Saturday, August 6, 2011

The Traditional White Regency Dress

I love the simplicity of regency dresses... especially white ones. I searched high and low for the right fabric to make my dress - a white sheer cotton. Surprisingly the only plain white sheer I could find was polyester or poly/cotton blend, which I was not about to use (polyester... *shudders*) Finally I stumbled on this swiss-dot at Hancock fabrics... and it was on sale! Needless to say, I was pleased - very pleased. :) The petticoat underneath is white linen. I'm also am going to make a peachy-orange petticoat, so it will lightly show through and I can have two dresses in one.

We had a lovely location to shoot these photos. My dad took a vacation off work and we went up to northern Wisconsin to Door County. Dad's secretary's brother owns a beautiful "estate", 300 feet above the water, and he was so kind to let us stay there for our visit! 

Here's an up-close view of the back. You'll notice that it doesn't close in the back (the seam you see is the petticoat closure), and at first glance it doesn't look like it's possible to get into the dress, but the front of the bodice has a drawstring at the bottom, and hooks and eyes along the drawstring casing, so the front of the skirt hooks onto it. I wanted a somewhat invisible way to close it, and this seemed to be the easiest solution.

I love pleats. Just saying.

The whole house was stone, which made for some great settings. 

Off to the woods for more photos...
(we were having a lot of fun, hence lots of pictures. I hope you don't mind)

This spot was right above the 300 ft drop-off. The water was so blue and beautiful. Every day there were lots of sail-boats, as well as kayaks, speed-boats, canoes, jet-skis, and even a few para-sails! 

And there you have it! Many many thanks to my sister for the photos - she's amazing, if I do say so myself. :)

All photos copyright ©Kathryn Grace Photography. All rights reserved.


  1. I.WANT.ONE. You did a beautiful job!
    That house was just amazing!!! Too bad it's so far away; it's perfect for historical photos!
    Thanks for posing for me!

  2. Wow, what a breath taking view! The dress is very pretty too. Our Dad saw the pictures of the dress and house and really thought it was pretty too:-)


  3. Oh, how beautiful! You did an amazing job on the dress- I don't know how to sew, so I greatly admire people who can sew like that.
    Beautiful setting, too. =)

  4. What a beautiful lady! The dress and scenery are rather nice, too. =) =) Bravo, both of you!! I should rather like to see this dress in person sometime...

  5. Beautiful photos, beautiful dress, and beautiful girl! ;) And of course, that estate is simply lovely!

  6. Tara, that dress is incredible! Absolutely lovely... and Kathryn, nice job with the photos. they are perfect. :)

  7. Kath - Then make one... :) but finish your red 1950's dress first! :)

    Esther - I know!! The view was incredible! It was even better in person! Thanks and say thanks to your dad for me!

    Samantha - Aw, thanks so much!

    Laura - I should rather like to show you the dress in person! Maybe we can convince Kathryn to do a photo-shoot of YOU in the dress! Regency tea party, here we come!

    Miss RJ - Thank you!! We really need to get together soon - it's been waaaay too long!

    Rory&Muffin a.k.a. Kristen - Thanks! :) Yes, Kathryn does take fantastic photos - here's to photographer-sisters!!

  8. Wow!
    What pattern did you use?

  9. Ella - Weeeellll.... I sort of made my own pattern. The back and sleeves are from Sense and Sensibility's "Elegant Ladies Closet" pattern, with some slight fitting changes. The front I made myself. The skirts are both from Sense and Sensibility's "Regency Gown" pattern (I used the one from Simplicity, but it's the same pattern). Hope that was helpful!

  10. ok, Tara. I've got to tell you. I've ALWAYS.ALWAYS.ALWAYS.ALWAYS wanted a dress like this! I love regency dresses (like pride and prejudice) and i've always wanted to have one! I watched the P&P movie (2005) and was almost depressed afterward because I wanted a dress so bad! :)

    I LOVE.LOVE.LOVE your dress! My idea of a dress like this would be a long-sleeved, square-neck, blue dress with lace at the neck and wrists. I can't tell you how excited I was to stumble across your blog!

    I never could sew well - too stupid to learn, i guess - but i'd do anything for a dress like this! How long did it take you to make this? It's SOOOOOOOO pretty! thanks for making it! Even if i can't make one, i can comfort myself in the fact that someone else can! :)

    it's my dream dress.....

  11. Elizabeth - Wow... thanks so much!! I always want to make a ton of dresses after watching Pride and Prejudice too! It's such a pretty and yet simple era!

    Hmmm... I think I worked on this dress off and on for a week I think. The under-dress I made in two days, if I remember right.

    Thanks again for the sweet comment!

  12. amazing dress! I love it, Tara good work! so so pretty!!!

  13. Thank you so much, Christie! :)



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