HSF 2017: challenge 1 First and Last

Well, this is a tad late!  Three and a half weeks late!  But as you know, December and January was totally messed up for me with stress at work, two car accidents (neither my fault), dealing with the devil (ie insurance company) and car shopping. My project for this month is a total cheat so, baring any disasters, should be done on time.
The Challenge: First and Last. This is a Victorian Chemise and this would be the first thing someone would put on.

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Material: cotton (possibly a blend…it has been in my stash for ages, I don’t remember its content.)

Pattern: Laughing Moons Victorian undies.

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Year: The package is listed as Victorian so I will go with 1836-1901.

Notions: lace (my stash only had poly stuff and this is a stash busting year) 2 buttons.

How historically accurate is it? So-so. The definite and possible synthetic fibers are bad. The pattern is okay I believe. I machine sewed which would be bad if the goal was for the earlier end of the Victorian era. As far as the persona I costume for (upper middle class older lady who is a bit on the conservative side) the style and amount of trim would be appropriate. So I give it a grade of 60%

Hours to complete: 10 which is more than it should. I just couldn’t do the mental aerobics required to attach the yoke so that the hand stitching that covers the seam was on the inside. I had to do it 3 times! I’ve made this pattern before! So annoyed with myself!

First worn: not yet

Total cost: Nothing. I used a pattern I had used before and I used material left over from a petticoat that I way over estimated the fabric needs. The lace and buttons were also stash, either given to me or salvaged from other sources.

Side projects=dreams

I need side projects because I have so much time and I brilliantly sail through major projects with no issues and my mood is always set on “high productivity”.  Yeah, right.  If I really believed that, this past weekend would have destroyed my illusions.

I have a new job so I have no vacation time.  This means the past couple of weeks of long weekends is the closest I have come to having time off since August.  So oodles of time is not something I have.

I tried, yesterday, to finish my leather gloves for the final challenge in HSF 2016 but it resisted all efforts to progress. In fact, I may have buggered it up enough that it may have to be wadded up and tossed.  Definitely hitting the UFO pile and for the first time since I started HSF, I will not have an entry into the challenges.  Lets scratch brilliantly sails through major projects with no issues.

This goes back to what I said in my last post about not touching a project when the mood is off.  I’m having some car drama…long story.  Which means I’m swinging between fury and depression with 30 second bursts of optimism.  It was that 30 seconds that urged me to face the gloves and attempt to finish them.  MISTAKE!giphy

So someone tell me why I started a Pintrest board for housewife/sewing kits with dreams to make “historical” ones as an accessory and modern ones for my knitting needles, crochet hooks and all the junk I store next to my “spot” on the living room couch?  My only theory is: when the creative juju evades you, you can at least, dream and what is Pintrest but a record of peoples dreams.

Another year bites the dust.

If I don’t look globally and only focus on my own front door, 2016 has been pretty good.  DECEMBER 2016 can bite me, but 2016 as a whole has been fine for me and mine. I hope 2017 is a good one as well.  And to my 4 readers, you know I wish you well too.

Blogger traditions says I must do a completed projects run down.

First on the list is that dumb cloak that never did hang right and I never had occasion to wear (thank God).IMG_20160110_183519126

Then there was several knitting projects, most have not yet been used.  I just don’t costume in the winter much.  Going outside sucks.

Then came all the parts for the Spanish Senora dress-blouse, skirt, jacket, belt and hat.5c

The lace cap is the part of the Spanish dress I am most pleased with.IMG_20160625_123514487

More knitting…a tulma that I did actually wear.img_20161022_130710981_hdr.jpg

And more modern knitting.

Then I fixed my garage sale find loom…still haven’t used it.img_20160611_162710381.jpg

I made some steam punk earrings.  Which were worn once for the steam punk tea at Coco and never again.  img_20160619_163512.jpg

And I made some wings for the Coco gala.172

I made the Ugly Bag of Tea Gown less hideous…again for Coco.187

Atessa was the dress I was most pleased with this year.img_20161031_205643558.jpg

My first attempt at leather gloves.img_20161010_204650046

My second attempt was meant to be completed on time for the final HSF challenge of the year and as my final completed project of the year…but as I said earlier, December 2016 can bite me.  I’m too grumpy to be bothered and we all know what happens when we push through when the mood is off.

There was some more knitting.  Not shown is neck warmer for my son…turns out I made it too big and I’m now making a smaller one.img_20161113_173000892.jpg

And finally a pretty nice bag.img_20161127_213658667.jpg

Knitting was a real theme this year.  I should probably reduce that for next year or actually get out of the house in costume during the winter.  Or stick to modern stuff…but how much does one actually need…even in winter.

 

Sewing/knitting plans for HSF 2017

The new list of challenges for HSF has come out on the Facebook page.  Generally, I attempt to match up my own plans and ideas with the challenges rather than trying to come up with something to match the challenge.  That, perhaps, defeats the goals of the Dreamstress and her Facebook moderators but it keeps me from creating something I will never ever use.  The role of the challenges in my life is not give me ideas for things to create but to keep me moving forward and FINISHING things.  My life is full of UFO’s that sit idle because I got really excited about starting a project so I abandon a project that I started to get bored with. You should see the bags of unfinished projects behind my couch and in the storage cupboards in my laundry room.  Pitiful!

