sewinginshambles

my crazy life

Archive for the tag “real life”

Fun Things Not Related To Sewing

I was wandering through the local antique shop today when we came across this absolutely adorable jewelry box. I immediately liked it, but since it wasn’t in the budget I was resigned to putting it back on the shelf and coming back another day. My little sister, bless her heart, immediately handed over a five dollar bill and put the box in my hand.

On the other side of non sewing related objects, I found a cute little pendant at Micheal’s the other day, it looks like they pulled a headshot from a 16th century painting and slapped it on a pendant, but since it was only two bucks I bought it anyway.

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Merida Update Oct. 3

Monday night I decided that I would finally cut out the fabric for my Princess Merida, so I carefully laid everything out on the fabric I had so carefully dyed only to find out that I hadn’t dyed enough for the sleeves. This prompted a furious trip to the fabric store while chanting the mantra, “It’s just dye. It’s just dye.”

Creative cutting diagrams…

After spending a good hour dyeing more fabric for the sleeves, I go to cut out the rest of the dress and run into another conundrum. I STILL didn’t have enough fabric! So with a bit of creative layout and piecing, I found the best layout possible with my limited fabric.  I am planning to sew the inside seams by machine, but do all finishing by hand as it looks so much better in my opinion.

 

Now I am only left with the issue of how to attach the sleeves. I am making a departure from screen accuracy by making this as close to medieval period accurate as possible, but I would like to keep the sleeves pretty much the same. I’ve considered making small fabric loops at the shoulder as a way to attach them, but I’m not quite sure.

Hoopskirt!

So, I have finally made a hoopskirt that was not a giant hassle to make, and it doesn’t engulf me in its massive girth. I used this pattern  by the Laced Angel . It was absolutely fantastic! Super easy and easy to understand.

Hoopskirt with purple linen petticoat over top. I used black thread on white fabric to make the skirt, so I couldn’t bring myself to show this on the interwebs.

 

What’s it made of?

  • A little over 2 yards of 45 inch wide muslin
  • Black thread (it was the only thing I had at hand, and I justified it by saying no one will ever see the hoop by itself)
  • Drawstring cord
  • Fish tape like this

I feel very accomplished as I started and completed the project in just under six hours time. It’s just big enough to be cumbersome when sitting, yet small enough to be seriously dwarfed by the Holy Batman Hoop I made earlier.

I’m trying to be better about updating more often, as I will be using this to track my progress when I finally start on the Cranach/Saxon gown I’m working on for a college research project. And since I have been honoured enough to be made Head of Registration for Utah’s only Steampunk convention, Salt City Steamfest and as such I will be attending other out of state conventions in order to do advertising, I will be making more steampunk ensembles as well as my more historical clothing, I feel like there should be plenty of sewing to be shared.

Labor Day Plans

Okay, Labor Day is tomorrow. And since it’s a day off from work and school, I’m going to get off my lazy rear and actually sew. Lots! I need to get a move on all the projects I’ve got piling up on me.

Sooo, first up: Commissions, I’ve got a couple and while they’re still on schedule, I’d really just like to get them finished right away.

Mock-up for a fantasy/steampunk Kurta

Mock-up for a fantasy/steampunk Kurta

Second: I really really really need to get a start on my Princess Merida dress. I was originally use medieval period sewing techniques and construction, but as October is rapidly rounding the corner, I shall be doing it in whatever way is fastest.

 

If I don’t at least make some kind of progress, someone needs to jump through my computer screen and kick me in the butt!

An Apology

I must apologize for my absence here. Life had momentarily taken over and I found myself with less time to focus on sewing.

Luckily, due to the new school semester, I will have more research and sewing to share with you, as well as more posts. I am working on applying for an URCO grant from my university. Basically, it’s an undergraduate research grant that takes place over the course of a year.

