If you wondered at all why it’s been so quiet around here the past month the answer is simple: Costume College!
This year was my very first time attending Costume College, the annual 3-4 day costume conference in California. And, whoo-boy, what an experience!! I had a fantastic time, met lots of awesome people, got all kinds of inspiration from both them and the classes I attended and have come home with my mind in a frenzy of possibilities for CoCo 2018 and the year in between!
But, for those of you who didn’t get to attend, you’re probably really just mostly interested in what everybody wore, right? There were so many good outfits, on a wide range of themes. However, to make things more digestible I thought I’d start with my own CoCo 2017 wardrobe.
I had 6 outfits/costumes in total. Three come from my costume closet and three were new makes.
Things kicked off properly on Thursday evening with the Pool Party. The overall theme for CoCo this year was to do with the 1960s so I paid my one homage to that at the pool party:
Next up in my Summer Frock Parade is this little number in a cute pistachio and ivory print cotton (probably a quilting cotton). It also continues with the mint/aqua and coral theme I’ve got going on this year – yes, I know, I haven’t posted anything coral yet, I’ll get there!
Some months ago I pinned this vintage dress to my “Sewing Ideas” board:
Happy Canada Day everyone! Or, for those of us who like to “kick it old school”: Happy Dominion Day!
My husband and I moved to Washington DC this past August for a 3 year stint. We moved from a wee 2 bedroom condo in Kingston, Ontario Canada to a rather grand historic row house on Capital Hill. We had a loveseat back in Kingston that served as our sofa, but it was a hand-me-down and getting ratty so we left it behind and just brought our pair of Ikea tub chairs (I’ll hopefully be blogging about them in a bit, too). In our new house there’s a beautiful front room, but with just the 2 chairs and a small accent table it felt kind of empty and also forced us to use the dining room table as a sitting room stand-in. We needed additional seating in the front room!
Ok, so I have a lot of catching up to do on here! Between finishing up my PhD and then an international move, there hasn’t been much time for blogging over the past few months. But I have been sewing during a lot of this “away” time. I made a natural form era summer suit, a vintage mash-up summer suit for my thesis defense, and three new dresses over the past 2-3 weeks. I’m also in the middle of a white cotton regency gown to wear with the blue silk spencer.
Today, I present a project I made for a Historical Sew Monthly challenge back in the spring: War & Peace. I did get it done and posted to the fb challenge album in by the challenge deadline, but never got around to blogging it. In the interest of catching up, this is going to be short and sweet, but I hope will still be worth your taking a look.
I hummed and hawed about what to do for War & Peace for some time trying to figure out what to do. Then I remembered those smart military-inspired hats women wore during the Napoleonic wars – feminized versions of the Shako hat/cap:
On Monday (Monday? Yes, I think it was Monday) I read through Lauren’s (American Duchess) sewing year in review post and enjoyed it so much I decided to do my own!
My ulterior motive for this is that I’m so behind on my blogging that I don’t think I’ll be able to catch-up, so there will be (several) new reveals to get them out of the way. Some of these will still have dedicated posts, but it should ease-up some of the backlog.
January – March
This period was taken up almost exclusively by the herculean effort of reproducing Charles James’ Tree gown:
This past June I had occasion to do a pretty significant purge of my sewing paraphernalia. For the past several years I’d been renting a room in back of a sewing machine sale & repair shop as my sewing “studio” (more like windowless-hole-in-the-wall, but it did the trick at the time!). However, the building was sold this spring, I knew I wouldn’t be able to find another such arrangement and I was already tired of travelling to sew anyway. Thus, everything was “repatriated” to our condo. It’s not a bad-sized condo, but it’s not a house either. While I knew I’d never be able to make the sewing stuff invisible, I was determined it should be as unobtrusive as possible. This meant a serious purge was needed – something I think is a good and healthy thing to do periodically anyhow and I was overdue.
Long story short, my loss may be your gain!
There hasn’t been much crappy stuff in my stash for years now, so I felt that what’s been purged was too good to go right into the donation bin. I wanted to try and find good homes for as much of it as possible and also try to recoup a small fraction of what I’d spent on it over the years accumulating it. I have an old etsy storefront, so I’m using for an online yard sale, and you can go check it out here.
Super late post, but I did fulfill my pledge for MeMadeMay’14, both in terms of wearing at least one make from an Indie pattern per week and sewing only with Indie patterns for the month. Now, to be fair/honest I sewed several duplicates of a few patterns. I need new summer dresses and making a couple from the same pattern in a weekend was the most efficient/effective way to achieve this with my available time and applicable Indie patterns.
I’ve combined weeks 3 & 4 because a) I’d be even later if I did a post for each and b) there was a lot of repeat items over these 2 weeks. But, they were all new makes, so it’s still fun! The weather’s been funny over the past couple of weeks – very up & down, one day sunny and hot, the next cold and rainy, or sunny but with a strong cool wind. So what ended up happening is that I’d wear a new make on a nice day, plan to wear an older Indie pattern make the next, but the weather wouldn’t co-operate, oh well. New stuff is more fun to show anyway!
So here we go:
On Tuesday and Wednesday of week 3 I wore 2 modified Macarons I’d made the previous weekend, I then wore them again on Tuesday and Friday of week 4.
Hot on the heels of finishing my UFO fall dress from last year the other week I finished a UFO fall coat, also from last year. I had hopes to finish it to take with me to the UK for last Fall/Winter, but it didn’t happen. A winter coat happened instead, which was probably for the best.
I used Vogue 8307: