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”.

 

Great Train Robbery 2016

It was time for the annual train robbery trip on the Prairie Dog Central.  Here are some of the best from my camera.

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Lottie’s first time for the train robbery!

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Shirley cozying up to the Sheriff!

 

The “robbery” raised over $700 for cancer patient services.

We stopped in Grosse Isle for some food and photo ops.

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Good advice for our young female traveler posted on the wall behind her!

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Here is the group posing with some of the desperados!

It was a cool wet day so some of the costume details got lost in wraps but Lottie and Shirley were in 1890’s and I was in 1880’s.23.jpg

We spent some time in the little house from 1880’s.  A good place for photos when it is raining.

That was fun!

First event of the season part two

Okay, I got some permission from more of my models and for the one I did not get, I decided to “conceal her identity”.SAM_2059 - CopyHere is the crew in order of decades and appearance.  There was a 90’s dress and a bathing suit out on mannequins as well.  My dress is sitting funny because we were too close to the wall and that made it sit oddly.  Glory be, the dress fits.  I still find the sleeves to large and I must remember to make note of that on the pattern for future reference.  But, it doesn’t bother me enough to take it apart again to fix it.  The sun fading is there but again, not bad enough to remove the panel and try to make another with the left overs.  I made the 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and 80’s dress and Shirley made the 30’s and 70’s (which she wore for the show).

Time for the amusing stories.  Myself and the model in the 1850’s dress had some work to get used to the hoops.  For myself, I needed to get used to how far the elliptical hoops stuck out behind me and for the other model, it was getting used to having hoops at all.  Sitting, of course is the biggest challenge.  Poor Miss 1850’s ended up knocking her chair over.SAM_2057 - Copy

And she got it caught in the dress itself.SAM_2058

We were all very supportive and stood there laughing and taking photographs.  She was a great sport about it.

The other amusing story happened to me.   I often get asked what I am wearing under the dresses so I asked the audience if they wanted to see.  They did, so after the tea and dessert (which I thought was the end of the program) I went and striped.  At first I was very pleased, they were interested and I was roasting alive in the dress and therefore much cooler in my undies.  I forgot that these teas always end with small gifts being given to the new brides (the tea originally started out as a bridal shower 20 years ago) followed by flowers being given to women celebrating new babies and major wedding anniversaries.  Guess who had to go up and accept a flower for her 25th wedding anniversary in Victorian underwear.  And yours truly can not keep my mouth shut…even in church…and I said loudly “this is how you keep a marriage fresh!”  Had some misgivings about it later but it seems no one took offence and I shan’t be excommunicated or shunned!

 

First event of the season

I had a Victorian fashion show at my church’s annual spring tea.  I haven’t been given permission from all my models yet so I’ll have to dole out photos as they allow me.  And I don’t have to many of them either!  I forgot to arrange for someone in the audience to take photos of the actual show. SAM_2051The model on the left is wearing my 1880’s Travel outfit.  It only took a pack and a half of pins to take it in.  The model on the right is wearing my friend Shirley’s 1830’s dress.  Ain’t she cute!  Then we realized that she had striped down and made her put all the extra’s back on.SAM_2052Still cute.  Thanks ladies!

Another card courtesy of Miss Shirley

For Christmas, my pal Shirley, gave me 3 cabinet cards.  Two were head shots of the same woman 10 years apart.  She also gave me a card that shows the full length of a dress as she knows that this is what I covet most in these cards…the opportunity to see the dresses, as they would have been worn at the time.  And if I can get ideas for my dresses, well all the better.

I'm guessing, by the dress, that it is an 1880's picture.

I’m guessing, by the dress, that it is an 1880’s picture.

It looks like the pattern I used for my Travel outfit. I did the two tone bodice like hers.527235And my Half Grand Surprise dress.293287I had pleats on the bottom too.  Only mine were sewn onto the bottom and hers looks like they are on an under skirt.

I wish I was as skinny as she was!  And she didn’t battle the girls either!

Selkirk vs Winnipeg

I live in the city of Winnipeg and Shirley lives in Selkirk.  Winnipeg is the capital of Manitoba and is MUCH bigger than Selkirk.  But, it could have been much different if it weren’t for some enterprising business men and politicians.

You see, the Winnipeg area is known to flood on a fairly regular basis so engineers looking to build a railway bridge across the Red River thought Selkirk would be a better spot.  When Winnipeg was under water, Selkirk was high and dry.  Also, Winnipeg had a second river, the Assiniboine, that was advantageous when furs and goods were being transported by canoe, but was another hurdle (bridge) to get over with a train.

There was much humming and hawing and debating over the matter.  The condensed version of the story is that some Winnipeg business men donated $300,000 (which was no small potatoes in the late 1870s) to build the bridge if the rail would come through Winnipeg.  This would save the Canadian  government some money.  Also, a representative from the Hudson’s Bay Company came to say that the Red River was behaving well the last few years so it would be safe to build a rail there.  HBC owned 1,750 acres of land in the city so its advice was likely not too generous of spirit.  (There has been major flooding in the years 1826, 1897, 1950, 1997, 2009 and 2011 and several significant episodes in between.  Because of the flooding, a flood protection project was started in 1962 to protect the city.)

The government seems to have felt that not having to pay for the bridge over the river out weighed paying for a bridge in a safer location.  Meanwhile, the planned railway route, which would have come through Selkirk was changed.  The CPR was convinced to run the line further south as there was more virgin acres to be had that could be sold to potential settlers.  The folks in Selkirk were told that the rail would still go through their town if they came up with $125,000 for a bridge.  If they could not, they would straighten out the route and by-pass Selkirk.  They could not come up with the money.

Seems appropriate that some 140 years later, a Winnipeg girl and a Selkirk girl, rode on a train together in Victorian garb.  Almost, poetic.SAM_1770