Currently, I have two projects I’m considering for the grant:

  • To work with the university library in putting together an exhibit on the countless amazing medieval manuscripts we have in the special collection that no one ever sees. It would involve dissecting the process of making manuscripts and translating the equivalent into modern society. Basically “illuminating” the inherent “magic of the book.”
  • The second option is to document the process of taking a 2 dimensional image like a painting and translating it into physical reality. This would be most apparent with clothing, as it is something I’m comfortable with, yet it will still yield an element of challenge to it. The big emphasis would be on the recreation of the garments in a way that reflects the painting’s original garment but using what information we know from extant examples. I would probably create the clothing on a 1/2 scale as it will be easier to work with and allows for more interpretations to be made.

I haven’t exactly made a decision yet, as I would really like to do the costume concept for my senior thesis next year, but I will have to see if there is any way I could do it for both.

Also, I’ve had several commissions come in, so the moment the customers have them in hand, I will be posting pictures. . .  And rumor has it I shall be appearing as the White Rabbit in a steampunked Alice in Wonderland tea party sometime soon, so keep your eyes out for that.

Micro Vests in the Making

Remember my micro shrugs?

Lab coat Micro Shrug

Well, for the Salt City Steamfest, I made a sleeveless rendition for the director of the con, who also happens to be a dear friend of mine.

Reversible micro vest. 1/4 yard of both vintage sari silk and gold taffeta

It was a very huge hit, and I got several people asking whether I do commissions, so I figured I better whip a couple of these up and place them up for sale on my Etsy page. (Which, to my embarrassment, has been pretty much abandoned for several months due to lack of items to sell.)

They’re pretty easy to make and take so little fabric. Plus they’re a joy to make!

Current fabrics for micro vest in the making

It’s also a great way for me to use up scraps from previous projects like the fabrics above. I always buy more than what I think I’ll need just in case I goof up!

 

Where in the world are Saxon painters from the first part of the 16th Century?

So…. 16th century painters from Saxony. Besides the Cranach painters. Have you seen them? The interwebs haven’t. I checked.

I’m seriously at my wits end here. All I want is several other painters from the same provenance to collaborate the theory that the Cranach gown was not just a fictional gown made up by some crazy old painter guy. . . I may be bald by the end of the week, I’m gonna rip my hair out.

 

ETA: Barbra from It’s About Time just posted a lovely series of images on Bianca Maira Sforza.

What do you know, some of the gowns she wears look rather similar don’t you think?

 

Quick post!

Just a really quick post since I’m super busy with last minute projects for the steampunk convention happening this week. Salt City Steamfest  this Friday and Saturday in Salt Lake City Utah at the Red Lion Hotel. If you’re in Utah, you should come!
In any case, I’m super busy making last minute alterations and accessories for the convention. Currently I’ve got a ballgown with the blue and brown bustle skirt which is almost done. I just need to finish the bodice, a Scottish-ish steampunk outfit- literally thrown together with already existing items (I’ll post that later after the convention), and the fish corset outfit I finished in May.

I’ve also been working on a special thank you gift for the director of the Steamfest. She’s a dear friend and has put sooo much time and effort into creating a niche for those who love steampunk here in Utah. I will post up fabulous pictures of it later this week.
Sorry for a lack of pictures in this post, but I promise to make up for it with lots of pictures from the convention when I’m not helping with registration and panels and such. I’ll be so busy!

 

Cheers

Sneak peek!

I’m crazy busy with a whole bunch of steampunk assorted costumes, for the upcoming convention, but here’s a sneak peak of one of the outfits.

Yes, I know it’s terribly blurry, but it’s nearly 11 pm here, and I was to eager to get this up. Better pictures when it’s assembled.

It’s not sewn together yet, as I was going to do that tomorrow, but as far as it goes right now, I’m rather happy with it. Also, the fact that I got the fabric for about 4.50 a yard was nice as well.

Favorite part of sewing

You know what? I just realized my favorite part of sewing is pretty ridiculous but I go out of my way to make sure I do a little bit of it in each project. Facings. Yeah… facings. I hate hemming, and I hate finishing seams, but for some reason, putting a facing on a skirt is the best part of a project… How weird is that…. Yeah….

In any case, I didn’t get much progress done while camping, but I’m still working on it.

Pictures to come later.

 

Em

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