3 Sep 2017 11:53 pm
mandie_rw: (shoes)
Went to a Fountains and Fireworks show at Longwood Gardens tonight - it was set to Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition/Night on Bald Mountain, and the slightly creepy drifting clouds in front of the bright moon were just too perfect! An autumn moon on a cool evening is very high on my list of enjoyment, and I got that tonight (yes it's still technically summer so there isn't that crispness in the air you get later in the season, but still, so nice! let me read you my love letter to fall weather...).

I wore one of my new pairs WKD of stockings with an old-ish dress, so I had to document it. ;) Fully-fashioned period-correct stockings appeal to the historian in me, but the fun-colored-seams on stretch nylons are half the price, and I've had to tell myself more than once that I don't have to be period-accurate in my everyday clothes if I don't want, sheesh. (Yes, self, it is okay to wear a hairnet with a 1950s outfit if you want, the world will not end. etc. etc.) Pink seams are decidedly not period, but now that I've bought a pair - OMG so fun, I want them in alllllllllllll the colors!
me in front of fountain garden  pink stocking backseams
A shoe aside: yes, I walked all around the gardens in those highly impractical shoes. But it's all paved...! Thus far in my life, I've got feet that have cheerfully worn all manner of cheap heels, for which I am very grateful! These were I think $8 on ebay. (I haven't been buying as many in the past few years, what with working retail so what's the point? but I am totally a Shoe Whore!) Almost always have to have some kind of strap, though, as I have a tendency to walk right out of regular pumps. I learned my lesson after dropping a cute little kitten heel down the stairs one too many times walking up to a second-floor class in college!


I did actually sew today, too; I hand-tacked down all the seam allowances on the chartreuse bodice and sleeves. Except for the side-back seams, because I think I should re-sew them with a sliiiiiiiightly smaller seam allowance, as I think I used a smaller allowance last time I made this pattern. But this silk is so damn fray-ish! Taffeta, my ass - I knew it wasn't taffeta when it showed up in the mail, and in case I had any doubts, my floor is covered in puffs of yellow silk thread to make me doubly sure. I've never met a taffeta that frayed like that! Fabric Mart, you are lying liars who lie. (If I hadn't been so set on the color, it would have gone right back, sale or no sale.)

mandie_rw: (1860ssunset)
But not the rational dress or the starry night masquerade dress! Hahaha oops.

*looks very shifty*

Well, but I'm not feeling the rational dress at the moment, and since FFC just deigned to find my fabric and mail it to me (I only ordered it three weeks ago...), I can't do much on the masquerade dress either.

And I know I really shouldn't be adding to my bin of UFO's (I make no promises of finishing anything new once the semester starts, though of course I'm still going to try to), but dammit, I want to sew what I want to sew, and I don't actually NEED anything new for Gettysburg, when it really comes down to it. I have three cool-weather day dresses, a paletot, a fur-trimmed hood, a bonnet oh no shit I sold that, a wrapper, a hideously ugly nightgown, a ballgown that definitely fits, a ballgown that may or may not fit, and plenty of 18thc dresses if I want to go that route for the Friday night masquerade. Not to mention a stable of unders, shoes, and enough stockings to outfit everyone staying in the cabin with me! (I love modern stockings, and I love historical stockings, and I may have a slight stocking addiction, but I don't care.)

All that to say...if I wanna cut out the horrible chartreuse dress and sew the bodice together, I'm gonna. And I did. ;)

mandie_rw: (fort mifflin)
Went for a lovely long walk around the neighborhood tonight with mumsie...it's in the low 60s at the moment! It's forecast to jump back up to 90 this week so I'm going to enjoy the autumn weather while it's here.

The show at Longwood tomorrow night has, mercifully, been postponed to Sunday. Oh good, I get to dress nicely after all! And not get wet! Very important, that part is.

Iron-gall ink does in fact improve my bad attempt at quill writing. Still a lot of finessing to do (I need a knife I can sharpen to a finer edge than the one I currently have; preferably a, you know, pen-knife) but I think I'm not entirely hopeless!

