Thursday, February 26, 2009

Debbie's Victorian Chemise

This is my mum’s brand new chemise. I used the simplicity pattern again as I really like how it turns out and I find it pretty comfortable. Believe it or not, it was really hard to find everything to actually make this; like the white voile, every time I go to spotlight they never have any in white (reason behind the pink drawers???) and then it took me an age to track down the broderie anglaise trim that you can thread the ribbon through. Now mum is really starting to get excited that everything is coming together. I keep presenting her with a new piece every now and again. First was the corset, now the chemise. I have started working on her petticoats but I need to take measurements with the corset on and of course I forgot last time I had her laced in.

Onto other news, I had the day off work on Wednesday and I managed to get quite a few things done. My 1850s round crinoline outfit is coming along nicely. I have the bodice almost complete and the skirts are attached to it and hemmed. All I really have left to do on it, is a smidge of hand sewing; namely the sleeve seam needs to be stitched down to the lining and I need to put my little hook and eye closures on the front, and add my bow trims. So I will be able to get it done this weekend. Other than that, I have the head piece pattern drawn up and I think I have enough of my fabric left over to get a little drawstring bag cut out. I am intending to use the dress fabric as the lining, and make both the bag and head piece out of my matching sash fabric. I tried the partially finished dress on Polly over the top of my crinoline and petticoats, and I am so pleased with how it is sitting. And with it only one weekend away, I am starting to get very excited.

Though, that also means that supernova is fast approaching and I really need to make more of start on my costumes. My Mrs Lovett is on hold until I sit down and get my hand sewing completed; my padme vest needs to be taken in a bit, edges need to be finished and I need to start on that embroidery piece; and as for my shinku, I have to cut out some fabric this weekend so that I can get stuck into it. I did manage to score on one front today, I picked up some large silver hoops to use as my padme armbands and some rose earrings for my shinku buttons, bonnet and shoes. These were that last hard things that I really needed to find. I am hoping that this weekend, once my 1850s dress is done, to get stuck into my supernova costumes. It probably does not help that it will be my brother’s birthday on Sunday and I may not get that much done. But I can live in hope.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Crinoline Petticoats

My crinoline petticoats are done. And true to my word I got it all done last night. This is the first one, my ruffled petticoat. It has three 45cm ruffles sewn down the length of the petticoat.
Originally I was going to do the two petticoats on the one waistband, but it was just easier to do them separate and I know with my elliptical petticoats, it still works. Plus it really makes ironing the top petticoat a lot easier.
And as for my second petticoat, the plain one. It is basically three widths of my cotton fabric, but with all the starch added in, it gives a nice smooth shape rather easily. It also has some pretty little trim on the bottom and above that 3 rows of tucks. The main reason for the tucks is that i realised after I had the trim on that it would be too long to wear, so I added in the tucks. I was lucky that I had done this one first, and I just chopped a bit off the bottom of my ruffled petticoat.
I am rather pleased with the shape that they give and so very happy that they smooth everything out and you cannot see the black and blue crinoline under everything. On top of that they are a good length in that they will not touch the ground even when in flats. Now I just need to get stuck into the rest of my outfit.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday 23rd

I have been sorely lacked for sewing this weekend. We flew up to Mackay at 7am on Saturday for my Pop’s surprise 80th birthday party, and then back to Brisbane on Sunday morning. It was my dad’s birthday, so we went out for lunch, and then when I got home all I really wanted to do was have a nap. I did mange to get at my machine in the afternoon, but I really did not get much done, just a few seams. One of which I sewed wrong for the forth time. I am starting to get very annoyed. At least this time I got the right sides sewn out instead of in.

But I am really getting a bit anxious about my outfit for the International Women’s Day Walk. I mean, there is really not that much to do, it’s just doing it that poses the problem. I did mark out where my ruffles are to go on the ruffled petticoat last night, so I am aiming to get the ruffles sewn on tonight. And once I have the waistband sorted I can actually work out where I need to hem the skirt. I am also planning to take Wednesday off work this week, so I should be able to get quite a bit of work done then. I think I will feel much better once I start to get more fully ahead of my sewing. At least I am onto some of my projects for later in the year. As in, patterns traced off, fabric cut out, undergarments underway. In all honesty I will get everything done, and in the past the only time that I have been working on something at the last minute was for Christmas last year and that was just my bonnet and basket and I really could have had them done earlier; I was just procrastinating.

The only thing that I may not get done is my headpiece. I should be able to draw up a quick pattern in no time, (it really is just a frilly decorated triangle of fabric) but I am not sure if I have enough decorative trims to stick on it. Oh and I would really like the bag done, but I will have to see about that one too. I guess what it really comes down to is time permitting; and making sure that I am motivated enough after a full day of work. I can tell you now, sometimes it is not easy and all I want to do is curl up and watch tv.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday 20th

And so it comes to the weekend. I was hoping to get more done this week in the way of sewing, but certain circumstances have prevented me; and by this afternoon, all I have accomplished is a new slip for underneath my 1920s dress - the old one was made of voile and I accidentally ripped it. To be fair, I do need this for Saturday night, as we are flying up to Mackay this weekend to celebrate my pop’s 80th birthday, and I needed a dress.

