I made this gold silk Florentine-style gown over a year ago, and have re-vamped it recently. When I first made it, I didn't realize that it was rather Italian in style (due to the sleeves), but came to learn it was after doing more research on the styles relating to each country in the 16th century. You can see the original version in my userpic.
1. Added more trim to the bodice to make it even more "obviously" Italian in style. The trim on this is a stiff jacquard embroidered with metallic thread and sequins. It's super thick and hard to cut, so the bottom of the trim on the waistline is just cut (folding over doesn't work). My new girdle (thanks Holly!) hides the edge wonderfully.
2. The pearls on the sleeves were popping off when I wore this gown last, in december, due to the sleeves being too tight at the elbow. I switched out the tiny pearls for 8mm ones, and did 4 down each sleeve instead of 5, making a "pouf" open at the elbow instead of a pearl holding it tight.
3. Removed trim from wrists and sewed them on a half inch lower. The sleeves were a tid-bit too short before; now they're perfect.
I also made a gold silk petticoat today, and will be adding it to my entry for the ACC. The color is this astonishing shade of buttery yellow- so lovely that I almost didin't use it for this petticoat, though I bought the silk for this exact purpose.
The way I constructed and sewed it has minimal stitches in it, so I could potentially take it apart and use it for another project if I wished. Simple, one-piece rectangular skirt, on a ribbon waistband to gather the fabric at the waist towards the back for more pouf in the back than the front.