jennylafleur: (georgian costume)

Stratford Hall was fun last night. The evening began with some bad attitudes floating around (mine included I'm sorry to say) but by the end I was having a good 'ole time. Prayer and good friends are wonderful things.

So all I had time for was the lace at the sleeves. I opted for a shorter lace rather than full on flounces... I like it. My hair came out well, which made me happy. Better pics will follow as the better ones are on other's cameras, as always.

Tonight I'm off again for more dancing in the dark. I'm thinking about wearing my Pimpernel just for something different. It's not trimmed and the fit isn't great but it's so dark in the room this year, no one would probally notice. :P


edited to add:
Okay the links to the pics should be fixed now...
jennylafleur: (georgian)
So I'm off to the church woman's retreat for the weekend. Hopefully I’ll come home with my ball gown newly trimmed... we'll see how industrious I am during our free time. Right now I'd rather stay home and work on my bustle frock but once I get there I'll enjoy it.

Besides the bustle I need for August and the ball gown for next week...
jennylafleur: (georgian costume)
I don't have any pics to prove it (so you'll just have to take my word for it :>) but I have been sewing a little bit this week. Now that I'm feeling better (just tired, still coughing) I've been busy catching up on all the stuff I didn't do while sick.

All the black lace is now sewn onto the bustle skirt. I did it by hand but it ended up not taking long at all. Looks so nice - ooh! One strip of the ivory lace is halfway sewn down as well.

I started work on the trim for my green ball gown. It has some trim on it now but I think needs more on the skirt. I'll be wearing it for the Stratford Candlelight tour next weekend so I have to get cracking on that! My petticoat needs a ruffle too… must remember to dig out that extra fabric.

The last two nights I've been helping new RCHSers get their ball gowns made for Stratford. I mainly fitted the mockup/lining for one of the girls. In order to do that I basically had to chop up the original pattern and drape it. Thankfully the sleeve was not as evil as usual but the whole project took out about 6 hours of my week. So lessons learned:
1 - don't take my own work to these sewing sessions, I won't get much done anyway
2 - it's much easier to fit a sleeve when it's not on yourself
3 - it's faster to fit a bodice on a small, skinny person. I really must lose some weight.
4 - JP Ryan has craptastic directions! I know what they are talking about and I still couldn't figure it out. No wonder RCHS people have so many problems making new frocks! Draping baby – all the way!! It's the best thing I've ever learned!
jennylafleur: (ma)

Ahhh! What a crazy weekend! It worked out that I had to pack all my holiday living history events into one weekend. Friday & Saturday I was at Stratford Hall (Lighthorse Harry Lee’s home) and Sunday I was at Scotchtown (Patrick Henry’s home). I've been either sleeping, dressing, ironing, curling my hair or dancing since Friday. well I went to church and Target on Sunday but still. So. Tired. It was good fun though.

Friday we again were part of the candlelight tour and got to dance, in candlelight, in the Great Hall. I did a bit of caroling downstairs but mostly danced all night. We did Rufty Tuffty and Childgrove over and over… I didn’t mind though as Childgrove is my favorite dance ever. I wore my newly trimmed green “Polignac” gown, with new bronze petticoat. I still haven’t gotten the smell out of my extra fabric so I went sans ruffle and trim. I think it looked okay, although after seeing pics I do think it needs some kind of trim on it.

I was so happy - my hair came out wonderfully! I don’t have great pics unfortunately but it did look good, if I do say so myself. I washed, dried, hot curled and then teased it to death before pinning it back and adding feathers and a bow to embellish. Yep, it’s all my own hair, no rats or hair pieces! Once Bridget is home from school and available to take pics I’ll try to do a tutorial on the hair for you guys. Of course I may never be able to do it again… :>

Saturday night we all wore Federalist clothing so I added a wrist loop to the train and wore my Bee gown and robe. I had fun on Friday night but I had more fun Saturday, mostly because it was such fun to dance in the Federal clothing. It made such a nice change to not have all the skirts to deal with and the more comfortable stays. I think slippers are easier to dance in too. I love my period shoes but I had a hard time keeping my balance in them while dancing. I really wish there was a Jane Austen dance group in the area – I’d join in a heartbeat!

