Liberty · Sewing · Sewing for Shakespeare

Fit for a king?

What do you think?  Fit for an audience with a king?  Or, more accurately, fit to be in the audience watching the machinations of not one but two kings?

Yes, I know there's a cat on it.
Yes, I know there’s a cat on it.

Making this frock was part of some pre-play prep.  There was homework of both a practical and a theoretical nature to be done.  Want a new dress for your theatrical trip?  Get thee to a haberdashery!
It’s a very basic shawl collar shirt that, when Penny-fied, has become a shawl-collar-shirt-dress.

New Look 6193 - no date, smells 70s.
New Look 6193 – no date, smells 70s.

There are patch pockets, pick ‘n’ mix buttons, french seams, and some pleat-based shaping which is difficult to distinguish and a pig to photograph given the busy Liberty print (name of print anyone?).

Once the practical was over it was on to the theory.


Not for the first time I thanked the maker that I work in a library. I reserved and read the play.  I read the notes that accompany the play, which I note take more time to read than the play itself.  I reserved and read a second book all about the play.  I was ready.  We went to watch the play.  It was…  can you tell from my face?

Although, if you are hoping for a review from my facial expressions alone the one where I’m on my phone is where I’m checking what the children have been up to whilst we’ve been gone.

The play was all-consuming.  I lack the eloquence to describe the experience effectively.  As the house lights fall you are transformed from audience members to members of court looking on, often horrified, as the fate of men and nations are sealed by conspiracy after conspiracy.  You are witness as a Sovereign is stripped little by little of his raiment, his privileges, his position and is left only with the fight for his sanity and the fight for the right to draw breath.

According to me programme, Richard II is in Stratford until 16th November.  It’s being broadcast live in cinemas around the world on November 13th and transfers to London from the 9th of December.  You don’t need to do as I did, you don’t need to make a dress or read the play before going.  It requires no homework.  Just.  Go.  See.  It.

Finally…  anyone else fancy going to see In Stitches at Stratford?  I spotted a dress by the cloakroom with fabric boobs and button nipples…  I want to discover more!

4 thoughts on “Fit for a king?

  1. I love what you did with the pattern and the print. I love Shakespeare too (legacy of having had the luck to have a good English teacher).

    1. Thanks! The dress held out, no popped seams or buttons that pinged off mid-performance so I must have done summat right.
      We had an ‘O’ level teacher who didn’t want to put us off literature so we didn’t ‘do’ any Shakespeare. Bit shabby for a librarian to admit but I’ve come to Shakespeare rather late. Still, I’m coming to love it.

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