gwendolyngrey: (edwardian calm... and tea)

I posted about my new 1912 evening gown and the amazing Titanic dinner I wore it to on my blog.  The pictures of my gown were taken by Nicole, as my little point-and-click camera was so inferior to the many SLR beauties at the event that I didn't even take it out.  I'm eagerly waiting to see all the photos the other guests took!
gwendolyngrey: (thread)
It's felt like an eternity since I was last able to say this regarding any new sewing project, but I finished my new Civil War day dress!

*cue confetti*

I'll definitely add more trim before I wear it next, but it feels SO good to have something new!  I wore it this past weekend at the Mariner's Museum for their 150th anniversary event of the Battle of Hampton Roads (the fight between the Moniter and the Merrimac).  Obviously, I had very little to do with the naval history side of things, but myself and a few other ladies had a display of various sewing and needlework and fashions which we talked about and gave demonstrations of.  It was a long weekend and very exhausting, but quite fun.  It's always so refreshing to be able to do Civil War events every now and then...

But more importantly; the dress! 

It's made of silk taffeta, which languished in my stash for a long time on the grounds that I already had too many blue costumes... but considering I don't wear them all at once, that reason fell apart under the weight of a non-existant budget.  The bodice lining and hem facing are brown polished cotton, and the trim is velvet ribbon.  Hopefully next time this dress appears in public there will be a great deal MORE ribbon on it.

I also finally got pictures of the sontag I crocheted over a year ago.  This weekend was very chilly, and I was able to put it to good use.

And then the wind picked up, and I flew.

gwendolyngrey: (becoming jane w/ text)
As always, I'm a little late posting about it (and am cross-posting from the blog), but Jenny-Rose's Regency gaming night was rather wonderful!  It was particularly nice to finally meet [ profile] padawansguide, with whom I've been LJ-friends for ages.

Although tables were set up for several different games I ended up only playing Speculation, and game which relies heavily on bidding and gambling for any true entertainment... something all of us who played it seemed far too lazy to engage in!

The company was delightful, the rooms prettily decorated, and good times were had by all!

Before the gaming commenced, we all milled around the back-yard taking pictures of each other.  I didn't get any of myself with my camera, but plenty of others did, and I have happily stolen the ones that I like best.

Courtesy of Gloria... I think...

I wore my old(ish) 1820 silk evening gown, though with new jewelry and a plume in my hair.

Courtesy of Nicole

Courtesy of Maggie

A selection of my pictures of the evening's company-

After the card playing had died down for the evening we just sat around chatting and snacking and drinking Good Things.  At one point, I pulled out my trusty drawing box, and did a quick sketch of Taylor as she sat across the table from me, lit by candlelight only.

gwendolyngrey: (marie antionette meadow)
So tired right now, but my gown was finished in time (minus cuffs/sleeve trim) and so far I've had a wonderful time at UTR. 

The stripe in the fabric is quite small, so from a distance it sort of visually blurs into a light grey-ish color, but it's really a white and lavender/grey stripe with tiny black pinstripes in between.  I'll most likely do a more in-depth post about it on my blog later, but right now it's time for dinner and then later it's back out again for libations at Chowning's Tavern.

gwendolyngrey: (militaryish)
I got back from my Michigan trip exactly a week ago, and while I'm REALLY glad I took it and loved seeing my family and friends it knocked my entire daily/weekly routine sideways and upsidedown.  My sense of priorities and time is a jumbled mess even one week later.

I did have a good time at the Greenfield Village Civil War event though!  The weather was cool enough on Saturday that I could wear my wool asymmetrical dress without suffering, and I wore it in both fashion shows that day.  Had tea with my Mom, hung out with Mike ([ profile] dandytailor ), Samantha ([ profile] reine_de_coudre ), and Katie [ profile] rvqavalon ), and had dinner at the 1850's based Eagle Tavern.

In spite of carrying my camera around in my pocket both days, these are the only pictures I took the whole weekend... I suppose once you've participated in the same event for several years with the same people (and have no new clothes), pictures become a slightly lower priority.

Sunday passed with very little surprises.  I did the fashion show again (this time in my silk windowpane dress), watched Mike cook the duck dinner, sketched, wandered, and went to the ball.  The ball was lots of fun, and I had the widest range of dance partners I think I've ever experienced at one event.  I had the requisite old man ask me to dance but also two teenagers, one of whom could not have been a day over sixteen, and a few others of various ages neatly filled in the spectrum. Of course the high point was when Mike proposed to Samantha about half-way through the ball... it's rather hard for any other occurrence to top a happy, romantic engagement.  :)

I blogged a bit about Greenfield, mostly focusing on the drawings that I did.  I adored having my little wooden drawing box along with me, and reaffirmed my love of charcoal over graphite.

