My oldest boy moved to another country a couple of weeks ago. He went from living in my basement one month to living in another country the next. Mommy is not happy. Because of the empty room I found myself with, I decided to make something good come from it. I finally have my very own sewing/craft room.
I have a table for my projects and sewing machine. There is room for my computer if I am wanting to watch movies while I work. The table folds down if I’m doing smaller projects and want it taking up less space. The shelves have some of my hats and will have things that I might want to be handy when sewing. I’m thinking of adding some sort of hooks to the shelves so that my scissors would be in easy reach. The dresser will hold my fabric stash, patterns and perhaps my trimmings and hat making supplies.
There is room for Trudy now. She doesn’t need to lurk in my closet or at the foot of my bed. To the right of Trudy there is a closet and it is jammed to the top with my costumes and accessories. I really don’t have much more room for more costumes and yet I persist!
The bed is staying. I can use it as a guest room if I need to. The other reason I’m keeping the bed is I have some hope that the boy will eventually come home and will need a landing place until he resets up his life here in Canada. If if he needs to stay long term…well Mommy will have this room unpacked in a half and day and she will be doing it with a smile on her face! For now I’m thinking of getting huge pillows so I can make the bed into a day bed kind a thing so I can sit and do hand sewing.
Finally, I want some pictures on the wall. I’ve been looking for things in a flea market but not having much success. I want something that will act as inspiration for the sewing and doesn’t cost a fortune. As I sit in here, I think I might not actually need to buy anything. I have a drawer full of cabinet cards. I could pick out my favorites and hang them up. I think they would be safe. There is a window in the room but it faces the wall of the next house so there isn’t any direct light. There is a 50% off sale at a local thrift store…maybe I can pick up a dozen little frames…. I could also get some hooks and get more of my hats out of the closet and hanging on the wall. I have to find that delicate balance between inspiring stimulation and offensive mess!
The room is not finished yet but I’m already enjoying it. With out the sewing room, this would have been running down the middle of my dinning room table at supper last night.
It is my project for the terminology challenge in the Historical Sew Fortnightly. It is due today. I don’t think that will happen!
The nights are getting cooler now…one small mercy…and the leaves on some of the trees are starting to turn. I actually like fall. It would be my favorite season if it weren’t for the fact that winter comes rapidly after. When winter comes…well lots of good things go away. I have a man-made lake outside my kitchen window that has been attractive to some birds that will not be hanging out once winter comes.
It is a bit hard to tell from these photos but this is a family of pelicans. There are fish in the lake and that is what they are hanging around for. Odd birds aren’t they!
I was at the Costume Museum of Canada last night and this is the coolest thing I found for the evening.
It is, of course a Chinese shoe for a woman who had foot binding and is dated as 1900. It is both beautiful (in terms of the embroidery) and ugly when you think of the years of pain that must have caused!
There is only the one shoe. I haven’t found the other and don’t know if there actually is another. Both sides of the shoe are embroidered.
I have no idea how a woman would have walked in these. The heel of the shoe is near my thumb in the above photo. That means the ball and toe end of the shoe is EXTREMELY narrow with the actual foot twisted in on itself inside the shoe! It is also very short. This one is 6 inches long but I’ve heard the desired length was 3 inches. And some folks think corsets were bad!
But before we go thinking we are ever so much better at treating women and their bodies humanely, I have 3 words for you…stilettos and under-wire bras. We’ve progressed, but we still seem to think that a woman has to suffer to achieve good looks.
I’ve been thinking about ALS a lot lately. Not because of the Ice Bucket Challenge that has gone viral here in North America. (If you have no idea what I’m talking about go to YouTube and type in ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.) I’m thinking about it because a member of my family has had his diagnosis confirmed 3 weeks ago. This is one of the reasons I’ve been having problems getting myself interested in blogging and other hobbies.
ALS is a brutal disease where the nerves that allow us to control the muscles in our body are damaged. Over time (and in the case of my family member it seems like not a very long period of time) the person becomes weaker and weaker and they begin to lose abilities. Abilities like combing hair, picking up a cup, getting out of a chair, walking, and standing in a shower become more and more difficult and finally impossible. Once the disease had finished laying waste to the muscles in the arms and legs it moves inward and goes after the muscles involved in breathing. It is usually respiratory problems that finish them off in 2-5 years. It affects not only the person with the condition. It affects the people they live with. Who thinks that in their late 40’s they will be caring for their spouse? Sure, you think that might be your life in your 70’s but not in your 40’s. What kid thinks that they will need to make life choices in their 20’s based on the physical needs of their declining parents? That is something you start thinking about in you 50’s!
