mandie_rw: (1860sgburg)
I'm getting into the mid-semester OH GOD EVERYTHING IS DUE AT ONCE. Tonight I wrote out my schedule of work I need to do in the next week and a half...and shut all my books (nope nope nope) and took out my sewing.

Finally finished that damn short hoop, thanks to the bolt cutters borrowed from [personal profile] hiraimi  to cut the boning! Managed to cut the bottom steels too long and totally ripped the fabric while trying to wedge them in. Ooops? Ghetto-tastic mending with giant stitches were then in order. If it doesn't explode, I don't care what it looks like! The front of the hoop is maybe a leeeeettle wonky-shaped, but I don't think it's very obvious when there's a skirt over it. That's my story and I'm sticking to it, anyway.

And then I leveled the top of the short petticoat and am currently sewing the waistband on, which I am determined to finish before bed. The hoop itself is probably a couple of inches shorter than it could be, but it's kind of hard to judge the length of a hoop til it's done, so oh well! Petticoat can fudge the length a little bit since it's got a flounce. And...this hoop is possibly the dumbest looking thing I've made in a while. It looks like a deranged flying saucer. xD

mandie_rw: (WC market)
(And I didn't have to illegitimately call out of work this year, even!)

Overall assessment: fun time, weather could have been nicer but wasn't horrible either, bedgowns were appropriately ugly and caps were appropriately derpy. [personal profile] robinsnest  did proper writeups of the afternoon and the dance, which saves me from having to devote the time and energy to them! Which is nice of her, since I had to spend pretty much all of my free time today doing the homework I didn't do yesterday because I was out playing!
four women sitting at the edge of a river
(Purloined photo from the Washington's Crossing FB page...we spent a fair amount of time sitting on that wall overlooking the river, swigging apple cider, getting covered with ants, and trying not to let Alice's yarn balls escape over the edge of the 15-ft drop. Good spot!)

I'll try and do a (ahem) formal blog post on the very exciting bedgown ensemble this week but I make no promises!


10 Oct 2017 11:52 pm
mandie_rw: (jane book)
Mmmf, colds make me even less productive than usual. We hates them, precious!

I gave myself a week to make this round gown, which wouldn't have been a problem in pre-school days, considering it's partly machine sewn and all. Buuuuut I started it a week ago tomorrow, and it's not done nor even almost done, even if you squint at it! (If I had one solidly free day, I could probably finish it, but I don't, and I have something due Thursday and a few somethings due next Tuesday, and am taking most of the weekend for playtime, so no free days anytime soon.) The event I wanted to wear it to isn't til the 26th, so I might come back to it, but for now I think I need to move on.

I bought the rest of the fabric for the starry night masquerade dress (I think that's all I better be), so I think that may be up next on the docket. Although I am determined to have a Halloween skirt for this year...I have a short presentation on the 24th in one of my classes and one of the rubric criteria is to "dress nicely and professionally." Oh I will. ;) And seasonally!

mandie_rw: (chintz dress spring)
Is almost done, actually! I've been machine sewing where I can, is probably why...I still am doing 18thc construction techniques, which pretty seriously limits how much machine sewing one can do. But the construction methods are a big part of why I like making 18thc things, so I won't give them up!

Not to mention, this silk frays enough that even if I made it like a Victorian bodice, I'd have to tack down all the seam allowances anyway, so that would negate any time I'd saved...

Currently one sleeve is sewn in, the other pinned, and I think I can get that done before bedtime. After that I just need to put the bones in the back. The neckline is unfinished as of yet, but I added too much onto the center fronts for an overlap and will have to unpick them and cut some off anyway, but I'm going to wait to do that til after I put the skirt on! It would be just like me to trim too much off and then not have enough to pin once the skirt and petticoat ties are accounted for...

Also, I totally trimmed the neckline down too much. The pattern as-is is a little too high, so I pinned where I thought looked good. Snip snip snip. Hah, okay, maybe that's a leeetle too far down? Like, possibly stays-showing-too-far-down? Oh well, can't regrow fabric, let's press on! And at the end of the day I'd rather have an 18thc neckline slightly too low than slightly too high. Too low I can fudge with a tucker, not to mention the overgown-turque-thing I plan to eventually go over this anyway; too high just looks off. And we all have seen those 18thc gown necklines in portraits and plates that we look at and this work-safe? I'm not entirely sure if this is work-safe. ;)

mandie_rw: (Default)
Nope, no sewing update! I got two papers back in two classes today, though, and got the top possible points in the class (along with at least one other person, to toot my own horn slightly less...), and an A on the other, so I'm allowing myself a nice chunk of sewing time tomorrow!

I should probably work on one of the zillion things I have in progress, but I'm not entirely sure I can bring myself to care about any of them, so. I bought two remnants of self-striped beige silk from a Fabric Guru sale last week (oops. but they were under $20!) that should be juuuust enough for a plain 1780s round gown, and I might make that for the Powel house 18thc masquerade at the end of the month. I shouldn't...but I might. ;)

mandie_rw: (jane book)
Not much sewing going on around here! Shockingly. Main event sewing-wise this past week has been to get the Starry Night bodice sewn together, and start sewing eyelets in. (Two. I've sewn two eyelets so far.)

I sold off the pink silk sacque a week or so ago; I was waffling over listing it for the longest time (I still like it but I never wear it, wouldn't I rather have the money, but what if I want to wear it again, but we don't do any fancy events that really require a sacque any more...), and then the lady who bought my bird print polonaise decided to take it, so that ended my waffling! It'll pay for a majority of my Gettysburg expenses, anyway. There's more stuff I ought to put up but I apparently can't be arsed to list it, so. Will have to work on would be nice to have Gettysburg paid for by My Old Crap! We'll see.


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'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 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 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.)

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