Saturday, August 1, 2015

Early 19th Century Painted Silk Fan - July HSM Challenge - Accessorize

For July's Accessorize challenge, I created an early 19th century painted silk fan, and finished it last night, just in the nick of time!

First, the finished fan:
Early 19th century painted silk wood fan by TheLadyDetalle
Early 19th century painted silk wood fan back by TheLadyDetalle
For July's HSM 'Accessorize' challenge, I decided to make some period appropriate accessories to go with my late 1790's open robe gown for the upcoming Jane Austen Ball!

I started by doing a lot of research on fans of the period, beginning with late 18th century and going all the way into the early to mid 19th century, to try to get an idea of the timeline and development of the fan and fan use, the materials they used, the changes in style, etc. I also looked into the regional differences a bit, but focused my research mainly on English & French fans of the early 19th century, although I also paid attention to fans that would have been imported at the time (China, India). I was really inspired by the many unique & beautiful fans that are out there, there was so much inspiration to choose from!

My finished fan is made using a vintage fan (as the wood base) from Spain, silk fabric and paint.

There were SO many lovely fans to use as inspiration, so I created a Pinterest board just for my fan research here, and ended up just painting the fan just from creativity in my head after looking at all the inspiration, as I'm sure other amateurs would have done at this time.

I also recalled the beautiful fans that I had seen for sale at times on InTheLongRun on Etsy, and also checked out InTheLongRun's fan blog post for ideas on what type of glue to use (GemTac). Also if there were any special tips or techniques to be aware of. I used wood instead of plastic, so I was experimenting on if the glue would work the same, but great inspiration there.

Here is my original fan:
Vintage fan - (Spain)
Here are a few in-progress pics of making the fan:
First, I very, very gently removed the old fabric lace from the wooden fan slats, being careful not to break them! If I broke them, I would be in trouble. Luckily the vintage glue made it relatively ok to remove the old lace.
Vintage fan - wooden slats with old lace removed
Vintage fan old lace after removal
Top is new silk, right is old lace and left is fan slat pattern
Gluing the silk taffeta to the wood slats
Finished silk fan - ready to paint
And here is the link to the blog tutorial I did on how I re-created this fan:

Historical Sew Monthly JULY challenge:

The Challenge: Accessorize - The final touch of the right accessory creates the perfect period look.  Bring an outfit together by creating an accessory to go with your historical wardrobe.

For this challenge, I decided to tackle my first ever reproduction fan! For over a decade now, I have wanted to create a fan, especially when the opportunity presents to 'rescue' an antique or vintage fan that is pretty much destroyed (but the fan slats are still in good shape - I have a few of those: we'll see if I can bear to use these in salvage even unusable, in original condition they are still SO beautiful). I've been planning this one for over a decade, and I'm finally taking the time to research and do it!

Fabric: Silk taffeta

Pattern: The 'pattern' was made by taking apart a vintage fan and using the original fabric for the mock-up of the new/fashion fabric. Also utilized the basic fan tutorial by InTheLongRun for tips & tricks.

Year: Early 19th Century

Notions: Acrylic paints, Gem Tac glue

How historically accurate is it? Not perfect, but I would say it's similar to what an amateur would have painted for themselves at the time. The wooden fan base is just like what they would have had and created at the time, and the fabric and design, size & shape are period appropriate for early 19th century fans.

Hours to complete: Total - 1/2 hour remove old fabric, 4 hours to cut the silk, glue it all and paint it.

First worn: Will be used at the upcoming Jane Austen Ball at Gadsby's Tavern on August 8th!

Total cost: the fan was $12 on Ebay. The silk taffeta came from the stash.

Next up is August - Heirlooms and Heritage

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