A Suffragette Dress for 2020

The year 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing and protecting women’s constitutional right to vote.

In honor of this event, our local arts center will be hosting an exhibition in September. I will be sewing a doll dress from that era for display, and I’m pretty excited about it.

My wonderful Bernina dealer up in Conway donated some gorgeous, sheer white batiste fabric which I will be using for the dress. The Suffragettes established three identifying colors to wear to events. White to represent purity and virtue, purple for loyalty , and gold in honor of the sunflowers that grace the fields of Kansas, where Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton campaigned.

I am still gathering information and samples, but I’m thinking a white dress, with ivory lace and pearls, white tights and shoes.

The pattern for the dress I intend to use is the “1904” dress from MHD Designs. I will probably simplify it a bit. I’m sure it’s out of my skill range, so it’s a good thing I have a few months to work on it.

For the purple and gold, I will be making a sash with the words “Votes for Women” on it, typically worn by the suffragettes at events.

I’m still working on the coat for the Sans Pretention dress, and I’m not sure I’m going to like it, but it’s a wonderful learning experience. Magalie of MHD Designs is a fabulous artist and her amazing attention to detail never fails to inspire. Her patterns are fully lined and certainly worthy of such an event.

This morning however, I decided to see how well quarter inch text would embroidery on grosgrain ribbon. My thought was to use purple thread for the “Votes for Women” and edge the white ribbon in gold… satin stitch, binding… not sure yet.

The first sample doesn’t look very good. The second one looks much better, but I didn’t bother trimming the jump stitches.

I used a built in font on my Bernina 700 for it. This is the first time in the fifteen some odd years I’ve been doing machine embroidery that I have ever used the smallest hoop!

I’ve got the sample soaking in water (I used two layers of Vilene) and then I’ll try ironing it and see how it looks.

Meanwhile… the “Divine Miss M” isn’t too pleased with her glasses.

She thinks she looks much better with them off.

This is what happens when you allow a pesky little mouse to peek over your shoulder while you’re on Facebook. She read a comment from Sandy calling her the “Divine Miss M” and has spent the last day twirling around in her new skirt, basking her in newfound divinity!

Thanks Sandy!

CJ Tinkle

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Mary Ann

    CJ , you are a “trip” and have a wonderful imagination. You should write a children’s book featuring the Divine Miss M. Regarding your period dress,I’m sure it will be a masterpiece.

    1. tinksquared

      Hi Mary Ann, several people have suggested that to me! Wouldn’t that be a hoot! I’m pretty pumped about the suffrage dress and hope I can do it justice.

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