Oh, and sewing stuff. Right. I did get pictures of the Peasanty 18thc Caps, and divvied them up among the Usual Suspects (I'm keeping the Unfortunate Biggins for myself). We have:
Caps!  )

I also actually sewed something Gettysburg-relevant today (shocking I know). It does not look like much, but there's quite a few hours of work put into that thing! It's my short-hoop petticoat, done as much as I can be without actually finishing the hoop...just will need to be leveled and waistband-ed once said hoop is done (I'm putting off the corsetmaking.com order til finances have recovered a bit from buying schoolbooks).
Boring petticoat picture and talking about boring petticoat )

So, since I'm off tomorrow with nothing to do, maybe I'll continue to sew productively! Ha ha ha, seems unlikely.

mandie_rw: (fort mifflin)
I finished the Kannik's Korner cap this afternoon, so I think the cap-making frenzy is done (FOR NOW mwahahaha). I'll post pics tomorrow. This last one may well be the dorkiest cap that ever did dork, I am very amused by it.

Regarding my Other New Hobby - I spent money I shouldn't've, and bought myself another TWSBI Eco and another couple inks as a back-to-school treat. I love the Estie J that [personal profile] chocolatepot  gifted me, but I've found that it tends to get a little ring of ink where the nib meets the barrel, and so can get on my fingers just a little bit. Which doesn't bother me at home where I can wash off, but I think that might not appreciate being bounced around in a book bag very much. And I want to have two pens at school. So. New pen it is! Plus I do want to have a semi-professional-looking ink to use, just in case...my current Eco and the Estie J are filled with purple and green inks, respectively, so. (Yes, you justify spending that money!) De Atramentis has a small line of "educator" inks, named after famous names in education, so I got a bottle of Pestalozzi, which is a subdued dark teal. Seemed respectable enough, and apropos to my schooling. xD

I also started working on quill pens this week, as I realized I could decimate a couple of goose wings from the millinery stash! (I've got a dozen, I think I can spare a couple...) I've cut three pens so far from the small feathers, thanks to a couple of internet how-to's, and they're fairly bad but I can write somewhat legibly with them! It may help when I get the iron-gall ink in my pen order; I'm just using fountain pen ink currently and I get the impression that's "wetter" than iron-gall or pigment? We'll find out. I do like writing with both the smaller-size feathers and the little "crow quill" metal dip pen I bought, so I suspect I'd favor the crow quills that were apparently popular around the turn of the 19thc...none of my regular feather sites sell crow feathers so I may have to ask the neighborhood murder of crows and see if they want to donate. ;) (Yes, there are a few on etsy. But I want to get less incompetent at cutting them before I spring for crow quills.)


29 Aug 2017 11:55 am
mandie_rw: (1860ssunset)
It's my last week of freedom before school starts, and I'm taking advantage of it by doing basically nothing! Somewhat in my defense, I caught a cold over the weekend - it's not a very bad one, just bad enough to be annoyingly sniffly (and grumpier than usual when having to stay past 10pm at work...). Not especially motivating to sew anything complicated, either.

I did start working on the Kannik's Korner cap again yesterday, since the old sewing finger doesn't have such a puncture any more. This cap's rather fussier than the two I made previously - lots more hemming!

I was going to finish one of the Nicer 1950s Dresses I started earlier in the summer this week, for a show mom and I are going to at Longwood Gardens this Saturday...but the forecast currently calls for rain. And since it's a rain or shine event and the tickets are not refundable (and I paid for them and they weren't cheap!) and you can't have umbrellas open during the show....I will probably not be wearing a nice dress to that!

(And if the forecast changes...well I've certainly got dresses to fall back on.)

mandie_rw: (Default)
Still giving the old sewing finger a break, so I did a bit more etsy-work - took off the exceptionally terrible waistband on my old 1840s flounced petticoat and put in a drawstring. Less correct but presumably more sell-able. I haven't done 1840s in years (my one dress is now defunct), and if I ever do it again I'll make less shitty petticoats! So that is hopefully going bye-bye. Which would be good because it takes up a damn lot of room.

I decided to try and get the short hoop out of the way as much as possible (since, hey, that's not hand sewing, right?). Got the last casing sewn on, sewed on the waistband, and boned all but one channel. I was really hoping the cutters I bought once upon a time for hoop boning would work, but no dice. Hoop steel was heavier but white steel is wider, so these aren't cutting it (hurr hurr hurr). I'm just about out of plastic whalebone anyway, so it appears a corsetmaking.com order is...in order.