So here are my plans:

January: Firsts & Lasts – Create either the first item in a new ensemble, or one last piece to put the final fillip on an outfit. Edwardian Chemise because I want one Edwardian outfit.  If there is time, a Victorian Chemise (because I only have one and it is good to have a wear and a spare) 

February: Re-Make, Re-Use, Re-Fashion – Sew something that pays homage to the historical idea of re-using, re-making and re-fashioning. Turn one thing into another. Re-fit or re-fashion an old gown into something you would wear again. Re-trim a hat for a new outfit, or re-shape a modern hat to be a historical hat. Re-purpose the fabric from an old garment (your own or a commercial one) into a new garment. Attach black needle tat trim to Half Grand Surprise dress   In a past challenge, I made some lace with needle tatting. (Great pastime and I want to make more…time, time, time, I need more time.)  I had planned on adding it to my red and black 1880’s dress.  This will be a fast project which will give me time to work ahead on future projects.

March: The Great Outdoors – Get out into the weather and dirt with an item for outdoor pursuits. Arm warmers I have seen knit patterns for something like these…5b60a444dd9211ac82061bdc1ae5ec2d

I don’t think I will make these…I’ve seem something more fitted but I can’t find the pattern just now.

April: Circles, Squares & Rectangles – Many historical garments, and the costumes of many people around the world, use basic geometric shapes as their basis. In this challenge make a garment made entirely of squares, rectangles and circles  Canadian cloud.  I have been working on this puppy for months.  It is slow going and a tad boring so this could take awhile.  Having a goal of “April” seems reasonable.

May: Literature – The written word has commemorated and immortalized fashions for centuries, from the ‘gleaming’ clothes that Trojans wore before the war, to Desdemona’s handkerchief, ‘spotted with strawberries’, to Meg in Belle Moffat’s borrowed ballgown, and Anne’s longed for puffed sleeves. In this challenge make something inspired by literature: whether you recreate a garment or accessory mentioned in a book, poem or play, or dress your favorite historical literary character as you imagine them. Gambeson. My younger boy used to be into knights and I once made a chainmail coif for him.

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It seems the interest died shortly thereafter.  But, I might enjoy going as a knight to the Medieval Fair that happens every two years. So I will make a Gambeson that could fit either one of us.

June: Metallics – make something in silver, gold, bronze, and copper, whether it be an actual metal, cloth of gold or silver, or lamé.  Corset 1850 The busk will be in metal.  Total cheat.  Perhaps I will find a fashion fabric that will meet the criteria but I doubt that would be very authentic!

July: Fashion Plate – Make an outfit inspired by a fashion plate, whether it is a direct replica, or a more toned down version that fits the resources and lifestyle of the character you are portraying. If you want to stick to a period prior to the 17th century advent of fashion plates, either re-interpret a Victorian ‘historical’ fashion illustration as period accurate, or use an image from your period that depicts and idealized and aspirational fashion. Pink/grey/black/cream 1898 flared skirt and ball gown bodice for pineapple shawl I haven’t found the fashion plate for this idea but I will.  I have this shawl I made years ago that I have never worn and I need to create a dress I would wear it with.  This is a big dream project so it may not (i.e. probably wont) come to pass.  Dream big. The back up plan is some sort of accessory that could go with the Edwardian dress.  A fan?

August: Ridiculous – Fashion is sometimes a little silly, and historical fashions can look particularly odd. Make something that was considered outrageous in its own time, or is just utterly ridiculous to modern eyes.  Edwardian hat. As I mentioned, I want one Edwardian outfit and there is nothing so “out there” to our modern eyes as an Edwardian hat!  I wouldn’t mind a Bloomer Dress but that just isn’t in the plans for this year!

September: Seen Onscreen – Be inspired by period fashions as shown onscreen (film or TV), and recreate your favorite historical costume as a historically accurate period piece. Bloomers and corset covers in Victorian and Edwardian styles.   The Edwardian ones are needed for my Edwardian dress and the Victorian ones would be done if there is time.  I have some already-I just want my “wear and a spare”.  The “onscreen” part of the challenge will be easy…just about every period movie has an undies scene…”show the audience what they wear under all that.”

October: Out of Your Comfort Zone – Create a garment from a time period you haven’t done before, or that uses a new skill or technique that you’ve never tried before. Corset Edwardian. This goes without saying.  Corsets are a mental hurdle for me.  I’ve done one that stretched badly in one wear so I only use it when I wear my bathing suit or my tea gown.  Looser corsets were considered acceptable for active or lounge wear.  I will tackle a Victorian one earlier in the year.  Hopefully, it will go well and I will gung ho to try an Edwardian one.  The challenge will be the different aesthetic lines from my usual Victorian era.