The only bad thing was on the way home I managed to spill cranberry juice all over my gown and stays. The gown came out of the wash just fine but the hemp cording has stained the stays permanently. They look like they have coffee stains all over. Oh well, I guess I just won’t be using them for show ever again. They aren’t ruined, just ugly.

Sunday was even more fun. I wore my new English gown with my red stripe petticoat and green stockings for an appropriately Christmasy outfit. I love my new dress! It fits so well and those pleats were so worth the effort! The event was good fun too. Scotchtown is not a large house so with as many as 8 couples (plus 5 musicians) we were packed tight into the hall. It made the dances very funny as we kept bumping false rumps and panniers! We definitely showed the spirit, frivolity and socializing of a country dance in a private home. We all had a blast and the guests seem to enjoy it too. We did a bit of caroling and whist playing as well, along with much laughter!

In other news, I’m all sixes and sevens with my computer. Dad and I switched computers over the weekend so I keep finding programs and files that still need to be transferred over. Simple, everyday things are suddenly very difficult which is frustrating. I’ll post more pics when I’m better settled. I’ll have to wait until I get other’s photos for more pics of me though, I’ve pretty much posted what I have. Oh well!
jennylafleur: (georgian costume)

I *almost* got the red print anglaise finished yesterday. All that is left to be done is to sew the eyes on the bodice (got through all the hooks then got sleepy) and its done!

I even did the hem. Two hems in one day – aren’t you proud of me? :> I’d forgotten it was already marked and everything… It’s so pathetic it’s taken me this many months to finish this gown. A robe a l’anglaise can take me as little as two days to make and I started this in July. Granted I did spend some time on the pleating. I decided to go wild and make a fuller skirt with tiny pleats at the waist. They took forever to work out but they sure are pretty – I love tiny pleats!

It feels so good to get these things out of the way. I want to get these petty little “almost finished” projects out of the way so I can have a clean slate for the new year… and the Fire costume.

*** You know the bronze taffeta looks rather cute with this dress. I really must wear more orange! *giggle*
jennylafleur: (1780s)
I have been sewing - yay! The bronze taffeta petticoat is done... sans ruffle.

The fabric still smells. *sigh* So I have to decide if I want to go to the pet store for one of the odor removers you recommended or to PM for more fabric. I don't know... I just don't know. It tempting to just leave it plain and as is, at least for Friday. I'm just tired of dealing with it...

I also tried on my old stays and figured out what I wanted to tweak. The first stays/corset always being a working toile you know. So I can work on the new ones anytime now. First up the red toile though!
jennylafleur: (nefret)

Thanks so much for all your advice to the odor issue. *hugs* You guys are the best!

As usual I found that Mom was one step ahead and had a special odor spray from Foster & Smith in the house. After testing it didn’t affect the fabric in any way so I hung it up on the line, sprayed it to death and have left it out to dry. Next step will be to wash it again I think.

*sigh* We have already found 3 incidents this morning so back to the vet Emma goes this afternoon. More Christmas money down the drain. It’s probably just as well we canceled our trip to Williamsburg’s Grand Illumination this weekend (mostly due to bad weather and 3 general sickies). I was looking forward to it though.

There are about a thousand things I should do today (taking it easy probably one of them) but after my extremely crappy night and morning I am going to do nothing but sew today. I still feel sickly but I’ve given as many “babying” days to the thing as I can and I’m tried of not getting anything done. Now what to work on… there is so much to choose from!

not fair

Dec. 1st, 2006 06:44 pm
jennylafleur: (costume bother)
Oh bother! I just went to iron the taffeta, in prep to make the ruffle, and it still smells like cat pee. *moo* Washing it in Ivory snow and rinsing in white vinegar apparently didn't work.

