It took all evening yesterday to finish up the last little bits of the skirts - I honestly thought I only had an hour - maybe two, tops to get the skirts completely done, but oh how wrong I was!
I spent the vast majority of the evening finishing up what Melia calls her 'saddlebags' - an extra bit of flouncy stuff on top of her black overskirt. Here's Melias skirts without the 'saddlebags' - I'll post an update after Bertha has changed back into Melia's clothes!
My skirts are finally, finally truly to the point where all I need to do is a smidgeon of handsewing at the waistband, and I can call it good: (I opted to put the ruffle on the waterfall skirt - a large portion of what took so dang long! The first attempt was ripped off, and the second batch of ruffles didn't turn out like the first set, so needed a lot of fiddling to get them looking similar. Many thanks to Melia for persevering through all that unpicking, on something that's not even her gown!!
I've more or less settled on coat sleeves (not too tight, but not loose like bishop or pagoda), probably either a wrist length with turned back cuff, or a 3/4 sleeve with a small bell or turnback. Still kind of TBD.
I'm pretty set on doing a lower square neckline (which I suppose I could fill in if occasion demands, or heck, even make a new bodice) - but what I am completely stumped as to how I ought to do the bottom of the bodice. Of the extant gowns I've been using for inspiration, it seems to be pretty split right down the middle as to whether the bodice is straight across the front, or various types of pointy*. The exception to is this one, that has a nifty flared gore thing going on. I know how to handle a pointy-type bodice (the skirts just go under the bodice, right?!), but what about the flat-across-the-front kind? Same deal? What about gap-page at the waist??
*Gah! One of the gowns I'm using for reference is no longer online!!