Hoppo Bumpo (n): A children's game. Played by folding one's arms and hopping on one leg. Aim is to bump opponents, so that they lose their balance. Last person standing wins.

July 27, 2009

Oh, Mr Darcy ....

from: "Jane Austen's Sewing Box"

It was a moment of romantic weakness.

Asked whether I could sew a period costume, I became completely consumed in the moment. Regency period how ardently I love and admire you. I adore your beautiful gathers and drape. Swoon. Then when I came to, I had apparently agreed to sewing an Empire gown.

Given my period sewing experience is limited to one 1940's retro apron, it wouldn't be unreasonable to see trouble looming on the horizon.

Luckily I have been given a terrific pattern to sew from. Its by a company called Folkwear and I have to say that the instructions look very good. The pretty dress has a narrow bodice gathered on to a slim A-Line skirt front and side panels and has a full gathered skirt back. There are little short sleeves with a number of variations. I do note - and not without a little trepidation - that the long skirt can be varied to include a train.

Much to do in the coming weeks.

The Empire gown has quite a low cut neckline and is fitted high up under the bust, so to ensure comfort ... and modesty ... I will need to start by making a toile. This will give me the opportunity to check the fit and make any alterations using some economical calico.

I will also need to start channelling my inner Regency-era sewist.
[Fade to dream sequence, which seems to include Colin Firth]

Mr. Darcy: So this is your opinion of me. Thank you for explaining so fully. Perhaps these offences might have be overlooked had not your pride been hurt by my honesty...

Hoppo Bumpo: My pride?

Mr. Darcy: ... in pointing out that sewing a dress for someone to wear to a ball in mid-August ... is ambitious ... if not a completely crackpot idea. Could you expect me to rejoice in the inferiority of your circumstances?

Hoppo Bumpo: And those are the words of a gentleman. From the first moment I met you, your arrogance and conceit, your selfish disdain for the feelings of others made me realize that you were the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry.

Mr. Darcy: Forgive me madam, but weren't we talking about sewing .... and aren't you married to Mr Hoppo Bumpo?

Er, yes. Back to sewing.


  1. That gave me a good giggle. I do look forward to seeing the results... if you stop swooning and start sewing, that is.

  2. Ha ha ha! Can't wait to see the finished result!

  3. omilordy. that's a big one! (I enjoyed reading your post, gave me a good giggle :o) )

  4. How exciting. Please keep us updated on your progress. Like, what kind of fabric will you use?

  5. I can always count on you to make me almost wee my pants at the end of a long long day!

  6. just too good...
    love a bit of Mr Darcy...
    and will take a look at your link...
    I adore period clothes...
    Wish I could wear clothes like that all the time...

  7. LOL :D good luck with the dress!

    I'm ashamed to admit I haven't actually seen the version with Colin Firth in it, I really should try to find it soon.

  8. I am sooooooooooooooo in love with Mr. Darcy! I hope he is the one who will be modelling your regency costume! I only just watched it for the 50th time yesterday!!!

    Good luck and I can't wait to see the end result.

  9. Oh what a hoot - I cant wait to see it - I love Folkwear patterns too aren't they great!

  10. I'll be looking forward to seeing what you think of the pattern! I've been tempted by one of the blouse/shirt/dress patterns, but they are a bit pricey and I am not sure my sewing skills are up to the task. No doubt your skills are well up to it, and your opinion about the pattern will be most valuable!

  11. All good fantasies, whether they be sewing, or ahem, not, should involve Colin Firth. I try to live my life by that credo.

  12. I cannot speak well enough of your accomplishments Miss Liesl. It is without doubt, a dressmaking endeavor of which every part promises delight; and one hopes that you will be deprived of any peculiar little sewing vexations.

  13. Ah, Mr Darcy, he's featuring in my thoughts quite a lot at the moment. I have no good excuse like yours though. I've even been watching Bridget Jones as I can't just keep watching P and P over and over, can I?

  14. I'm sure you could find away to overlook the slight and marry him anyway. Oh, but then there's that Mr HB thing too... ;)

    Whenever Mister Bell sees me watching a period drama he says "Oh, Mister Darrrrcy!". My weddding dress had a Regency feel, and I told him I wasn't sure he's like it as it was a bit Jane Austen about the bosoms. He replied that the only thing he liked about Jane Austen was the bosoms. And to think she never found a suave gentleman like Mister Bell ;)

  15. LMAO!!!!! You're a classic Liesl!

  16. *grin*

    That's really ambitious, I'm not sure if I would dare to take on such a project. Very brave. I can't wait to see how it will turn out. I'm sure you'll make it wonderful!

    Good luck!

  17. Love it!

    Well, ambitious perhaps but perfectly achievable. Best of luck with the toile - I would love to see how you get along with this. I have a bit of an interest in doing something like this one day...

  18. Eh...anyone can be forgiven for losing all sense in the presence of Mr. Darcy. :p

    I used a Folkwear pattern before..was quite decent. Though, it was for a Japanese kataginu, which is basically a bunch of rectangles, and a few pleats. :lol: It looked spectacularly awesome, though!! :D


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