The fifth Historical Sew Monthly challenge is due May 31. The theme is holes and, of course technically, all clothes have holes, at least as soon as you go from a piece of material wrapped or draped around the body to a sewn garment. You simply cannot get into a garment if there isn’t openings in it. But holes can also serve a dual purpose combining utility with decoration. Or they can be there simply as an ornament. They can be punched and cut, the can form a circle or a slit or any other shape. There can even be more open space than material in a garment. I hope this post with a small sample of all kinds of holes will provide some inspiration.
Functional holes for lacing a bodice in blue glazed cotton, 1775-1800.
Holes necessary for adjusting the size of a corset.
The buttonholes on this coat, dated to 1725-50, are both functional and decorative.
A sideless gown where the necessity of arm holes also becomes a way to show off the garment underneath.
Gown by Lanvin from 1938 where the neckline that also provides a design element.
The more holes in a bathing suit, the more places to get a lovely tan.
Red doublet with decorative slits and a row of lacing holes to keep the breeches attached.
A child’s bodice from the early 17th century where the open sleeves are tied with ribbons to form decorative slits.
Yellow silk dress from 1819 with decorative slits on the sleeveheads.
Red evening gown, c 1934 with the traditional lacing converted into a design element.
Full length sleeveless negligée in pink silk satin from the 1930’s.
We wouldn’t have lace if there wasn’t any holes...
A woman’s waistcoat in drawn and pulled threadwork, 1630-39.
17th century collar in drawn lacework.
Cotton lace cap from 1829
Linen petticoat with eyelet embroidery, 1860-65
Bobbin lace bodice front, 1865-75.
And let's not forget shoes, that can provide many variations of both functional and decorative holes.