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Pattern for a Civil War Era Night-Cap

Make your own nineteenth century night cap with muslin and lace.

This night-cap is made of spotted muslin, and trimmed with lace and narrow satin ribbon.  Fifteen inches of muslin, six yards of one inch wide lace, six yards of narrow satin ribbon, and three-quarters of a yard of one inch wide ribbon, will be required to make one cap.

Cut out the crown the marked size of the pattern, and cut out the head-piece, allowing sufficient turnings for a broad hem down the front. This hem should be half an inch wide.  Gather the crown from where the fullness commences (which is seen in the illustration).  Run that and the head-piece together, letting the raw edge come on the right side, and then lay a very fine cording over the join.

victorian bonnet pattern

victorian bonnet pattern

Cut out the strings, join them on to the head­piece, and then carry one row of lace all round the cap and strings. Put the lace on the strings, except round the ends.  Put the other three rows of lace on, the last row being run close to the cording, and so hiding the raw edges.  A narrow piece of muslin should be run on the head-piece behind, from string to string, to form a runner into which the broad ribbon should be placed to draw the cap into the size required. Cut the narrow ribbon into lengths of more than two inches, and arrange the bows in the lace about one inch apart. [From Peterson’s Magazine, 1861]

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