Tuesday 5 April 2011


I went to the Uměleckoprůmyslové muzeum in Brno on Friday. The entrance was free this weekend (lucky me!). I forgot to ask about their photography policy. I hope it's possible to take photos there, for when I go there next, because they have one of the loveliest 1840s dresses I've ever seen. Well, the only one I've ever seen in real life and not just on a picture, which makes for a lovely dress in and of itself. :-)

I got inspired and drew a sketch of my idea for the kacabajka and the OUATITW blouse. It's kind of my re-imagination of the 1848 Czech national costume... not entirely period correct, but in the same spirit. A 21st century Czech national costume, so to say.
It's just a quick and rather messy sketch I made on a train, but for such, not bad at all. :D

EDIT: I added the Research tag, for my comments below.


  1. It's gorgeous, I love it. Simple, elegant, well proportioned and I can imagine would look amazing on you :)

  2. wow! I love it! and it's definitely better than I could ever draw...let alone on a train! ;D

  3. MrsC: I think 1840s designs overall tend to be well-proportioned (in 19th century sensibilities, but pleasant to 21st century eye as well). Of course, my skirt is narrower and the blouse is not really period, but the jacket is 1848.

    Hannah: Thanks. As a graduate of art courses on my local art school, I should be able to draw much better. Sadly, my artistic skills have been awfully neglected in recent years.

    Oh, and I'm in the university library now, and I took a look into a book on Czech fashions in 1780-1860, published by the Uměleckoprůmyslové muzeum in Prague, which holds the original kacabajka, and the book says it's wool. I thought silk based on the photos and the book I have (which speaks of similar jackets as silk ones), and my fabric is cotton. Now the only variant I haven't considered is linen. :D (I'll use the cotton. I really cannot afford to get more fabric when I already have one in the colour I want.)

  4. I like the design very much! I have a love of long standing for European national costumes - I've always dreamed of creating a Hungarian-inspired one.

    I hope you will be able to share a picture of the 1840s dress - it sounds lovely!


  5. Funnily enough, the 1848 Czech national costume is for the most part an artificial construct and partially inspired by Hungarian national costume - in fact, it seems the word kacabajka is Hungarian! When I google it (images), the relevant things that come up are a) my blog, b) Hungarian jackets.
    Traditional Czech (and Moravian) folk costumes are rather different. Some elements of them found their way into the 1848 thing, but there were many other influences. From the book I have it seems there were many attempts and designs, but ultimately the only thing that really took hold in public was these soutached jackets - both for men and women, with respective styles for both.

  6. I love it. It looks very pretty and versatile.

  7. Really pretty, thanks for sharing. Will you do all the embroidery yourself?

  8. Stephanie Ann: Versatile - that's exactly what I love about it!

    Steph: It's actually soutache, which, Katherine-Koshka tells me, is not that hard at all. (I wanted to dig up the post of her soutached jacket where she answered my question, but blah, no idea how to find it!) So if I can actually get soutache in the colour I want, yes, I'm doing that. Simpler than on the original jacket, though! I still don't know what pattern I'll use, the drawing is just a quick sketch. And I have other projects ahead of me that need to be finished first.
    (If I can't get soutache in the colour, I'll probably hook-embroider which seems to be quicker and giving the sort of look I'm going for.)

  9. Everyone, thank you very much, for liking it and letting me know! :-)