The Cross-Barred Sacque


Here we go–write-ups on the costumes I made for a fantastic stay at Chateau de Pys, a glorious chateau in France I shared with eight costumers I love dearly.

When I decided I needed a third sacque in my costume closet, I wanted it to be a little different.  I had made two already in solid colors and it was time I branched out into a sort of figured fabric–specifically, a cross-barred pattern.  I searched high and low for a suitable silk, and was completely smitten when I found this taffeta at Fabric Guru.  Who doesn’t want a plaid 18th century dress!


Can we all admire Sarah’s perfectly frizzy wig?

Although I used my first sacque (created at a workshop led by Janea Whitacre, so I knew the fit was proper) as a guide, this sacque gave me a little more headache with the fitting.  (Perhaps it’s the new set of stays I made–bizarrely, they make me stand with a sway back, my belly thrust forward, so my posture is incorrect.)  I added bust darts this time, which I didn’t need to do with my other two sacques, but the dress still fits rather loosely, even when laced as tight as possible in the back.


I will admit that the best part of working with the cross-barred pattern is that it worked like a perfect grid!  I know I am built asymmetrically, but frankly, I couldn’t resist just making the dress perfectly symmetrical and lining up the seams with the pattern.  It made things go so much easier!


For trimming, I decided the cross-barred dress at the Kyoto Costume Institute was rather right on, so I added lace up and down the front robe openings, complimented by ruched stripes of taffeta in a serpentine pattern.  Bows at the breast and elbows in a contrasting olive green finished the look.


I decided to wear the sacque drawn up a la polonaise, which I think is such a charming look.  I love wearing elegant sacques as evening wear, but I think they are absolutely darling as daywear, too!  I styled this with my hedgehog wig and a flat hat.

I collected some images of cross-barred costumes on this Pinterest Board.

I’ll be back soon with my next costume!

This entry was posted in Chateau de Pys 2013 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The Cross-Barred Sacque

  1. Aubry says:

    I love this dress so much! You really used the cross bar to perfection!

  2. Maggie says:

    I adore this dress a lot! It’s so cute and it looks great on you! In my eyes, it looks like it fits you great too!

  3. Cassidy says:

    I was actually thinking that your posture looked pretty decent! That kind of hips-forward stance shows up in a lot of prints.

    The gown is gorgeous. I love the fabric and the pretty trim.

    • J. Leia Lima says:

      Thank you very much, and excellent images! I admit I used the least offensive posture pictures of me in this post, but I’m glad to see such a stance show up in prints.

  4. madam spencer says:

    This was my favorite gown of all those the ladies wore on your trip! LOVE it!

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