November: HSF Inspiration – One of the best things about the HSF is seeing what everyone else creates, and using it to spark your own creativity. Be inspired by something that has been made for the HSF over the years to make your own fabulous item. Edwardian Coco suit. The suit will be called the Coco suit because I bought that fabric while at Coco.  My Inspiration is the many bloggers and costumers I see on line and at Coco.

December: Go Wild – You can interpret this challenge as an excuse to make something that incorporates animal print, or wild animals in some way, or to simply make something wild and over the top. Knit petticoat. A knitted petticoat is different!  I have yet to see any one make one of these!e4890f80a30fb38258693b97224dbf71.jpg

On top of these challenges, my goal is to get some of those modern UFO’s done and perhaps think about getting some small gifts made in time for Christmas.  I also have some ideas for the craft sale my girlfriend has a table in and some ideas of modern clothes for myself.

 

 

HSF 2016: Challenge #11 Red

Challenge #11: Red (the flowers and the lining are a rusty red.)
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What the item is: purse
Fabric/Materials: polyester fashion fabric, cotton lining.
Pattern: self drafted
Year: I will use it for late Victorian or early Edwardian era costumes
Notions: Vintage, possibly Edwardian purse frame.

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I can see I need to trim some threads. 


How historically accurate is it? The fashion fabric is not because of the fiber content. I can’t speak to the weave or pattern-I lack the expertise in those areas. It looks plausible to my amateur eye and suits my needs. The lining would be less “risky”. I wish I had a date for the frame but since I don’t, I will give this 50%.img_20161127_213658667.jpg
Hours to complete: 5
First worn: not yet…haven’t made the dress yet!
Total cost: $15 for the frame. I used about $2 worth of fabric.

HSF: Challenge 10 heroes

Challenge #10: Heroes

What the item is: Ladies knitted hoodimg_20161111_165153158_hdr.jpg

Who your hero is and how the costume applies to them: This wasn’t my original plan but that will never be finished in 2016 so I came up with this. My hero is my Grandmother. She taught me to knit and it is she who gave me the love of “creating” and the interest in the past. Also she was the most loving person I know. A walking hug. This is an homage to her because it is a historic knit and it is cozy like she was.

Fabric/Materials: Chunky weight wool. Mixed fiber. Used about a half ball.

Pattern: victorian-8

See previous post for my tutorial.
Year: likely mid to late 1890’s

Notions: 6mm knitting needles (10 US 4 UK). Ribbonimg_20161111_165220833_hdr.jpg

How historically accurate is it? Both the ribbon and the wool is a synthetic blend. The wool is also chunky weight and I’m not sure that was a standard size in Victorian times. The pattern and technique are good. I believe it would have been worn by all classes of women but upper classes would have only worn it in the evenings. Farm woman would have worn them all of the time…any cold day where the big fancy hats were not worn. I give it about 65%.img_20161111_165205258_hdr.jpg

Hours to complete: About 10

First worn: n/a

Total cost: The wool cost $6. I had a coupon and I only used half so about $2

 

HSM 2016: Challenge #9 Historicism

A few weeks late but here goes.  My inspiration was gloves like these:

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This pair can be seen on the Met web site.

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Also from the Met.

They could depict an historical event or character or styles and were seen during the early 1800’s.

And these are my interpretations.img_20161011_071005101

I haven’t decided if I want to scallop the bottoms or leave them as is.  It would be shallow scallops with my pinking shears if I do it.  What do you think?

What the item is: gloves

The Challenge: 9 Historicism

Fabric/Materials: Leather

Pattern: self drafted

Year: early 1800’s

Notions: needle and thread for leather, stamp and stamp pad

How historically accurate is it? The pattern should be good.  The shape and pieces are similar to my original example.  I had to self draft because I can’t find ready made patterns that fit my short, broad fingers.  The span across my palm is problematic as well.  I can’t wear bangles because I can’t get them over my thumb joint.

I used leather and that is spot on.  I can’t say if the curing process is the same.  I have no idea. The color of the leather and of the ink is good…I’ve seen examples of both. The ship stamp is plausible but the ink is likely wrong.  The gloves were hand sewn which is correct.  (I had tiny stitches but I sure need to work on evenness!) The thread is polyester so that is not correct.  I will wear them as out door/day time gloves and my “persona” is more well to do and that is appropriate.  I’m also older so even though my costumes are typically Victorian, it might not be so odd that I’d favor some items from my Regency youth.  I’m also Canadian so some of my fashions may be a bit out of style compared to France. So I give them about 90%

Hours to complete: about 20

First worn: not yet

Total cost: Leather $4, stamp and ink $6, needles and thread $15.  In reality it was $4 because all of the other stuff is either reusable or there is a huge amount of left overs that will be added to the stash.

I have black leather that I intend to make gloves out of as well so these were a fabulous trial run.  I have already altered my pattern to shorten the middle finger and make the fingers a bit more snug. I’m okay with these being a bit loose for now. Honestly, I can’t get modern leather gloves on (see above) so it is a bit of a treat to have them be too loose.  At a later time, I may resort to shrinking them (dunk them in warm water and wear them till they dry).

Do let me know if you think I should scallop the bottom.  I have a hard time with finding the line between enough detail and crazy lady so I usually end up with blah.