16 February 2012

Eye on Eyelets


I think it's safe to say that I'm nearly at the home stretch on finishing my stays. Despite making countless errors such as...

...realizing that, though I had completed the boning channels for these panels, the channels were facing the wrong direction. I don't want my stays to give me the wrong shape so...
A spoonful of linen thread.

...I ripped out the channels and restitched them. I then realized that I needed to remove the channel in the center of the front lacing panels because...
...I did not leave enough room for the eyelets. Duh!
It was then finally time to begin breathing life into the shapeless panels and move onto something fun, like the eyelets. 
Four of my completed panels, boned with reed.
The center back panels, boned and easy eyelets made.
Left front panel.
However making the eyelets on the front panels is proving to be terribly difficult.
Detail of eyelets on left front panel.
The three eyelets pictured above look OK from the front...
Inside view of eyelets on left front panel. Yuck!!
...but from the back it's an awful mess! Especially compared to....
Inside detail of center back panel eyelets.
...the much cleaner appearance of the inside eyelets on the center back panel. I'm having issues with the very silky fashion fabric slipping. Should I redo them? If I don't, will these messy whip stitches protect the fabric from the stress of lacing and wearing stays on a regular basis--or will it ruin the whole panel and eventually need to be replaced?

In trying to answer these questions, I've found a few originals online.
Augusta Auctions, stays 1775-1785
Augusta Auctions, late 18th century stays
Detail of eyelets....they're so perfect!
While the photos are fascinating, I can't find any that show eyelets from the inside. I guess I need to keep my eye on the eyelets as I continue to sew them--and keep on researching.

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