Any brilliant ideas beloved pin posse?

Another wise I guess my only options are to go to Potomac Mills or Richmond to see if I can find more of the fabric or going sans ruffle.

I want to cry.
jennylafleur: (1780s)

I don’t know about you guys but I like it! I was going for a little bit more green in the blue but this is such a pretty color I think I will leave it. It’s the right color family (it's actually a bit richer looking in person) and it goes with the necklace. Maybe I could find some ribbon matching the necklace for my trim…

The color could have come out a little more even in places (another reason to miss my old washer) but I don't think anyone will notice with the full petticoat skirt and the fact I can cut around them for the jacket. If you look at the edges you can see the warp and weft took the color differently. It's why it's so pretty in person - this fabric almost shimmers. I love it! So a new ruffled jacket and petticoat here I come!

I used 1 cup salt, 1 bottle evening blue and about a tbsp dark green. I did it in the tub sink in the laundry room with the hottest water from the tap, soaking and stirring for about 25 minutes before rinsing (with a vinegar rinse) in the washer.

And a pic of the bronze taffeta, since I haven’t shown you that yet…
jennylafleur: (victoriana)
Still sick - bah! I seem to be getting worse not better. I actually lost my voice! Today I was feeling a bit better toward evening so that is something.

I did manage to do some desperately needed laundry done so that is good. I also washed the leftover bit of bronze taffeta (bits for the ruffle and trim of new ball gown petticoat) that the cat pee-ed on last week. I washed it by hand in the sink - hopefully it didn't loose too much of the crispy taffeta-ness. Worthless cat! Once I'm done here I'll go press it and see how it is. You never know with taffeta, I've had very bad things happen washing acetate taffetas. This one was a poly/nylon so I don't know. *crossing fingers* I could always starch it I guess.

I'd like to work on the petticoat tonight but I'm a bit wiped. I just finished dyeing the ivory faille (by hand). Dude I miss my old washer! *pouts* The faille is in the washer now being rinsed in cold water and vinegar. I'm curious to see what the color it ends up being. I wanted it to match a certain necklace you know...

In bustle news, [ profile] laurenmonkey was kind enough to pick up this eyelet lace for my bustle in the LA fabric district. It was a bit of a treat but I figured I'd only ever make the one bustle so I might as well do it right and I'll save days hemming those ruffles. Besides it's so purr-dy! :>

According to the pattern I need 16.5 yds of 6" ruffles (unhemmed) and I'm getting 15yds of 10" lace. Even adding a extra layer for height (which I suspect I'll have to do) I think that will work. I'm all about fudging! :>
jennylafleur: (antoinette)
I don’t think I can dye anything in the new washer after all. I watched it go through a wash cycle last night and the stupid thing doesn’t actually fill up with water – it’s one of those fancy efficient ones that uses less water and soap. Dumb. I am so bummed out. My days of easy dyeing are over. I’ll have to do it in the tub sink or buy a pot and do it on the stove. *mreh*

I did get the cream petticoat all taken apart and washed though so it’s ready to go. Maybe I’ll try the dye thing tomorrow. Have I mentioned I’m bummed?

I worked on my new ball gown petticoat today, it’s mostly done. I have the waist band pinned on so just that, the hem and the ruffles to add. I ended up with a shot gold/bronze taffeta. It looks nice with the ball gown but isn’t too matchy-matchy. Pretty!

I finally got word that I can wear my Bee gown one of the Stratford Hall nights so that is nice. I’m excited to wear it again. I’ll have to put the train on a wrist loop though for dancing!

I really can’t believe Thanksgiving is this week – November where did you go?! It will be 12th Night before I know it - scary!

