Young Frankenstein: Peasant Girl #5

tablecloth folded in 1/8s and marking the cutting line

This post is about the 5th Peasant Girl outfit I made for “Young Frankenstein”.   I think this is my favorite one.  This particular tablecloth was floral with a plaid border.  I love the large print and the built-in detail created by the border–with no additional work on my part.  I don’t use a lot of prints, but after making this outfit  . . . they are growing on me.

I began as I have with the other outfits, by folding the tablecloth in 1/8’s, determining the desired finished length, and marking the top portion to be removed.

The tablecloth is used to cut the  curved lower edge of the border–again, since I am using a knit, no hemming will be needed.  The upper edge of the border is then cut by measuring up from the lower cut edge, with about 1/2″ added for overlap.

The border pieces are sewn together into one long piece.  This is stitched on to the tablecloth, along with some lace for trim.

A strip is cut for the casing/waistband.  For this skirt, I folded the casing fabric in half, right side out, and stitched it to the top.  The excess fabric was trimmed off when I met the beginning point, and the top edge was tacked together.  I ran a row of stitching just under the seam to hold the seam allowance down and provide a little extra strength–you never know who will be stepping on the bottom of the skirt.  The casing is wide enough to use elastic or a drawstring.

I used a drawstring and tacked it to the back to prevent it from accidentally coming out.

And the skirt is done:


I really was itching to put petticoats under these because I think they would fall better and have just a little more body.  However, since I didn’t have time to make 7, and since the other girls wouldn’t have them (including Inga and Frau Bucher), I just left them alone.

I chose to use the brown fabric for the casing at the top  of the skirt as I was planning to make the separate mock-corset waistband brown.  If the casing peaks out, it will blend in with the waistband.

I made the waistband similar to the ones I have blogged about previously.  I began with the fashion fabric and made two tucks (one shown).  For this outfit, I decided to use some lace on the waistband.

After the top layer was done, I used it as the pattern to cut the felt lining.  I am picking felt because it doesn’t fray, it is heavy enough to act like an interfacing, and I have a large bolt of it.  I used strips of 1/2″ rigilene boning to provide more body.  Any excess felt is easily trimmed off.

I threaded the ribbon through the lace.  If this lacing was actually functional–ie-being used to adjust the size of the waistband, the lace would probably not be strong enough to take that kind of tension.  However, since we are just using it as a decorative feature, this technique works just fine.  To provide variety in the look of the costumes, this lacing section is a bit wide than the previous ones have been.


I used  two rows of stretched elastic on the back of the waistband to provide a bit of easy size adjustment.  The waistband closes in the back with hook and loop tape.

skirt and wasitband

The original blouse has short sleeves and a square neck.

I took the inner circle (the discarded “point” of the tablecloth) and cut it in half.   I turned the cut edge under for a little hem.  I added three rows of lace for decoration.

sleeve decoration.

The half-circles were simply stitched to the shoulders.  I threaded some of the same ribbon I used on the waistband through the crochet trim that was already on the blouse.

And . . . the costume is done.

So what do I like so much about this outfit?

I like the neutral border on the bottom.  I used red for several of the other dresses, and that is fine (and I had a large piece of that fabric), but, I really like this brown.

I also the the colors and the way the ribbon looks threaded through the lace at the neckline.

What I also like is the potential for using this outfit for different eras.  I imagine that if this skirt had a wide sash at the waist, or a wide belt, maybe in a burgundy, and then the shoulder ruffles were applied to a long sleeved, high necked blouse, that this ensemble might work, for, say, Marian Paroo.   With a sash, I think it could work for someone in “Carosuel”.  The skirt could work for “Oklahoma”.  You could also trim some of the brown off to make it shorter if you wanted to.  I like versatile costumes . . . and I think this is one you could use over and over.  Since the shoulder ruffles are simply appliqued to this blouse, it would take a few minutes to remove them and stitch them on a different blouse.


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