How to Make a Leather Thimble || Stitch with Me Q&A

How to Make a Leather Thimble || Stitch with Me Q&A


– Ok, so this video is
maybe a little bit clickbait because I’m not actually
going to be making a thimble from scratch, I’m just going to be repairing
this old crippled beast here. My trusty thimble, that if
you’ve watched my videos you will know so well, he is
quite coming apart at the seams and is in quite some need of repair. So what I’m going to be doing today is I’m effectively going
to be making a thimble because I have to take this apart. And in the meantime I can
explain to you what I’m doing and how I did it and how one makes a nice little leather thimble. I should have it be known that
I don’t think these things are historically accurate. That is I have seen plenty of
evidence for metal thimbles throughout history but I don’t think I have come across actual
documentary evidence of leather thimbles
being used historically. There’s no reason why
they couldn’t have been. One day I shall get
around to training myself to using a metal thimble
but today is not that day. And I know a lot of other
folks out there really struggle with the use of metal thimbles, because they are a bit
difficult to get used to. Leather thimbles are so much
easier I think to adapt to especially if you’re
new to using thimbles. Thimbles are so so very important especially if you do a lot of hand sewing, because well it just saves your fingers. But also you go much
quicker and more efficiently when you use a thimble
because you’re not constantly like ouch, ouch, every stitch that you make doesn’t hurt. So that’s always nice, use thimbles. Anyway, whilst I do that I’m going to be answering some questions
because that’s a thing that I can do. I put out a notice for questions on both Instagram and YouTube. There were so many questions
and I will not have time to get to them all today. I think about half the
questions were asking me how I got into sewing,
any tips for beginners, all of that sort of, how do I start? Where do I even begin? I do have a video on like beginning sewing so I will put that in
the description below. I also in my first Q&A video that I did a couple of months ago, I did address some basic beginners
questions such as time periods to start with, easy first
project to begin with. I think I addressed some
of that more basic stuff in that video so I shall also link that. So I’m going to get started
now unpicking my thimble here. I will answer sort of
two questions at once. The first ones, how did you
get into historical sewing and when did you discover that you really enjoyed historical sewing? I’m not gonna go like way
back to the first time that I discovered that
historical stitching was a thing. Partly because I don’t remember and I make up answers
all the time in reality. Like I have no clue how I got
interested in historical dress because I feel like I’ve been interested in it my whole life. I can say for sure that for a while, I was just doing costume
and I was interested in costume making but I
actually really got interested in the historical study of dress. I spent a bit of time over in England at the School of Historical
Dress a couple of years ago. And that was like the
point of no return for me. But once I was at the school,
I was supposed to be there for I think four weeks, and
I stayed for two months. And then I went back to New York and then I went back to the school and then I came back to New York and then I went back to the school again. So I’ve just been like now
for the past couple of years, I’ve been back and forth just in New York and then going back to the
School of Historical Dress. And all of my colleagues
there are absolutely the most knowledgeable people in the world on historical dress, and they’re also passionate about this. So of course after meeting
them and getting to learn from them and work with them,
there was no turning back. This was what I had to devote
my entire life studying. I just had no clue that it
was a whole realm of study. Like people actually do
study the history of dress and that is a thing that
one can do with their lives. When I did discover that, when I did discover that
there were people out there who literally devote
their lives to studying the history of dress,
I was like oh my God, this is so cool, I wanna do this too. And so I just kind of didn’t stop. So one of the first projects
that I got to do at the school was to make a pair of pocket hoops. So that was the first garment
that I got to do original practice entirely hand stitched. I wasn’t really aware
that that was a thing. I mean vaguely because I knew that Shakespeare’s Globe did it, some of those productions had
original practice clothing. But I thought it was something
that was like impossible and only like crazy people did that. But when I tried it, I
realized that it was really, it wasn’t as hard as I thought it was. It was actually lots of
fun and I learned so much about the history, about the people who would have made those clothes and about the people who
would have worn those clothes just by getting to work
so closely with them. That’s when I discovered that
I actually really enjoy sewing because before that it
was just sort of a means to get to a final product. It was like something that had to be done in order to have the finished costume. So it was like, the sewing
was the necessary evil in order to get to the final project and I didn’t actually enjoy it. But when I started to slow down and take the time to enjoy the process, to learn from the stitches, to really feel the
history coming together, to experience what people would
have experienced in history, it was like, I mean it was time travel and it was like a sort of magic. And so that’s when I realized
oh well, the final product doesn’t actually really matter, it’s the process that’s
really interesting. And so I ended up taking
on more sewing projects, more and more and more sewing projects because I just really enjoyed
the actual process of sewing and sewing slowly and
taking my time with it and really learning from it. And that was really cool. And then I started filming
it because I found people on the internet were
saying, you’re doing what? Exactly as I thought
previously, you’re doing what? You’re hand stitching this thing, isn’t gonna take you five years? Aren’t you crazy for even trying? But as I was starting to put
my pictures on Instagram, people were realizing oh I see, like it’s not taking you so long. And people had really
genuine interested questions and so I started filming
it, and the rest is history. So someone else had asked
how I had the confidence to start making YouTube videos? I kind of didn’t. If you know me in life, you know that I am completely inarticulate, very
quiet, very socially awkward. I like don’t understand people. So the thought of me like being a youtuber was something so completely
and utterly hilarious. I never intended to like be a personality. I didn’t know I had one of those. I didn’t know I had a character, but it’s amazing what happens
when you just do a thing. You just try it. I had an instinct. Obviously I understood
that video was probably the best medium to convey
what I wanted to convey to the public in that
I want to show people how this is done, I
want to share my journey in learning the history. Because obviously I’m
not an expert at this. I never was, I still am not. Sharing still images does
restrict you after a bit. I did have a bit of a
background in video production so that helped a bit. So I understood the editing, I understood a bit of filmography I guess and it felt natural to me. It wasn’t something that I had to learn, like an entirely new
skill that I had to learn. So I just thought yeah, I’ll
just make some quick videos. And then people enjoyed watching them. So Noelle of Costuming Drama
if you watch her channel has asked and I think jokingly but I’m taking this completely seriously how has YouTube changed you? That’s how YouTube has changed
me, is because I had no clue that I had any sort of voice or character. I don’t know, any sort of personality. I’ve always been very introverted
and very very reticent and shy and don’t want to talk to people. And I still am that way
but now at least I know that there is a side of me
that can be entertaining and that I do have some
some bit of personality that people actually enjoy listening to which is extraordinary. I would have had no idea. I would have gone the rest
of my life without knowing that I have a funny accent
and that I dress cool. People generally credit the
internet with being vile but I think this corner of
the internet is an exception, because you’ve told me a
lot of really lovely things that I just had no idea. So that’s how YouTube has changed me. YouTube has also given me the
most incredible work ethic and motivation and drive. Well, I have my thimble now in two pieces as it once was originally. We shall get on with the thimble business because if you are just
here to learn about thimbles and you don’t care about my nattering then stick around for a second, and then you can go off
into the merry sunset and do whatever else
that your life demands. So when I first made this thimble, this is made of alum
tawed leather which is, it’s actually a
historically accurate method of treating leather. I did this actually at the
School of Historical Dress and the leather that we just
happened to have lying around was this historically
accurate alum tawed leather. But any thick leather will do. This has been treated with
alum and sea salt I think to make it white, at least it
was white once upon a time. Now it is sort of yellowed and
gross because I use it a lot. You really only need the
smallest scrap of leather if you are a leather worker and you’ve just got scrapped
cabbage lying around and that works too. All you
have to do is you want to work with your middle finger
because that is the finger that you will use to push the
needle through the fabric. That is the most
convenient finger to do so. Take your finger and lay on
to the edge of the leather. This is really inconvenient
because you have to work with your dominant
hand and without a thimble to be doing this whole project. So it’s a little bit of a
challenge but we shall prevail. You just want to go up
to about this joint, maybe not quite so far
but around that joint-ish, and you just trace roughly
around this finger. If you have long fingernails,
do accommodate for that because that is always a
grievance with thimbles. You may want to flare it
out a little bit at the end just so that it’s easier
to get on and off. That will be the shape of your thimble, and you just cut that out twice. And then you have the
basis of your thimble. So what we did here for this,
leather can be quite thick. What we did is we went
through with a tiny, I forget what it was. It might have been a needle
or might have been an awl or something to poke all
of these little holes before you actually
have to stitch through. Because presumably you have
to do this without a thimble which means that’s going to be
very very thick to go through and you have to use your bare hands which is really not fun. You may use pliers to
