Tag Archives: handsewn eyelets

Buttons & More Buttons

As boxes are slowly being put away, the pile of unfinished projects grows.  Early in my SCA adventure I beaded a sideless surecoat with a blue cotehardie for an underdress.   That project was entered it into the GW A&S  exhibition as a “work in progress”.  Now is the time to start the finishing work.  This started with buttons….   First challenge making the cloth buttons.   I searched the web and found several sites that have great tutorials.  The one I chose to use as a base is:   Making Cloth Buttons.
First I dug and found the fabric scraps from the dress, a chalk pencil, and a spool of thread:  ( the first pictures I used black fabric so you could see the marks)   Gather your tools:
spool of thread, marking tool, scissors and fabric scrap

spool of thread, marking tool, scissors and fabric scrap

Use the spool of thread to create your circle then cut on the line.  Next, thread a needle using a long piece of thread  ( I used buttonhole thread in a contrasting color for the visual if using regular thread use a double strand)  and stitch around the circumference far enough from the raw edge that the fabric will not fray.


gathering stitches

gathering stitches

Gently pull the thread to gather the circle in.  The edges should naturally tuck in but you may need to coax them a bit.  You will end up with a flattened circle:


after gathering

after gathering

On the flattened button, repeat the above step, stitching around the folded edge.  ( I forgot to take a picture of this step)  Firmly pull and shape til you get the button.


second gathering to bring it into the button shape.

second gathering to bring it into the button shape.


Take your needle and stitch across the opening using the gathering as a guide.. and Viola you have a button..   Leave a long tail  so that attaching to the garment will be easier.


Finished blue buttons wrapped around a thread  winder with one button started

Finished blue buttons wrapped around a thread winder with one button started

buttons drawn for cuffs..

30 buttons drawn for cuffs..

Making fabric buttons was easy and they match the dress.  Give them a try and see what you think.  The cost of pewter buttons for a cotehardie can be very high as you need sooooooooo many.  This is a great alternative and is also period.  Have fun!!




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New Year – New Project

As the new year has started so has the list of projects..  We all have them..  My first project is to do a device on the back of a Furisodo..  As the device has many details it was a challenge to transfer the pattern to the already completed piece of clothing.  Using tracing paper I traced over the device and made three separate sheets. design printed transfering for opposite position
After completing the tracing the three pieces the placement on the clothing was next.  After some trial and error the placement was finalized and in went the pins to hold the patterns in place.
  dragon traced and placed on furisodo  
To transfer the pattern buttonhole thread seems to give a good line and is easy to pull out after you have embroidered. Center outlined
   one dragon almost done  
The design is done in silver thread with a chain stitch.  The completed back took around 20 hours.  
finished furisodo
The first project of the year completed!!!  🙂   Hmm now what to do next…. 

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Filed under Embroidery, SCA

Looking back

A couple of years ago I started to do a sideless surcoat.  I used fabric that was in my stash and started beading.. The fabric was white with a diamond pattern that was perfect to embellish.  Being from the Kingdom of Trimaris  blue and silver beads would be perfect.  It never occurred to me that this would turn into a year long project.  The pieces traveled with me everywhere, even at the airport where an audience gathered and asked questions.  It was amazing that one of the question/statements from an older lady was “Women in America still hand sew?”.
full view sideless surcoat front

Full view sideless surcoat Front. ( fur pinned on)


This is a full front view.  The beads are from neck to floor and the fur is a 2″ width pinned on.   The over dress is lined in cotton and the bottom band is of linen (blue to carry on the Theme of Trimaris colors).






                Here you see a picture of the lower back of the gown.  The beading is done with the outline of  a V to avoid sitting on any beads.  The upper back is also lacking beads for the same reason.  This would not have occurred if I had not sat on one of the beaded pieces and decided this was not a good feeling.  It also would put more wear and tear on those beads.. And after the time it took to do this it would be unlikely that it would be repaired quickly.. 🙂

sideless surcoat back


 Now to give you some close ups of the beading itself… 



beading close-up  blue seed bead with 4 silver beads clustered around

beading close-up blue seed bead with 4 silver beads clustered around

lower back of dress showing V

lower back of dress showing V 

This post has been inspired because this dress was recently pulled out of the closet and worn with the blue cotehardie under-dress..  “wow”  I really need to finish this off correctly.  As I took out the rings lacing on the cotehardie (pics to follow) i was amazed how much I have learned and how many mistakes I made.  As the tedious job of taking apart all the hand stitches thoughts of how could I have entered this in GW open competition as a work in progress….   Though the comments were encouraging and getting both yellow and white bead made me happy now that I have moved forward it is obvious how much growing has occurred in two years.  
Now comes the “refurbishment”  of this ensemble..   The Triskels need to be added to the blue band, eyelets need to be handsewn down the back of the cotehardie, and the fur needs to be applied differently.  So with fur flying and seam ripper in action lets see what happens….  




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finished corset

The Corset is finished.  I am truly glad I did a prototype first as there are things I will do different for my silk one.  It was a great learning experience and I will post a more complete description in the following weeks.  but here is the  final product.Finished corset on dress form back view finished corset side view finished corset on dress form


So many small fixes to do to the pattern but all in all for my first totally hand sewn one i am happy.

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Filed under Corset, SCA

Moving along

the 29 eyelets are completed.. Learned many new things in the process.  Onto finishing the edges and then finished!!  Here is another sneak peak of how far I am..
sneak peak front side eyelets   
I hope to have it completed in the next day..  will post the completed project with the steps that I did. 🙂  

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Filed under Corset, SCA