mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
So I admit it's maybe not the MOST THRILLING PLACE in winter, but it's my birthday I do what I want. *shifty eyes* I love a good garden, even in winter. When I have my estate it will have to have a well-maintained park. Heh.

And we discovered that "it's her birthday" is apparently a totally valid explanation to the public when you're dressed up. That it's just for fun is totally weird, but a birthday makes it not weird at all. The More You Know. It's going to be someone's birthday all the time from now on...

I did not wear The Pimp Coat, though I did bring it. But I'd have roasted in it...walking and a scarf kept me quite warm! Too warm at times actually.


Read more... )
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
And on time! Barely.

My Birfday Outing is next Sunday (I'd extend the invite to anybody local again, but there aren't too many people I can wheedle into partly-outdoor events in twenty-something degree weather, I know), but in the interests of full disclosure, I wanted to finish in time to submit it for the Your Wardrobe Unlock'd competition. The deadline's tomorrow at 5pm, so, for me? I Done Good.

(I have no illusions that I'd win, but it gave me a very convenient deadline, and some motivation! We like motivation.)

Plus this gives me a whole week to make the coat that I will definintely need! Feathers-feathers-feathers. (Actually not quite as many feathers as intended, as they're sold by weight not length, and I was hoping they'd be longer than they turned out to be. Oh well. Will still have feathers up to my ears, that's the important part!)

I posted way too many pictures on my blog and nattered on about it there (I guess I like this dress since I couldn't pick just a few shots, haha), so I'll just link you to it.
mandie_rw: (fort mifflin)
Sewing! Yesterday I made a chemisette-thing that I am not entirely enamoured with and will probably remake. I thought I wanted a pleated ruff-type-collar-thing but it appears that maybe I don't.

And then today I did the skirt facing. You may notice I've left the sleeves til last...
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
The bones are in. *flops* Thankfully. My poor widdle fingers are tired of sewing through this cotton. Mocked up and cut out the sleeves too.Starting with a pattern really cuts down on the futzing; if I didn't have chicken arms I wouldn't have needed to futz much at all!

At least it's not like the coat sleeves from the Laughing Moon pattern...those things were absurdly big on me! This adjustment was much more reasonable.

And here is the very attractively boned bodice. I don't have any steels or casings, so as usual just made it up with what I had on hand. The cable ties were great for seven of the nine seams/darts, but those side-back seams were way too curved. I can make a tie curve a bit, but not that much. My options, then, were either cording or reed, and reed seemed like the lesser of the two evils. It may well break at some point, but I can always replace it with steels if this turns out to be an often-worn dress. As long as it doesn't happen while I'm wearing it. There are two reeds in both channels, anyway. Reed or steel, I sewed them into strips of canvas, and then tacked them to the bodice. (The four boned darts are in the wool fronts, which you can't see. I thought it'd be overkill to bone the waistcoat too...)

And it turns out the long bones in those side-back seams hold the skirt volume back in place quite nicely, so I think horizontal ties won't be necessary. Good. One less thing to do.

I didn't put it on with the corset, but even without I can tell that those bones make quite a difference. I certainly won't claim no wrinkles, but I'm pretty pleased with how smooth it is. Bone your late Victorian bodices! That's your PSA for the day.

Oh, also: I decided to be smart and practice doing my hair for this outfit. As usual I had no clue what I was doing, but c1880 daytime styles seem to be relatively simple. The difficult part is going to be getting little wispies from my pinned-back "fringe" to stop falling in my face! Will probably practice again tomorrow (and wear it to work and look like a nutter. Could be much weirder, who are we kidding).
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
(This is me updating, and therefore not being at work. Amusingly, it seems like we won't get much, if any, snow at all, but thanks for canceling my shift!) So...slow! I think it's going to be nice when it's done, and I'm very much looking forward to wearing it, but I would also very much like if it would finish itself.

All I did today was tack the facing down, which sounds very pathetic, but the polished cotton lining's very tightly woven, so it was difficult to just stitch through the lining and not catch the wool. Annoying. So! Tomorrow I need to cut and sew in the rest of the boning, and then either do the sleeves or the skirt facing, whichever seems less terrible when I get to it. Also hooks and eyes for the front, whenever I feel inspired to corset up (so maybe not tomorrow).

World's most unimpressive picture of the dress so far. Turnbacks are unironed and untacked, and I didn't put it over the skirt. But, proof I haven't just been napping!


Though let's be honest, naps are awesome.

I also mostly decided on the fabric to use for the coat to go over this, and so ordered the feathers to trim it with. I think I've decided on the light pink mostly-wool flannel that I bought without a purpose (because it was $5/yd), so I don't keep second-guessing myself, going, "But should I save it to use for this Thing I wanted to make when I bought it??" It's a pink-and-ivory herringbone weave; as far as I can tell with my very limited research (aka poking the internet a bit), herringbone's maybe not correct for a lady's coat for the time period, but whoops, I have it and I don't care that much. And it's cozy!

So I bought some white turkey marabou fluff for trim. I have a bit in the stash (reserved for Other Purposes), so while I was digging though my feathers, I pulled it out and said, aha! Originally I thought I'd get marabou boas for the trim, as they'd have been about 2/3 of the price, but it wasn't quite the look I wanted, so I kept looking. Payoff! The strung fluff's much fatter. I wore the piece I already have around my neck for a few minutes, and it was very toasty warm! So, fluff it is. Definitely worth the extra money.
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
Got the collar sewn in (I only had to unpick and hand sew a little bit of it. I'm so not a tailor) and the facing sewn on - although not tacked down because I realized I have to bone the front darts before I tack it down. So that's what I'm working on now.

I may get a snow day for my overnight tomorrow (being snowed in at Joann's at 5am would be really high on my list of Do Not Want), but seeing as their models range from 2.5" to 15" total...they have noooo idea. We'll see!
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
Jeez, those darts took for-EV-er to fit. I didn't have a ton of sewing time the past two days (there was, among many other things, a duck waiting to be made into soup), so it was all taken up by darts. Seriously. Easy to fit, but every little tweak meant I had to take the whole thing off, re-pin, put back on and button up...et cetera, et cetera. The joys of fitting on oneself!

Tonight I want to get the top bit of the collar pad stitched (it's small, so this seems reasonable), then tomorrow I'm off so I can get a good chunk of it sewn. We hope.
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
The natural for dress is now to the point of having to try it on to do any more on it (well, after I iron the seams), which is totally not happening tonight. zzzzzz
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
I'm done basting the pieces...at least, I think so. I hope so! I've started pad stitching the collar and skirt turnbacks (stupidly exciting) and can probably get the one side done tonight. After the other side's done I think I can sew the fronts to the back, which then means I can try it on and fiddle with darts. Yay.
mandie_rw: (naturalform1)
Overnight at work tonight, grump. Did sew, though! Much basting, and did the buttons and buttonholes, and the waistcoat fronts totally don't match up. Haha. Oops. Oh well?

I am so not a perfectionist.


And I took off all the buttons from my red and white striped bustle dress to put them on the waistcoat. Well, I wasn't going to wear it again anyway...now I definitely won't! I didn't wear it all that much, but it's still a little ratty. Not something I'd want to give away or sell. So, may as well use the bits from it! The buttons were just what I wanted for the waistcoat: flat metallic silver. And at a perfect price, too. ;)

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