pull the needle through, that works too. Once you have your two pieces
you then will require a needle and I’m using linen thread
because it’s strong. And then whenever using linen thread, you always have to be sure
to wax the linen thread. Because linen thread, it
can shred apart quite easily so the wax just helps to keep
all of the fibers together and also helps to make it a bit stronger. So wax your linen thread. This is just some beeswax as would have been done
historically, and just get started whip stitching this
thimble all the way around. I’m just starting it
off with a little knot and I made you two of those
just so that it’s super secure because as you may observe, one’s thimble when one sews quite a bit will get a lot of wear. And then you just go through
and you whip stitch it all around the edges. And this probably won’t take a minute. It takes two seconds and then you have a lovely little thimble. This feels extremely sacrilegious
have this bare needle just against my finger. I don’t know how people do this. Ok, so a couple of people
asked if I’m going to be making any more historical to modern adaptations? Yes, I will, I’ve got one planned for when I come back from Costume College. I haven’t been doing as many
as I intended to be doing because Lady Sherlock
has literally taken up like six months of my life
which I had not anticipated. Not that I’m mad about it
because those are garments that I will wear in my everyday life but just they’re not exactly
adapted for modern wear I suppose if wearing actual
1895 clothing is not your jam. But yes, I do have
something definitely planned for end of summer and then
probably some more in future because I guess that’s what’s popular and that’s what people want to see, so I can certainly do more of that. I also, yes, to the person
who asked about blouses. I am going to be making
some blouses because I have, well I’m going to be
starting a whole series on wardrobe, on the
historical modern wardrobe and on fast fashion
because that’s something I’m really really passionate about, the ethics and sustainability of fashion because it’s one of the
most destructive industries of our modern times. And we, as people who make clothing and people who study
clothing I feel we have a bit of a responsibility
to take action against that. So what I do, I will definitely be doing a wardrobe tour video as
well as a whole series on obtaining clothing and all of that, because I have as of this year made a vow to never buy another article of clothing that I can’t confirm
is ethically produced. That eliminates pretty much
every clothing retailer, so that’s going to be a journey and I don’t have an
enormous wardrobe right now and I don’t think I ever will. I don’t like having a lot of clothing. I just don’t think that’s
useful or productive. So I will of course be
making a lot of my clothing and mending and upcycling stuff. So that’s going to be an ongoing project. There will be more videos about that and going back to blouses,
those if you have not noticed are what I wear a lot
everyday in my general life. And as you probably noticed, I wear the same like four
blouses in every single video because that’s what I own. I do want to make some more
like Edwardian inspired blouses, so that’s something that’s probably going to happen soon-ish I hope. But I’ve got projects
lined up through like the end of the year so we shall see. By the way, this is the beginning of the Costume College gala thing. I don’t generally like keeping secrets, I don’t believe in being all secretive and high and mighty about that, but I am about to release
the design announcement video for that in like two weeks. So I guess you can wait, we’ll make it more dramatic I promise, it’s maybe for the best. Dress forms, so the person looking for information on dress forms, this is actually kind
of an important topic. Because people don’t know
a lot about dress forms and it can make such a big difference in the quality of your work I think. There is a difference between a decent good-quality
dress form, a display form and a cheap quality dress form. In my opinion, having
gone through that journey it is not worth getting
a cheap dress form. They don’t work as well, they break and you end up thinking I
really should have just saved up the money for a real proper dress form. That’s my opinion. I will put the link to the website that I bought my dress form
in the description box below, not affiliated, not sponsored. But this is my dress form currently. As you can see she’s not a display form, so a display form is
meant to display clothing say for example in a store
or for photo shoot purposes and they’re not meant to be pinned into. A proper dressmaking dress
form, you will be able to pin into it which will be
hugely helpful in draping. And again I had one of those really cheap adjustable dress forms,
those are never worth it because you can always pad
dress forms to change the size but the adjustable ones
are made of plastic inside, and so you cannot pin into them and they’re also generally
really cheaply made and fall apart quite easily. So I had one of those,
it was very inexpensive and I thought oh cool, I need a dress form and I have no money and this
is cheap and it’s adjustable. So I bought it. I regret it because it
would have been just much more efficient to save up
for a real decent dress form and that obviously I
will have for a long time because this cheap dress form is quite falling apart after, well I’ve had it for about five years but in the grand scheme of human history, five years is nothing. This one, I’ve only had it for a year but she’s much more durable. You see dress forms surviving
from the Edwardian era from the 50s, from even the dress forms that we’ve got in costume
shops here locally, they last ages and you can re-cover them because they’re just fabric
and stuffing essentially. So you can take them to be re-covered and then get more use out of
them which is always nice. Do you wear pants sometimes? See I’m going to need to know
your geographical location before answering this question,
because yes in England, I wear pants. In New York, I do not own pants. What do you do with the mockup fabric after you’re done with it? I think there is an argument to be had for saving your mockups. I personally don’t do that
because I have zero space for storing anything. So what I do is I save my mockups but I put them back in the muslin pile and I recut future mock-ups out of them. So garments with big skirts
like the medieval gown, I’m still cutting mock-ups out of that. You can cut the smaller bodice pieces out of the skirt pieces. I reuse my mockup material
because it’s useful and muslin, I mean it’s fairly inexpensive but it still does add up. It is another cost. If you can reuse something, why not? Staying motivated throughout a project. Yes, this is a definite
topic to be discussed because I used to have a big problem with actually finishing
costumes and clothes. My favorite part of the process, I think is the getting the
fabric and the cutting things out and the pinning everything together. It’s all like going
really quickly and you can see the garment being
made but once you get to the little like finishing,
that’s the closures, and the hems I would just lose interest because you don’t really see
the garment coming together so dramatically and it’s
not so exhilarating. So I just kind of lose
interest and then not finish it for months and months and
months until I realize like oh wait, I actually want
to wear this like next week so let’s finish it. This may or may not work for everyone but posting my progress on
the internet in real time has fully cured that. Because I am aware now that
I have all these people on the internet waiting to
see the finished project, I have to finish it. That definitely helps for me. It won’t work for everyone because some people just can’t cope with that level of stress. Or for whatever reason, you
actually can’t finish a project, you just don’t want to have that feeling of letting everyone down. I get that, don’t do that if you are prone to
those types of feelings but maybe give it a try because that has most
definitely helped me. In that vein, someone has
asked how I manage my schedule to be so productive? This is something I am so
passionate about, productivity. Maybe don’t try this at home. If you are not cut out to
be this kind of person, don’t try this at home,
but the way that I exist is that my primary reason
for existing is to make stuff and to do stuff and
essentially like for my work and for my career. So if I’m not doing stuff,
then I just don’t feel like I have a purpose, I’m constantly planning and thinking and doing and how can I use my time most efficiently
so that I can maximize what I accomplish in a day or whatever. Productivity is something
that really really excites me. But it’s also of course
something that works differently for every person. Every person works differently,
every person has methods that work better for them. I did here once, successful
people never make to-do lists or something because it nails you down to stupid menial tasks that
are on your to-do list. I tried doing that once and it didn’t work because I thrive on to-do lists, I thrive on that feeling
of being able to cross something off the list. So I’ll put everything on the to-do list, every little tiny like incremental detail but I just find that it
gives me that momentum of like look at me being so productive and accomplishing so much,
I can accomplish more. I like to sort of schedule my days. Again this won’t work for everyone because everyone has
different personality types. This is just how my personality works. So I will have my to-do
lists, I will have the things that I want to accomplish. Well, I have two calendars. I’ve got one like big month-long calendar where I put deadlines
and big sort of events of film this video, release this video, I’ve got this meeting or this thing that I’ve got to do this, whatever it is. But then I also have a
separate weekly to-do list where I put day-to-day, what I want to accomplish on every day that will get me to those
deadlines comfortably. Because it is a huge
stress reliever to know that yes you have this big
deadline happening on the 22nd. However, you have also mapped
out day to day your week of exactly what you’re going to accomplish on every day in order to
get yourself from point A to the completed deadline,
preferably a day or two before the deadline so that you have a little bit of breathing
room if for some reason you aren’t able to accomplish
everything on one day. It just takes all of the
stress out of the deadlines if you know oh yes, this
will be accomplished because I know exactly,
in tiny little increments exactly what I’m going
to be doing every day in order to get to that deadline. It’s probably a little bit
retentive to be doing that but that’s what works for me. That is not to say that I
don’t have like moments, minutes, an hour or two during the day where I’m just like why did I just spend an hour scrolling through Instagram? And I sort of often will
beat myself up about that, like I’ve just wasted
