All posts tagged: Augusta Stays

The Augusta Stays

How to add more bust space in the Augusta Stays

When Amber & I created the Augusta Stays pattern we decided to have two different fit blocks, to make fit easier straight off the pattern. The ‘Straight’ fit has a 10” difference between un-corseted bust and corseted waist, and is best for those with less bust-to-waist difference, or those desiring less waist compression. The ‘Curvy’ fit has a 12” difference between un-corseted bust and corseted waist, and is best for those with more bust-to-waist difference, or those desiring more waist compression.  However, we know that isn’t going to accomodate everyone: the body comes in an infinite variety of fits! Take Priscilla: she’s wearing the Theatrical Augusta Stays in size 38 Curvy. As you can see, Priscilla has a tiny waist and a lot of bust, and the stays aren’t quite accomodating that bust. (note: these stays were not made for her – dressing up in them and the photos was a spontaneous event during a costume weekend) If she were wearing the Historical Augusta stays we could loosen the lacings to provide space, but even …

Augusta Stays

Playing at pastoralism in Augusta Stays

I’ve been hard at work planning online teaching for costume history and pattern drafting at Toi Whakaari, and doing pattern stuff for Scroop Patterns, and my brain is exhausted and tired of looking at the computer. I’ve got a whole bunch of blog ideas, but they were all just too much effort today. So I had a rummage around in my photo library for inspiration for today’s post, and found a bunch of gorgeous images from back in October and our 2019 Sew & Eat Historical Retreat which I’ve never posted. We spent an afternoon dressed up in Augusta stays, pretending to be 18th century ladies pretending to be milkmaids, wandering around in the meadows picking flowers and inspecting old farm equipment and having romantic interludes with attractively lichened fences (as you do). Eloise @eloise_faith_gladrags went very historical, in her gorgeous completely handsewn Augustas, and perfectly pastel ensemble. She always picks the most beautiful soft colours for her sewing! I went slightly less historical, because I’d forgotten to pack 18th c caps: And I dressed …

The Augusta Stays: Inspiration, or a survey of 1780s stays

Rather than basing the Augusta Stays on one particular pair of extant stays, we took inspiration from a number of surviving stays, to create a stay pattern that reflected the most common and popular features of 1780s stays. Amber used her experience in mantua making and stay fitting to pick boning layouts that would be most flattering and comfortable on a wide range of bodies. She also chose design elements that adapt well to the modern alternatives to historical materials, and construction methods that are moderately easy: good for sewists attempting their first pair of fully historical stays. Here are some of the stays that we looked at to inform the Augusta pattern. Each features the partial front lacing, scooped neckline, and forward thrusting silhouette of the 1780s, but there are subtle differences in boning layouts, tab design, strap fastening, and fabric and finishes. I will admit that not much of this pair made it into the final pattern, but I still love the fabulous colour, and it did influence our tab shapes: