Tag: halloween costumes

Renaissance Costume Pattern Review and Construction Tips

Renaissance Costume Pattern Review and Construction Tips

Renaissance costumes are fun to make, I made these costumes recently with my Cricut Maker. Choose fabrics such as cotton, linen or wool for a great result.

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Men’s Renaissance Costume

Our son Ted was thrilled with the costume I made for him. Overall, it only took a couple days to put this entire look together. This is an historic costume by Simplicity Pattern #S4059. I really enjoyed making this men’s pattern. It is simple to follow and fits really well. I didn’t need to make any size adjustments which is so encouraging! The white shirt was an easy sew using an old queen size sheet for fabric. The Renaissance time period calls for simple fabrics and colors, such as cotton, wool or linen. All of these are great choices and easy to find in stores. This outfit is cotton and linen. The sheet worked well for the white undershirt as the pattern is just HUGE. I used an entire queen size sheet to cut it from. Those big billowy sleeves require A LOT of fabric, but I love how it looks and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I did use interfacing in the collar and elastic in the cuffs, but you could easily do without them as they didn’t have that sort of thing back in the 13th century. As a costume, no one really expects things to be that accurate and I am all for modern inventions that still look fitting for the time period.

The jerkin or vest features wide shoulders and a peplum hem. These were easy to make and attach with a few simple seams. The green cotton broad cloth vest is lined, I used a scrap of mystery lining fabric from the thrift store for this purpose. It works great in this style.

I didn’t need to make the trousers that were included with the pattern, we were fortunate enough to find a pair of black linen draw string pants at the thrift store in Ted’s size. We cut them off just under the knee and left the raw hem to add to the overall effect of the costume.

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The leather details are my own design and were cut on the Cricut Maker. Read the complete leather post here. The leather pieces were attached to the jerkin with rivets and grommets. The leather placket gives authenticity and stability to the laced up front, and the grommets were easy to install through all layers with a hammer and a wooden cutting board surface to pound on.

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Grommets need to be pounded in place with a hammer.

I won’t kid you, it took a bit of muscle to pound them all in place. But, sometimes it’s very gratifying to hammer away at something that has such a cool manly look. The vest is not washable, but could be sponged clean or dry cleaned with the leather trim. I am not concerned with longevity, I think it will hold up just fine. The front lacing is a faux suede cord I purchased at the craft store.

 

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

 

Women’s Renaissance Costume

This costume was much more time consuming to make. This pattern is Simplicity pattern #3809. I have made this costume before, several years ago so I was already familiar with it’s construction. Overall this is not hard to construct, but the bodice is time consuming. This time I used different fabrics that required more special care. The corset and over skirt are cut from wool crepe that I found at the thrift store. Wool cannot be ironed directly, you must use a press cloth when pressing all seams. Without a press cloth, the material will have an un-natural permanent shine left from the heat of the iron on the surface. In addition, the seam allowance can leave marks on the right side if it is over pressed. Ideally you should use a pressing ham for pressing the seams to avoid this problem. I used a rolled up towel instead, I haven’t invested in a ham to date but hope to get one soon.

Women’s Fitting Adjustments

As usual, I had to make a large number of fitting changes for the bodice and skirt pattern. The corset was lengthened for my long torso and widened to fit through the waist. The skirt was widened and lengthened as well. I am not very happy with the over all fit of either piece, there are too many puckers for my liking, especially on the corset. Most of the problem is due to the interlining and fabric that I used to line the bodice.

Sewing renassiance costumes|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com
1/2″ wide plastic boning is stitched to the lining fabric.

The Simplicity pattern calls for the bodice fabric, interlining, and lining. It has three layers. When I made this style in the past, I used a tapestry for the corset, with muslin interlining and muslin lining. That garment fits me well and is very comfortable to wear. This time, I tried a stiffer interlining thinking it would work better for a more structured garment. I used drapery bastiste as the interlining, which is a thin cotton but very stiff and rigid. It was recommended for making corsets on another blog, and I don’t care for it at all. The purple wool crepe is wonderfully form fitting and shapes easily, but paired with the stiff interlining, it doesn’t shape at all the way it should. The combination of the two incompatible fabrics creates all sorts of puckering that wasn’t there before when I sewed this pattern from different materials.

Also, the lining is too thin and doesn’t offer any additional support. It would work better to have the boning attached to a thicker fabric (you can see it warping in the wrong direction above) such as muslin which is what I used in my first attempt at this garment. The thin lining, stiff boning and even stiffer interlining just don’t seem to work together the way they should, but rather cause rippling and puckering when they pull against each other. The casings for the boning were made from pieces of bias tape stitched on either side, then the 1/2″ wide plastic boning was inserted. Boning supplies can be ordered online from Vogue Fabrics Store.

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

I would not use a drapery product again for this style, I can actually feel it against my skin through the lining. It’s very scratchy and uncomfortable. I am not sure if I want to rip it all apart and remove it, but I might do that eventually. The bodice has several rows of plastic boning stitched into the lining, which is just a scrap of grey satin from the thrift store. Ideally, I would like a lot more boning for support as I don’t think this design provides enough for my large figure. The gold leaf embroidery detail was added around the neck and center front using a varrigated embroidery thread, before the grommets and leather details were installed.

I have been studying corset fitting and drafting for some time, and I think it would be best for me to draft my own pattern next time around. I have too many fit issues to contend with and I think I would be happier with the result of a custom pattern. Also, I am going to invest in some french Coutil for my next corset, it is expensive fabric (about $25.00 a yard) but authentic for corset making and is perfect for shaping a good fitting garment.

