Historical Sew Fortnightly

The HSF ’14: Challenge #21: Re-Do

It’s coming up to that time of year Sew Fortnightliers!  The best HSF Challenge of all: Re-Do, due Sat 15 Nov.

It’s the best, of course, because it’s an excuse to finish up an UFOs that you have created this year, and because it gives you the opportunity to do almost anything.

The brief is simple.  Pick any previous challenge from the HSF 2014 and re-do it (or do it for the first time).  

It could be one that you didn’t finish, one that you wish you’d had more time for, or  any  time for, or one where you loved the theme so much you want to do it  again.

And you could be really crazy, and do what I attempted last year, and re-do all the challenges (albeit nnot with an item per challenges, but with items that filled multiple challenge themes, until I’d re-done every theme).

Or you could be really, really crazy, and attempt to make one single item that qualifies for all the previous challenges!

The possible themes are:

  • #1: Make Do & Mend  —  due Wed 15 Jan.  Let’s start of the year with a clean slate, and with a bit of a tidy up.  Use this challenge as an opportunity to get your historical wardrobe in order by fixing any little bits that have worn out and gone wrong.  Alternatively, you could focus on the  historical precedent of making-do by re-making something into a historical garments, whether it be a bodice from a worn-out skirt, a chemise from old sheets, a bosom-friend from an old cardigan, or a new historical hat from an old modern one etc.  Finally, you could just  those people who had to make-do by making something for a historical character who would have scrimped and saved and re-made and mended until the fabric entirely fell apart.
  • #2: Innovation  – due Sat 1 Feb.  To celebrate the way inventions, introductions and discoveries have impacted fashion, make an item that reflects the newest innovations in your era.  Be sure to share the research you did on your innovation, as well as your finished item.
  • #3: Pink  – due Sat 15 Feb.  Make something pink!
  • #4: Under it All  — due Sat 1 March.  Make the  foundations of your outfit: the things that go under it to provide the right shape and support, and to protect your fancy outer garments from sweat and grime
  • #5: Bodice  –  Make a bodice — a garment that covers the upper body.  You can either abide by the strictest historical sense (see the blog post for history of bodice terminology) or can explore the idea of bodices in a more general sense.
  • #6: Fairytale  — due Tue 1 April:  imagine your favourite fairytale set in a specific timeperiod, and make a historical garment inspired by the fairytale.
  • #7: Tops & Toes  — due Tue 15 April.  Create an accessory that goes on your head, or on your feet.
  • #8: UFOs & PHDs  — due Thur 1 May.  Use this opportunity to finish off something that’s never quite gotten done, or stalled halfway through.  Check out  the post from last year  for more information on how to interpret this challenge.
  • #9: Black and White  — due Thur 15 May.  Draw on the opposite ends of the shade spectrum to create something in black and white, or black or white.
  • #10: Art  — due Sun 1 June.  Make your own masterpiece based on a work of art.
  • #11: The Politics of Fashion  — due Sun 15 June.  World affairs have both affected, and been affected by, fashions.  Craft something that demonstrates the interactions between dress and political history.
  • #12: Shape & Support  — due Tue 1 July.  Make a garment that changes the silhouette of the human form through shaping and support.
  • #13: Under $10  — due Tue 14 July.  Whip up a fabulous item for under $10 (we’ll use US$ as the de-facto standard)
  • #14: Paisley & Plaid  — due Fri 1 August.  Plaid is the most universal pattern, found in the textiles of almost all cultures and periods.  Paisley is more unique and recent, but has had a lasting impact on design.  Make something that utilises one or both of these patterns.
  • #15: The Great Outdoors  — due Fri 15 August.  Get out into the weather and dirt with an item for outdoor pursuits.
  • #16: Terminology  — due Mon 1 September.  Explore the etymology of fashion by make something defined in the  Historical Fashion & Textile Encyclopedia  (new terminology posts and items will be added throughout the year).
  • #17:  Yellow  – due Mon 15 September.  Embrace the sunny side with something in any shade of yellow.
  • #18:  Poetry in Motion  – due Wed 1 October  Find inspiration for a garment in poetry and song.
  • #19: HSF Inspiration  – due Wed 15 October.  One of the best things about the HSF is seeing what everyone else creates, and using it to spark your own creativity.  Be inspired by one of the challengers item from HSF ’13 or HSF challenges 1-18 to make your own fabulous item.
  • #20: Alternative Universe  — due Sat 1 November.  Create a garment from an alternative universe: fantasy, steampunk, dieselpunk, etc.  Your item can be perfectly historically accurate within our own universe as well.

Felicity the Cat thedreamstress.com

So what are you going to be re-doing?



  1. You have a mistake in the deadline… Sat 1 Nov, which is also the deadline for alternative universe…
    … I certainly have a number of challenges I did not get around to doing in the end.

  2. So glad we get the opportunity to redo one of the challenges! I found the perfect paisley only a week after the deadline for that challenge.

  3. Stephani says

    With any luck, I can hit 3 previous challenges that I missed with two items: Bodice, Paisley/Plaid, and Alternative Universe. And if I get really crazy, I might even be able to check off a redo of Black&White and Art with another item. I’ll need them all this winter, so that’s motivation.

  4. I wish I could have re-done more of the challenges, but I only had time for one. I didn’t begin the participating in the HSF until after #12 (shape and support), so I chose to do that one!
    I made an 1840-60s corded petticoat for an 1860s gown I’m about to make.
    Thank you again for your hard work that you put in to make the HSF a reality!!

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