I would have really liked to have studied the insides of original bonnets. I zoomed in as well as I could to pick apart the images online, but I just couldn't find a whole lot of photos of linings or frills for some reason. Maybe I was just searching incorrectly. But anyways, without further ado, here's what I did.
To begin, I of course bought the bonnet. (actually, I should say my Mimi and Poppy bought the bonnet since they paid for it :) Love you!) It was $35, from Abraham's Lady. I highly recommend her company (as do many reenactors I know), and the lady who contacted me was super nice-she even put it online so I could buy it! Shipping was like $10 though, so if you are in Gettysburg and want to buy the straw bonnet, drop by her store. :)
Second, I collected the supplies I would need. Leftover white cotton curtains from my tucked petticoat project for the lining, a 75 cent curtain to use as the frill, and some silk for ties and trimmings. I got 2/3 yards silk for $10 (ouch, most money ever spent on one piece of fabric) off a scrap table when I went shopping with Bascha and her Mom. I'm not sure exactly what type of silk it was-it had a slight sheen to it, it was an incredible tight weave with hardly a slub to be seen, and not quite as plasticy feeling as taffeta, but definetly stiff. It both wrinkles and irons really well. As soon as we felt it though, we all agreed it would make a lovely dress..except the 2/3 yard part :P (I hated the taffeta....there was no way I was going to pay that kind of money for silk that felt like super thick flag material! It was not at all what I was anticipating.)
Then I plunged into the construction. To line the bonnet, I laid the fabric in it, making sure it was smooth at the round back part. I pinned this down to make sure the back round part fabric didn't get any odd wrinkles. I stitched this down with straw colored thread. As for the rest of the lining, I measured down 4 inches from the brim and marked it all the way around with a pencil. I cut along this line. As you can see in the following photographs, the lining was very full around the edges, so I made some small pleats to tuck that excess fabric in. Then I folded under the raw edge and stitched it down with straw colored thread.
|marking the lining|
|Measuring 4 inches from the brim on the lining so I knew where to cut it|
|cut bonnet lining in the full stage|
|pleated bonnet lining pinned|
|sewn bonnet lining|
the lining makes me think of the amish and menonite caps
|pressing down one edge of the bavolet for the rolled hem|
|folding it over, tucking the raw edge in and pressing it again|
|after that I whipstiched it down doing a "blind" hem (not really blind...this was a very|
tight weave) with about 2 stitches per inch
|I box pleated the bavolet, and here you see it pinned to the bonnet|
You really wouldn't think that a bonnet would have much trouble staying on your head would you? I didn't think so, but it does. I used a couple scrap pieces of cotton twill tape for functional ties, which are the unseen ties doing the hard work of keeping the bonnet on. Here is where I put mine.
|my fuctional bonnet ties|
|attached under the pretty bonnet ties|
|placement of both ties|
|bonnet ties before getting hemmed. I narrow hemmed them also|
For the frill, I cut a peice of the curtain about 2 yards long (...I had a whole curtain, no need to be stingy) and 6 inches wide. I put two rows of gathering stitches on one end and gathered the frill to fit the bonnet. It covers part of the lining on the inside. Then I sewed it down with straw colored thread across the gathers at the base of the frill, and then each side of the frill to the cheek tabs. Then ta-da! The frill was done :).
|hee hee, look at all my metal hairs! :P this was the frill pinned in|
|sewing the frill in|
|frill sewn to cheek tab|
|the frill sewn down|
As of now, there are no silk flowers or things inside my bonnet. Maybe I'll add a few one day, but then maybe I won't. I'd really like some pinky-red flowers and light olive green leaves...not a bunch, but just enough to give a little color. But anyways, here are a few pictures of the finished thing :D
|My mom saw this picture and said "selfie!" (a term she just learned|
a couple weeks ago) :P
Until next time!