18th Century

Pet en l’aire progress

Remember Madame Ornata’s gorgeous silk brocade  pet en l’aire?  No?  Oh…that would be because I was a bad blogger and forgot to post about it for almost a year.



To make up for that, I’ll give you a little update on the sewing progress, and in just a few days I’ll do a whole post with the finished pet and petticoat and the most gorgeous, drool-worthy stomacher ever.

So, sewing updates!

When I last posted, Madame O and I had draped the pet, using a lovely cotton voile for the draping so that it could then be used as the lining.  We’d also cut out the glorious silk brocade she picked.

After the draping, Madame O decided that the voile lining was too white, so she tea-dyed it:

Dyed cream on the left, original white on the right

It looks much better with the silk brocade too:

Mmmm...pretty striped silk!

Madame Ornata then disappeared with all her fabric, and a few days later she casually mentioned that she had ‘gotten a tiny bit of work done’, and would I check it?

Yeah, tiny bit!  This is what she had done:

Completely pleated and sewn back

And this:

Completely pleated and sewn side pleats

And this:

Well...OK. the front doesn't look that exciting at this point

And to get to this point in a pet (or robe a la francaise) don’t forget that you have to sew a complete bodice under-structure, with lacing all the way up the back.

Now, some people cheat and use metal eyelets for the lacing holes, because they are never seen.  I don’t do that because I’m a historical stickler.  Madame O doesn’t do that because she is a manic handsewer.

These are her amazing, beautiful handsewn eyelet holes:

Those are never, ever going to rip out!

Look at how many lacing holes there are!

So many! So amazing!

So yeah, sometimes progress isn’t that exciting.  But wait until you see the photoshoot of this made up.  Wowee is it something!


  1. Ooh! That is looking rather special – adore that fabric! I cannot wait for this reveal!!

    Well done Madam O – those eyelets look beautiful!!

    • Madame Ornata says

      Aw thanks 🙂
      These were very good practice for umpteen eyelets in the green stays which were going to actually be seen. Eyelets now though – totally over them argh! I must have handsewn about 200 by now.

  2. Elise says

    Ohhhh! It must be so much fun to make such a pretty thing!

    • Madame Ornata says

      It was and is even more fun to wear it! Squeeeee!!!!

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