an hour doing something really stupid and useless on the internet. But it’s also important to remember and I have to remind myself
of this every day of my life, that humans are not meant to work every waking hour of the day. It actually helps you
to have a bit of time when your brain just shuts off for a bit and scrolls aimlessly through
Instagram or whatever. I think it just helps to put your brain in a different thinking pattern briefly before you have to refocus again on what you’re supposed to be doing. I’m not sure if that was helpful at all. To answer the question about my vocabulary which I shall reluctantly do on behalf of the thousands of people
that commented solely on my manner of speech
in that corset video, not actually on the content itself, the only reason that I have
any sort of awareness of words and what they mean and how to use them is because I read so much,
like a ridiculous amount. I don’t do this now that I actually have a self-employment job and
my time is my business. But I used to read about
75 to 80 books a year. I’m like a really slow reader too. So I would spend about
three, ideally four hours in the morning before I went
to class just reading books. Again, this is all down to
self-discipline and productivity is that I would schedule
this is my reading time. It doesn’t have to be three or four hours but at least, I’d have
at least one hour or two of reading a day. It was just something that
I found was really important and that I could feel was benefiting me. And of course, there were
so many books that I wanted to read so it was like something that was obviously important
to the progression of my life. So it’s something that I carved
out the time for and I did. That’s what you have to do. If there’s something
that you want to do is you just have to, I mean Cathy Hay, has a whole video on this and
I shall link that down below. But it’s the same, if you ask
anyone who accomplishes stuff amongst a busy schedule,
it’s exactly the same. Just make the time to do it. No matter how small the amount of time is, if it’s an hour, if it’s half an hour, whatever it is you just do it. There’s no excuse, you just do it. We all have busy lives. Your busyness is no different
from my busyness, we all, just do it. So back to the question
of vocabulary, yes. Reading is probably I think
the best way to do that is to learn words and
that, and all that I say distinctly not using
words correctly at all. Read books, read so many books. I’m always reading a
nonfiction and a fiction sort of simultaneously because obviously nonfiction feels productive, it feels like you’re learning something. And a lot of people have
a problem with fiction because they don’t feel
that it’s a productive use of their time and I used to
feel that way for a long time. However, I have come
to realize that fiction is hugely important
in, well in vocabulary, in sentence structure,
in character development, in human psychology and storytelling. It teaches you all these
sort of sort of creative and imaginative and just like
self-constructive elements of life but it is quite safe to say that if I were not such a
voracious reader as I am, these videos would not be
what they are right now. Because I am such a strong believer in the power of storytelling and not just conveying
information in a linear and perfunctory fashion,
but in actually making it into a story, in having a
character, in having a plotline, in having points of
dramatic action and emotion and connecting with the reader, having like a narrative to the videos that just make them so
much more like stories and make them so much more interesting. So that’s something that’s
all been taught to me through books and through reading. What I primarily read fiction wise and when I read a lot when I was younger is 19th century fiction obviously. Jane Eyre, Great Expectations,
the Dickens and the Brontë and Edgar Allan Poe and Sherlock Holmes and all those like classic
19th century stories that just sort of like immerse you in this world of language
in the 19th century. And you just sort of
pick it up after a while. So people think that’s
strange and unusual today because it kind of is. It’s just so natural to me
because I’m just so used to hearing it in my head all the time. So yeah, read a lot of stuff. And if you’re having trouble
staying motivated to read, I highly recommend getting on Goodreads. This is not sponsored just by the way. Goodreads, it’s basically a
social media but it allows you to sort of track what you’re reading and say this is what I’m
reading now and have friends and be able to see what they’re reading and what they thought of a book, and oh I want to read this and add things to your to be read list and
you can have reading goals, if I want to read this many books per year and it’s so satisfying. I just love books, Ok? Ok, well I have finished
my thimble by the way. Here’s my thimble, it
is all nice and fixed. It looks exactly as it did before because it’s exactly how
I made it before but yeah, that’s how you make a thimble
in case you were curious. And now I have nothing else to sew. I guess I shall sit back and
answer some questions now. What was my job before YouTube? I’ve said this multiple times. I worked in theatrical costuming,
not as a costume maker, this is the clarification. I did not actually make the costumes, I worked on design teams. So I worked on the teams that
worked with the designers to actually design the
clothes and facilitate them getting made in costume shops. I did not make the clothes. It was it was a fun job, I
really enjoyed it while I did it but if you’re working
with historical costumes you always have to adapt
them for quick changes, for dance numbers, for
actors, for producers who want things modern but
it’s still a historical show. That was less fulfilling
than actually reproducing actual period historical clothing. That’s kind of why I got out of it. In that vein someone has asked my opinion on the importance of historical accuracy. I have said this before,
I will say this again. There’s no such thing
as historical accuracy. There’s absolutely no way
that we can know for certain that things were done in this
particular way in history. None of us survived really in the periods that I work in generally to tell us yeah, this is how we did it. It’s just kind of impossible
to completely recreate the atmosphere of how and
where and when someone would have been working. So for example if I’m recreating something from the 18th century, the reality is, I’m several stories off the
ground of the earth right now in a steel and glass and
drywall or whatever apartment that would not have existed
in the 18th century. I’m in a temperature-controlled
electrically lit room, I’ve got Wi-Fi on happening in
the room which goodness knows what that’s doing. I’m just surrounded by
things that visually would not have existed
in the 18th century, so I’m not really in the mindset
of an 18th century tailor or stay maker or whatever
it is that I’m recreating. There’s no possible way
that we can recreate history and the environments in which
these clothes were made. And then it comes down to
things like tools and materials that you just can’t get nowadays. So to say something is
historically accurate, like I work only historically accurately, it’s kind of false, it’s kind of a lie. Because we can really
try, we can make an effort and that’s what I like
to do, is I like to try my absolute best with the
materials that are available to me today to try and
gain a vague understanding of how clothes were made
and worn in history. That’s what interests me. I don’t make clothes like for funsies. I’m not a dressmaker, I don’t
make things to have a thing, I make things to learn. If I can use the materials
that are available to me today in order to facilitate that
learning, that is cool. That being said there is no
excuse for blatant inaccuracy for things we know with relative certainty did not exist in history or were not called something in history or were not used in this
specific way in history, there’s no excuse to be
perpetuating that I think. So in a lot of period dramas when, someone has asked biggest
historical fashion faux-pas. Someone please roast my pronunciation of that in the comments. So when period dramas
and these costume dramas blatantly get information wrong, that’s what makes me scream. Biggest I think number
one, grievance for me, well the whole realm of
corsetry just generally is a huge nerve point for me. When they are calling
corsets, stays corsets and getting the terminology incorrect when the scholarship is out
there, it’s very obvious people just didn’t do the research. When they don’t where chemises or shifts underneath their corsets. Why? Have you ever worn a corset? Have you ever worn anything
tight around your middle without something underneath? It’s mega uncomfortable. And then you’ve got all
the actresses going on their talk shows complaining about how uncomfortable the corsets are. Well, no wonder because
they weren’t worn properly. But anyway this is all
topic for a different video. I think I’ve got two more
corset myths videos in the works because there’s just so
much that can be said. The other thing that
is blatantly incorrect in a lot of period dramas,
is the hair and makeup. It’s astounding how much
people don’t even try. Sometimes it’s done deliberately because I guess people really
like their modern aesthetics, especially a lot of actors are really used to having their face and hair
made up in a specific way. Shows like, I’m gonna
call out Mr. Selfridge. I adore that show but the hair and makeup is astoundingly bad and I get it. Because in some periods
where makeup wasn’t a thing, people don’t want to appear
on camera without makeup, I guess that’s fine. But if anything it’s a conscious choice then fine, it’s art I guess, whatever, what are we really doing here anyway. And this applies to costuming too. To go through so much
effort in the clothing and then pay no attention
to the hair and makeup, it does really make a big difference in the overall look of the garment. That and the foundations. If you don’t get the foundations right, if you don’t get the
hair and makeup right, then I mean the look will
just never be correct. It will never even look vaguely correct. What would your reaction be if you woke up and it was the 1910s? (stirring music) Ok, there were so many questions relating to Gentleman Jack. Therein lies a historical drama that is actually really really well done. I am so trash for that show. They had my heart from
the hand worked eyelets and the hand done buttons from
the very opening sequence. I don’t have any immediate
plans to recreate anything from Gentleman Jack. Primarily because a very
specific somebody else would be better off doing that I think. Do you think you’re going to experiment with more medieval clothing? Yes, one of my projects
before the end of this year is another well, two, ’cause
it’s layered medieval project. It is very very very early. That’s to come, yeah. A lot of people were like,
what are you gonna do when Lady Sherlock is done? Don’t worry, I’ve got
so many project plans. I’m not falling off the
