Thursday, June 25, 2009

One thing gained, another lost

So I got my fabric in today.

Not much good that is going to do me because I no longer have a sewing machine to sew anything with. I was borrowing so I guess eventually I had to give it back.


So here at least are pictures of me burrowing in my six and a half yards of beautiful taffeta. ZOMG.

Its kind of pinkish in certain lights but back to the beautiful cinnamon in others

The lovely vine pattern oh it adds SO MUCH!

Joy is wallowing in brand new fabric.

Its now sitting in the trunk of my room mates car until the bedbugs have been done away with.

Hey look color!

My partner in crime is pretty much the most awesome human in the world and showed me how to use this painting program I've been using for years incorrectly.

Tada! The color scheme (roughly) for the bustle dress. Change fringe to tassels or lace. Fringe might drive me insane.

Wrangling Wigs

I have finally migrated over to the dark (insane) side of wigs wigs wigs!

Since I recently chopped off what locks I had;


it was then time to delve into the world of wigs if I wanted to correctly keep costuming. After looking at Lauren's [] wig of great enormity I thought to myself well hey wigs aren't so bad!

...HAHAHAHAHAHAH I am obviously off my rocker. Maybe it was just the cheap ass [read: 28 dollars] wig that I purchased and received in an ENVELOPE. Maybe it is the fact I have no idea how to style hair, not even my own unless it involves the mass being shoved into a metric shit-ton of bobby pins.

Maybe it is just the fact that I need my partner in crime to help me wrangle.

Here is the scoop:

When I got it the wig was shoved into an envelope and pretty much flat. That was fun. Had to do some fluffling. Then I put the mass of shoulder length sausage ringlets on and went OH JESUS CHRIST I LOOK LIKE PREDATOR. No, really. I did.

Side note: This was tuesday night, before I had my wigblock.

I grabbed the mass of bobby pins I could find and made an attempt to wrestle the thing into some semblance of victorian grace and beauty.

Note: Attempt.

This is what I came out with on Tuesday night.

The 'bangs' that the wig had were some half hearted little scrap curls, so I just pulled them back into a little twist. The curls are really...fake looking. About that later.

For some reason, this side always looked better, more natural. Im not really sure WHY.

I look like Little bo peep.

So that was all Tuesday night. Yesterday I braved the bus and almost getting hit by a car a couple of times to go to the costume shop to get mself a wig block. [worth it.] After I got home i plopped my butt down and was determined to crank something out! So I started to experiment with up dos, half up dos, and whatever else I could think of. Sadly I didn't get enough pictures because during this I was recharging my camera batteries, little buggers.

The wig was made in such a way that made it nigh to impossible to pull the mass back from the forhead like a proper late 1800s updo. I tried to pull the bangs back to see what that would do.

Not so great, in practice. Theory, yes, reality, no.

So I took all that down and shook it out some more.

Then I noticed something; some of the curls were getting looser because of being twisted the other way.

IT. LOOKED. GREAT!!! So then i grabbed the head o-hair and proceeded in turning all the curls the wrong way to loosen them up and make them look less like dreds, because that was just terrible.

End result:

It looks much more natural and less sausage like. I also attempted to get some volume at the top because it was pretty much flat.

All in all I understand now that this is going to be quite a projet and a half. There will be many more attempts and now that I have my camera cable, more pictures of every step of the way.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Revealed! The mass Masquerade Ball Project!

Finally, I will reveal my idea and my final sketches for the Fox themed Halloween bustle ball gown!!

It has taken me forever to draw anything suitable, but here we are.

The bodice and overskirt are going to be in this fantastic fabric that I found on

The bottom ruffle is going to be in a black silk to match the black gloves I plan to wear.

Around the bottom of the overskirt, and around the top of the bodice I plan on using a very short cream colored fringe to give not only the look but feel of a fox, but to keep it sleek so as short as i can find it. I also plan on finding some very nice antiquey looking lace appliques to go down the front, and a heavier flat lace to go on top of the fringe around the over skirt.
The grand parlor skirt will be in a cream silk, most likely another taffeta.

Hooray for providing these patterns.

I plan to finally start this gown in July. Many updated to come!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The successful 'Pulling a Pimpernel'

So, Lauren and I have this saying now, coined by her called 'Pulling a Pimpernel.'
If anyone remembers from my very first post the small anecdote about the 18th century gown for the Scarlet Pimpernel PEERS ball. I made the very random and strange mistake of last minute [the night BEFORE] cutting up what I had to remake it into a different gown, because someone made mention that my gown wasnt clear on the period. This made Maggie have a little bit of a freak out, as back then I was OBSESSED at always being period correct. It was hard back then because I knew nothing of 18th century gowns.

