Sewing Projects 8: The “Madame Elizabeth” Top

Originally written for, and posted at The Sew Weekly. Theme: Art
The Facts
Fabric: Kona cotton broadcloth $4
Pattern: Lisette for Simplicity 2211
Year: 2011
Notions: Lace salvaged from my childhood bedroom curtains $0
Time to complete: ~3 hours (the entire NBC Thursday night line-up)
First worn: At my in-laws’ house
Wear again? For sure!
Total price: $4

I was drawing a blank for the longest time with the challenge. I couldn’t decide between a literal remake, or a more “Project Runway” just inspired-by approach. Eventually I settled on the latter. I browsed through all my art books and through some random museums’ online collections when I found a few contenders. When I saw this portrait of Madame Charles Simon Favart by François-Hubert Drouais in The Met’s collection I had a sparkle of an idea.

I wanted to do all the photos at the piano but the lighting was all wrong.

When I was allowed to redo my bedroom in high school (*cough15yearsagocough*), everything pink was stripped away including my “dusty rose” curtains that had miles of lace trim along the edges. My mom insisted on salvaging the lace and she was thrilled when I asked to use some.

I knew Lisette’s “Market” pattern would serve as a good interpretation of this work. The long-sleeve option calls for a ruffle, but I thought that would be over-kill so I stuck to my short sleeves which I’ve done three other times (only have pics of two). I also nixed the sleeve cuff because I couldn’t decided how to tackle it with the lace, so the sleeve is just hemmed. I think the look is cutesy but wearable. I have a lace overlay obsession at the moment so I’m quite pleased. I can’t decide if the bodice is too plain.

Here’s a few closeups on the sleeves for good measure. I was in a bad mood when I took the other pics so I forgot to be thorough.


About EBS

Museum curator, nerd, chronic watcher of TV show marathons, married to a soccer hooligan, vegetarian, obsessive sewer.
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2 Responses to Sewing Projects 8: The “Madame Elizabeth” Top

  1. Pingback: One Week, One Pattern: Day 6 | The Cataloguer

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