face of the internet Lady Sherlock is done,
I’ve got other projects that hopefully people will
be just as excited about. So yeah, stay tuned I guess. What’s a project you don’t
feel you have the skill for yet but it’s something and then
the question gets cut off because I think my phone is to ancient to show the full question. I don’t necessarily have an
actual answer for this question because I don’t feel like I’m
skilled enough for anything before I actually start it. But I wanted to answer this
because it brings up a story in that when I was first starting a medieval project last
year, I knew I wanted to do something of the medieval era because that’s something
that I was interested in. I wanted to do a project from that era. And I was looking through images and I found the image of the St. George slaying
the dragon picture that I ended up using as my actual gown
reference, spoiler alert. But I came across a picture
and I thought oh that gown is so lovely and I
immediately thought great, I’ll put it away for one
day when I have the skill to do that dress because I don’t feel like I can do that right now. And
then I looked at it some more. Yeah, it looked
complicated but I realized, do I really not have the skill to do this or am I just sort of doubting
myself unnecessarily? So I thought let’s do an
experiment and let’s try. Let’s just try and make this thing. It involved draping because I didn’t have an actual surviving pattern. Draping something wasn’t something
I was hugely confident in but I thought you know
what, let’s just do it, let’s see what happens. I mean the gown has its problems still. As you know, we look at
our finished projects and always and think that. But I do remember having
this overwhelming feeling of incredible satisfaction
and pride and that wow, I made this dress and
it’s not complete garbage and I didn’t think I could do it. I was gonna put this away for a day when I thought I had more skill. I feel like I do come across
projects like that still but the reality is if you have something that’s interesting to you now, it’s probably not going
to be interesting to you in a couple of years. You’re gonna have other
projects that are exciting you. So I think it’s interesting
you now for a reason, it’s a project that you’re meant to do and that it’s going to
push your skill level and ultimately teach you
some new stuff. Do it. And if you don’t know the skill, if you know there’s a
particular bit of a garment that you aren’t quite sure about and you don’t think you have the skills to necessarily execute, where can you go to learn those skills? Making those types of
garments are the ones that teach you so much, as
opposed to making something that you know how to make,
that you’ve made before and it’s just sort of
exercising skills you have instead of teaching you new skills. I sometimes see clothing
in a museum setting and I really want to look
on the inside of them. How does one ask, whom does one ask? So museums are an interesting world. They vary on permissions and friendliness. Generally, the bigger
museums are not going to be as useful to you. Some of them nowadays are starting to have more open access policies which means you don’t
have to have fancy degrees or fancy reputations in
order to go make appointments and see clothes. However, they are very very limited now because of the quantity of people that are making these appointments. So you have a limited amount of time, you can’t touch the clothes. There are all these restrictions. So that’s a little bit limiting. I know like the Met which has
such a fantastic collection and it’s literally down the street for me but a lot of people do ask me
why don’t you go to the Met and actually see the garment? Well, because it will take me six months to get an appointment and
then I will only be able to see it for two hours and
I won’t be able to touch it. So it’s like I need to finish
this garment by next month. It can be a little bit tricky but smaller museums are your best friend. Those are collections
generally run by people who are really passionate
about the collections, not that bigger museums aren’t
but not as many people go to ask for appointments
to see those garments. So they are more ready
to allow more people who are just purely enthusiastic
about the clothes in to see the clothes. Especially in the UK. UK, small museums tend to be
really really really friendly which is fantastic. Small museums are your best bet. Ok, I just had to change both of my batteries on
everything, so we’re back. How is the synthetic baleen in your Lady Sherlock corset holding up? Modern-day corset wearers
tend to avoid plastic boning because it can warp from your body heat or stress put on them and
then just stay that way, and my own experience bears that out. This is a very very common misconception and it comes from and I’m
quoting entirely Cathy Hay here who runs the corset
maker’s community online for people who are going
through the same journey and discovering this. It comes from a lot of
cheap corset manufacturers putting cheap plastic
boning in their corsets. And so people have sort of
equated plastic with cheapness and inferior quality whereas
steel is strong and durable and is the best quality,
not necessarily true. The type of synthetic
baleen that is produced to mimic actual baleen that
we use in reconstruction work, it is nearly identical in
texture and in flexibility and in behavior to historical whale bone. And plot-twist, there’s a
lot less steel in corsetry than you think there is. I’m about to put out
a whole video on this. Whale bone is pliable, it’s flexible and plastic synthetic
baleen actually behaves just like historical
baleen in that it does. Yes, it does warp out of shape
with the heat of your body but it’s supposed to do that because it’s supposed to conform
to the shape of your body. It’s not supposed to warp
into some random shape. If you’re wearing it
and if you are heated, it’s going to mold that plastic baleen just as historical whale
bone would have been molded to the shape of your body which is the more historically correct and is arguably the more
comfortable way to wear a corset. There is a difference
between cheap plastic boning and synthetic baleen. Always get synthetic baleen. This is a whole journey
that the folks over at Foundations Revealed have discovered because it is a really interesting mix between historical costumers and modern fashion corset makers. And so a lot of these modern corset makers who did have these misconceptions
about synthetic baleen are starting to now learn
through the historical costumers that synthetic baleen
actually is hugely beneficial in the weight, in the flexibility, in the lightness of a corset. It have to be this rigid sort of armor. It can be light and
flexible and comfortable. Same though, honestly same. Ok, a lot of questions about research. Research is one of my most
favorite things in the world. And yeah, ok, resources are a thing that I should definitely be sharing. I always put my resources,
my most primary things that helped me with the
research in a video, in the description of the video. Ok, but how do you find Bertha Banner? How do you find the Keystone
Guide to begin with? Google Books and Google
Scholar are your best friends. If you don’t know, in Google
where you click on images, shopping, whatever else,
video, there is an option. It’s like way kind of like in other because no one ever goes in there, but like Google Books and Google Scholar are basically databases that only show you digitized online versions of things. That’s how I found Bertha
Banner, that’s how I found, no, that’s not how I
found the Keystone Guide ’cause that’s in the
Library of Congress website. I mean knowing what to google is I suppose an art in and of itself but
I put in sewing guide 1890 and it came up with Bertha
Banner which was hugely helpful. Because she’s now one of my bibles, like one of my primary
resources for 1890s sewing. But the New York Public Library, you may or may not have access to it if you’re not a local
New Yorker and don’t have a library card number. If you have a library go to
the library, get a library card and make sure it has a number. You can access the world with
a library card number for free but the New York Public
Library has so many resources, so many books. A lot of them have been digitized, so I can just access them
right here from my desk or I can actually go to
the library and say hey, can I see this 19th century sewing manual? And they’ll say yeah, here you go. And they’ll let you see it for free. But also through, I think it was through the New York Public Library because I used my library
card number to look in the Gale Group. All these academic research
databases are fantastic. Some of them cost money. If you’re at a university you probably have access to it for free. And if you have a library, you may be able to access it for free. So the Gale group 19th
century collection’s online, that was a huge help in a recent research project that I did. All I had to do was put
in my library card number and suddenly I could access every women’s and domestic magazine
from the 19th century that I could possibly dream
of and I could just put in like corset cover, and it would bring up that keyword corset
cover in every article, in every advertisement,
in every whatever-it-is, publication that is digitized in their collection online for free. The 19th century is probably
one of my favorite periods to research because of
the amount of information that there is. Obviously things get lost, things weren’t printed
as regularly before then but the amount of ladies
magazines and domestic magazines published in the 19th century
is absolutely astounding. And these magazines give you
a really fantastic picture of what life was like during those times so you can look at magazines
published in the year 1908 month to month to month and
see what was being advertised, the little correspondence
columns of people giving advice or people having announcements or people just writing about
things about their lives, having questions, having opinions and writing really vehement opinions about corsets or whatever. It really gives you an interesting picture of what everyday life
was like contextually in these periods. Not this war happened or
this politician was a thing and it’s like a written history but it’s like these are real people, this is what they’re interested in, this is what they’re passionate about, this is what they’re buying. It’s so cool, look at magazines definitely if you’re in the 19th century. Also in the 18th century too, there were some great
ones in the 18th century. But it does help to have terms to Google, to have actual specific keywords. You’re not just looking
for 19th century corset or like corset 1890s corset because that will pull
up all sorts of stuff. But to have keywords like
ok, first take a step back and go are there any brand names? Who was making the corset? Royal Worcester was of course
the manufacturer in the US. The Symington Collection
was a corset manufacturer in obviously Midlands England. So having those names,
those manufacturer’s names are sort of key because then you could say Symington Corset 1890
