Monday, November 23, 2015

holy bias-stretch, batman!

measure measure, cut cut

and then hanging until the bias stops growing.....

Monday, November 16, 2015


Silk shrinking worked out well, and the first three panels of the skirt are cut out (chiffon is kind of annoying, so I'm taking it slowly)... but I still haven't decided on what the bodice will look like.

current thought:
Charles James - 1945

Maybe something along the lines of ....

super photo shop skilzz

I'm already set on (and committed to) the flowy chiffon skirt -- but most of the bodices I've been thinking about don't really need chiffon -- in fact, they are better with something sturdy and structured.  But a gathered sort of a bodice, with an opaque something or other underneath, could look rather nice.

hrmm hrmm hrmm     I keep changing my mind every few days, which is why I started with the skirt.   The way I see it, this will be my most photographed dress ever, so it had better look good.   (Plus everyone, their brother and their second cousin twice removed has been asking me if I'm making my dress and then saying they are looking forward to seeing what I come up with.  So I need to collectively stun them.)

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Shrinking Silk

free, with the breeze running through my fur....

The theme of my wedding is stress free and happy.   (Even if I have to kill everyone to make it happen)   This means my dress can't be so delicate I'm spending the entire day worried something will happen to it -- so I decided to investigate pre-shrinking all the silk chiffon I'd gotten so that the water that I *know* will get spilled on it when I get excited, forget I'm holding a glass, and start talking with my now-empty-because-I-dropped-the-glass-on-my-skirt hands doesn't ruin everything,

I popped a sample into the washer on hot, and then into the dryer on no-heat fluff.  Total shrinkage is at about 14% in each direction.

The process changes the texture and the opacity -- as everything has tightened up, its a bit thicker and not as smooth.   While I prefer the look of the untreated silk, the shrunken is still very nice and will be a lot more robust to whatever I throw at it over the course of the day.    (Although, realistically, I am 100% going to be wearing a full length bibbed apron during whatever part of dinner I get to sit down for)

So-- as its time to start the skirt, I figured out what I needed, added 14% to the length and popped it into the washer.  (This is sounding so much more carefree than it actually was.)

and now I wait as 15 yards of silk rumble around where I can't see them.....

so many yards.....

soon to be 12.9 yards.....

Sunday, November 8, 2015


We went as a black plague -- Greg was a doctor and I was the patient (victim / body / whatever) or.. more accurately, I got lazy and didn't feel like doing the 1400s giant horned hat, veil and gown I'd been planning and just made myself a shift instead and declared it a couples costume.

Greg's coat is a combination of a (highly modified) simplicity 2333 for the coat and simplicity 5840 for the hood.   In order to fit comfortably together, we removed the collar and lapels from the coat and changed it to have a center front opening.

He made his own mask -- it is composed of two layers of craft foam, a muslin backing and held together with rivets and waxed thread.   He used the lenses from welding goggles for the eyes and sneaky air holes on the bottom.

The pattern is his own design, based on a combination of tutorials online and images he's seen.   It was a fairly entertaining evening as he tried various ideas and wandered around with a giant cardboard beak.

My costume is actually a civil war era shift - simplicity 1139.   I'm aware its 400 years off - but, I had it (the pattern, not the shift) and I figured no one would actually notice.  (Besides -- how much did shifts really change?)  Anyhow, it is SUPER comfy... so I might see if I can dye it, wear it with a belt and work it into  my regular wardrobe.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Its time for a wedding dress!

How will she reach anything?

Greg and I are engaged! 
(and have been, for a little while, but we just got around to getting a ring and making it public)

(This has also meant he has gotten stuck with all my ramblings on about lace and silhouettes and such.   For all that he is learning to sew, I think this may have been a bit much. - SOOOO now I get to yammer on to the internet, and the joys of fancy fabrics I usually forbid myself since they just don't fit into my life.)

Anyhow, I've set myself a few rules for the dress:
1: I need to be able to breath freely and move easily (so no corsets, trains, long tight sleeves, etc)
2: I need to be able to dance without falling over (so just slightly shorter than floor length)
3: I need to be able to use the bathroom without a squad of helpers.  (the skirt can't eat me alive)

I know I want some sort of straps or other over-the-shoulder-something, a long, full skirt, and some kind of textured embellishment - but otherwise, I'm not sure what it will end up looking like.  Right now my thoughts are running along these lines:

okay, probably not this.  I would catch on everything, but its a pretty amazing skirt.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

smurfing the couch

Why cover a perfectly lovely couch?   Silly Greg is allergic to cats and doesn't want them rolling back and forth on the furniture until there is a removable, washable cover.

So I'm slowly, but surely, making that cover - during which time the cats are living in the (finished, furnished, has been used as an apartment) basement.

Now, I have to attack the back and sides... bum bum bum!
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