The young tailor explained that if I were a customer I would have come in with a specific need for articles of clothing or accessories in mind, and would browse the latest in fashionable fabrics. The fabrics, laces, trims and more would be selected by the customer, and the tailor or seamstress would begin as we do today - taking specific measurements of the customer, sharing what fabric we may have on hand, or other accessories, "Just in from ..." .
For more on the history of a milliner shop, visit: http://www.history.org/almanack/life/trades/trademln.cfm
What struck me most was how very little the basics of sewing have changed. While we use a sewing machine for the majority of the work in making a tailored garment, it's still handmade, and the construction process has changed very little.
Careful measuring, deciding on an appropriate piece of fabric for the garment, cutting and sewing the garment pieces remain as the basic steps in custom sewn apparel.
Changes could be listed as the blends of fibers, introduction of the sewing machine and other valuable tools and/or notions. Other changes to note are the reduction of pieces of clothing worn today, versus the attire of the 18th Century.
The sewing machine also reduces the time spent on sewing. Where it once took up to one week to make a garment, now a garment can be made in a day.
I'm curious. What changes would you say have been made to clothing construction in the last 200 + years?
Wishing you success and inspiration, today and always,