and that will pull up more targeted results. Someone with their Steampunk inspired Victorian corset project blog is not going to be putting the word
Symington in that blog. And so that’s not going to come up, it just filters out all of
those less serious results and gives you more specific results. So knowing what to google,
having specific keywords, that’s really helpful, I hope that helps. Research is so so so super important and it’s so much fun. But then again maybe that’s why I’m here. Maybe that’s why I exist
is to bring you fun facts and to go and do this research if you don’t necessarily have the time or the interest in doing it but yeah. Incidentally, to the person who asked about South African specific
19th century research, I came across an overwhelming
number of South Africa and I think somewhere else
like Zimbabwe or something, local magazines in the 19th century on this Gale Group 19th
century collection online. I will have a link to that below. You will need a library card to access it but what you could also do is try googling domestic magazines,
ladies magazines 1890s and see if you can get
like a concise list, like a Wikipedia list of
the names of magazines that were running in your
region in that period so that you can then use
those keywords to search. So The Designer and Lady’s Magazine, 1895 and that will give you a more
targeted search endeavor. Hope that helps. Do you have any channel recommendations for historical costumers? Yes, I adore this community so much. Morgan Donner, I adore her videos. She does primarily, primarily I wanna say, medieval and early Renaissance. She’s in the Society
for Creative Anachronism so she does like reenactment type stuff. She’s really cool, I adore her. She also does other stuff
like 1920s and Mrs. Maisel. She does all sorts of stuff but primarily her interest is
medieval which is really cool. There were a number of you asking about medieval projects
on my thing, so yeah. If you like medieval,
definitely go check her out. There’s also Marika of
Enchanted Rose Costumes. She tends to do like big projects and then build them layer by layer. So she just did this massive 18th century robe à la francaise project which was amazing. She’s trained in
theatrical costume making. I think she does incorporate
a remarkable amount of historical techniques in
her work which is super cool. But she also does things
completely practically. So if you’re watching my
videos and you’re like but how do you actually do this efficiently? Then go check out Marika,
she’s really cool. Noelle of Costuming Drama,
I adore Noelle so much. We met last year at Costume College. And she had another vlog channel but she just transferred over
to just doing sewing vlogs. So she actually is a real human being in front of the camera and
she does vlog projects. So she’s working on like 12 projects at the same time right now
and she’s vlogging weekly on her progress and doing pattern reviews and all sorts of stuff. So she’s really cool, I adore her too. I adore everyone. Obviously we have to give a shout, she’s not a historical
costumer, but to our Meme Mom, Karolina Żebrowska. She doesn’t make clothing
but she does a lot of historical fashion,
historical costuming discussion which is also super important, because myth-busting is always nice. Definitely go check out Karolina. If for some reason you are
watching my videos and not hers, she is the queen. I must give a shout to my very
very most special Cathy Hay. She’s doing a little bit
more sewing content now but she primarily does more like ok, so you have the skills,
you have the pattern, you have the research but
you have this paralyzing fear of actually cutting into the fabric. She takes these extremely
relatable problems and issues that we have as creative people and she gives you inspiration and tips on how to get past them
and how to solve them which is such a life saver. I watch her videos more than
I should probably admit. I’m a little bit biased because she’s also my favorite human being
on the face of the planet. But they’re so encouraging
and they’re so helpful and she talks to you like you’re
just a very special friend just sitting right there,
and whatever project it is that you’re working on is important and it’s important to you and
it’s important to the world and here’s why you should do it. It’s so encouraging. If you are a craftsperson,
if you are a creative and you need a bit of
encouragement, I know we all do, go check out Cathy Hay. Put yourself down in the comments or put someone else down in the comments if I’ve forgotten them,
and I will put them in the description because
there are a lot of people doing some really cool
stuff on YouTube, and yeah. In that vein someone has asked I’ve been trying to film
projects but then trying to edit kills me. I don’t know what the rest of this says but I’m guessing it’s editing. This is something that a lot
of people don’t think about and it’s something that’s sort
of a really important aspect of making videos for YouTube. Sewing videos especially. I do say that if you want to be on YouTube doing sewing stuff or creative
stuff or whatever it is, do it, it’s the most
magical thing in the world. However, you must be
prepared that the editing, that the video production, that the whole practical
execution of video is a whole other skillset
and it’s a whole other hobby. It takes just as much
time to edit the videos, to film the videos, to set up the shots, to write the scripts, to
record the voiceovers. It takes just as much time as
actually making the content, the actual garment that is the content. So you effectively have
two hobbies, two skillsets that you need to practice simultaneously and the editing is part of that. People don’t often think
about that when they say I want to make sewing videos on YouTube. They don’t think about
the fact that the editing is such a huge part of having videos. The way you cut together
your videos is the way you tell the story and
that’s what makes them interesting to people. That’s what conveys your character, that’s what conveys the
story of the garment. It’s so important. Obviously again I had some
background in video production so it was something that I
was comfortable with already. It can be really frustrating
if you don’t know how to do something. If you are looking to get
into video production, my strong recommendation
would be to do your research as with anything. Do your research, watch
tutorials, learn the software. Watch other youtubers. Who are your favorite youtubers
that are really engaging, that produce really good content and how do they edit their videos? Because editing is usually
something you don’t notice unless it’s really poorly done. But who’s on YouTube making
videos that really captivate you and make a conscious
effort to pay attention? Where are they cutting? What are their angles like? What is the lighting like? I’m not saying do this to my videos because I don’t think
my videos are as good as they should be. When I
first started my channel and this was another
question someone had asked, who were your YouTube inspirations before you started making videos? I had the idea for this
channel about four days before I was set to leave
for England for three months. So from the moment of having
this really inspirational, passionate idea of oh my god, I have to start a YouTube
channel for the historical sewing to I can actually sit down
and start this right now, there were three months of not being able to do anything but research. I think that helps me so much
because it forced me to stop, take a moment and think about this practically and logically, how are we gonna do this? And I watched so many videos, like an unhealthy amount of videos. I’m not saying do this. I had a lot of hand sewing
to do, keep in mind. I had sort of a study
selection of youtubers. So people from different genres. So I had Evan Edinger’s travel channel. I had Ruby Granger’s study videos. I had Sasha Alsberg’s Booktube videos. I had of course Morgan Donner and Enchanted Rose Costumes and Karolina because I adored their videos. I had dodie who is a
musician, I think that’s all. But it’s essentially people
who are really popular now and who are making videos
that I really enjoyed, I went through and I
watched every single video on their channel from
video number one start date seven years ago or whatever
to the present day. It’s hugely time-consuming and I don’t say that you have to do that unless you have an inordinate amount of
hand sewing to be doing. But I learned so much,
about where they started, what their videos looked
like when they started, where their videos started to improve, where my attention
started to actually engage and not like oh my god, why
am I sitting through this? What their videos looked like when I started to pay attention, what their videos looked
like when they started to get popular because
usually they would say oh my God, I can’t believe
there are 5,000 people here now and where they are now. It was so enlightening. Yeah, research, research
is hugely important as we have learned. Your videos are always a delight, but more guinea pig content? Well, I’m always happy to oblige with guinea pig content, right? Right? Yeah. Hello guinea pig content,
hello guinea pig content. Who’s a good boy? Ooh! This is Cesario, he’s called Cesario because when I first got
him, he was labeled as a her and so I called her Viola. So if you know Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night then you will be very familiar
with the obvious choice of action when I discovered
that she was a he and that I had to call her Cesario after of course the character Viola who proceeds to disguise
herself as a man, Cesario. I thoroughly brought
that upon myself I think. Ok, and finally I suppose I shall endeavor to answer one of those many questions of what is your best tip to someone who is just beginning sewing? There were so many of these and I get this question
in my Instagram DM box at least five times a week. It’s such a broad general question, it’s sort of difficult to answer. What is the one thing that
you can respond to concisely that won’t take you
half an hour of your day to actually respond to that
will actually be useful? If you were sending me this DM
asking for tips for beginners any advice for beginners I
will give you this answer. One, pay attention to
the grain of your fabric. That is a hugely important thing. The way that the fabric is woven
sort of crosswise this way, the warp, the long grain
against the selvedge is stronger than the cross grain weft. So if you’re using a
pattern and it tells you to cut things on the straight grain, make sure it’s cut on the straight grain. Make sure it’s cut on
the actual straight grain and it’s not deviating ever
so slightly onto the bias because once you start
getting into the bias, once you start getting off that grid, things start to stretch and warp and that can cause wrinkles
and funny things happening. So yeah, pay attention to your grain and always use a thimble. Always use a thimble. See now Cesario has
fallen asleep on my lap and I forever cannot move. I am trapped forever.

