mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
Had a living history event bright and early today and managed to finish my outfit last night at 11:30 pm. Ugh. The event went well though. We had a couple schools come to a local museum where we gave educational demonstrations about Manitoba's Selkirk Settler history. I was at a station with another lady where we talked about what kids wore 200 years ago. We had two kids (boy and girl) from each group dress up in some clothes and the kids all enjoyed that.

I took some pictures of my outfit when I got home. They are in the hallway because the rest of our house is crammed full with stuff at the moment (my stuff from Ontario and stuff from my grandmother's). I like this outfit, but the waist is seriously too low, which bothers me because I think it makes it look more 1820s than c.1815. However, when wearing an apron over it, it's really not noticeable, so whatevs. The real point is that I hand-sewed an entire outfit and that now I have something of my own to wear to living history stuff!
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I also took pictures of the pockets I made (which were what I was finishing last night), but I'm saving those for another post because they are my HSM entry. :)

Try-on

May. 19th, 2016 03:10 pm
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
I got the fronts attached to the backs at the shoulders, so I pinned the side seams and had a try-on. I was expecting to feel frumpy and butter-churny etc, but OMG, it's actually kind of cute! With regard to the Regency pattern I drafted for this, I think the fit is good, but I would like the waist to be about half an inch to an inch higher, the front neck a bit lower, and the have the back piece curve narrower at the waist. But really, those are such minor things, the waist length really doesn't matter for this, I can cut down the neck a bit before adding the collar, and increasing the curve is just an aesthetic thing. I am SO GLAD it fits well!
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The details are kind of lost with the busy print and I have a feeling it's going to be very visually...um...interesting combined with long sleeves and a petticoat. The pattern is taken almost exactly from this cotton spencer because it had the style I wanted and similar measurements to me, but altered to have a long crossover front. The back skirt is just a rectangle (12" long fabric width) pleated to the waist with double knife pleats. What's left:

  1. Sew side seams

  2. Hem fronts and bottom

  3. Sleeves, with wristbands

  4. Collar

Hoping to get this done Saturday (but probably won't actually get it done until Sunday, or possibly even Monday. Ack!). Then I will have time to make a pair of (mostly machine sewn!) pockets before the event on Wednesday.

Eventually, to finish off this outfit, I'd like to make an apron, a cap, a straw bonnet, a neckerchief, an alternate short-sleeved shortgown in a different print (for hot days), and a wool spencer (to wear with the petticoat for cold days). Then I could just stop worrying about what to wear for living history and focus on other, fancier pretty things. ;p
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
The petticoat is done. And the back pieces of the shortgown bodice are together with the back skirt partially attached. I backstitch top-stitched the side-back fashion fabric pieces onto the back fashion fabric and lining. Then I whipstitched in the side-back lining pieces on the inside. It's all tidy and looks nice. I am attaching the back skirt like normal, using a backstitch. The fronts will be backstitch top-stitched at the shoulders and then seamed normally at the sides along with the ties. Pictures will be forthcoming when I have the main pieces together and can try it on. Other bits are: collar, sleeves, wristbands, and (optional) back buttons.
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
I tried on my petticoat yesterday so that I could fit the straps. So you get (not very exciting bathroom mirror) pictures! The fabric is a cotton print from the Old Sturbridge Village collection by Judie Rothermel and I found the actual fabric on the OSV website, which dates it to 1822, so a bit after this outfit, but still pretty close. This petticoat has a gored front piece and straight back piece that is gathered at CB. Slits are left in the seams to reach pockets (which I'm hoping to make for this month's HSM challenge: Holes), and the hook and eye closure is at the left seam. The waistband is fabric and the straps are twill tape, based on this example from the Royal Ontario Museum. I'm wearing it over my quick 'n' dirty Regency stays that I made for CoCo last year and my shift, which you can see I adjusted by gathering the back neckline to a band because it was too big.
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I need to finish this off today so I can get started on the shortgown. Hoping to get it patterned today and maybe also cut out.
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
I finally watched Crimson Peak yesterday. Some parts scared the bejeezus out of me. It also reminded me of some classic horror/Gothic/suspense things, kind of Hitchcock meets Gaslight meets V.C. Andrews meets the Brontes. I loved the design. The sets and costumes were glorious. I am especially fond of this gown:

I read that the pleating in the costumes was all hand done and in some scenes you can see the basting stitches for the pleats left in, I think on one of her nightgowns. I like the pale yellow contrasted with the black trim. It's just super awesome.

It looks like my new Regency blue print ensemble will be hand-sewn. Not my first choice, but my mom has been using the sewing machine to make costumes for the school musical, and I wanted to get started yesterday, so I just decided to hand sew. So far, the petticoat seams are sewn and one pocket slit is hemmed. My mom's school musical is Beauty and the Beast this year and I was also helping her with that. I drafted up some hoods for the Beast and a couple of wolves and cut out the hood pieces in faux fur. That fur gets EVERYWHERE! I think I even ate some of it. ;p
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
Now that I am not frantically scrambling to move, finish essays, and prepare for a conferece, I can take time to do things at home. This mostly involves cooking and cleaning, to help out the family and to prepare for my stuff to arrive. It's not fun, but it's good to feel accomplished and productive. Plus, I get to sleep in.

