Friday, May 28, 2010

The Ruff is done!

Well I'm pretty sure I won't be doing that again!  I finished the ruff finally.  Normally I don't keep really good track of the time I spend on projects.  I later get asked "how long did that take" and I honestly have no idea.  This time I kept a good log.  I wrote down start and stop times each time I worked on it.  It took 48 hours to hand stitch this period-ish ruff.  The ruff was based on a combination of Janet Arnold Pattersn of Fashion 4 ruff numbers 22 and 23. Here are images of those ruffs.

Here are some photos of the completed ruff.  I am actually very pleased with the way it turned out.  It looks as much like the photo of the extant garment as I could have every hoped for.    

He'res a photo of the ruff tied closed.  I used a copper ring I made from some electrical wire to make the ring.  I stitched the ring into the ruff so that it could be tied closed. 

Here are some close ups of the copper ring and the wooden awl I used to make the hole.  I also took some some cotton string and finger loop braded it.  I used the braded string to tie the ruff closed.  I also attached loops of the string to the underside of the ruff (similar to the extant garment) which are to be used to fasten the ruff to the high collard doublet.

Now that it is near three in the AM, I must off to bed...

Monday, May 17, 2010

The ruff has been re-pleated

Well after messing it up last time, I have finished pleating the ruff.  Now I have to sew it onto the neck band.  As it turns out I had 66 feet of material to use in the ruff, but I only needed about 62 feet.  I had to cut off an extra four foot section.  I couldn't get the pleats any tighter.  To fit my neck properly I guess I only need 62 feet of material?  Heh?  Who knew I had a 62 foot neck.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Blacksmithed round hot punch

This hot punch was made from N7 steel.  I needed a 3/8 in round punch to punch the tongs I would be making later in the day.  This type of steel has a portion of chrome in it and is air hardening.  I did most of the shaping of the tip and then drew the rest of the stock out and shaped it into octagon.

Here is the piece air hardening.  Heated up to temp and then rested on some firebricks while it cooled.

 Cleaned up this is the finished piece.

This is the piece after the final heat.  I had to bake it for 2 hours at 450~500 degrees and thus the nice bluish purple color.  Pretty huh?

This is the stock we started with.  It was a piece off of an old tractor.

This is a piece the instructor showed us.  He did a demo on how to form each side and then let us go.  He made flat jaw tongs, but I opted to go with a round jaw that would fit a large portion of the round stock I have at home.

Here is my first formed piece

Here is the matching side I made.  The second half was a bit of a rush.  I had to wrap things up as the class day was ending.  I reworked it a bit the following week before punching the hole.  The idea is that both pieces should look the same.  You can also see a flat jaw tong which I started as an extra project made from some flat stock.  I used a pattern I spotted on a YouTube video.
Here are the pieces a little more cleaned up and shaped to match before punching.

Here are the matching sides after they were cleaned up and punched.  I got to use the round punch to make the holes.  The round punch was a project from earlier in the day.

Here are the finished round and flat jaw tongs.  I made a small elbow shaped piece to fit into the pritchet hole.  When my round tongs were almost done, I heated them up and hammered the jaws closed around the piece so that the jaws would fit well on that sized stock when completed.  My camera ran out of space and so I was unable to take all the photos of the flat stock and riveting.  I used a standard 3/8 inch mild steel rivet for both tongs and just peened the rivet closed while cold.  The flat jaw tongs hold 1/4 inch stock.  The round jaw will hold 3/8-1/2 stock very well.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Let the pleating begin

A couple nights ago I spend another four hours working on my ruff. It is coming out rather well I think. Now with all sixty-plus feet are assembled I began working on the pleating. I trimmed the length of the ruff to an even 5 inches. I then took a pencil made for marking material and marked every ¼ inch along the length. That turned out to be over 3,000 tick marks that had to be made. I then proceeded to put a stitch through each tick mark as the first step in the cartridge pleating process. It came out OK. Well, sort of OK. After pleating and then standing in front of the mirror with the ruff for a while I decided that I needed to tighten up the pleats. While attempting to tighten the pleats, I broke the binding thread and it all came apart. Luckily I took a picture of the ruff before that happened. The result looks much like the image from Janet Arnold’s book. I am happy with that, but now I have to pleat the whole thing again. Last night I spent about an hour beginning to pleat it again with a much heavier type of thread.