My last bit of pointless rambling is a link to Yahoo Movies – they have 6 clips from Marie Antoinette up. Now I want to go see it again. Sony will you please hurry up and put MA on DVD?! :>

Marie Antoinette clips
jennylafleur: (polignac)
Thanks for the dyeing advice earlier this week - I appreciate it. So I will break down and take the waistband off. I don't mind doing the pleating really, I rather enjoy pleating. it the re-doing the waist band thing. The WB came out so beautifully on this petticoat. Really it is a work of art. :>

But then it occurred to me that the petticoat was too long anyway, maybe I can just shorten it from the top. Oh wait pocket slits... umm maybe not. I went out and bought the dye today, one bottle royal blue and one packet teal, should work. If I can figure out the new washer that is. Our dryer blew up earlier this week so we now have a front loading washer and dryer, not sure how that works with dyeing stuff...

Should I leave the ruffle cream (and trim the jacket in self cream) do you think? Ummm...

While at Jo-Anns getting dye I saw they had some decent looking poly taffedas 40% off. I'm going to run by tonight with my ballgown and pick something out for a new petticoat (since I'm dyeing the cream one). Yes poly but hey the dress is poly! Shhh! Someday I want gold silk satin for it but I can't find any at the moment and if I did I really can't afford it so this is a temporay measure.

Oh just got my hair cut too. I waited WAY too long… it feels so much better now. I decided I was bored so I got 2“ off the length and lots of short layers. Haven't had it like that in years. Should be easy to do 1780s big hair now anyway! :>
jennylafleur: (polignac)
Here are some step by step pics of my trim making for your viewing pleasure.

First the supplies. The sequins are small flat ones taken from a trim I found at Hancocks. I couldn’t find them loose so I picked a trim that had a lot of them and tore it apart. If you pull the threads the right way most trims will just come part you know. :> The gold trim is 1/8” trim I found by-the-spool at Jo Anns, very simple stuff but cheap. The thread is Coats and Clark, also from my local Jo Anns. The fabric strips are made by tearing the fabric along the grain and allowing it to fray a bit on each side.

I attach the gold trim by hand, using the little holes as my guide. I just eyeball how far I want it from the edge; it doesn’t have to be exact. As you can see from the underside I’m basically basting the trim on. Once the gold trim is attached I use the basting threads to gather the trim up.

I then pin the trim on in whatever arrangement I want and use the loose sequins to secure the trim to the gown (you can see the sequin stitching on the underside of the bodice). I placed the sequins alternating about a ½” or so apart, depending on how tight the corners were and how much sparkle I wanted. :>

It’s a bit of a cheat - if I ever take the trim off I will have to re-apply the sequins but it does save time in the short term. Ta da! Trim on a budget – what is not to love?!
jennylafleur: (pink)
Oh yes - I've decided that my green ball gown is actually my "Comtesse de Polignac" dress. I was thinking about it and if I were dressing up for Halloween that is who I would be. Afterall she wears a dark green frock like mine in the film and we both have red hair - it works for me! :>
jennylafleur: (antoinette)
The Marie Antoinette excursion last night was so fun! I had too much fun working on my frock, way too much fun dressing up in it and too much fun watching the movie in costume and hanging with everyone. Too much fun! :>

This is the first time I’ve gone all out in late 1780s garb and now I’m wondering why it took me so long. It is my most favorite era afterall. *rolls eyes* I definitely felt like a pretty princess, especially after B did my hair. Isn’t she fabulous?! *applauds* I showed her an pic in Revolution in Fashion and she just did it for me. The scarf in my hair is the last little scrap of my bee dress fabric, which was my brilliant idea. :>

Another of my brilliant ideas (which B did for me because she’s talented that way) was my necklace. Do you recognize it? It’s my Katherine of Aragon necklace with drop pearls wired on. It turned out to be the perfect touch, drawing in the cream petticoat and making everything work together instead. I need to get some nice glass or cultured drops to do it properly (the ones I used are cheap plastic ones I picked up ages ago and they look it) but it worked for the evening.

