August 11, 2015

7 Historic Costuming Blogs You Should be Following

You all know I am a big fan of historical costuming, and I have been following costuming blogs for a long time! There are a lot of amazing costumers out there, people are constantly doing just crazy beautiful work! I thought I would put a little list together today of just a few of my favorites for anyone who is perhaps new to the hobby, or wants to add a bit more historic flair to their RSS feed :)

1) American Duchess

Lauren doesn't just make beautiful costumes, she shows the process behind them too. From her wonderful sketches, to process photos, occasional tutorials, and amazing styled photos of the final results, she provides buckets of inspiration. Then of course there is her historical shoe line, dreamy doesn't even begin to cover it!

2) Before the Automobile / The Aristocat

When it comes to amazing (and I mean truly amazing) historical costumes, there is no one like Merja. Her work never looks like a costume, these gowns look like the real deal. Her stays and corsets look like they were just pulled out from a museum drawer, each gown like it was just taken off a mannequin at the MET. I can't imagine being able to sew like she can, Merja must have magic in her fingers.

3) The Dreamstress

Leimomi Oakes (AKA the Dreamstress) has my dream job, she is a freelance fashion and textile historian! Her articles are fascinating, her makes gorgeous, and her cat Felicity extra adorable. Visit for great tutorials, in depth research, and fun posts about life in New Zealand!

4) Mode de Lis

Lily of Mode de Lis doesn't just create beautiful and accurate historic costumes, she also makes beautiful retro clothing as well! Another skilled seamstress, I am always impressed and inspired by each and every one of her projects. She's got a great eye for color and choosing just the right accessories to make an ensemble look period whether she's dressed in 18th century finery or 1930's day wear!

5) The Couture Courtesan

Samantha of the Couture Courtesan is another incredibly inspiring costumer. Her work is stunningly accurate, which is probably why Colonial Williamsburg snapped her up! The resulting costumes are portals to the past, real life versions of historical fashion plates. Working though chronic wrist pain, she still creates amazing work that inspires me to infuse my own work with more accuracy!

6) The Fashionable Past

Katherine is another veteran historical costuming blogger, and her excellent tutorials have helped me so much over the years! Just recently I referenced her excellent robe a la francaise draping tutorial while making my pet en l'air. She puts her enviable skills to great use across an incredible range of eras, from 18th century riding habits to 1920's robe de styles. Visit for equal parts learning and oohing and ahhing!

7) Wearing History

Many of you probably know of Lauren from Wearing History due to her wonderful range of reproduction vintage clothing and sewing patterns! Lauren is another master of both historic and vintage sewing, sensing a theme here? Lauren doesn't just produce the patterns, she goes through step by step to show you how to put many of them together! Her costumes and photos are gorgeous, and her blog a must follow for historical and retro fashion lovers alike!

(edit) Okay, I'm adding more, because there are too many awesome blogs!

-Emily's Vintage Visions
-The Costumers Closet
-Daily descriptions of my sewing madness

How about you guys? What costuming blogs are your must reads? I would always love to add more to my list!


  1. Thank you so much for including me!

    1. Of course! I have been reading your blog for years and have loved reading about your projects and admiring the wonderful results :)

  2. So here are the rest of the costumers on my blogroll: - very approachable style, and she sews SO FAST. I believe she mostly makes clothing to sell, but her inspiration and period-appropriate approach to lifestyle blogging is entertaining. Works in conservation at a museum, and is an important member in her local Portuguese folk festival group.\ A professional costumer in Canada, specializing in the tailoring and menswear aspect of the costume shop. Not the most regular updater (not that that's terrible) but beautiful work. Absolutely amazing costumer. Specializes in lower and merchant class medieval. She's forgotten more than I've ever learned about working with wool. Beautiful costuming -- sparse of late due to a big pile of Life attacking, but amazingly clear tutorials and a wide variety of eras.

    1. I totally agree with a lot of these suggestions! I am happy to add a few new costumers to my blogroll :)

  3. Great post! I've been following all these blogs for a long time now. Each one is fantastic and a joy to read. I actually started my blog for my 18th century sewing project, though I've been focusing more on vintage the last year or so. Take a look through my portfolio and you will find some of my historical clothing adventures.

    1. Emily, I just added a link to you in the body of this post because I can't believe I hadn't already included you up there! Your projects are constantly inspiring me, and your 1940's work is flat out amazing!

  4. Thanks for the share! I'm flattered! :-)

  5. Absolutely marvelous list!!! I try to regularly follow all of the ladies that you mentioned here and some are in my daily feeds, including Lily and Emily (from Emily's Vintage Visions). Were I sewer, I highly suspect that I'd be a historic costumer as well and love that sites like this let me live those dreams vicariously, while also being amazing lessons on old school styles (just as yours is - if I were making this list myself, your blog would have been on it big time!!!).

    ♥ Jessica

    1. Thank you Jessica! I'm not a very prolific costumer, its something I'd like to work on. I always get caught up making retro stuff instead for my regular wardrobe :)

  6. Very Informative blog regarding costumes. Thank you so much.


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