1893 British Explorer

Digital Changeling > Sewing > Costumes > 1893 British Explorer

I was lucky to get into the Survivors of the Naronic LARP at Intercon H in March of 2008. The game was set in 1893 and I got to play Lady Caroline Harmsworth, British explorer and journalist. Because I'm a sucker for punishment I did not reuse the pile of 90's stuff that I've previously made.

Kathleen got the only photo of this costume during the game. She very kindly allowed me to use a copy of it here (Alan's in the picture too, dressed as a British army Captain). There aren't any pictures of my spats from the game, but I took some when I got back home so I can show off the 5 to 10 hours of work that went into them. Over all I made 50 button holes and hand sewed 66 buttons over the week and a half it took me to put the outfit together.

I'd especially like to thank Danielle for all her help. I definitely wouldn't have gotten the skirt done in time without her! :D

I made up the Truly Victorian 1901 Split Skirt (TV299) in a lovely dark green wool. I also made a poofy sleeved blouse based on the pattern that I had drafted and used previously for RingGame shirts.

I had wanted the skirt to be short (bicycle length seemed more practical) so I made up a pair of knee high spats based on the Laughing Moon 1890's Sporting Costume pattern. I say based on because I had to re-drape the pattern to my leg and change all the seam allowances to make it work. I also had to swap over to a corduroy instead of the wool felt that I was trying to use. In general I wasn't thrilled with the pattern, but it was a good starting point. The weird brown tabs on the bottom of the spats in the pictures are there because at the moment the bottom strap is being held on by 1" bias binding tape and saftey pins. I'll have to finish that part up later on.

I ran out of time to sew a vest to go with the outfit, so I spent a few hours scavanging through sales of winter/fall clothing and brought home a brown corduroy jacket which I proceeded to butcher into a vest. It worked remarkably well and at $7.50 it was cheaper than the fabric I was planning to use.