It’s silly but one of my favorite parts of the evening was wearing the bum roll of doom, otherwise known as both my bum roll and false rum worn on top of each other. :> Driving in it was a bit of a challenge but worth it. :> I need to make a nice big false rump now because I loved wearing this more exaggerated style. How shall I ever go to CC without my hair diva though!!!! :<

I wish we could have gotten better pics but we had to take them all inside, due to the gale force winds outside. We tried but it just didn’t work. Dratted weather. I’m sorry I don’t have more pics of our party but Mom and Dad took the camera so I’m actually pinching [ profile] bauhausfrau’s pics here. Thanks Loren! :>

[Error: unknown template video]
A video from a cold blustery day! :>
jennylafleur: (boromir)
I finished sewing on the skirt trim last night (pics to come). I think it needs more but I don't have time - next time I wear it right? :> I have come up with a way to polonaise it that I like involving my favorite safety pins. I am so lazy. I also started putting cockades all over the outfit and I'm liking the effect.

So today I need to:
finish making cockades
trim petticoat
make sleeve ruffles
pad polonaise?

Looks like today will be costume day. the whole family are going to Halloween parties tomorrow night - all different ones. Well technically mine isn't "Halloween" but it's the only thing I'll be doing for the holiday so that is how I'm thinking of it. :>

Mom is downstairs finishing up her costume as I type (so cute!), Dad actually fits into his re-enacting suit again (skinny man!) and B is on her way home to pick up her Elvish gown. The Harry Potter robes weren't happening so she decided to skip it for now and make them up for the movie premiere next year. Wise girl. Her hair is long again so she is going to do the curly "do" that we did the first time she wore the Elvish. I'll probably have to help her curl the fake hair for that sometime today. Seems fair since she is going to do my big hair for MA. Mom will need help with her hair too, although B may just take that on by herself. Everything seems to be working out nicely... makes for a nice change! :>
jennylafleur: (georgian)

I made good progress on the ball gown yesterday. Ooh it’s really looking like a ball gown now! I tacked down the zone trim and started on the one side of the skirt (any place you see sequins it’s sewn). I need to make more trim obviously, to finish the bottom and the other side. I want to add a second band to the sleeves too, but only if I have time.

The petticoat is all done, except for some trimming. I have a little piece of the gold pinned on and that little bit seems enough to tie it into the gown. I don’t want to go too wild on the petticoat as ultimately I want a different petticoat for the gown (a gold silk satin I think, or maybe a shot bronze taffeta or something like that). I also want to make a jacket ensemble with the cream and I don’t know how I want to trim that yet. I’m not sure I’ll have enough of the baby gold trim, I bought out JoAnns supply yesterday and don’t particularly want to drive to PM for more. I have some other gold trims laying about so I could just use one of them instead if needs be.
jennylafleur: (1780s)

I got started on my revamp of the green ball gown today. Yay a Sunday afternoon of sewing – such fun! I really need to do this more often you know. *wink*

I didn’t realize until it was too late that I didn’t have any of that little gold trim in my stash (I hate how everything closes early on Sunday) so I couldn’t work on the new trimming scheme. *pouts* I pinned the one leftover scrap I have to get an idea of how it would look as a faux zone and I like it. I like it a lot!

I moved the skirt edges back 1.5”, un picking the stitching, folding back the excess fabric and re stitching it for a better line for the zone front. Then I started work on the petticoat. I found this cream matching fabric (I forget what it’s called) in the stash today. It was actually Mom’s but she generously gave it to me (have I mentioned I have the best Mom ever?).

I’m almost finished with the petticoat - just have the hem to sew up and the ruffle to attach. And guess what? I have enough fabric left over for a jacket, so I can make a whole new outfit with it too. I’m trying to decide if I want to try my hand at another style of 1780s/1790s jacket for make the same as the yellow linen, only without the mistakes I made on it. Ummmm….

