Thursday, April 30, 2009

1840s corded petticoat

And voila, I am making progress on my next project. Originally I was going to be doing steampunk next, but as I am not going to the event, I am putting that project on hold. It will get made later in the year, but I would rather put my time into all my projects for July. But the purpose of this post is to say that I have finally finished another part.

This is my corded petticoat to be worn under 1840s dresses. It has taken a damn long time to finish but now that I am done, I am glad that I persevered. I started out with two 90cm widths of fabric that are both 1.5 metres long. I then stitched them at the side seams and left a placket at the top of one. And then the cording began. I actually folded some into the hem when I did that to begin with, so that it would match the rest of the petticoat. There are a total of 42 rows. And each one is formed by using a zipper foot and sewing a pintuck with a piece of cord inside. Originally I was going to use cording, but at 90c (or more) per metre, it gets very expensive for basically 80 metres of the stuff. So instead, I found a thick wool. It cost me about $7 for around 50 metres; so it is much cheaper and it has actually worked out really well. It think it really holding out a pretty decent shape and will create a great base for my dress. Especially once I get the flounced petticoat and plain petticoat over the top. Now, I can move onto the next step of my projects. But just so that you can actually understand where I am coming from, the list of things that I need done for July are:

11th - Newstead House Garden Party
1840s Maid Dress for Me - to make 3 flounce petticoat, plain petticoat, dress, apron, cap.
1849 Day Dress for my Mum - to make dress, bonnet, reticule
1850s suit for my Dad - to make vest, trousers, jacket
I've also got to draw up the patterns for these yet. But thankfully I have already made a head start and have most of the undergarments taken care of.

12th - Abbey Medieval Fair
I have to make my gown, chemise and hooded cape. The gown and cape are cut out, so I plan to actually start these this weekend.

25th / 26th - History Alive
1830s day gown - thankfully just me at this one, and all I have to do is sew my dress together. (If I go a second day, I will definitely be re-wearing something)

25th - Heritage Ball
1880s bustle ball gown for me - Also needs a pattern, but I have all the undergarments bar one petticoat done, and it is cut out.
1840s ball gown for Mum - Yet another pattern to be drawn up. Thankfully though, she will be wearing the same undergarments as for the day gown.
1850s evening suit for Dad - The only difference to his day suit is that there will be a different jacket and vest.

So with those four events looming up on me, I really do need to get stuck into my sewing. Thankfully I have all of May and June free to make my new costumes. And the best thing about dressing mum and dad is that once I have these ones done for them, they can be worn again and again without too much drama. Other than the fact that I will be making regency clothing for them to come to the ball in September, but at least they go together pretty quickly. Though looking at that list, perhaps I should head back to my sewing machine...

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Heritage Dancing April

Last night, Kerry and I went dancing at the heritage dancers monthly bush dance. Now when you hear the words bush dance, you immediately picture the kind of dancing that we are all taught in highschool. But this kind of dancing is heritage. Very pretty. I had a great time. Kerry and I both dressed in Vintage, which made us feel pretty and special. Plus bonus that we got heaps of complements on our dresses. I dug out my 1960s dress because it is fun to twirl in.

Though, the best thing about going to the monthly dances is that when it comes time for the ball in July, we will not be completely inept when it comes time to dancing. It was a really great workout, and I have been feeling a bit stiff today. But I totally plan to go next time. And I am thinking that I will take my dad along too. He loves to dance.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

1850s Pink Crinoline Bonnet

The next upcoming costuming event that I have is at Rockton House in Ipswich. This time, it will be 1850s again as it is related to the Q150 celebrations. Since I am not really a fan of the round crinoline, or really crinolines in general, I am going to re-wear my pink dress that I wore for the International Women's Day Fun Run. I actually would like to wear it again and hopefully get some nice photos of my outfit since I didn't get any last time. But to make it a little bit different, and since I had the time, I decided to make a bonnet to go with it. Last time I wore a silk and lace cap that I had made to match, but as the hat-loving freak that I am, I could not pass the opportunity to make a new bonnet. And it is finished...

It is completely made of silk and with a buckram base. The hot pink stuff actually matches my dress, and it is the same stuff that I used on the waist sash that I wear with it, and my reticule. It is bound in white silk, has pink silk ties and bows and pretty white flowers. I was tossing up using pink flowers instead of the white, but I just liked how stark the white ones looked. Plus the type of flower goes better with the perid. Now I just have to wait until I can wear it.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Debbie's 1849 Dual petticoat

I managed to finish my mum's ruffled petticoat for her 1849 gown. Thankfully I only need to make her bum pad and then I am done with the undergarments. This has been sitting in my sewing room half done for quite some time, just taking up room so it is rather nice to get it out of there. It is actually two petticoats built into one. The are both sewn onto the drop yoke which is mid-hip height. The underneath layer is a single petticoat with two flounces and the top petticoat is a single layer with 3 flounces. Together with the plain top petticoat that is worn over this, they help give the perfect shape for her 1849 dress that I am making for the Newstead House Garden Party and her ballgown.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Migunyah House Book Launch

Yesterday saw me off to Miegunyah House in Bowen Hills for a book launch. I, of course was in my 1907 Afternoon Gown. I thankfully finished it all on time (Friday night, I only had buttons left to sew on). I am really pleased with how it turned out. The lace at the neck turned out to be a little scratchy at first, but not really an issue. The only problem that I really had was that the bodice kept slipping back a bit. I think that for next time that I wear this dress, I will either add a brooch to hold it in place or just safety pin it to hold.