 

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

The chemise was one I originally made from the same Simplicity pattern a few years ago. Made from ivory cotton voile, is is thin and comfortable. It has three rows of elastic in the sleeves to create the full sleeve look. I love it and occasionally wear it out under a vest for special occasions.

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

 

The front of the corset has grommets and leather trim that was a design I cut on my Cricut Maker. You can read more about that tutorial here. The grommets were easy to apply to the wool, and the lacing is faux suede cord from the craft store. I was not prepared for how much the corset would change my figure. After lacing it up, my skirts were huge. A corset can easily change your waist measurement by several inches, I forgot this when I measured my waist for the skirt. I need to make skirt smaller so it will fit my shape after corseting. This is a good problem to have! The green underskirt was a silk skirt that I found at the thrift store for a few dollars. I should have added pockets to the over skirt, it didn’t occur to me at the time but next time around I will add them as well.

 

The only bad thing about the underskirt being silk is that it is very slippery against the purple wool fabric over skirt. I will need to tack the over skirt up in place so it doesn’t slip down over the bottom layer when wearing it to the Fair.

That’s it! Hope you enjoyed this tutorial, I have so many fabulous things on my cutting table stop by again soon and see what’s happening!

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For more sewing ideas, try these posts:

Sewing for the Renassiance Faire

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut

How to Triumph Over Your Unfinished Sewing Projects

How to Read a Sewing Pattern Envelope

Gertie Inspired Vintage Party Dress

 

 

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Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut

I have been designing some fun Renaissance costumes with leather trim for Halloween, it’s easy to complete this project with your Cricut!

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com     Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

These projects are really fun to sew. We love Renaissance costumes and my son and I have always wanted to have a matching set! I made these frocks with a little help from my Cricut Maker. The costumes are made from the Simplicity Patterns line of historical costumes. The sewing isn’t enormously difficult, but the details do take a bit of time to execute. Read on!

The Cricut Maker can cut all kinds of things, but I am excited to try cutting leather with it. Using Geniune Leather calls for a different blade a few special modifications to the cutting machine. This video shows the basics of what to do.

Costume Details & Directions:

Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com    

 

Men’s Costume Supplies:

  • 2 pieces black genuine leather
  • Cricut Maker
  • Deep cut blade
  • Strong grip mat
  • 27 Silver 5/8” grommets
  • 18 nickel 5/16” rivets
  • Rubber mallet
  • Hard surface to work on
  • Scissors
  • Faux leather cording for lacing

Directions for men’s costume:

1. Sew the jerkin according to Simplicity #s4059 pattern directions.
3. Attach grommets to center point of the hexagon shape pieces using the premade holes using a rubber mallot.
4. Attach leather hexagons to hem of the jerkin with rivets. Poke a hole thru the leather and fabric with a large nail, then insert the rivet. Secure by pounding with rubber mallot on a hard surface.
5. Mark placement of holes on center front for lacings with the leather placket. Cut holes with a scissors, insert grommets and attach  thru the leather with a rubber mallet.
  Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com   

Women’s Costume Supplies:

  • Cricut Carmel genuine leather
  • Nickel colored 5/8” grommets
  • Nickel leather rivets (kit comes with tools for applying)
  • Spray Adhesive
  • Chalk pencil
  • Faux leather lacing
  • Rubber mallet

Directions for women’s costume:

2. Clean up any messy leather cuts with a sharp knife.
3. Baste leather in place with spray adhesive. Check fit and placement of appliqué before proceeding.
4. Mark placement of grommets and rivets with chalk.
5. Cut small holes for grommets with a sharp scissors, place leather appliqué in place, then hammer in grommets with rubber mallet. Use a hard surface to hammer on such as a cement floor or hard tile for best results.
6. Repeat above steps for rivets, marking placement with chalk. Use a leather punch to make holes in appliqué and fabric where needed (comes with the rivet kit). Install the rivets and hammer in place with the mallet.
7. Place leather appliqué over center back seam. Mark placement, spray appliqué with adhesive and attach. Make holes with leather punch at critical parts of the design to hold it in place. Install rivets into holes, hammer in place.

Women’s wristlet:

For the wristlet, cut the leather according to the design space directions. Mark placement of rivets ( I used every 1”), then attach. Cut holes for grommets closure, attach grommets and tie closed with faux lacing.
        Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

Tips for working with genuine leather:

1. Use a strong grip mat with leather face down. Tape the edges of with masking tape to be sure it won’t the leather to the mat to avoid shift when cutting.
2. Use the deep cut blade.
3. Select genuine leather when choosing material type.
4. The Cricut Maker will ask if you are finished cutting, check your cuts, if it’s not cut completely cut you can cut it again. There were a couple parts that I had to cut trim with a knife afterwards because it didn’t cut all the way thru the material.
5. Use grommets with “teeth” for the best adhesion. I bought some generic ones that didn’t work at all because they couldn’t grip the fabric and leather. Stick with the name brand to save some frustration.
6. The Maker can cut the small rivet holes too. I realized this too late and used a nail to make them, but the Cricut would do a better job of it. I will update the design so you can have it done right.
Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com
Since the sewing construction details of this project are rather involved, I will cover that in a separate post. Keep an eye out for that post which will be coming soon!
This has been a fun project, we are ready for Halloween or the Renaissance Fair! Our son Ted has always wanted a costume like this, he is very excited to wear it!
Thanks to Cricut for sponsoring this post!
This post is sponsored by Cricut, any opinions given are completely my own.
This post contains affiliate links for your convenience . By making a purchase I will receive a small commission at no additional charge to you. Thank you for your support!

 

Here are a few other projects I’ve made using my Cricut:
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Renaissance Costumes for Halloween with Cricut|Chambray Blues|www.chambrayblues.com

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

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