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

100 Comments

  1. I just came across this chap on the news (UK) had to immediately repost as thought of these videos
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-england-sussex-48757020/the-brighton-tailor-whose-identity-became-his-business

  2. I'm trying to make bloomer/panties if that makes any sense. Many, many years ago, I saw a B/W movie that took place in the 1900-1920's about an heiress but what caught my attention was that she had her panties done by nuns in the nearby convent. They showed the folded and unfolded panties which looked like present day silk shorts but had button closures instead of elastic. They almost look like sleeping silk shorts but have the construction of panties. Do you know how to make these? I really would like to make a pair..how to measure etc. Could you help me? Thanks again for your videos.

  3. I have to thank you today for being my craft partner, I am crocheting a shawl with chunky yarn. (had to give up on the cape idea because of my selection of yarn😭)
    It helps to have someone yammer in passion over their project while you are in the middle of doing your own.

  4. Aargh, I didn't see the announcement for this and probably wouldn't have thought of this anyway until I saw it in the video, but do you, or anyone else reading this, have recommendations for people making mens clothing? I mean, I love watching your videos but in terms of encouragingness I think seeing somebody making mens clothing is more encouraging for me because it is something I could see myself wear.

  5. I found your channel after watching a ton of historical fashion videos. I love your videos, and this video is by far my favorite. Books are the best; I use to always have a book in my hand. I’m in the process of recovering from a brain injury, and sewing has helped with the recovery process. Thank you for the list of people to follow, the visual aspect helps so, so much!!!

  6. Bernadette, five minutes in I had to pause your video to comment. I understand all that you say about how you thought of yourself and interacted with the world and that YT has giving you the opportunity to share a part of yourself that you didn’t know existed. I suspect that part of it is because you don’t have to interact with all of your followers in one on one or group situations; you decide what you give out to the world, how you respond to people, and your introvert self isn’t overwhelmed. Just my thoughts! I very much enjoy your corner of the internet. I have several others unrelated and it is such a lovely feeling to know that those havens are there. 😁❤️

  7. HI Bernadette,
    I think it's the first time I wrote to you even if I've been following you since I stumble into your video on historical stitching. I absolutely love it as it's really a reflection how to do something from the research until the end.

    If you don't mind asking you a small question, what would be the best fabric to practice hand sewing as I'm absolutely crap at it. Thanks and continue this wonderful channel.

    P.S. : Sorry for any mistake in spelling or grammar as I'm a French girl.

    RP.S. : I love you accent it remind me England.

  8. Would you mind making a short video on how to use a thimble? I just can't seem to get the hang of it.

  9. Do you know what legality issues there would be if someone wanted to make videos like yours but with texts/references that aren’t public domain?

  10. Oh Bernadette you’re a light to this world. Funny thing, when I discovered your channel I went back and watched all your old videos, and in one video (I think it was the Sewing in the Park one) you discussed making your thimble, I ran out that very minute and went and bought some leather to make me and my godmother a leather thimble. I had no awl or any knowledge but just set in. I used a squat, thick embroidery needle and used a norton anthology book, to back the needle because I didn’t have a thimble. 😂😂😂 Now my copy of the Dead by Joyce has little stabby bits all over it.

  11. In case no one else has posted this information–anyone living in New York State can get a NY Public Library card, and have access to the catalog including electronic resources. BTW my daughter lives in England and the pants issue tripped her up a few times 🙂

  12. About "Gentleman Jack," I am in complete adoration of that series as well.

    with regards to "fear of cutting into the fabric," thank you so much for mentioning that. It is my biggest hinderance. I am definitely heading over to Miss Hay's channel tonight.

  13. what do you mean Karolina is not a historical costumer? 😱 she has literally made dozens of historical costumes!

  14. 28:16… I laughed so hard at your rage. And I do agree, its annoying when you A: see inaccuracies, and B: when people complain about wearing something… and they are wearing it wrong and thats why its a complaint.

  15. Thanks for posting. I'm so happy to hear that the internet has been kind to you, and hope it continues to be. This is the 2nd of your videos i'm watching and you're totally inspiring. I hope I do start sewing some day, it's one of the many, many, many things I want to get back to.

  16. Dress forms may be built at home. You can get super customizable. Can’t wait to see your dress forms. ❤️❤️❤️

  17. I was listening to you talking about books and reading and thought "Hey, maybe I can find Bernadette on Goodreads and follow her there" and paused the video and wrote you a message there and then came back to the video and you mentioned Goodreads and it felt like an anvil fell on my head (like they generally do in cartoons)… That is all. As always, love your work.

  18. Since you often make things from "cabbage", would you be willing to sew a dress from cabbage leaves during your next Q&A video, in a similar vein as the potato skin tunic you made several months ago?