I'm also planning my next sewing projects. I have a couple of living history events at the end of May: Visit With the People of the Red River and Doors Open. The first is an educational day at one of the local museums, where kids from a school come and we do demonstrations. This needs c.1815 clothing because it's Selkirk Settlers/Manitoba history stuff. I was going to make a white petticoat to wear under my 1790s chemise dress that I was going to fake as being later by wearing it with my Regency stays. But I got the brilliant(?) idea that it wouldn't be much more work to make a petticoat and a shortgown/jacket out of some cotton print that I have and then I'd just straight-up have a period appropriate outfit for all my 1815 needs (which are many because that's the primary period we do). I am planning an ensemble based on a few period examples:
From the National Trust, can be seen in Nancy Bradfield's Costume in Detail.
From the Charleston Museum.

And there's a similar shortgown/jacket in [livejournal.com profile] chocolatepot's Regency Women's Dress. I'm making a less frilly one because I don't have the patience for ruffles. Just a fitted back and loose front that will tie, with a collar. I have a whole Pinterest board for this project here. The petticoat will be really simple, just a shaped front, rectangular back, and straps. I think I can get this project done in a reasonable amount of time since I have a sort of basic Regency bodice pattern to start from.

The second event is at Dalnavert House Museum, where I was this past weekend for some of the conference. The house was built in 1895 so my new shirtwaist/skirt ensemble will have its first wearing! The ensemble really needs a hat (well, and a jacket, but I am being slightly ambitious, not crazy. I just hope it's fairly warm. I was chilly last year). I am thinking a plain sailor hat with a band of the same silk as the bow tie, kind of like this lady:


I also need to work on two baby quilts. I have the cotton fabric, but need the batting. I want to get the costuming done in the next couple of weeks and then maybe one quilt and then back to costuming (corset?) and then quilt again.

For non-sewing things, today I baked a cake. I'm calling it a diet cake. Now that I'm back home I am eating healthier (and less) and trying to get some exercise (so far, mostly vacuuming) and do stretching. I got a cake craving, though, so I made a "diet" version of a Victoria sponge cake. It's "diet" because it's about 2/3 of a regular cake recipe, which is 2 cakes put together to form the layers, and it doesn't have any whipped cream. Also, because it's at home, I only get to eat a quarter of the cake. ;p
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It sunk a little bit in the middle, for some reason. Possibly problems when I reduced the recipe or maybe not quite baked enough, though it was definitely cooked. It's super easy to make and I love the taste. It's basically a pound cake recipe, usually done by weight, but I've converted it into volume measurements.
Recipe behind the cut )

Moving on

Jan. 4th, 2016 09:59 pm
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
Got my apartment stuff sorted out (keys on the way to me and bill paid) and thinking about other things, like what is on the sewing docket for the coming year. I've mentioned my projects before but I'm kind of sad that all of my upcoming projects are already decided. I like it being a bit open-ended. But since the reason for these projects being determined is the fact that I have specific things to wear these to, it's not really a bad thing. So here are the projects and their different elements, just to keep it organized:

1. 1895 ensemble: petticoat, corset cover, skirt, blouse, bow tie, straw boater, (jacket?)
2. 2 baby quilts
3. 1867 outfit: corset, crinoline, petticoat, (chemise?), print dress, hat, shawl
4. 1883 plaid kilted outfit: kilted underskirt, overskirt, velveteen bodice (I hope 1m is enough for this, if now, I have a cotton-silk suiting I could dye green that would work), (collar?), (cuffs?)
5. 1883 outerwear: coat, faux fur short cape, faux fur muff, faux fur hat, nubia
6. Modern: grey shorts

It's a lot of items for me to make in a year, but last year I made 3 ensembles/dresses for Costume College, so I think I can get it done. And when these are finished, I have some others that I want to get done after (maybe for the Francaise Dinner or Costume College in 2017).

1. Painted 1780s gown: bum pad, petticoat, petticoat, gown, wig, cap/hat
2. Lilac silk and cream net 1871 evening gown: petticoat, skirt, overskirt, bodice
3. 1816 ensemble: print dress or shortgown/skirt combo, cap/hat, apron, ruff/chemisette
4. 1790 riding habit: shirt, cravat, petticoat, waistcoat, jacket, hat
OR 4. 1908 ensemble: net guimpe, green jumper dress, (hat?)
OR 4. 1920s one-hour dress: lavender polka dot day dress, hat
OR 4. Yellow linen-rayon 1930s/40s something
OR 4. 1916 outfit: petticoat, corset cover, striped skirt, blouse, hat
OR 4. 1869 burnt orange dress: dress, overdress,
5. Modern: pants, (blouse?), (wool-cashmere blazer?) (birds voile dress?)

