26 November 2007 @ 07:11 am
I have declared today to be a day of getting things done. Here are the things I will do:

  1. Clean room.
  2. Get canvas, muslin and silk cut out for Victorian corset.
  3. Write 4,000 words before lunch, and 4,000 words after lunch.
  4. Finish hemming kirtle that I started to hem last fall.
  5. Finish hemming Tudor kirtle I started this summer, and reattach skirt. Bad cartridge pleating.
  6. Finish binding Elizabethan bodies started in July and sitting forlornly in period undergarment drawer since then.

If I get half these things done, it will be a successful day. Especially item 3.

Random thought: Norah is a great, great name. Must work it into NaNo somehow, as female main character is named Eleanor/Helena.
Current Music: Don't Know Why -- Norah Jones
13 May 2007 @ 02:44 pm
I've been doing random Web site cruising tonight, and now I can't get these lines from Beauty & the Beast out of my head:

Gaston: Le Fou, I'm afraid I've been thinking . . .
Le Fou: A dangerous pastime.
Gaston: I know.

Because I'm afraid I've been thinking, too. About what?

Pet en l'airs. Striped anglaise. (Which makes me think of creme anglaise, which makes me want Boston cream pie. Yum.) Saucy little jackets. Quilted petticoats. In my stripey green fabric.

The only problem is that I only have barely five yards of the fabric. Oh, and I have absolutely none of the underpinnings for an 18th century outfit. ButI do have an 18th-century corset pattern that fits me. I've just never gotten around to making it.

And there is a French & Indian War reenactment that takes place every fall near my hometown, though I'm not sure I'm bold enough to just show up in full regalia, since nobody else does except the sutlers and guys who fire the cannon. Apparently there is also a period dance group in Milwaukee, that I wish I had been aware of earlier.

But stripes! New corset! Silk petticoat with ruffle!

On the Tudor kirtle front, I've bound the armhole, and I think I'm going to end up ripping out the neckline and doing it by hand. There's some wonkiness in the front that needs to be taken care of.

Would anyone like to weigh-in on my embellishment question from a couple days ago? Mad Photoshop skills, I know.

Four choices, and I can't decide if it's even a good idea )
Current Music: Victimae -- Anuna
09 May 2007 @ 12:08 am
1. I finished another beret, this time for my friend Tabatha. It's once again in Elann Peruvian Highland Wool, and I still love it. I washed it in shampoo and rinsed it with conditioner, so it turned out very soft indeed. I also did one more set of decreases to the brim on this one, so it's a little bit perkier than the other one.

Pitcha here )

I also got my hair cut again, and it's quite a bit (3-4 inches) shorter. There are days when I wonder what the hell I was thinking, and then there are days when it's really cute. Unfortunately, there aren't many of the latter.

2. I found a site with samples of period brocade that are incredibly similar to this stuff from my fabric acquisition post. That makes me so happy! Even if the stuff I have is flocked acetate.

3. I started a Tudor kirtle, using some of the fabric I acquired in my last post. I went with the pretty, pretty purple stuff, which I've discovered is wholly synthetic and melts in delightful crusty bits when ironed no matter how much steam. It looks surprisingly period, though. It's definitely period-oid, and it good enough for ren faire. I also think I can stretch this puppy to cover most of the sixteenth century, from about the late 1530s to 1570 with the appropriate accessories.

I'm using the Tudor Ladies' Gown and Kirtle pattern from Reconstructing History. I was delighted to realize that by adjusting the back neckline and depth of the front point, I can use this to make kirtles for the entirety of the sixteenth century.

My justification behind making this before my sister's kirtle is a) I don't have the fabric for hers yet, and b) I can mess up on mine and not feel as horrible as I would if I botched hers.

So, onto the pictures.

Mock up and notes )

The mock-up was completely painless. So I moved right along to the actual thing.

Purple brocade/jacquard/something kirtle bodice and construction notes )

I did, however, run into some trouble with the piped bias on the neckline and a mystery wrinkle at the bust.

Razzafraggit )

Now comes the debate over trimming this puppy. I'm not sure if I should or not. On the one hand, if I do, then I can stretch its use: All I'd need to do is make a partlet and some sleeves, and I could wear it as a 1550/60s style dress. So, friends, this is where you come in.

Four trimming choices )

Which would you go with? I'm leaning right now towards the Eleanora di Toledo version or Version 3. They seem the most flexible, and the Eleanora has the advantage of being from the 1550s, while there are examples from the 1540s, as well. The look is a generic mid-century thing. The only problem is that the back neckline on my bodice is, well, wrong. Oh, and that this trimming look is Italian. I think I can live with that, though.

I am currently very startled by how easily this is going together. I'm predicting that this means I will sew the skirt together inside out more than once or spill red Kool-Aid all over the entire ensemble at some time in the future. Costuming is not supposed to be this easy!

What I have left to do:

--Baste down piped bias along armholes/lacing
--Figure out trimming situation
--Maybe insert an lining
--Sleeves? Sleeve cap?
--Finish covering lacing holes
Current Music: Come My Sweet -- Medieval Baebes