  19. I found the banner book on amazon for 12$, the keystone for 11$, so if you can afford that. I prefer paperbook references, so I'm definitely getting them.

  20. On the topic on how you speak and your vocabulary, this is one major reason why I enjoy watching and just listening to your video. I only have some interest in period clothing and I probably will never learn to make clothing of any kind, but your videos and how you narrate through them are highly enjoyable. A lovely companion to listen to during a busy day of work in front of a computer all day, far better than many podcast and audio books. On that note, any plans on creating a podcast like so many popular channel?

  21. I love watching your videos, today I was cleaning my garage well listening to you talk and it was great and kind of relaxing even with all the heavy lifting I had to do.

  22. You and Cathy Hay have honestly been helping me so much with sorting out, and getting past some of the various junk that swirls around my head constantly and prevents me from "making all the things!" and "reading all the books!" and allowing myself to be the full-fledged specifically-interested hermity weirdo I am meant and actively want to be B:
    Thank you for putting yourself out there, it's been absolutely wonderful to watch <3

  23. Stumbled across this video- I am thoroughly obsessed with you. I am a Couture Fitting Tailor currently in West Hollywood primarily on wedding gowns. Nearly all of my Tailoring is hand sewing 🧵 ✂️♥️ so it feels like a clandestine virtual meeting 🥰 I am a historical nerd anything from Austen to Dickens. Thank you for your fabulous channel.

  24. For weeks now I have not had time to watch your videos, but today I watched three of them instead. While making the pattern for and cutting out the first pieces of a medieval dress. You inspire me so much and it is so fun to actually have time to make stuff again after som busy weeks.

  25. watching this channel made me better at sewing…. not because i actually followed the patterns and practiced anything you show, but because occasionally I make plushies and I want to use the machine for everything and then I think "This crazy lazy hand-stitched an entire dress, you can sit down and make a monkey look slightly nicer."

  26. I'm so excited to hear you'll be doing a medieval project! The LARP that I go to is set exactly 800 years ago (so we're currently in 1219), and I've been wanting to make my own costumes since I started watching your videos. So much of the costuming at our game is hundreds of years more modern than our setting, but I think it would be really interesting to do an original practice garment from the time period.

  27. I confess that I just can't tolerate thimbles at all. I can't stand the feel of them, I can't stand the weight of them. I never, EVER use anything but my forefinger or thumb to push the needle through the fabric, and if I have a tough spot that needs a bit of extra oomph, the thimble is only on long enough to push it through, and then I"m ripping it off my finger again.

    I understand WHY they are supposed to be helpful, and WHY people do wear them. However, they completely get in the way for me, no matter what type I use or how I use it or what it's made of or how I wear it. I can't stand the feel of it, I can't stand the bulk of it (and I even made my own out of leather about five years ago), and I just cannot deal with it.

    I honestly just can not figure out how people tolerate these things. I've been hand sewing for probably 10 years now, through all sorts of fabrics and material. I only break my thimble out with a really tough piece of cloth, and I just can't stand having it on my finger any longer than absolutely necessary. It's so distracting and uncomfortable and RESTRICTIVE of my movement that it makes me crazy! I will never understand how anyone can use these things! LOL

  28. Had to google thimble. Literal translation for me: finger hat. You should use that one.

    But not the one for sewing. It translates to …. sewing without thread…. For mummies and daddies only. Sewing work is the proper one.

  29. I did my first pocket a few days ago thanks to your pocket video!! It’s far from perfect, but I’m so proud of it, especially since I don’t really know anything about sewing! Thank you for sharing all your wisdom! 💕

  30. I use a metal thimble. They are kinda slippery, so finding one that fits just right is important. Here’s a tip, depending on your level of comfort with this type of thing: lick your finger before you put the metal thimble on and it sticks better. It’s not original practice, but I love the Clover one that is a hybrid: metal top with a frilly silicon “skirt”. It’s very steampunk (rivets)!!! It stays in place and really let’s you drive a stitch. I haven’t tried it on anything really heavyweight as I’m I quilter. LOVING Lady Sherlock!

    If you like podcasts… have you tried “Dressed”?

  31. Hi Bernadette! I haven't ever commented before because I'm not interested in learning how to sew and so I felt out of place. However, I just wanted to say thank you for your content. I've just defended my dissertation in astronomy, and I found that your journey into historical dress has strong parallels to my grad school career. Your confidence and transparency about the struggles and triumphs of the garment construction process was reminiscent of my own journey and therefore felt comforting. I enjoyed watching you explore, learn and grow in your passion. You inspired me to continue moving forward, even when I felt overwhelmed. So I'm sorry if my comment is less exciting than those who are interested in sewing, but I wanted to let you know that your videos helped me immensely in my dissertation process. Thanks for everything you do!

  32. You covered so much it was great. Thank you for all of the information. Oh yes I almost forgot. Your side table display is adorable so to your guinea pig. 😊 Such a cutie pie.

  33. I was trying to create a complete new wardrobe which consist only from historical or historical-inspired clothing, because this style makes me feel elegant.. but the main disadvantage is that when I think about traveling with my amount of clothes (for 1 outfit I need at least 4 pieces – tights, shirt, bodice and skirt) – I remember some modern versions of wardrobe, capsule minimalistic ones, which allows you to live wherever you want with just one universal bag of clothes… Black pants, white t-shirt and so on. But, for sad, pants and t-shirts never make me happier, like victorian dresses and waistcoats do. Bulky historical garment gives me elegance and inexpressible emotions. Modern minimalistic garment gives freedom. I still don't know how to combine them if I want to have advantages of both styles.

  34. actually it's interesting for me what do you usually wear in everyday life. And how do you combine modern and historical garment

  35. A surprising reference for research for me has been Theriault's Dolls. Watching her videos of the dolls of various eras is soothing, informative and such a treat! All that linen, silk, cotton of all types, meticulously chosen trims inspires me to create doll clothing with more care, as if someday these dolls will represent this time, just as those dolls she shares those times and people.

  36. If Bernadette uses a leather thimble, it's good enough for me. makes one and proceeds to use it holy crap what is this magic that allows me to feel my finger but not be injured by the needle! This is amazing! Sorry metal thimble

  37. I Loved this! You are very smart; articulate young lady. Thank you for your passion. You are a Modern National Treasure. Elizabeth Tracy, Ca

  38. As someone who sews historical clothing (early Middle Ages) for sale, I enjoy your videos because one of your videos (I forget which one) got me to start hand sewing again, primarily for myself. I am currently working on my own pair of 18th century stays from the Simplicity pattern by American Duchess, mostly by hand. I did sew the boning channels by machine, but everything else is being done by hand. I have posted pictures on Instagram (@lyssahatfield_sheelahoconnor) and will post a picture of the finished stays when I get them done; it may not be until late August, though. 🙂

  39. going to watch this while i draft a 1890s gown. love these long taking vlogs they are so lovely and relaxing 🙂

  40. Thank you seems so inadequate.
    1. Plugging reading for vocabulary development is huge! I am a speech-language pathologist that works with teens and getting both the teens and their parents to understand that reading is so important is always an uphill battle.
    2. Introverts unite.
    3. Your self-talk is a wonder. Instead of being negative about mistakes or yourself, you approach life, projects, etc. as a means of learning not only skills but about your self.

  41. "I don't have an enormous wardrobe" honey I know, you've filmed videos with that same red cardigan at least three times that I've seen so far in my watching this afternoon lol
    Not that comfortable clothing or pieces you come back to again and again are bad, but…
    I see u

  42. "Humans are not meant to work every waking hour of the day" is a phrase I need in cross-stitch form and also on posters and plastered everywhere please

  43. I DIDN'T REALISE THAT "GUINEA PIG CONTENT" MEANT THE CREATURE WHEN U PUT IT IN THE DESCRIPTION I AM SO PLEASANTLY SURPRISED

  44. I love how you just blushed with happiness about your love of Gentleman Jack! Two of my favourite things together 🙂

  45. 26:20 "I got Wi-Fi on happening in the room which, goodness knows what that's doing."
    Ah Grandma Dette, what would we do without you.

