Year in Review: costumes worn

I had big plans to wear all my dresses this year but that didn’t happen.  I blame my new job…not having vacation time, Shirley and I were not able to go to Saskatchewan for the Dickens Festival.  That trip alone would have had at least 4 dresses out and about.

But lets see how well I did.

1838-40 Queen V dress.  Check. That was worn at the Coco Gala.172

1845 Atessa dress was worn for Halloween.

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The 1860’s  Silky Skies dress got put on for this photo but I can’t figure out where I wore it.  I wouldn’t have put all that on for a chance to try on the apron!IMG_20160807_121745

Oh, wait!  Good ol’ Facebook!  According to Facebook I wore Silky Skies to the 7 Oaks Museum.  For some reason, those photos didn’t get posted here!  I will remedy that next post!

1861 Senora dress was worn to the St Boniface Museum this year.

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1872 Basque in Blue was used during Coco’s Steam Punk Tea.  200

My 1872 Lilac dream was worn to a play (I had almost forgotten about this fun event!)SAM_3652

1873 Purple Polonaise went to Little Britain Church.53

1880’s Half Grand Surprise Dress was used during the Circus themed social at Coco.

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My 1880’s travel outfit was chosen for our annual ride on the Prairie Dog Central Train.

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The 1882 Tea Gown finally got a real wearing during the Sunday breakfast with the artists at Coco.  I still don’t love the gown but I no longer loath it.189

My 1890’s swim suit was worn by the pool Friday night at Coco.29

My 1895 Summer Ensemble made an appearance at the Steam Punk wedding.img_20161022_130710981_hdr.jpg

1900 Widows Weeds got worn twice.  Once by myself at a celebration and fashion show at work…img_20160930_153444423

…and once by another person at the Vaughn Street Jail event last spring. (Serious nip tucking needed on the dress for this event.)

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Four dresses didn’t make the cut this year: 1840’s Copper Penny, 1850’s Tea Dress, 1895 dinner gown, 1895 Walking outfit.  It is probably best that I have only one dress on the docket for 2017.  If I can’t get them all worn, then I have to slow down production.  Or I have to part with some of them (gasp!)  Trouble with that is, if I am disenchanted enough to be willing to part with one of my babies, I am disenchanted enough to feel that no one actually would want it!  Then factor in size…nah.  I’m just going to have to find more times to wear them or set my goal to “wear once every two years”.

 

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Victorian at Heart 2016 Costume Season is launched

The first costume event is both exciting and stressful.  It is exciting because we are putting on pretty dresses and doing fun things.  And we are frequently the center of attention. The extrovert side of me loves this.

Costume events are stressful too.  Will that dress/corset still fit?  Will there be a wardrobe malfunction? “People will look at me and think I am nuts!” That last bit comes from the anxious introvert in me.

I have to ignore the Introvert’s protests and get dressed and venture out.  And I’m always pleased that I did.  It is like parachuting.  You don’t want to jump out of the plane but once you do, it is a thrill.  Or so they tell me.  No freaking way I’d ever jump out of a perfectly functional plane.  That is just nuts.

This years first event was a play at a local church.  The play was called My Fair Brit and was about a British man who lands in the wild west and tries to fit in but his accent and frilly language makes it very difficult for him to communicate and make friends.  In true wild west fashion, Shirley and I donned bustle dresses and enjoyed the play!  After the play, we were allowed to use the stage as a back drop.SAM_3649

I brought a shawl because we have been having freakishly cold weather this spring.  I was glad I brought it.

This next photo is my favorite.  SAM_3651

I also really like this one.SAM_3652

The cast of the play was so friendly, they even allowed us to take some pictures with them.SAM_3654

There is that wardrobe malfunction!  My bodice seems to have ridden up under my arm pit!

In between acts, there was coffee, tea and dessert.  I was a real piggy and had two desserts!

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We are well and truly off to a good start.  The next event is in two weeks time!

Year in review: outing addition

My goal this year was to wear every dress I have made.  How can I justify making more dresses if I can’t manage to wear the ones I have already?  How did I do?

1838- 40 Green Queen V dress

I wore my Green Queen dress to the Dickens Festival.

I wore my Green Queen dress to the Dickens Festival.

1840’s Copper Penny dress.

Also worn at the Dickens Festival.

Also worn at the Dickens Festival.

1850’s Tea Dress

This is what Shirley and I wore the first night at the Dickens Festival.

This is what Shirley and I wore the first night at the Dickens Festival.  I also wore the 1870’s shawl so kinda two for one.

1860 Silky Skies dress

Dickens again. I got a lot of mileage out of this outing.

Dickens again. I got a lot of mileage out of this outing.  Two for one again as I wore the 1871 mantle with it.

1860 Sontag.  There is a miss there.  I wanted to wear it with the dress above but it was too big.  But strictly speaking it isn’t a dress so we wont count it against my goal.

1870-90 Pineapple Shawl.  I still don’t have anything to wear that with so another miss, but again, it isn’t a dress so that doesn’t count.

1872 Basque in blue.

I wore this to our Halloween event.

I wore this to our Halloween event.  I also wore my 1871 Mantle with this so it got used twice this year (after lounging in my closet for a couple of years!)

1872 Lilac Dream

All aboard! The Prairie Dog train ride.

All aboard! The Prairie Dog train ride.

1873 Polonaise

First outing with our tiny groups newest member Lottie

First outing with our tiny group’s newest member Lottie

1880’s Half Grand Surprise Dress-Doh!  This is a definite miss!  I did have plans to wear it but an event or two got cancelled because of weather and this is one of the dresses that didn’t make the cut.  It has gotten a lot of wear other years.