So when I was asked if I’d take up the challenge, I agreed. I don’t particularly care to dump ice on my head and perhaps I wont. I have a choice. I will do the most important parts though. I will tell others about the disease because they might not know about it. I will tell them how they can donate money and I will tell them where. I WILL DONATE MONEY BECAUSE I HAVE A CHOICE ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT TO DUMP ICE ON MY HEAD BUT PEOPLE WITH ALS DIDN’T GET TO CHOSE WHETHER OR NOT THEY WILL GET IT!
So I challenge my readers to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and you can donate here:
ALS Society of Canada
3000 Steeles Avenue East, Suite 200
The ALS Association- 1275 K Street NW – Suite 250 – Washington, DC 20005
Motor Neurone Disease Australia Inc.
ABN 52 650 269 176
PO Box 990 Gladesville NSW 1675
My cousin-in-law just posted a photo of some cup cakes she made. They are so pretty that I think I must come up with some sort of reason to order some for myself.
A Victorian Feathers party? The guests come in hats loaded with feathers?
The Costume Museum of Canada has some books that other volunteers have been patiently cataloging. When they come across one that I might be interested in, they pass it down to me. Here is one that I think I would like to add to my Christmas wish list….
It has some real gems in it that should encourage some creative sewing!
And there are many more than just these! The above photos are only a random sampling! Buy the book! I’ve found it on eBay!
During this time of troubles I am in, I do find that knitting (and watching hours and hours of movies) has been soothing…takes my mind off of it all….which worked out wonderfully for the last Historical Sew Fortnightly challenge. It is a bit of a challenge to imagine any scenario where I’ll be wearing this thing as it is summer and I may be starting hot flashes! I break out in a sweat just looking at it!
What the item is: sontag
The Challenge: The great outdoors
Pattern: Godey’s 1860 which was up sized and dated by this blogger.
Being more fluffy than the blogger, I had to do some guess work to up size it even more. I think I may have gone to far. It seems a bit baggy.
Notions: 1 button about 600 yards of blue and 100 of white.
How historically accurate is it? Wool is acrylic but pattern and tecnique is correct. It would have been hand made by the lady wearing it or giving it as a gift. Plausible that all types of ladies could have worn it…working class to upper class. I guess an upper class lady would have worn it puttering in her yard on a cool day. So about 80%
Hours to complete: @40
First worn:not yet
Total cost: $30 in wool. Pattern free and I had the needles for years.
My computer is fixed now so we can try another post. So how about a post about some very old shoes at the Costume Museum of Canada.
This one has been dated as 1770-80
The front has a metallic thread embroidery.
They have an odd heel that I had never seen before. Apparently they are called Italian heels.
It is actually a single shoe. Who knows what happened to its mate. This one is pretty worn out. I guess the other one didn’t do as well.
Here is another pair, dated 1780. These were cool because you could still see the holes from the prongs of the buckles. I don’t know why I found that amazing. It was like seeing the holes made me connected to the wearer…I could see evidence of them using them. They were also cool because I didn’t know that the heels were low during this time period.
I’m having trouble getting back into the grove of blogging. I’ve gotten more bad news (insert sad face here). I’ve also got a terrible cold AND my computer got a nasty bug. My son has been spending his free time, saving my files and wiping my computer clean. I’m hoping today he will put everything back, minus the virus (I curse all computer virus makers with the cold virus I now have). For now, I’ll just say, have a good weekend.
I went off the blog world grid for awhile. There has been a death in the family and I just haven’t “felt like it”. I still don’t feel like it but, hey, routine and structure and putting yourself out there is sometimes what you need at a time such as this.
My opening move back into the blog world will be photos from my last outing with my costume club, Victorian at Heart. It seems I forgot to post photos of that outing which was held in early July!
We went for a ride on the Prairie Dog Central train again. It is one of our favorite outings.
Shirley wore her new 1890’s outfit. I wore my 1880’s Half Grand Dress and Coco wore an 1880’s dress as well.
The train was stopped by masked bandits on horseback.
They robbed us of our loose change (and donated it to a women’s shelter.)
When the train reached it’s destination, I had to head up the tracks to find an item that fell out of the window during the robbery!
The item was the head of my parasol (the pretty gold thing to the right of the photograph). My kid accidentally snapped it off moving his hockey bag. I fixed it with Crazy Glue but it didn’t hold…neither did the emergency electrical tape patch I had done.
Once we found the handle and then had some lunch we toured a little house built in the 1880’s.
Then it was back on the train to head back home.