Thursday, August 20, 2009

Sully Plantation - Renton's Tunic

The tunic is made of varying shades of blue fine cotton cambric. I turned the fabric to the bias so the plaid would run on the diagonal (common for boys). It is lined in a simple blue cotton (scraps left from other projects). The short pants are made of dark royal blue cotton velvetten and are unlines. They feature two bands on the side of each leg of self fabric to match the tunic. The bands are pointed on each end and decorated with a button to match the tunic. I had velvet left over from the pants and made an extra bolero jacket for Renton, too. (Not pictured) Renton is wearing a separate white cotton shirt under the jacket. The jacket could also be worn without the shirt, with just an undershirt on which the short pants would be buttoned.
If you look closely, you can see the shadow of Renton's sleeveless, batteau cut undershirt. His underdrawers would have been buttoned to this, but because of the extreme heat we opted to go without. The undershirt still served to keep Renton's outer shirt free from the sweat. When we were getting ready to go home, I removed his outer shirt and buttoned his pants to the undershirt so he could be as cool as possible.
The pants were made following the Elizabeth Stewart Clark pattern. They are nice and roomy and made up very easily. I wanted short pants, so I chose the shortest option (did not add any additional "leggings" before cutting).
Full length view of plaid tunic and velvet short pants
Close-up of Shirt

Short pants buttoned to shirt

Disclaimer #1 (Renton's Hair) - While there is much exigent documentation to show very short hair on boys during the Victorian era, most wore their hair longer (often curly) and always parted on the side. In fact, the side part on very young boys still in skirts was often the only thing that distinguished them from their female counterparts of the same age.

Disclaimer #2 (Renton's Boots) - The zip laces on Renton's boots are not accurate for this period. HOWEVER, when you are outfitting (on a budget) quickly growing children with footwear that they will not wear anywhere or anytime else, you get what you can. :)

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