Other potential sewing )
mala_14: (1882 Little Mermaid)
I have a variety of things that I want to sew in the coming year and a half. Some of them have deadlines or events, which is good for making sure I get things done. I'm excited about getting to try new eras as well as having eras that I can now do fairly comfortably. I still need to make more underthings, which is sort of a downer, but I am looking forward to having them in the wardrobe. So here are the projects that you should be seeing in the not-too-distant future:

Must sew:

  • 1895 Tailor-made Gown for a conference presentation in April: drawers, petticoat, corset cover, shirtwaist, skirt, jacket, hat (I have most of the supplies for this one, after a trip to the fabric store today. Still need something for the hat and maybe other small things that I will figure out as I go along.)

  • 1867 Cotton Print for living history celebrations for the 150th anniversary of Confederation: corset, hoop, petticoat, petticoat, dress, shawl, bonnet (I need all kinds of things for this one, like all the supplies for the hoop, busk, cotton for the petticoats, buttons, and bonnet supplies.)

  • 1883 Little House Winter Dress: kilted skirt, overskirt, bodice (Yay for having all the correct undies for this! I am using my blue and green brushed cotton plaid for the skirts and my green dyed velveteen which burn testing makes me think is cotton for the bodice. The velveteen was originally supposed to be for my GoT Tyrell outfit. I wanted black velveteen for this project, but I have the green on hand and it matches, so it's getting used. Also need buttons.)

  • 1883 Little House Winter Outerwear: coat, cape, muff (I can use the burgundy wool I got upsold on in London to make the coat, with a hood I think. Need to get some faux fur for a cape and muff, as well as whatever else that will require.)

  • 2 Baby Quilts for friends' babies being born at the end of August and early December

Bonus sewing or projects that may also appear in the coming year or so:

  • 1820 Blue Print for living history: shortgown and petticoat a la [livejournal.com profile] koshka_the_cat or a morning gown, chemisette, cap (Living history does lots of Regency era, so would be useful to have this, especially now that I have my quick 'n' dirty stays. Have all the supplies for this.)

  • 1790 Riding Habit: shirt, skirt, waistcoat, jacket (Now that I know how to make death head buttons, I can make buttons for this. Have all the other materials as well as correct undies.)

  • 1916 Ensemble for living history celebration of 100th anniversary of women's suffrage in Manitoba: skirt, shirtwaist (I have fabric and the undies for this.)

  • 1780 Painted Gown: stays, bumpad, petticoat, skirt, gown (I have almost all the stuff for this. Would be very labour intensive project with all the painting. No real occasion to wear though. Maybe for Quebec City?)

  • 1870s Little House Winter Dress: petticoat, skirt, overskit, bodice, mantle (I have some possible fabrics for this, but would still need to buy more to really make it. Definitely a maybe.)

  • 1950s playsuit: shorts, skirt, top (I have all the stuff for this, but not really an occasion. Except for the shorts; I need more and better shorts in my life.)

  • Retro Yellow Dot Sundress (I have all the stuff for this, minus zipper. For wearing in regular life.)

  • (Modern) Birds Voile Sundress (I have all the stuff for this, minus zipper. For wearing in regular life.)

  • Smooth Sailing Trousers (I have some plum plaid that I could make a pretty awesome pair of trousers out of. For wearing in regular life.)

  • 1779 Striped Polonaise: same underthings as 1780 Painted Gown, skirt, polonaise (I have the striped silk but need lots of silk organza for this to make it froofy. No real occasion to wear though. Maybe for Quebec City?)

  • 1871 Lavender Silk and Cream Net Gown: petticoat, skirt, overskirt, dinner bodice, ballgown bodice (I have the lavender silk but need lots of cotton net for this. No real occasion to wear though. But I want something FROOFY!)

I have fabric for other projects that are languishing in the stash, but these ones make the (not-so-)short-list either because I have an occasion for them or because I have all the supplies (or because I just got the fabric for them and am thus super excited about them because they're new and shiny!). Links go to Pinterest boards.

Whew! That's enough!
mala_14: (iris)
I attended my first meeting for my local living history group. It was a lot of fun. The people are super nice, welcoming, friendly, and fun. There was an annual general meeting and then a sewing session. I got a welcome gift as a new member of a period appropriate sewing kit with flat wooden spools for thread, needles in red flannel, little metal snips, a brass thimble, bone buttons, and an awl. (I'm extra happy about the awl. I've been needing one of those.)

The only downer is that because of the local history they do not tend to recreate many eras or much fancy clothing. The focus is on early 19th century. And the people in this area at that time were very early settlers so lots of work clothes. Some ladies had some very nice caps though. They put out the Country Wives patterns. So I need to make some stuff that is appropriate. Luckily I have some repro cotton print dated to 1822 that I can use to make something plainer. I'm thinking something like this. My stays are about half done. Need to get those finished up.

I'm thinking that February is going to be the month of undergarments. I have my stays, my 1880s corset, and my 1880s petticoat to finish. I would also like to make my 1820 dress, but we'll see. March will be my 1882 print skirt and polonaise. Then April will be my Little Mermaid ballgown. Hopefully I will get all these things done by May. Then it will be on to Lost Hope Fairy. I just need to focus!

And yeah, looks like HSM 2015 is not in the cards for me. My sewing schedule just doesn't fit in with the challenges enough. Oh well, one of these days.

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