Sunday, March 8, 2015

Lucy Locket lost her Pocket!

When I was wee I never understood that nursery rhyme. I thought it strange that anyone could lose a pocket. While I think there is a real story behind the rhyme (as there often is), I have learned that pockets once were separate things, and I suppose easy enough to lose!

As I mentioned last month in my post on the chemisette, I am trying to do as many of the Historical Sew Monthly challenges as I can manage. In early February, however, I was understandably distracted by my bib-front dress which I wanted to complete by Valentine's Day. After that I was overwhelmed at the idea of beginning a new sewing project, and then it occurred to me that I didn't have to sew a new dress or something equally large. I could embroider and sew a pocket instead.

The challenge for February was "Something Blue" (again, see this website for details:, so I looked for extant versions of 18th century pockets that might have blue embroidery on them. And this one took my fancy:

18th Century pocket from Massachusetts 

It is fascinating to me that pockets, though not seen except by the wearer, were such beautiful and ornate things. Here are a few examples of other 18th century pockets:

Another pocket done mostly in blues.

A lovely pocket from the Metropolitan Museum.

So, on the 19th of February I began my pocket. Despite this late start, I was hoping that I would be able to finish it by the end of the month. I did not manage that deadline. I finished it a week after - the 7th of March. I hadn't taken into account how time-consuming embroidery can be.

Drawing out the design.

The original pocket compared with my drawing. I did simplify it, but I tried to keep as close to the original design as possible. 

A close-up of the top half of the pocket. I had some material in my stash that I thought was a pretty close match to the binding on the original pocket, though I made mine rather wider! 

Detail at the bottom - I even did my initials in cross-stitch, as the original pocket was done as well. 

The completed pocket! All together it took me just over two weeks to complete! 

I still have to attach a string to the pocket, and I'm hoping this is my first step in an 18th century ensemble. Next up will be the stays - but I'm hoping I can get a dress-form before I make them. I'm saving up for one!

1 comment:

  1. It is exquisite. It has a "feeling" just as the original ones do, and I believe part of that feeling is the loving attention and effort of the creator! It is a little masterpiece. I hope it serves you well for many a long year!