Friday, October 31, 2014

HSF14 Challenge #20 - Alternative Universe

I picked up a commission a few weeks ago for one of my friends who does another Renaissance Festival in the fall.  He wanted a garment he could wear over or under his regular doublet that would have sleeves for when in what chilly.  The basic design he wanted was: like a doublet, but shorter, no collar or flanges, and with buckles down the front.  While not particularly historically accurate, he's the client, so he gets what he wants.  Plus it makes a great entry for Alternative Universe.

I apologize for the complete lack of progress shots.  It was mostly from Simplicity 4059, with the length shortened and the sleeves a slightly different shape.  I used basic cotton twill for the outside and quilting cotton for the lining.  It went together very easily, and I brought it in for him to try on, just in case.  Good thing I did, as he said the sleeves were shorter than he'd like.  I didn't have much fabric left, so I added cuffs, that could be rolled to give anywhere from no addition at all, to an extra three inches in length.  I brought that back in and delivered it minus buckles for him to wear to rehearsal and make sure everything else worked.

It didn't.  Like me, he is a stage combat performer.   Although it fit fine when he was moving like anyone else, some of his fight moves were impeded by the jacket.  He needed a bit more room.  I took the jacket back and added gussets to the back of the shoulders to give him more range of movement.  And then I finally added the buckles, which I found at Tandy Leather.  That was a new thing for me, and it took a little finagling to figure out how to attach everything.

The Challenge: Alternative Universe

Fabric: Black cotton twill, black quilting cotton
Pattern:  Simplicity 4059
Year: Who this faire (not my home faire) most everyone is in Tudor/Elizabethan garb, but they have King James and Musketeers.  
Notions: Buckles
How historically accurate is it? It fits into this faire and this challenge perfectly, I'll say that. 

Hours to complete: Look!  A puppy!
First worn: This coming Saturday
Total cost: $40ish

And the result:

Yes, he wanted it that short.

The back

Close up of the buckles

The cuffs

Last-minute gussets

The jacket under his regular doublet

Very Alternative History

Saturday, October 18, 2014

HSF14 Challenge #19 - HSF Inspiration

I must admit that I was really lost on this one.  I think there were just too many options, and I poured over the boards again and again wondering what I should do.  Plus time was still an issue, and I'd picked up a commission in the last week that needed my attention.  (Fortunately, it will serve well for Alternative History.)  But on another review of the Art Challenge, I remembered how much I'd liked the recreated jewelry by Debbie Mac Rory, seen here. I used to make jewelry all the time before sewing took over my life.  I thought it would be fun do make some again, plus I could make something to go with my big gown project.

I searched through pages of Edwardian and 1910's jewelry to find something I wanted to recreate. A lot of it was the sort I had neither the budget nor the tools to make.  But I really took to some of the multi-stranded styles.

Edwardian Amethyst Festoon Necklace

With no decent beading stores nearby, I had to make do with what I found at Joann and Michaels.  I bought gold chain, spacers, jump rings, and some pretty gold pendants to assemble my necklace.

Those giant pearls weren't working for me though.  I popped them out with pliers.

It only had four rings on the back and I needed six, so I added spacers to the back to give me an extra ring.

This piece had an open lattice design, so I just looped the extra rings through it.

I couldn't find stones in the colors I wanted, so I created an enamel effect by painting the centers with gel nail polish and then finished with Modge Podge Dimensional effects.  I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out, although when my gown is done, I will probably adjust the length, and possibly tweek the color a tiny bit.

The Challenge: HSF Inspiration

Fabric: None
Pattern:  None
Year: 1910's
Notions: Assorted jewelry findings
How historically accurate is it? The style looks right, but given that it was assemble with pieces from the local craft store, paints, and pliers, I can't really say much for the construction. 

Hours to complete: 3-4 hours because of the painting.
First worn: Not yet.
Total cost: $20-25ish?

And the result:

Came out a touch more purple than I wanted, but I can live with it.

I think I need to make the "stone" a bit higher, like a cabochon.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

HSF14 Challenge #18 - Poetry in Motion

Okay, so poetry has never been my thing.  I tend to like silly children's poems better than deep soulful poems.  But my plan for doing a dress themed after my favorite silly poem was scuttled when I learned that the poem must actually mention clothing specifically.  Well, shoot.  I found a poem about a golden gown that would work for the Edwardian gown I'm hoping to make this year, but that keeps getting pushed out.  I turned to song lyrics to see if I could find any clothing themed ones that would suit.  Pretty last minute, I found an Andrews Sister's song called "A Zoot Suit (For My Sunday Gal)."  I overlooked it a couple of times, because I had no intention of making a zoot suit in a week.  But I finally read through it and found this verse:

I want a brown gown with a zop top
And a hip slip, and a laced waist
In the sharpest taste to see my Sunday man
(In his zoot suit)

I usually say I don't have a favorite color, but brown is definitely high up on my list.  A brown gown sounded just right.  I wasn't sure what a zop top and a laced waist entailed, but I needed to keep it simple, as I'm running behind again.  So I reached for the 1920's again, figuring a simple square-cut flapper dress wouldn't give me too much grief.  I hand drafted the top, choosing a high neck in front and a bit more of a dip in back.  I cut a basic skirt shape, just slightly a-line. Once I had it all together, I cut the hem into a diagonal, like this dress:

Ivory dress with black and gold sash by Callot Soeurs, French, 1928. The Goldstein Museum of Design.

Although not before experimenting with a few different styles:

I used a silk/rayon burnout velvet in dark brown, with bits of peach and purple.  It sounds like an odd combination, but I quite like it.  I happened to have some poly faille in my stash that I used for the sash and drape.  I've always liked peach and brown together, and it really worked with the little peach hints in the fabric.

I serged all my edges on the dress, and then just turned them under and topstitched them down.  I did a double folded hem around the sash, and gathered one side to a piece of hem tape.  It just ties on at the moment, although I may add better closures later.

The Challenge: Poetry in Motion

Fabric: Brown Rayon/silk burnout velvet, peach poly faille.
Pattern:  None
Year: 1920's
Notions: None
How historically accurate is it? The pattern and most of the fabric is accurate, but it's all made on machine and partly serged.  

Hours to complete: Let's just assume I never know the answer to this.
First worn: Not yet.
Total cost: $30

And the result:

Hopefully I can get some pictures of it on me soon, so I can show it off better.