While I had my stays on and the pins out I had B mark the hem on my red toile English gown too. I really should finish that – it only needs a hem, hooks and sleeves. Not that I need a summer weight cotton dress now or anything… So sad, I started that dress in May!!
jennylafleur: (antoinette)
I've been so bad about updating this LJ lately - and replying to your entries. I read them, really I do, I just haven’t had the time to reply lately. In my defense I've been out of town a crazy amount and this week I've been feeling under the weather. Lots of headaches and general ickiness. I have a busy weekend ahead of me so I've been taking it easy the past few days in the thought that if I baby myself a bit I'll feel up to the weekend activities. So far all I feel like is behind in everything. Oh well. :P

All the vegging about and watching Duchess of Duke Street has lead to getting quite a bit of quilting though on the petticoat. It's looking so good! This morning I switched focus and marked out the bottom lines so I can get the bottom finished off. I thought it would be easier to measure the length that way. I was going to wait until I'd sewn the panels together to hem it but I think I won't now. I think the idea of two complete panels sewn together in case I ever want to take them apart for another purpose. Whatever that purpose may be. *evil grin*

Looks like I will be waiting to see MA until next weekend (so all spoilers behind cuts if you please!). [ profile] bauhausfrau and some of her friends are going in costume next Saturday so I'll go with them. Should be fun, the weekend before Halloween no less. :>

I'm going to wear my green ball gown with BIG hair. :> I need to add some more trimming (I think I'll make it a fake "zone front") and something at the sleeves. A new (and properly fancy) petticoat would be fun but I don't know that I will have time for that.
jennylafleur: (twelfthnight)

Another Twelfth Night party is past! Inexplicitly I’m still awake so I thought I’d bring you a few of my favorite images from the party. The rest will follow soon. Really I should be in bed but I’m not tired for some reason. The weight of a looming deadline being lifted off my shoulders and too much sugar probably has something to do with it. :>

I finished the last stitch on B’s costume at 5pm this evening (the party was at 7pm). Way too close for my comfort but it was the best I could do. I’ve come to the conclusion that this costume is cursed. No matter how much I sew, I never seem to get any closer to finishing the wretched thing. Sort of like trying to eat pasta at Olive Garden, you eat and eat but you never seem to empty your bowl.

Not to say that her costume is finished – far from it. She was cheated on and safety pinned in places. At some point her stays out-of-the-package-poly-binding with have to come off and be replaced with silk while her coat and skirt still have to be made. Since I have to mess with the stays anyway I think I’m going to alter the fit of the back and shoulder straps. They are not right and bug me. I should also adjust her petticoat, taking out some of the fullness.

Of course despite it all she managed to look stunning tonight, if I do say so myself. Her beading was lovely in the low lighting and the velvet may be a pain but it sure is pretty. *sigh* She looks so good in red. :>

The oddest thing is that after this week I’m not feeling “off” sewing at the moment. It feels so good to have gotten something accomplished from my sewing list, even if it was in a crazed, mad way. I suspect I’m more burnt-out that I think I am though so I’m going to go on a forced sewing sabbatical. I noticed my machine was making some wacky noises today. These noises have been getting worse over the past few months and I really should take my machine in to be tuned up. The tension needs to be re-adjusted and the poor little thing is long overdo for some maintenance work. *bad seamstress*

Since I will be without a machine for a while, my next project will be to get going on the quilted petticoat. It is all handwork at this point so a good project for the interim. I may use Mom’s machine a bit to finished off my ballgown (attach the sleeve flounces)and get the stays fitting squared away while it’s all fresh in my mind. Then I can work on the new silk binding. More handwork you see. :>

Oh yes this week’s pirate progress pics. Not too many I’m afraid, I was too busy just sewing to document things. The last pic was us being a little silly. Narcissa was used as a clothing rack & accessory stand much this week and after piling on a few outfits on accident we decided to add some weaponry to complete the look. This is what happens when you have too much costuming and Cold Stone ice cream combined. :>

July 2014

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