Started the overskirt. This is what is actually sewn:
And these are just draped here for the effect (now they are pinned in):
The side/back pleats are just pinned in here, too, of course.
I am falling pretty in love with this dress. Obviously not everything is coming out perfect, but the look is really coming together the way I want! I am not even very bothered by the visible machine stitching. Would it be more gorgeous and awesome if I had hand-hemmed those ruffles? Yeah, probably. But it's 1870s, so machining it is totally valid, right? And I would never get miles of ruffles like these if I was going it by hand.
I'm also thinking accessories. I would love to make a new hat, but I am going to focus on the dress first. I have an old trimmed straw hat I could use if I run out of time. Or my seaside hat might work.
For this project I decided to finally buy some American Duchess shoes. This took weeks of waffling and obsessing (and looking for cheap fakey alternatives) before I finally decided to just do it. Well today I was all set to order my dyeable Tissots - I even had them in my cart! - but then every dye color I chose was out of stock. I tried at least 8 different colors. None of them were available.
White shoes aren't much use to me and since I am doing this rather last-minute I can't wait and dye them later. I might give her a call later and see if it's a glitch or if every dye color is really out of stock. Or I might dig around in the closet and see what I can do to mod some old crappy shoes.
Update: I called Lauren and she said the out-of-stock was a glitch and to go ahead and order. So I did! I still cannot believe I am blowing that amount of money on shoes. But here's the part I left out: my hubby told me to. No, seriously. After I whined about mother's day
he said I should have a fancy gift and I said well, there's these shoes. . . so there you are.