I have written the following when planning this gown:
…There is one thing about this bodice that disturbs me a little:
The fact that the front seems to be ‘just’ standing open without being laced; yet there are horizontal folds which are usually a clear indication for the bodice being pulled somehow.
I then came to the conclusion that *originally*, the bodice was ladder laced but that detail might have gotten lost during a restoration of the painting. I will give some examples of other pictures that have ladder lacings on the bodice page to verify this conclusion.
Well, here they are – the examples for front ladder laced bodices:
Especially the first and fourth pictures remind me of the shape of the gown in Moretto’s “Image of a young woman”.
Please consider: The bodice would never ever stay the way it does in that painting *without* any lacings / closure at the front, and the chemise below is most definitely not said closure.
So I guess that my assumption that the lacing got lost during a restoration of the painting is right – either that, or the painter didn’t bother painting the lacings… (which I just don’t assume, knowing Moretto’s accuracy in other paintings, which is also visible in this one – he even painted the seams on the velvet decorations on the bodice!).
Anyway, now that I know that I have to make those lacings I can happily go ahead to actually really construct the bodice 🙂
Anyway… back to the bodice.
The front sides of the bodice, where the ladder lacing will take place, will have to be heavily boned so that they will keep “standing” straight. I will add some corset spring steel in there, some of the thicker / wider type. Of course I won’t miss the obligatory side boning.
Plus, I think I’ll add side back lacings to the bodice – my often mentioned jojo-ing weight practically forces me to do this; this is the only way I can make sure that the darn gown will fit me for a longer time…
I have one problem with the bodice, and that’s the fact that it has a straight instead of a pointed waistline.
The problem I have here is that I have no idea how to hide a waistband (of the skirt) in the small gap between bodice and belt.
I think the best solution might be to attach the skirt to the bodice, which would basically spare me the waistband. If I’m indeed doing that I will have to make the skirt with actually *three* openings faced with plackets: One at the front, two for the side back lacings… *sigh*…
However, I think that’s the only way for me to prevent any skirt waistband showing up in the ladder laced gap behind the belt.
Plus I wouldn’t have to fiddle around with any lacings / hooks / whatever that would prevent the bodice from slipping up while being worn – in short terms – the skirt would have to be attached to the bodice in some kind of way *anyway*, so…
Yes, I think I will sew the skirt right to the bodice, which I think will be an interesting task, considering that there shouldn’t be any bulk from the cartridge pleating around the waist.
Coming to think about it… I *could* do some kind of waistband, but instead of facing upwards (as usually all waistbands do), it should face downwards. This waistband could then be sewn to the bodice.
Hmmm. I think I have to construct the entire bodice *first* before I do any steps on actually pleating / waist banding the skirt panels.
Next are the sleeves.