Make-do Pieced shawl (HSM 2/2017)

One other thing I made that would fit perfectly into the challenge of “Make-do and mend” for last months HSM, is this simple cotton shawl/neckerchief.

It started out as a small piece of rectangular fabric (50 x 140 cm) that I got for 10 sek (1 Usd) at a estate sale last summer.

It reminded me of lots of Swedish folk costumes and fabrics worn by my peasant ancestors back in the day.

I knew I wanted to make something that could be paired with outfits from 18th century all the way through to the 1920s. But what?

It was the small amount of fabric (les then 50cm) that made the choice for me – a shawl/neckerchief/fichu, would be perfect.

The only problem was the piece was to short to make a proper shawl.
But as they say – “Piecing is period”…
Time for some mathematics.

I cut the fabric in 4 different sized pieces and then attached them again to get that biggest size shawl with the least amount of seams possible.

The sewing itself was noting special, just spaced backstitches and folded over edges and hems. detail of pieced corner

finished but not yet pressed.

The only thing that I wasn’t completely happy with was the fact the plaid was a un-even, which caused the side-turned piece not possible to pattern match. But I don’t think that will be noticeable once worn.

The finished shawl:

Paired with my 18th century “Outlander” jacket:


Just the facts:

Challenge: nr 2/2017 – Re-make,

What: a 18th-20th century neckerchief/shawl/fichu

How it fits the challenge: The fabric is second hand from a estate sale, and I pieced the fabric to make a bigger shawl then the original fabric.

Pattern: None – just made some quick calculations.

Fabric/Notions: 70 cm blue/white plaid cotton fabric and thread.

Time/Cost: About 15 Sek (1.5 Usd), and 3 hours.

How historical accurate: Spot on I think :-). The material and weaved in plaids are good, and so are the stitching with waxed linnen thread and the fact that I pieced together a bigger piece from a smaller one.

First worn: Beginning of Mars for photos

Final thoughts: I think it is good, and i will probably get some use out of it being so simple and non time specific.

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“Sew 17th century Challenge” – Fur Shawl

The next thing to be made after the skirt, cuffs and coifs (not exactly but I’m twisting the order of things in my attempt to postpone the unpreventable showing of the bodice) was the fur shawl .

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I drafted the shawl pattern using the bodice pieces as a guide.IMG_7404Drafting from the bodice neckline

The only tricky part about the pattern was trying to get the scale right.IMG_7408

I tried the paper pattern over my bodice mock-up.  IMG_7417(Spoiler alert 1 . bodice mock-up)

When I was happy with the size I cut the piece in my favorite faux fur fabric
(previously used in my brown velvet cape and 19th century fur hat)
IMG_7419I also used some leftover linen for interlining and a small piece of lightly brow woolIMG_7418

I started by basting the linen to the fur to get a bit more stability.IMG_7424

Then I pinned and stitched the wool to the fur by hand.
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Trying the almost finished shawl on my dresform. IMG_7452(Spoiler alert 2 – bodice foundation)

The last thing to do was to make some ties form scraps of the skirt material.

The finished shawl:
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The facts:

What: A faux fur shawl, which work for pretty much every era from 1500-1950s

Pattern: I drafted my own using my bodice neckline as a guide.

Fabric & Notions: 20 cm faux fur, 20 cm linen for interning, 20 cm soft wool for lining, thread, hook and eyes and scraps of fabric for ties.

How historical accurate: Not really. Its pretty obvious the fur is fake, but I did look at originals to copie and used materials (except the fur) and construction techniques. Maybe 5/10

Time: 3 hours – completely hand stitched.

Cost: Nothing, since everything came from stash scraps.

Final Thoughts: I love how simple and fast the whole process went an dhow extremely versatile the shawl is.
It will fit almost anybody in any given timeperiod. Such a perfect garment/accessorie.