Completed project: sortie 1858

I can’t compute – still no computer, but I can still knit. I have just finished a sortie, which is a winter bonnet. The Godley’s pattern is on the bottom of this phone screen shot. There is a full copy with plain modern instructions here: http://www.koshka-the-cat.com/sortie.html

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I think my wool is too thick because mine seems bulkier than what I have seen other costumers make but, my winters are colder so I’m leaving it as is.

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It is made from scraps from mitts I have made so now I have a set.
I thank you again for bearing with me and my technical issues.

Dickens’ day 1

We had a good start to our road trip!

We stopped in a small town for lunch and they had these two little buildings made from glass bottles.

We stopped in a small town for lunch and they had these two little buildings made from glass bottles.

The little church was very pretty.

The little church was very pretty.

I am really pleased with how well my phone takes pictures!

Nice little windows in the church.

Nice little windows in the church.

I guess the people who made this we Bob and Dora.

I guess the people who made this we Bob and Dora.

I don't know if this is a world wide thing but lots of small towns have these random "attractions".

I don’t know if this is a world-wide thing but lots of small towns have these random “attractions”.

We're here!

We’re here!

Now to find places for all our crap so we can walk!

Now to find places for all our crap so we can walk!

Shirley even thought of a Christmas tree!

Shirley even thought of a Christmas tree!

Shirley found the very evil Mr. Scrooge!

Shirley found the very evil Mr. Scrooge!

There was a very cute little parade.  It was so small, they went around the block twice.  I loved it!

There was a very cute little parade. It was so small, they went around the block twice. I loved it!

This is what Shirley and I wore the first night.

This is what Shirley and I wore the first night. Shirley was in an early 1860’s style and mine was early 50’s.

Father Christmas!  We've been good ladies....

Father Christmas! We’ve been good ladies….

Or have we.  Our flasks didn't contain just water!

Or have we. Our flasks didn’t contain just water!

I joke about our booze in our flasks but we really were good girls. Neither of us consumed more than an ounce of Bailey’s or Brandy and we were in our jammies by 9:00.

Me in my Ugly Bag of Tea Gown reading how to be a Victorian.

Me in my Ugly Bag of Tea Gown reading how to be a Victorian.  I highly recommend this book by the way.  It doesn’t seem to have the usual misinformation (aka. crap) that other sources have.

More tomorrow.

 

Photo bomb

I will be photo bombing you today…not in the modern sense of the word (sneaking into other people’s photograph) but more in the manner of flooding you with several photos.  While at my volunteer job this week I saw several photos that are owned by the museum (see my last post) and I took pictures of several of them.  Since I don’t own these, I wont be sharing them one by one like I do with my own collection.  I will attempt to date them where possible.

The photo on the left is from the 80's and is of a girl around 14-16 years.  The one on the right is the same girl in her 30's in the late 1890's to early 1900's

The photo on the left is from the 80’s and is of a girl around 14-16 years. The one on the right is the same girl in her 30’s in the late 1890’s to early 1900’s

A little laddie and his dog.    So cute in his little kilt!

A little laddie and his dog. So cute in his little kilt!

1870's I'd guess.

1870’s I’d guess. Love her hair!

1860's

1860’s dress with fabulous ruffles.  I like ruffles…except they are a ton of work!

This was dated 1890

This was dated 1890-bit of a May/December relationship here.

1860's I think

1860’s I think-look at those sleeves!

This was my favorite!  Look at the embrodery on those pagoda sleeves!

This was my favorite! Look at the embroidery on those pagoda sleeves!

I think 1860's

I think 1860’s.  I’m not to sure about that boob accent!  Makes me think of the multi boobed hooker in Total Recall for some reason.

I took this photo because I didn't like the the dress.  My photo didn't turn out well because the sheer shirtwaist waist is more apparent in the original.  I really didn't like seeing the dark underneth.  It was like she through a shirtwaist over a bodice ball gown.

I took this photo because I didn’t like the dress. My photo didn’t turn out well because the sheer shirtwaist waist is more apparent in the original. I really didn’t like seeing the dark underneath. It was like she threw a shirtwaist over a bodice ball gown.

1860's I believe.

1860’s I believe.

A commemerative copy of the engagement photo of the Prince and Princess of Wales Edward and Alexandria.  The trim on her skirt is to die for!

A commemorative copy of the engagement photo of the Prince and Princess of Wales Edward and Alexandria. The trim on her skirt is to die for!  The original is not so blurry.

I would guess this is a 1860's-70's dress.  The photo really picked up the glossy shine of the silk.

I would guess this is a 1860’s-70’s dress. The photo really picked up the glossy shine of the silk.

Hope you enjoyed.

Inspecting the costumes of the tour guides

This year, while at the Fort, Shirley and I spent a lot of our time inspecting the outfits worn by the staff.  The focus was, of course, stealing ideas for ourselves!

We were given a ride on a sheltered golf cart to the "Big House"

This girl was dressed as the wife of one of the men living in the big house.  I forgot what she said his job was. It was a cooler day so she was dressed in a heavier fabric (wool likely).  My dress was  designed in a late 50’s style and hers was late 40’s early 50’s.  (Looks like this pattern) The fort was built early 50’s but was extremely “backwoods” so the ladies would not be in on the latest fashions.

