This dress has had several incarnations…ahh…I suppose I mean repairs. My goal was to create a unique German dress that incorporated the freer form of the northern principalities (whereas other countries’ styles tended to be shape-altering and stiff), without going too overboard on decoration (we all love landsknecht, but I wanted to stay safely within the merchant’s wife look I desired).
In the beginning, I selected fabrics from the amassed lot I had sitting around. The outer dress fabric was an upholstery remnant of which there was only 3 1/2 yards, so that was tricky. I decided to use contrasting colors to accommodate the fabric shortage. A client left some dark brown silk after her project was finished, so I used that for the outer sleeves of the doublet. This might be the time to tell you how this dress looked originally. In fact, it was a dress and attached bodice, and the doublet went over that (a choice I made because the doublet is fur-trimmed and therefore not washable).
So I had this dark sepia velvet I salvaged from an old skirt I found in a thrift store. I trimmed the bodice with it extensively. The effect was exactly what I was going for.