The cat I was babysitting while he recovered from surgery is back at work now.
Last weekend, Shirley and I got back into the vaults at the costume museum. We were dressing mannequins for a showing of Edwardian display. Not my era but it did have some merits!
The beading and embroidery is lovely on this!
I reminds me of the dresses you start to see in the 1920s. I wonder what was worn under it. A white slip? Black? It would have been a show stopper at a party!
Just a short post as I’m in a time crunch. My acting debut as Dr Amelia Yeomans went well. I lost count as to how many times I did my part but I did it in front of 1,650 people in groups ranging from 40-70. I! drew a blank on my lines a few times but there was only one time where it was so bad that I couldn’t improvise and save it. This is in spite of things like audiences that starred stoney face at me in places that others laughed, parents ignoring misbehaving children, and one person who let their cell phone ring and ring and ring…. I’ll be hitting the stage again today. Hopefully, I will have some photos soon.
Update! My .15 seconds of fame! (Hope this link works)
This weekend our city will be opening the doors of a few of our older buildings to the public. Some of the buildings, like the old jail, have been closed to the public for decades. The old jail will be opened and some of its history will be brought to light through actors playing the parts of people who once walked the halls of this place.
I have been asked to play the part of Dr Amelia Yeomans, the second woman doctor in Winnipeg and a staunch warrior who fought for better working and living conditions for immigrants, women and children.
There is a resemblence…especially around the second chin area!
Dr Amelia fought for more humane treatments in the jail. And she fought for women to have the right to vote. And she seems like she would have been a REALLY nice person. I think I would have liked her if I had met her and I also think I would have felt…I don’t know…may be inadequate or weak next to her. She was a real mover and shaker in a time when women were expected to keep themselves and the babies quiet.
I know I feel inadequate to play her. Mostly because I’ve never done any real acting. Each tour group is expected to be at each character and station for 10 minutes. So every 10 minutes I will be showing my Amelia Yeomans play for two whole days. I will either hit my stride after a few runs at it or I will SUCK terribly and it will be a very long weekend! Wish me luck!
In honor of Queen Victoria’s Birthday, Victorian at Heart planned an outing. We had considered Lower Fort Garry but the weather was just too rotten with rain, rain and more rain. So we went to Maple Grove Tea House in Captain Kennedy’s House. After tea we posed for some photos.
Shirley wore her 1860s sheer dress.
I wore one of my 1880s bustle dresses.
Mr Mac Leod and his daughter were with us! After awhile, Mr Mac Leod had to head back to work so he left with his daughter. Shirley and I were headed to our cars. We looked at each other, neither of us ready to head home to modern clothes. The rain had stopped so we decided to head to the Fort as we originally planned and go to the tea they were hosting in honor of the Queen’s birthday.
Last year, when we had gone to the tea, we had it in the basement of the governor’s house. In later years that room had been used as a dining area for a motor club. We were expecting more of the same. It was a bit different this time. The staff person who was playing the Governor came out and lightly chastised us ladies for not having our men folk with us! It was fun playing the part of rebellious females who insist on traveling alone.
We began the tour of the house and saw a few rooms. When we got to the parlour we found the fireplace was all lit up. I had never seen it lit and didn’t know the chimney was still in working order! It was cool that day so I’m glad it was lit.
As you can see, the table was set for tea. I was very surprised to find that the admissions desk had called ahead and arranged for us to sit and have tea in the parlour just like real guests!
Shirley sat between the Governor’s wife and the Governor’s guest.
The Governor sat next to his guest and I sat between the Governor and his wife.
There was a maid that served the cake while Mrs. Colvile poured the tea. I kept falling out of character and trying to pour my own tea and not waiting for the maid to open the door for me! Obviously, I am nouveau riche and lacking in the social graces of the upper crust! All in all a wonderful start to the costuming season.
I have finished my 1870-90 swim suit. Originally, I intended to have the whole thing done for the By the Sea Challenge-I got the shoes done. Then I hoped to finish it for the Flora and Fauna because the fabric is cotton-I got the skirt done. Honestly, I can’t find any references to swimming in stories based in Victorian times but I NEEDED to finish that suit last week. Surely someone went swimming in some book somewhere!
The largest size of the pattern was not wide enough to fit me so I added a wide button-hole panel to the front. That means the buttons are off to one side which looks bad. I intend to add a second column of buttons to the other side of the panel to make it look more balanced. I had to order the buttons from the store and they wont come in until after the challenge dead line. Except for that one detail the suit is done.
The Challenge: Challenge 10: Literature
Fabric: 100% Cotton
Pattern: 253 Folkwear
Notions: Buttons, thread, elastic
How historically accurate is it? 70-90%. I used cotton and I’m not sure if they did that or if they stuck to wool. I have no idea about the weave of the fabric and if it is correct. I’m also not sure if my “fix” for the size was something a Victorian woman would have done. I believe the pattern, color, silhouette and notions are pretty accurate. I believe that it and its accessories are appropriate for beach wear and I believe that a middle to upper middle class woman would have made her own suit. Would a 40+ year old woman go swimming? Why not? It was machine sewn with some hand sewing which is possible for the 1890s.
Hours to complete: @25
First worn: Today for the photo
Total cost: $50?