Saturday, February 22, 2014

Teslacon wardrobe project 2, Striped underskirt love!

When I first started looking at the late bustle period for ideas for outfits for Teslacon 3 I fell in love with this outfit from the Brooklyn Museum collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art:

Or at least that wonderful draped overskirt and the overall effect of the striped underskirt with matching striped accents in the balance of the dress.

I recently found the most wonderful striped fabric (on e-bay, of course. I think that's that place to shop when you live in the fabric-less wilds of middle America) and am now embarking on my own outfit with a striped underskirt, asymmetrically draped over-skirt, and bodice with matching accents. I've collected several related outfits from the mid 1880's on a Pinterest board and after consideration I have decided to go with seperates--partly to make a more flexible wardrobe, and partly because I have yet to purchase a coordinating solid fabric--so I'll be making a skirt and waistcoat from the stripe, for starters. I'm basting hems into the yardage tonight and prewashing. such a good girl I am!

Valentine's Day's Secret Plan revealed!

So, what indispensable item of gentlemanly flash can be cobbled together from a few cool bits and bobs bought on e-bay? Well it all started with a necklace ...

With the perfect steamy links...

 And ended up a pocket watch and chain!

We are now on the hunt for the perfect fob, or three, to subtlety hint at the interior life of his steampunk self. Kids, we're going to Teslacon 5! And this year I've sworn not to bring anything that still needs sewing.

Friday, February 21, 2014

These...Are Not Potatoes

I've been starting to make my own recipes based on Medieval and Renaisssance period cook books which sometimes leads to interesting dilemmas like "what could I do with these baked turnips I have left over from *way* overestimating how many turnips I would need to make turnip tart?"

Todays answer? Fried Turnips!

Yes, they are as yummy as they look. :)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The Secret Project of Secretness

I am indebted to Graverobbergirl and her blog "Just Another Crafting Blog" for the title of this post! I read with interest her posts on her own secret project of secretness in 2012 and the phrase captured my mind and has since invested all my sneaky little gift projects with a mysterious allure befitting such a grandious name!

My current project is a valentines gift for my Clarence and, while I won't go into any details at present, I must say that shopping has been successful, assembly has begun, and the whole thing is shaping up marvelously. I'm also *really* enjoying teasing him about it every night!


Monday, January 27, 2014

Corset re-do--Done!

The almost-final product!
I still need to add hooks and eyes to the bottom front but woohoo - the re-do is DONE!
What I did:

First I cut off the old lacing just inside of the eyelets and took out the remaining bones on each edge. Then I folded the fabric at the next bone--which is now my outside edge.

I attached a strip of white linen just inside the bone on the inside of the corset, doubled the fabric and stitched down the opposite edge. I then had many layers of fabric to hold the new eyelets.

Aren't they pretty?

I had eleven empty boning chanels left by bones that had worked their way out of the fabric over the years so I opend up the stiching at both ends and added hemp cord 'boning' to those.

Then I trimmed the edges and stiched it all back up!

I also turned down the center fronk neckline to the top of the bone. This gives it an ever-so-subtle sweetheart neck line and I *hope* it will correct the recurring issue of just a bit of the center front of the corset showing above the neckline of my bodices.

'Cause I sure wouldn't want to have to *raise* them! ;)

I added some trim to cover the holes where the bones had worked their way out and ...DONE!

Monday, January 6, 2014

1987 Corset Re-Do. So 2014 Sewing Begins!

I'm taking on both the Historical Fortnightly and Five Foundations Challenges this year! We are stuck inside today due to unusually (dangerously) cold temperatures so I am jumping in with some desperately-needed alterations to a corset I made back in...1987-ish. It has been my go-to corset for literally decades now and has held up surprisingly well but the eyelets were shot long ago and the surrounding fabric was never intended to do lacing-duty all on it's own--poor thing--and really should be relieved of the job! I've also changed in shape and a bit in size so a remake is in order and will allow me to rethink my corseting before I jump into making new patterns for a whole new corset wardrobe.

Squee! A whole new corset wardrobe! That's a lovely phrase. :)

And now, so you can truly appreciate the desperateness of my need, the dreaded "Before" picture!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Wrapping paper! Is there anything it can't do?

Our apartment was restored by some lovely people who care about their work, and old buildings, and their tenants, and they did quite a lovely job of picking color schemes and fixtures and in the hot, hot summer it is cool and restful and I quite like it. But at Christmas? BORING!

So when I was wandering through Joanne fabrics in early November I was looking for some nice red wrapping paper to add feature walls on either side of our fireplace. I didn't find it (sigh) but I did find...


Or rather, Santa's Beard. In fact, I found about a bajillion Santa's beards! Suddenly, I had a vision!

Wainscoting in the hallway!

Wallpaper in the dining room!

Hmmm, an entire wall in the living room might be overdoing it. Perhaps just a touch around the fireplace?

We still haven't gotten our tree, or wrapped all the presents, or baked many cookies...or, hey, CLEANED...but it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!