On her head, the girl was wearing a woolen cap that I think I can copy…I really need to get some caps made for these earlier years.  Many ladies would wear them under their bonnets-especially older ladies such as myself!

It is basically 3 pieces knit on larger needles and the color bits knit in a wave on smaller needles. I’d do this but not in Christmas colors.

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The back is just a basic hat.

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I can do this.

And here is a couple of lace ones.

SAM_2094SAM_2126And I must have this cape.  How cute is this!  I wonder if I can figure it out without a pattern?SAM_2091

Here is the back view.

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Of course it is lined.

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Then there is this red one…Little Red Riding Hood…

SAM_2100SAM_2101I think I have some red wool that was given to me that might be big enough.

Being connected to the Hudson Bay Company the Fort had many samples of cloaks made from their blankets.  I should make one of these, as a Manitoban…SAM_2123

I haven’t been too interested in working class clothes but I think I might be interested in it one day.SAM_2117

Several of the ladies were wearing sontags.  Not a one of them knew that that was its name. They called it a criss-cross shawl.  I can’t blame them for that.  They are all students (most weren’t even history students) that got summer jobs from the government.  (I want their jobs….)  They are given basic info that they memorize…and then pray they don’t run into someone who thinks they know more than they do (insert winky face here.)

 

 

Neither rain nor snow…

Shirley and I were a pair of brave troopers and headed out to our Victoria Day event in spite of the near torrential rain. Here are some of my favorite photos.

We were given a ride on a sheltered golf cart to the "Big House"

We were given a ride on a sheltered golf cart to the “Big House”

Unlike last year, we spent quite a bit of time in the basement checking out the kitchens.

Unlike last year, we spent quite a bit of time in the basement checking out the kitchens.

We did a few lady like "at work" poses.

We did a few lady like “at work” poses.

Then we got a bit silly.  Shirley wanted to flaunt her lovely Victorian shape.

Then we got a bit silly. Shirley wanted to flaunt her lovely Victorian shape.

And I wanted to show of my thrift store find of "sensible shoes".

And I wanted to show of my thrift store find of “sensible shoes”.

We then decided to brave the rain (which had slowed down) for some outdoor shots.

We then decided to brave the rain (which had slowed down) for some outdoor shots.

We walked out of the the Fort walls to some of the outer building.

We walked out of the Fort walls to some of the outer building.

The river gave us some interesting, if gloomy, back grounds.

The river gave us some interesting, if gloomy, back grounds.  As you can tell by my expression, I’m feeling bedraggled because of the rain and because my skirt was too long and I kept stepping on it and dragging it through the dirt!

Shirley is managing to look dainty and fine!

Shirley is managing to look dainty and fine!

Ah!  Dry land!

Ah! Dry land!

I wanted a photo like this...I liked last years so much.

I wanted a photo like this…I liked last years so much.

I made Shirley do the same pose.  Once the photo was done Shirley looked at me and found that I had put my hat back on...backwards!  I wish I could say I planned it that way!

I made Shirley do the same pose. Once the photo was done Shirley looked at me and found that I had put my hat back on…backwards! I wish I could say I planned it that way!

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!

 

Pardon me ma’am your hoops are showing

One of the things that costumers like to achieve is a smooth skirt which is achieved with enough petticoats over the hoops.  The hundred dollar question is “was the lumpy look truly inauthentic?”

Today, a woman may go for a popular look but not quite pull it off.  It doesn’t fit right. She can only afford a poorly made knock off.  It doesn’t suit her age/build/style/coloring….  I’d like to argue that this happened 150 years ago as well.

This carte de visite shows a woman (likely from the 1850-60’s) whose hoops are plainly visible under the skirt. It can sometimes be said that nearby furniture pushed the skirt over, causing the hoops to appear but I don’t believe this is the case in this photo.  I think this is a case of not enough petticoats to hide them.

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So, if you ever look back at your costume photos and see hoops, don’t think yourself (or any other costume enthusiast) inauthentic.  Victorians weren’t all perfect Victorians so how can we expect ourselves to be?

Reprint!

Today’s cabinet card is definitely a reprint!

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The style of hair is 1850s so I’m guessing that the original was taken then.  The lower seam on the shoulder helps to back up my theory.  It was reprinted, possibly in an effort to save the picture before the original completely faded away.

This card is useful to show the hair style which is not a flattering style if you do not have a dainty doll-like face.  The swoops of hair draw the eye to the center of her face which is not this lady’s best feature.

This style does nothing for me either!

Dawn 21 - Copy It makes the top of my head look narrower (as it does to the lady above) and the middle of my face look wider.  Not a look I’m going for.  When you add the very high neck line that frames my double chin you have a recipe for “Doomed to Remain Unmarried Ugly” or if you prefer “Guaranteed to be Cheated on Homely”.  The only thing that saved my look was wearing my bonnet with the tie under my chin.  It acted like a corset for my extra chin.

I wonder how many women fell into the trap of wearing a style that makes them look homely because it was in style.