So, this is what the gown started as;

It was very nice and simple, and it fit great. The hoops not so much, though. [See thats me being ignorant.]

It was fine the way it was, but well I didn't like it, so I cut it up to turn it into this.

This is what made Lauren and everyone else realize that I am apparently not right in the head. The gown was great in theory, but it was HARDLY wearable or functional. I was sewn into it.
[That is a horrible thing for me.]

So, because of the frantic last minute changes, and somehow barely pulling it off, it became known that changing drastically your costume for an event the night before Pulling a Pimpernell.

As you know, There was the first Le Society de Pique Nique today and I had been planning the Polonaise, which took two different routes. The first one was a horrible disaster, and I hadn't been updating with the second, shame shame on me. I will tell you why, though. It has ALSO been a huge disaster.

Because it was too small last time, when I cut the pattern peices out this time, I scaled but about a half inch, give or take. This was a very bad idea, because of my bust. I thought that taking in the darts would make this gown fit like a glove. It didn't fix the neckline and bust, unfortunately which is always my problem. So it ended up being alot of top stitching and fraying.

The bust still ended up fitting horribly after I rearranged some seams, trimed into a better shape, then stitched. I apparently have not discovered the art of top stitching.
The back, as Usual, turned out fantastic, though.

Another problem I had, which I usually have a problem with are sleeves. I unforutnately lost the top part of my Polonaise sleeve so made the very bizarre and abrupt choice to grab a basic sleeve: from my Margo Anderson ladies wardrobe pattern. Fail. They fit a little strange, and dont fit into into the armscye very well.

This is one of those times where a costume did NOT want to be made. Any costumer knows really how that feels. It really has fought me every step of the way. So I didn't make it. It is sitting in my closet being depressed.

So this is where it all ties in; I pulled a pimpernell Saturday, with the ideas brewing Friday night. I had no idea what to do, but that I was going to throw something together with my already made, half finished parlor skirt. I thought I could make a bodice using the top of the polonaise, toyed with draping something, even thought of changing the fabric, or shopping up the polonaise, but that was stupid as the TOP was what was not working for me.

Then while digging through my patterns, I had a GENIUS epiphany. I have vests. Many many vest patterns, of varyin styles. Vests are sort of period! So I picked a nice and feminine shawl collar, and harrassed Lauren for swiss wasit help, and threw together in less than 24 hours my new picnic outfit, including the ruffle on the parlor skirt.

I have no pictures of it in process, because I was working insanely fast. Oh yeah, I also managed to make two hats the morning of the event; i.e. this morning. I also was sewing on the snaps for the vest IN THE CAR ON THE WAY THERE.

So here is the finised product, all courtesy of Lauren who took these, and whos facebook I jacked them off of.

Tada! The not really period correct somwhere between edwardian and bustle look. I think that I can take the bustle out and it will very much pass for edwardian.

These pictures were taken with the inspiration from a picture Lauren and I found on I also love Lauren's seeming skinny legs compared to the hair/hat size haha

There was a lovely beach area, not ocean but it was a nice river beach none the less. With alot of goose poop.

Close up of the new vest and the swiss waist as well as my hat. I kind of wish I had had a wig for this outfit, as I just chopped off my hair yesterday, but it was still ok. Everything fit so well! I can't even believe this. The success of this Pimpernel was multitudes better than the last, as it is wearable another time, and I was not sewn into it!

I think my bustle pad was a little too overstuffed, the right shape, but a little too stuffed so it made a bit too sharp of a bum.

Enough to put a cup on. And stay. Thats a sign.

And of course there was ice cream.

There are a few more things that need to be done, add closures on the skirt since it was closed with saftey pins, heh, and fix up the armscye and the collar, maybe add a couple of buttons.

Little things like that, and of course and overkirt so I can switch between edwardian and bustle.

One very successful picnic!!


Monday, June 8, 2009

The finished Elizabethan Nobles!!!

Here are some pictures of the finished EVERYTHING of my newest elizabethan nobles from Tahoe faire.

Back view one. Our juggler friends were juggling around us. I was scared.

Front view of said incident.

First putting EVERYTHING on.

With fur partlet that kept me VERY warm

Up close of the partlet.

Good back view.

All photos courtesy of Lauren Reeser partner in crimes!!

Monday, June 1, 2009

The one day fur partlet.

I'm going backwards and posting the finished pictures before i post the starting pictures.

Let me tell you something about cutting up old fur jackets. It makes the biggest mess you could even imagine. But more on that later, Like I said I'm going backwards.

So this is what an old rabbit fur jacket somehow turned into.

It still needs some adjustments, some trim, a broach, then it should be golden.

Im the pimp of the elizabethan world. As it is puffy.