Dance eisteddfods in NSW, my home state, don’t have National Character sections in their syllabus, so it’s lovely to get interstate requests for these costumes. I try to make them as authentic as possible but recognising the constraints that some of these costumes have for dance. In this case the long smock style Swedish in the national colours was translated into the dirndl style worn in regional Sweden. I thought that wasn’t stretching the national idiom too far.
The key characteristics of this costume is a blue dress with white embroidered flowers on the bodice, teamed with a white blouse and a yellow apron patterned with a blue stripe and more flowers.
I cheated a little and used organza appliques for the flowers but I think you’ll agree they look sweet.
For the laced front I put light boning into the bodice opening and inserted corset grommets. The boning helps keep the lacing from tugging at the bodice and maintains a smooth centre front.
The colours are very striking together. I also particularly like putting this one together because the colours are those of my favourite football team too! Go the mighty Eels! I digress.
There is a petticoat to match and the full circle skirt allows for freedom of movement.