The Little Bodice Book (Little Costume Workbooks) Paperback – 11 Jan 1996
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From the Author
Review in Lady's Gallery Vol IV,Is2
Bonnie Holt Ambrose has been making period costumes and hats for over 22 years in her own theatrical supply company. In her Little CostumeWorkbooks she shares her simple and time-saving mathods for making hats and period clothing. Each book guides the reader step-by-step through the construction process. These small paerbacks fit comfortably in one hand. Each page covers one step og the making of a bodice or a hat. Line drawings illustrate the clear, succinct directions. The books include lists of materials and tools needed and tips on how to change the trim and the fabric to change the look and period of the project. The Little Hatmaking Book shows how to build wide brimmed turn of the century and sweetheart hats in about ten easy steps. Making a bodice is more complicated, but the simple drawings and guidance are reassuring to the novice seamstress. Thereare patterns and instructions to make Victorian, Rococo, Restoration and Elizabethan bodices with a veriety of sleeves. With these two books and a little imagination a costumer can readily create a wardrobe of outfits evoctive of several periods. Other books in the series include The Little Hatmaking Book, The Little Bodice Book, The little dressmaking book and the Little Corset construction book.
From the Back Cover
Bonnie Holt Ambrose has been designing, cutting and maintaining costumes in her own theatrical supply company for 22 years. During that time, she has discovered some time-saving and simple methods for building hats and period clothing and is sharing this knowledge in her mini-book series. Each book guides the reader through step-by-step construction with watercolor illustrations of various costume parts. Bonnie's methods have proven popular and easy-to-follow.
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Top Customer Reviews
While not entirely accurate in construction, it serves very well for the stage (especially on a minute budget or for amateur costume makers) and for simple costume needs, giving the appearance of a period correct item using very simple construction techniques.
If you are to use the bodice pattern in the book then you would need to understand drafting but you could just as easily apply the information to a commercial pattern for the same result. I often use Simplicity 2723 / 2354 (full figure) / 9713 (OOP version) for the basic bodice and skirt shapes from which to build my period dresses. (And recently worked with another pro costumer who was using the same pattern.)
I was very pleasantly surprised by how much information was contained, and it really is a starting block, once you understand how easy it is to adapt the basic pattern, your imagination can create all sorts of variations that enable you to have a host of different frock all starting from the same pattern, a great time saver in costuming.
My only disappointment is the tiny size. While it is handy and light to slip into my work-box as a reference book, it has already got lost once amongst costume paraphernalia and it is difficult to keep on a book case without it disappearing. At the moment it sits on top of the books so I don't forget its there.