I am still sewing away! No pictures today, unfortunately; I've been working on a hodgepodge of things. I thought I would have my farthingale done by today, but unfortunately the vinyl tubing I bought to use as the hoops isn't holding its shape. I'd heard that some costumers had luck with it, and I thought it might be an inexpensive way to stiffen my first farthingale (I am anticipating making a nicer/ improved one at some point in the future...), but no dice. That's ok; I have some hoop steel, so I am planning on switching out two of my six hoops for the steel, and we'll see if that fixes it. If not, I'll keep on replacing the tubing with steel until it holds its shape.
I've also started my petticoat. Not very exciting; I used the farthingale pattern, plus widened the gores slightly and angled the center front and center back panels to get a fuller skirt than the farthingale has. That way I don't have to worry about it fitting over the farthingale, and I'll have a little bit of extra fabric to help conceal the hoops. I am planning on pinning my forepart to this petticoat, but we'll see; I may need to think of a "sturdier" solution.
Finally, I have started work on the bodice pattern. I am using the front half of my corset pattern, which I modified pretty severely to get the bodice shape that I wanted. However, as the corset pattern has no back or straps, I decided to use the back of the Simplicity Tudor bodice pattern as a starting point, and I kind of Frankensteined the two together, using the shape of the Tudor Tailor pattern pieces as a guide. The first mock up fit pretty well, and I was able to further modify the shape of the pattern pieces. I am on my second mock up now, and I believe if I can tweak the neckline shape in the back and perfect the shape of the armscye, I'll have a working pattern! Once I get to that point, my plan is to start fiddling with the sleeve pattern to make sure that the neckline will be the shape I want once the sleeves are interacting with it. Unfortunately, I know that the weight of the real sleeves and skirts will mess with everything, I just don't have a good idea of how much... I've been tugging on the bottom of the bodice like crazy and hoping that will at least give me an idea of how to compensate.
I've only tried on my corset twice, but so far I am liking it... It is really comfortable, which I hope means I got the fit right. I like the cable ties as a boning material as well; they are nicely flexible, but hold firmly enough for my standards. I would use them again in a heartbeat, although I recognize that they may not be the best choice for every project. That being said, I don't regret using them in this project... Yet! I'll reserve my final judgement until after the corset has been worn more!