Halfway through last week, I decided to take take a much needed break from embroidery for a couple of days to get some actual construction done. I cut out the canvas interlining using the embroidered top fabric as pattern pieces to cut the canvas, and then used those pieces to do the final fitting. I spent almost the entire day prancing around the house in my stays and fitting the bodice, but imagine my great delight when I was able to take in a good four inches from the original pattern! For the rest of the night, I cut out the lining and began assembling everything.
The next day I finished up the bodice construction. Everything is now finished except for the grommeting in the back. I ordered a gross of 00 sized grommets from corsetmaking.com, and once they arrive everything will be finished up.
The sleeve took allot more effort than I expected, but that's mostly because I hadn't used any sort of pattern. I took out my favourite paper sleeve pattern and laid the unfinished panes over it, measured everything a dozen times, and then finally cut all the pieces to the sizes I needed. It hurt a bit to have to cut some of the panes down and therefore cut off quite a bit of embroidery, but at least I'll know better for next time. I interlined each pane in canvas and then lined them with cotton. The panes were all hand-stitched into some bias tape made from the cotton lining fabric at the cuff and top.
There are still a few things to be done...the sleeve panes need to be connected at certain points, and I have some hotfix crystals that I'm going to put in the centre of each embroidered flower, but I'm very pleased with the progress so far.