during those decades. Likewise, sleeves vary from the narrow, close-fitting sleeves of the late 1840s to the voluminous “pagoda” sleeves of the late 1850s to the gently curving coat sleeve that became fashionable in the 1860s.

 Participants in this 2 ½ day workshop led by Samantha Bullat will begin by learning about the changes in women’s fashion from 1840 to 1869. The rest of the weekend will be devoted to cutting and fitting a bodice specific to the year and style of their choosing, as well as construction methods consistent with extant garments and sewing manuals of the period. A sewing machine will be used in addition to extensive hand finishing. While the workshop will focus on bodices, Samantha will also provide instruction on cutting and constructing the skirt to create a complete dress.


This is an Intermediate Level 2 Class

*Please read Level Requirements before registering

Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $210 

Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday.

 

A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

Class size will be limited to 12 Participants


Cancellation Policy

Register Here




“To Cut the Perfect Shape”

The fundamentals of cutting and fitting to the figure
A Hands-On Workshop

Friday Afternoon, March 6, Saturday, March 7th, & Sunday, March 8th, 2020

 

Eighteenth century women's clothing was made by first cutting and fitting a lining to the figure, to which the fabric of the gown would later be sewn. The “shapes” created by this make up a perfectly fitted pattern for the customer and can be reused and adapted - to speed the sewing of future gowns of the same - or even other styles.

 

The purpose of this workshop is to teach the fundamentals of cutting and fitting to the figure. In this 2 ½ day workshop, led by Brooke Welborn, Mantua-maker, you will:

  • Learn the shapes needed to cut the sleeves, back and front of a stomacher-front or close-breasted gown.
  • Discuss, analyze and observe fitting figures of various types, and learn how to manipulate fabric over the complex three-dimensional topology of the human torso.
  • Work in pairs to practice both cutting the shapes and then learn to adapt these basic shapes to different styles and decades.

 

Students will not leave the workshop with completed gowns, but with a set of fitted shapes and an understanding of the basic techniques and mechanics that they can adapt to their own dressmaking projects.

 

This class is intended for those new to 18th c mantua-making or those wanting more practice in cutting to the figure. Must have shift and well-fitting stays!

 

This is an Intermediate Level 2 Workshop

*Please read Level Requirements before registering

 

Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $210

which includes muslin

 

Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday

 

A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

 

Class size will be limited to 12 Participants

Cancellation Policy

Register Here



 

 

The Basics: Historic Stitching 101 for Guys

A Hands-On Workshop

Friday Afternoon, March 13rd, Saturday. March 14th & Sunday March 15th, 2020

 

At the knees of their fathers and mothers, 18th century boys and girls learned the basics of sewing. Familiarity with needle and thread was necessary for executing the inevitable mending of one’s own clothes, or for going into a trade where this rudimentary skill was required for entry to the apprenticeship.  Join the ranks of those that possessed the knowledge of needlework!

 

Our 2 ½ day workshop is geared towards men who wish to learn the foundations of historic sewing. Led by Michael McCarty, Journeyman Tailor, students will begin with an introduction to the sewing tools, threads, stitches and fabrics of the 18th century.  Projects for the class will be a stitch primer book, a simple sewn cap, a wallet bag and a neck stock.  Participants will leave not only with finished projects, but with a solid introduction to basic sewing skills that they can apply to more complex projects in the future.  All materials will be provided and are included in the workshop fee.


This is a Beginner Level 1 Class

*Please read Level Requirements before registering

 

Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $210.00

which includes all materials.

 

 Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday.

 

A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

 

Class size will be limited to 12 Participants

Cancellation Policy

Register Here




“To the Making of Your Breeches”

A Hands-On Workshop

Friday Afternoon, March 27th, Saturday, March 28th, & Sunday March 29th, 2020

 

A pair of breeches was the most common form of legwear worn by men during the eighteenth century. First coming into fashion during the 1660s, this garment fastened around the waist, fit firmly and smoothly across the thighs, and ended below the knees.

 

Over the course of two and a half days, join presenter Neal Hurst as we learn 18th century tailor’s methods of taking the measure, patterning and finally constructing a well fitted pair of breeches.  Participants will have the option of choosing a flap or button front and will construct their own breeches using period hand sewing techniques.

 

It is respectfully requested that during this class all breeches be fit to men; female participants may bring a “customer” at an additional charge or work with male participants in the workshop. Fabric will be provided, so that all students may learn the same construction techniques. Participants will need to bring scissors & sewing notions; customers need to bring a pair of closed-front, close-fitting drawers.

 

This is an Intermediate Level 2 Class

*Please read Level Requirements before registering

 

Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $235 including material.

 

Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday

 

A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

 

Class size will be limited to 12 Participants

 

Cancellation Policy

Register Here



 

“The 18th Century Ladies Redingote”

A Hands-On Workshop

Friday Afternoon, April 3rd, Saturday, April 4th, & 

Sunday, April 5th, 2020

The Redingote is one of several less formal garments styles that became fashionable in the 1780s and 90s.  Inspired by elements of men’s greatcoats, ladies riding habits and English gowns, the redingote is a long gown featuring cuffs, collars, long sleeves and a center front closing with rows of buttons.

 This 2 ½ day workshop, led by Brooke Welborn, Mantua-maker, will include:

  • An examination of images of this style of garment and the varieties of ways it can be finished.
  • Demonstration of all stitching & construction techniques needed to hand stitch and finish the garment.

 Due to time restraints, participants are required to bring with them previously cut and fit shapes in muslin for BOTH bodice & sleeves.  These “shapes” can be from a previous Burnley & Trowbridge workshop on fitted sloper, gown, or jacket, or copied from a patterned garment that fits well. These “shapes” will then be adapted for the fit of a 1780-90s redingote. Participants will work with a partner to fit their garment using the methods of the 18th c. Mantua-Maker

 By the end of the weekend participants will not only have their garments assembled and sleeves set, but they will have designed and begun the creation of the trims for their garments.

 Please be prepared for “homework” on both Friday and Saturday night!

 

This is an Advanced Level 3 Class

*Please read Level Requirements before registering


Cost of this 2 1/2-day workshop is $220

 Complimentary snacks on Friday and a cold breakfast & lunch buffet both Saturday & Sunday.

 A confirmation package with directions, suggested lodging, and details will be sent to you upon acceptance of your registration.

 

Class size will be limited to 12 Participants

 

Cancellation Policy

Register Here





 
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