  46. Of course I couldn't think of what to ask until the video is already up!

    I was wondering what your list of essentials would be for sewing?

    I wanted to restock my grandma's old sewing box. I had never met her and even though they both don't sew for fun or anything of that sort, I know just the box means alot to my mom and I wanted to give it to her as a christmas present. Your Guinea pig is so cute, I used to have some, don't they make the sweetest sounds?

  47. Just came across this passage on a site in an article called "Thimbles Through Time."

    "Because sewing woven fabrics require less force than lacing animal skins, it is thought leather finger wrappings evolved. A few literature references support this, include 14th-century poet Thomas Occleve, who tells of a lady's purse containing “needel and threde, and themel of leather.”

    So it seems possible leather would have been used, whether as this suggests, as wrappings, or in a shaped thimble (which probably would have been made with the use of a metal thimble! ha!). I think leather seems more practical and easier to maneuver. I've never been able to stand metal or ceramic thimbles because I feel like I lose all control over the finger it's on.

  48. Hello friends, I went ahead and found a link to Bertha Banner's book. For some reason, Google scholar did not spit out the link to the pdf (why must you fail me so, trusty friend). https://archive.org/details/householdsewing00banngoog/page/n10 If you look at the bottom of the page, there is also a plethora of other sewing guides and manuals from around the same time which might be of interested to some.

  49. I wish I'd found you in middle school. I wouldn't have my suppressed my love for history and changed myself so much if I had. Asskdklh

  50. 🙃 Have you always lived in New York? Is your mom into fashion? And is this what you do for a living? You are SUCH AN INTERESTING PERSON.

  51. Re: 17:30, I am DEFINITELY cut out to be a maker & do-er. I must be producing something, or doing something quantifiable. I think of myself as a Human Doing rather than a Human Being.
    I don’t think this is entirely healthy, and it’s not something to aspire to, it is just what I am.

  52. I really enjoy wearing clothes which I have designed based on 10th century Northern European clothes of women of the “middling sort.” It is easy to wear and work in clothing made from these designs, which makes historical sense. Women of the “middling sort” needed to be able to move & work, so I don’t have to just stand or sit around being decorative, which is antithetical to who I am.
    My problem is a common one: I love designing, fitting and draping garments. I don’t enjoy finishing garments.

  53. I used to have such a high vocabulary because I read so much, and then I stopped and I started to loose my vocabulary. Dx But you're definitely inspiring me to pick up some good habits that I stopped doing so thanks Bernadette!!! <3 <3 <3

  54. Another great channel when it comes to historical clothes is priorattire, this channel was suggested to be because I was subscribed to that channel. They show how women from the past put their dress on, and they also debunk common misconceptions about women's clothes from the past.

  55. Hi, I have wanted a dress form for more than 5 years now. but I'm plus size and I have teetered from a size 18 to 22 (store size)(24-28 in most patterns)for the past 3/4 years. I am going on and off different diets and have recently started to show some signs of gluten sensitivity. which will also change my weight. I'm wondering if it is worth it to invest in a quality dress form when my size isn't constant. If so, should I invest in a regular dress form and pad it up? should I get a one that's around a 16/18 and pad it from there? should I get one that is my biggest size? is there somewhere that I can ask these kinds of questions?

  56. I am very happy that you make these videos and “share your journey.” I’ve been needing to build my wardrobe back, and have put it off for far too long, despite by being surrounded by bolts and bolts of fabric, and your pretty projects give me the kick in the pants I need to get going on my own projects.

  57. More pet peeves! You're so nice and positive but I, too, really want to see you point out more inaccuracies in the popular media! And ethical consumption, I'm excited to hear your thoughts and findings on brands and supply chain practices – how do you know your fabrics and notions are produced ethically? I wonder these things and have no clue how to research answers. Thanks for all your vids <3

  58. I would love to make all my familes clothes and not buy any! But i have 5 kids and 3 are boys, I dont know if I could keep up! I do make my own and my daughters dresses though!

  59. You are a very beautiful and passionate young lady and it is fantastic that you can share your passion on here 🙂

  60. Yes, I have three leather, one for a whole finger, one for the end of a finger and one for the middle of a finger where I most frequently push the needle. I have several metal thimbles but only one of those do I find useful. I love the leather ones which I made our of black coat leather.

  61. I just found your channel yesterday and am hooked. The dresses and skirts are amazing and I thank you so much for your comments on historical authenticity! You're 100% right and it's what many forget when recreating historical clothes etc. Thank you! You're amazing 🙂

  62. What you said about not knowing you had a personality – it’s so funny to me because I find your videos so calming because my brain is always insane and your videos make me go “oh. I can slow down, my brain can shush for a moment” and it’s just really nice ☺️

  63. I just have to share this link with you. It is an international group, with separate smaller groups for various areas and cities. A wonderful friend started the group when she inherited a huge amount of second hand cloth from a family member. With your passion for upcycling I think you would find it very interesting and a great inspiration. https://www.facebook.com/groups/UpCycledClothCollective

  64. do you know anything about how they dyed clothes before?
    i think it’s very interesting that you want a more sustainable wardrobe 🙂 but modern dyeing clothes are very poisonous.. I agree that now a day’s the fashion industry is very polluting..
    I’m happy that you wanne inspire the world to do better 😀 you go girl 😉

  65. When I was historic reenacting, I was also pretty poor. I did the best I could, sewed a lot of basic garments. I found a standard tank top, one of the light Hanes underwear ones in white, was a perfect thing to wear under my corset. No bunching, form fitting, absorbent, easy to clean. I would put it on, put on the corset, then pull the sleeves down so they wouldn't show. So easy. And if it got a hole stabbed in it from whatever, so what, it was $5 and I can darn. But you know? That thing lasted more than a decade! And I never had a corset rash or discomfort.

  66. So, I'm hoping someone can help me out. I want a dress form. My biggest problem (and I do mean BIGGEST) is that I am a pretty large person. Things like dress forms and patterns don't come in my size. If I bought one of your referenced dress form I would likely have to pad it so severely that it really wouldn't matter what was under there. I am also not the standard plus-size person (and who is really). I did, however, find these (link below) and was wondering what people thought about something like them. Will it be professional? No, but if a professional dress form isn't my size and shape will any of that matter? Also, I'm kinda irritated that there is no garment/fabric district in the Austin, Texas area and sewing classes are either crap or way too expensive. Anyway, what do y'all think about the DIY custom size dress form (the plus size at the bottom of the page)? https://patterns.bootstrapfashion.com/diy-dress-form-sewing-pattern.html

  67. Bernadette telling me to “just do it” is the calm, kind, warm cup of tea version of Shia LeBoeuf’s loud, angry, redbull fueled “JUST DO IT”.

  68. I know about a leather thimble used in japanese "embroidery" technique Sashiko. They used and still are using this technique to mend clothes in a more artistic way. Do not ask me from which time period it is, because I am, in fact, not able to remember any dates, including birthdays and any schedules I have. But I remember watching documentaries about embroidery in other countries and seeing a thimble made from leather. It wasn't one for the finger, though…
    Here is a video with the thimble: (which unfortunately is not made from leather. What a shame!): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FuRLgl5mSmk

    Edit: So I have found a picture: https://images.app.goo.gl/ZFzjHjcQAZvtFSEr7

  69. Ouuu when you were talking about corset being worn and portaryed incorrectly it friggin scared me. Ive seen frustrated you but pissed off you is O_O SHUDDER.

  70. FYI I taught myself to hand sew when I was eleven in 1972. I’ve tried many many many times over the decades to use a metal thimble. Nope. The black leather thimbles I can use easily but until I found those I’d just use a wad of folded fabric. I enjoy t-tunic dresses the most. About seven hours cut out to finish for a floor length gown.

  71. Also you should always use waxed thread in leather, no matter the fiber used, because the enzymes in the leather will break down natural fibers if not waxed.

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