I did manage to make a trip out to Spotlight at Morayfield yesterday afternoon, not that I got much. I still haven’t been able to get the silk that I needed for my Shinku costume, so I settled on some ribbon that should serve the purpose just as well. The main reason for our trip out was the $40 off in $100 spend. And as it turns out, my mum got her fabric for her regency outfit. We got some white batiste for her chemise, some pretty cotton at $4 / metre for her dress and some matching silk for her spencer. I am planning that her dress will be short sleeve for the ball and then she just need to wear her spencer over it to dress it down for the day outfit. At least a dress is a lot easier to make up than making all the components of a mens costume like last year. Dad can just re-wear his. If he is lucky, I will make up a new vest for him.

But I really do not expect any more progress this weekend. We fly out early tomorrow morning, and get back around lunch time on Sunday. Which just happens to be my dad’s birthday, so we are going out in the afternoon. He hasn’t decided where yet, but I’m sure he will make up his mind. Until next time folks…

Monday, February 16, 2009

Monday 16th

So the update on the sewing front so far, things are going okay; another project has cropped up and I am furiously working on that. The details: March 8 is International Women’s Day, and here in Brisbane a fun run / walk is being held around the south bank area. We are entering an Australian Costumers Guild team who will be wearing 1850s dress in honour of Queensland’s 150th birthday. What this means for me is that I need to get off my butt and actually make up my round crinoline dress.

Thankfully I have the crinoline itself finished, courtesy of Christmas holidays, but I need to get just about everything else done. I have picked my outfit and have the fabric that I intend to use, it is a pink check Indian cotton that I picked up at spotlight last year some time. I had always intended to use it for my round crinoline; I just did not expect that to happen quite so soon. Friday afternoon saw me over at spotlight trying to pick up the last of my supernova bits and pieces. Bad move, I bought no fabric but still managed to put a dent in my bank account buying trims and hat decorations. I mean, yes it is good that I got my flowers and feathers for my 1830s but I was very disappointed that I could not get any of my fabric eg. silk. I was also intending to pick up some lining fabric for my crinoline bodice, but thankfully I still had some at home. After that unsuccessful adventure, I spent my Saturday drawing up patterns for my outfit and cutting out the fabric (yes my supernova is now on hold until I get this one done). I work best with lists of all the components that I need for a costume so…

Drawers, Chemise, Corset (thank god I did this at Christmas)
Crinoline and bum pad (Tick)
Ruffled Petticoat
Plain Petticoat
Garibaldi Blouse (wearing the one that I already have)

I have made a good start on getting the petticoats sewn up. The plain outer petticoat just needs to be attached to its waistband and the ruffled petticoat needs the ruffles attached and sewn to a waistband. I have the sash completed and the skirt just needs to be sewn together, hemmed and attached to its temporary waistband.

In the future, and if I get time before the event, I will be making a pagoda bodice to attach the skirt to at the waist. This will turn it into more of a dress. I would also really like to get a reticule done and a hairpiece to match, but these will also depend on how I go with time. This weekend is out for me, as we are going up to Mackay for my Pop’s 80th birthday party, so I am really hoping to get stuck into some sewing during the week. I guess we will have to wait and see how that turns out.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Debbie's Victorian Corset - Dore

Mum's corset is done. Phew. I did actually have it finished yesterday so that I could give it to her for her birthday, but I was too tired to do another post last night.
So, details. I made the dore corset from Laughing Moon. Mainly because I liked how it turned out on me and figure that it would be good for mum as well. She is really pleased with it and was surprised that I was done and could give it to her. She is laced in pretty tight, and could actually go tighter with a smaller corset (as this one is lacing closed at the top) but I don't want her to be uncomfortable, and I think if I lace too much more in at the top she will start to bulge over at the back a bit. Though point of note if she looses any weight, I will be making her a new one. But at least that will mean that this one becomes superfluous and I can re-use the boning and busk.

At least now this means that I can make a start on getting some of her other bits and pieces made up. For a start I can do her petticoat yoke (already started on the skirts), and I can draft up her patterns for her ball gown and day gown. If only I had remembered to take her measurements while I had her all laced up. Oh well, I may just have to get her into again this weekend for some measuring.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sunday 1st

Not really much to say in the way of sewing, I have been out quite a bit this weekend so I really did not get much done. I did manage to make a start on my Mrs Lovett costume for supernova.

But I also managed to find the most perfect hat for my steampunk costume. My design was always leading towards the explorer sort of category, but now that I have my safari hat, it has really confirmed my outfit.

I really need to confirm the rest of the elements of my costume though. And sooner rather than later would be good. My vest bodice is already drawn up and I have every intention of wearing some knee breeches. A bag of some sort would be good. And I have decided with my hair I will use my super long plait pieces under my hat. I am rather excited about making it all up now. I was having some trouble getting into my costume completely, but now that I have my hat, I am all there for it. YAY!!!