Sunday, March 4, 2012

Doublet in a Week - Day 2 Tabs

Tabs and skirting

Doublets generally have either Tabs or Skirting at the bottom.  Early Elizabethan period tended to be skirting as Doublets evolved from the coats of Henry VIII that had longer skirting.  As time when on it go shorter and shorter until at the beginning of Elizabeth’s reign it was around 3-4 inches wide and divided into 2-3 pieces.  As Her reign went on the skirting was split into more pieces and those pieces changed shape sometimes adding small tabs Leicester was very fond of tiny little tabs added to the bottom of either the Skirting or the Doublet itself.  Until towards the end of the reign there were commonly quite a few 9 or more large tabs or dozens of small (less than 2 inches across.)  There was another type, loops of fabric that also showed up midway through the reign.

The shape of the tabs varied from round to almost diamond shaped, depending on the look that the individual is looking for.  Tabs were usually attached as separate pieces but the skirting was often a part of the doublet body.  Tabs often overlapped and were ornamented to match the doublet. 

Adding the skirting to the doublet pattern is actually quite simply a matter of extending the pattern.  It is a matter of personal preference as to how long the skirting is but I recommend that it be at least 3 inches. 

1. Extend and redraw a smooth curve around the bottom of the doublet pieces. 

2. Make the bottom edge longer, so that it can flair.

3. Angle the front and back of the skirt by 2-3 fingers from both ends.

If you choose to make the skirting separate pieces then the shape changes a little. 
The top edge curves down about 1-2 fingers and the shape evens out, having less of an S curve and more a simple curve.

Tabs – suggested shapes

Make sure that you have enough to go all the way around the waist line of the doublet, I recommend that you make a couple extra and pick the best looking ones to use.

*Note that the tab shapes all taper inwards at the top and thus spread out at the bottom, allowing for spreading. 

Add a fingers worth more to the top end of the tab to account for tucking in to the doublet.

If you are going to over lap the tabs, then make sure that you start at the back and space them evenly around the waistline.  The overlap should be symmetrical from the center back.

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