As for the book launch itself, I had a nice time. We toured around Miegunyah House for a bit, our job was to basically add ambiance to the event. To help people picture what would have been worn at different times throughout history. We had 1839, 1850s, 1880s, 1907 and 1945. So we managed to cover quite a chunk of history. But the real interest are the photos of our outfits...

1839, Rebecca...

1850s, Paul and Narelle...

1880s, Cherie and Rachelle...

Victorian Gentleman, Nathan...

1945, Kerry...

1907 Afternoon Gown - Part 5

The completed 1907 Gown...

Monday, April 13, 2009

1907 Afternoon Gown - Part 4

It is all coming along. Slowly but surely, I am progressing on my gown. I now have the blouse finished. Phew. It has taken quite some time to do, mainly because of all the hand sewing. I used a very soft cotton voile that has a vertical stripe for the front, collar, sleeves and cuffs. I ended up having to cut the sleeves on an angle so that I could get them out. Mainly because I didn't buy the fabric specifically for this project. The fabric was actually intended for something else, that completely failed. It meant that I had already partially cut the fabric. So to make up the rest, I used a plain white cotton voile for the back of the blouse. I think it actually works to my advantage. But in any case, it really didn't matter because I will be wearing the jumperskirt over the top, and it covers most of the back.

I also have an overabundance of buttons running down the back of the blouse (I guess I won't be dressing myself). And then it came down to the docoration. If you know anything about Edwardian and the early 1900s, you would know that they really went to town with the amount of lace and trims on their clothing. So in the spirit of things, I have an insert lace and decorative lace runing down the front. I also hand stitched quite a bit of embroidered organza trim (on the cuffs and collar).

I am pleased with how it looks. The mannequin really does not do it justice; when worn the cuffs sit just above my elbows and the sleeve puffs up quite a bit. The front of the blouse is also cut longer so looks really strange without a waistband of some sort. This so that it can be puffed up to give the pidgeon chested look that was popular at the time. Now I just need to finish the jumperskirt.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

1907 Afternoon Gown - Part 3

I am trying to drum up a bit more motivation for doing my 1907 afternoon gown. I am not really succeeding, but I am trying. I now have the petticoat done (photos). And the blouse just needs buttons and some lace to be sewn on. As for the jumperskirt, I have it cut out and I have started to put it together but I really need to make a trip out to spotlight. I want to bind the skirt and bodice with white velvet ribbon, but I just don't have any that is wide enough on hand. At least I really do not have that much more to do now. Hopefully my next project will inspire me a bit more...

I am pleased with how my petticoat has turned out. For a start my drafting of the pattern actually worked. It fits me rather well. It was good to have a bit of a trial run of how the patterns from my book turn out; and I am glad that they work. It means that I can have a bit more faith the next time that I want to put one of them to use.

Friday, April 10, 2009

1830s bonnet

I am having some trouble getting into my next sewing project. I am supposed to be making my 1907 afternoon gown for next weekend, but no motivation to even fixing my pattern and cutting the jumperskirt. So instead, I decided to decorate my 1830s bonnet. I will be wearing it for History Alive later this year. So I really do not need it yet, but I really do love decorating bonnets. I have pictures. It is the bonnet I wore for our regency picnic last year, but it is better suited to 1830s, which I have been desperate to make ever since buying Wives and Daughters on DVD. So the bonnet is lovely silk, and I decorated it with white and blue bonnets, a white silk bow and pretty blue flowers.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Supanova Sunday - Padme

And then there was Sunday. It was actually a lot easier trying to shop on Sunday than attempting the herd on Saturday. Much less people there, so I managed to get a decent look at everything left and picked up the few things that I was actually after; a couple comics, figurines etc. Oh and slurm. Yes they were selling slurm. I don't have the heart to drink the stuff, but if I do, I feel like there should be a costume involved and lots of photos. At the moment it is sitting on my shelf just looking good.

I actually spent most of the day catching up with Abi, who looked amazing in her Classic Silk Specter costume. It's the sort of costume that one day I might like to do (once I tone up enough). I even managed to catch the cosplay in the afternoon as well. But, as for me, I was wearing my new and improved Packing Padme (from Star Wars Episode 2). So, once again I was covered from neck to wrist to toe and corseted this time too. But I am really happy with how it looked, and so pleased with my embroidery. I had so much fun being Padme and being recognised by all the Star Wars enthusiasts. At this point I am determined to dress as Padme again next year. Of course, it will be a different outfit. The hardest thing, will be to decide which one to do next, there are just so many beautiful gowns. Though, my Dad keeps insisting that I must wear my Packing Padme again. I guess that I really impressed him. Maybe I just need a Star Wars convention to go to.

But overall, I had an absolute blast this weekend. This was only my second Supanova, but it was my best. I am so looking forward to next year, and it is always great to be able to do something different each time. I mean, I really do like to re-wear my costumes, but there are just so many that I want to do.