Somewhat related to sewing: I decided ages ago (like when I got the tickets) that I wanted, nay, needed a new dress for the Dita von Teese show, found some fun embroidered net on ebay, and cheerfully bought it. I'm off this weekend, so I figured it's high time to crank that dress out...and then last night I went on Unique Vintage and found the exact dress I was going to make, on clearance, for $35. So I bought it. xD Alright, it isn't the exact dress, but it's pretty darn close! The embroidery on the net's a little finer, and the black skirt's a little shorter, but those are the exact sleeves I was going to do...and $35 is well worth a cute dress! (And I won't mind having two dresses of similar fabric, when I get around to using my fabric...mom and I have tickets to the Pennsylvania Ballet season this year, so I need fancy dresses. ;) )
unique vintage cocktail dress

mandie_rw: (pre-raph)
I fiiinally unearthed my Kannik's Korner cap pattern (*sneezes* oh is that what was at the bottom of that pile? ha ha oops), so I cut out the last cap I decided I want to make and started in on the hemming. And then realized I've gotten to the point where I've worn a bit of a hole in my finger from pushing the needle through, so maybe I should give the incessant hand sewing a rest for  a day or two! Hum, all right.

So I dug out a couple more old costumes that are getting the axe (aka listed on ebay), ironed them, took pics, and messaged the lady who bought my bird print dress and indicated potential interest if I sold any more 18thc things. If she doesn't want them I'll write up the listings tomorrow.

And then I spent an hour + of my life learning how to make good decisions about alcohol use as a college student. LOL. You know, one of those online orientation courses for new students. It was actually a decent one, as those types of things go...except that, you know, I'm almost 30 and if I want to get drunk in costume, I'm damn well going to. xD (Shockingly, that wasn't an option on the "describe how you use alcohol" survey, hee hee.)
mandie_rw: (germantown)
Stupidly boring to look at so I didn't bother taking any picture proof, but...

Yesterday I finished my Boring Apron - midweight unbleached linen, and tried on the petticoat, bedgown, and apron all together, just to see. And woooooow it's unflattering. It may actually surpass my 1920s "servant outfit" as the ugliest thing I've ever made. Not that I anticipated a wool tent being especially flattering anyway, but...it's ugly. Just saying.

(And that was kind of the point so I'm not complaining! Just stating facts, haha.)

Long-sleeved shift is finished except for buttonholes in the cuffs. I thought about buying a nice set of linked buttons from Wm Booth Draper...and then realized I could get a card of buttons from work for $1.50, so, eh. I'll upgrade that someday... I also made one of the caps from the "Caps for the Working Poor" pattern today; the one that's basically an Unfortunate Biggins. It's entertainingly frump-tastic. But very simple to make, so extremely gratifying!

mandie_rw: (1860ssunset)
I had to take today off work, since I was scheduled for jury duty, but ended up not having to go in...so I was free to watch the solar eclipse! We only got somewhere between 75-80% here, not totality (because apparently Philadelphia is anathema to the solar eclipse gods for whatever reason, woe is me), but we had glasses and it was still pretty cool to watch!

Yesterday was a highly successful sewing day at [personal profile] robinsnest 's house...well, successful in terms of spending time with a group of good friends, chatting costume, and laughing myself silly! Actual sewing? I sewed the two side seams of the Ugly Bedgown in 6+ hours of sewing time! Not what I'd call efficient.

Today though, I was slightly better! I finished the Ugly Bedgown (yes, it is covered in fuzzies and dog hair; no, I don't own a dog...), for one.
navy wool bedgown


I also got my petticoat linen in the mail this afternoon, and shocked myself by promptly throwing it in the washer and dryer. And then sewing together just about the whole petticoat! Just have to finish sewing the tape to the front half of the waistband and it's done.
bedgown with orange linen
It's somewhat less "happy pumpkin" and more "rust" in real life...

I ought to get back to the rational dress outfit, but I'm really enjoying my hand sewing! So I might finish up the accessory-type things (apron, one or two more experimental caps) before I do that.

mandie_rw: (germantown)
bedgown lining

I did finish the lemon print skirt today too, but the wacky lining was more important to document. xD And I recounted; it's 19 pieces.

September 2017

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