Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hussar Jacket Project

In one of the podcasts I've listened to recently, there was a story about a young artist asking a question to a panel of other artists.  He was wondering how to accomplish his dream of being an artist, and asked for advice.

One of the experienced artists replied with a list of things for the novice to think about and start considering.  Nuts and bolts stuff.

Another artist simply replied with, "If you want to do it, you'd be doing it."

Straight and to the point.  The optimum message being that at a certain point, you have to stop planning and start doing.

So that's what I've been doing lately... I've moved forward on a coat for a friend, several dresses for another, and tonight I'm sharing what I've maintained "radio silence" for such a long time (it feels to me)... I've been busy!  : )

Here's my latest creation--a Hussar jacket done for a friend of mine involved in some charity work where there are formal events in "court attire".  He needed a jacket, so I dove in and made one all by myself...  This is only the third jacket I have ever made on my own.  Experienced eyes may see a lot of things that need adjusting, and I'll be going back after his first event and adjusting things for a better fit, but I think this is a good first step.  I'm happy with it thus far.

The original pattern instructions are from an early 1860's tail coat, and the sleeves are of the previous era--very full and gathered at the top a bit.  This gives him a very square-shouldered look that narrows his waist.

The metallic braid was the hardest--all placed by hand...  It sweeps over the shoulders onto the back, so it had to be applied to the front but not the back until the coat had been assembled part way, then the back could be finished...

I learned a lot about how to do things by doing them the wrong way on this coat... I think may be going back and fixing some stuff after this first go around...

My 1930's dresses are coming along.  I had another dress added to my stack, so I'll be completing an oriental robe, a coat, a women's day suit, and two day dresses--one completely from scratch since it has no pattern.  The robe  and day suit are done, and the dresses are coming along still.  It's a lot of work working with flimsy chiffon, but the results are really going to be quite beautiful when they're completed.  I will post some pictures of them when they are all finished!

Okay, until next time, Live Life with Relish!

[EDIT:  For those of you that are looking for information on how to construct a Hussar coat for your own project, please follow this LINK for more helpful resources.]


  1. So can I! He wants another that's more "Adam Ant". I'm going to be going back and putting a second layer of trim over the top of the first, so the first layer won't look so bright and wide... I think it will tone it down a bit. All this needs is a white glove and epaulets, and it could indeed be a Michael Jackson coat! LOL!


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