1880’s travel outfit-dang!  Another one that got missed.  Also due to weather.

1882 Tea Gown (aka Ugly Bag of Tea Gown).  First time ever.  That is a win right?

Me in my Tea Gown reading how to be a Victorian. It got worn but didn't see the light of day or other humans other than Shirley.

Me in my Tea Gown reading how to be a Victorian. It got worn but didn’t see the light of day or other humans other than Shirley.

1890’s swim suit

Halloween costume for work.

Halloween costume for work.

1895 dinner gown

Out for dinner.

Out for dinner.

1895 Summer Ensemble

To my favorite house museum

To my favorite house museum

1895 walking outfit

Again, at my favorite house museum.

Again, at my favorite house museum.

1900 Widows Weeds

At the old jail.

At the old jail.

So not too bad.  Two dresses that got a lot of wear in years past, didn’t get worn because of cancelled events.  I think I can justify making two more…

The plan is one like this black one.tv242colorfin

The black will be done in reds and the blue will be cream and black.  I want to use my vintage treadle machine for this one.  The challenge will be to use as many of the attachments as possible.

And the paisley material I bought at the Dickens Festival will become something like this…1840-49 dress day a Augusta AuctionsI hope to make more accessories as well and I hope they will get some use!  I also hope to wear the two dresses I didn’t get to wear this year…we have to keep it fair after all.

 

Prairie Dog Central 2015

My practice run with my hair style went well and the real run also went well.  It held up perfectly and my hat stuck like glue!  Here are some highlights.

I love posing with the crowd.

I love posing with the crowd.

All aboard!

All aboard!

Away we go!

Away we go!

When the train gets robbed, I go back to my childhood...the first time I was on the Prairie Dog Central Train.

When the train gets robbed, I go back to my childhood…the first time I was on the Prairie Dog Central Train.  So much fun!  I’m almost giddy!

Shirley watching the horses.

Shirley watching the horses.

Then the robbers board the train.

Then the robbers board the train.

And steal our money (to be donated to a charity).

And steal our money (to be donated to a charity).

The train stopped at the set of the new Pinkerton TV series.

The train stopped at the set of the new Pinkerton TV series.  Scroll through the photo gallery and see if you recognize any of the sets.

I don’t get a channel with this show.  Drat.  I guess I will have to wait for it to come to Netflix.SAM_3019a

 

Time for some silliness!

Shirley in a new 1890's outfit.

Shirley in a new 1890’s outfit.

I'm in my 1872 Lilac Dreams dress.

I’m in my 1872 Lilac Dream dress.

I thought this was lovely.  Something about rotting wood....

I thought this was lovely. Something about rotting wood….

 

Finished top to bottom

I have finished 1872 Lilac Dream’s hat and that completes the whole project.  Sometimes, after wearing a dress for a few hours, I realize that there are things that need to change and that may happen with this dress.  There are no events planned until spring, so this will have to wait.  For now it is done.

Trial run on my head.  I'll have to fiddle with my hair styles to make sure there is something to shove that hat pin through.

Trial run on my head. I’ll have to fiddle with my hair style to make sure there is something to shove that hat pin through (other than my scalp).

My husband said he thought there was too much on that hat.  I always worry I don’t put enough on because I can’t seem to find that line between embellished and crazy.

Another difficulty I have is with being too matchy-matchy.  I tried to live on the edge and add a detail to the hat that didn’t match.

Big ol' pink rose.

Big ol’ pink rose.

I hate it because it doesn’t match!  It might come off yet.  It is in the back so if I don’t have to see it I might be able to let it go.  I may trim back that netting too.  For now it is best to just walk away and let it be for now.  I’ll look at it with fresh eyes in a week or two.SAM_2707

And here it is with the dress.  Not to shabby, I think.

And here it is with the dress. Not to shabby, I think.

On to the next project which is stash busting for Sew Historical Monthly.  I’m planning on using up some of the left over fabric to add some more trim to the very plain skirt for this dress.SAM_1371

Dress done…now hat tomorrow?

I finally settled on how I will finish my over skirt and kept it moderate.  I decided that I can’t find that delicate line between wonderfully ostentatious and bat crap crazy.  I am a middle aged woman so there really is no reason why I couldn’t err on the side of conservative…if you can call purple floral print conservative. I went with the lace on the front.SAM_2678

And I managed to squeeze enough out of the lace to make a decent coverage of the ties in the back.SAM_2684

And the lace shows up nicely on the sides too.SAM_2685

More is more?

I finished the over skirt for Lilac Dream.

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Now is the time to decide what, if any, trim will be added to the over skirt.SAM_2678

At first I liked it with nothing but I rather like the lace. With some fancy foot work I can get a lot of the ties done with the same lace.

In the modern world, less is more, but in the 1870’s they seemed to live by a MORE is more philosophy. So let’s try more. I made a pile of bows and still have 3 left. SAM_2679Hmmm.  That doesn’t seem quite right. Asymmetry bothers my modern mind.SAM_2680Nope.  Not the asymmetry that is off.SAM_2681Nope.

Let us try the more is more theory again.SAM_2682I don’t hate it…more?SAM_2683

Gads! I don’t know!  I think I need to walk away from it for a bit and let it marinate in my mind for a bit.

There is also the issue of the contrasting side panels that I am having a love/hate relationship with.  I have to love them…they are there because I ran out of the floral fabric. Maybe they need something…more….SAM_2676