Monday and Tuesday I spent back in Grand Rapids, hanging out with my best friend from college and my sister.  I also got my hair cut and dyed, which I'd been desperately wanting to do for a couple months now.

Un-styled with no product, it looks sort of like this:

Yes, it will be harder to style my hair for UTR, but that's what caps were invented for... right?  Besides, I think I love having short hair.  Every time I go in for a cut or trim I want it shorter than the last time, and this is my favorite cut yet. 

Under the Redcoat is coming up surprisingly quickly though, and my new gown is unfortunately not going to make itself.  Hélas.
gwendolyngrey: (Anne- happy)
It doesn't really feel like Thanksgiving or the end of November.  Partly because of the weather (the trees are still bright yellow and red and it's been nearly 70 the past few days!) and partly because I've never been away from my family for the holidays before.  One of the ladies from my Tuesday night sewing circle has invited me to her house for dinner today, so I at least won't be alone on Thanksgiving, but it's really not the same thing.

Also, it's been my habit to put up my Christmas decorations on Thanksgiving evening or the day after, and I feel really strange thinking of decorating for Christmas when it's still so fall-like outside.  There hasn't even been a proper frost yet!  I suppose I'll just have to get used to living in the South and adapt... and after all, it's not as though I'm in Florida like my brother where it's still next door to summer.

Last week was crazy busy as I quickly made my wool dress for Gettysburg in between friends' visits and several dates (though there's nothing exciting to report on that front).  As usual, I was up incredibly late the last two nights before the event getting it done, and the final stitches were put in at the hotel room the morning of the event!  Of course, now that I've actually worn it I want to make changes so I hesitate to call it done, but it's a complete dress so it's technically on the finished project list.

Even though the wool is a light, tropical weight, it ended up being super bulky when box-pleated into the waistband which threw off the fit of the bodice.  The bulk of the waistband causes there to be a gap between my body and the dress right above the waist and the bodice doesn't quite close at the front point.  I'm thinking of taking the skirt off the waistband and re-doing it with cartridge pleats instead and will probably add a couple bones to the bodice as well before the next major event.


I'm really happy with how the trim on the sleeves turned out though!  I used a narrow, velvet ribbon which I applied before the sleeves were completely constructed.  I used one of the discontinued Martha McCain patterns from Simplicity to get the shape of the pleated sleeve, which ended up being much easier to make than I had anticipated.

We match!  Sort of.  :)


And a couple more dress photos:



Katie and I both got quite a few compliments over the course of the day, which was naturally very pleasant, and in spite of fitting issues I'm really pleased with the dress in general and had a lot of fun wearing it.  I think it'll probably see quite a bit of use in the future.
gwendolyngrey: (1825)
The Siege at Old Ft. Erie was, like last year, a very good event, and unlike last year everyone had a good time and I did not get sick!  Like all 1812 reenactments, the clothes were a wide range of good and very, very bad, with an astonishing lack of foundation garments on many ladies and a fair amount of 'frontier-ish' impressions.  I got to meet several new people with whom I would love to become better acquainted, including [ profile] renna_darling.  It was her first time at Ft. Erie, and I hope to run into her at future events! 

Katie/[ profile] rvqavalon, Mike/[ profile] dandytailor, Tyler/[ profile] superiorcap and myself camped with our group, the 1st Reg. of Volunteers.  The guys spent most of their time drilling and being in battles, but Katie and I mostly sat on blankets in the shade with other ladies and talked the day away.

Gazing over the landscape a la Lizzie Bennet:

I finished my new dress and chemisette in the car on the way there (naturally), and am really happy with how they turned out.  I love the chemisette to bits, and don't think I can ever go back to a plain fichu for this period.  It's roughly based on the 1800-1825 chemisette in Janet Arnold, but I have a double ruffle at the neck instead of the triple mushroom pleated frills of the original.

Also, we have decided that the fabric of my dress is actually a dark violet and not a brown.  It's a tricky, shifty color that sometimes look brown or purple or blue... I suppose it's up to the viewer to decide what to call it, but I think I'm settling on violet.  Speaking of the fabric, I was talking to one of the ladies I met this weekend, who said that she has an original dress from this period which is made out of a fabric almost exactly like that of my dress!  She said the print of the original was perhaps a little smaller than mine, but that it was an uncanny resemblance.  Considering I purchased this fabric quite a few years ago (before I knew much of anything), I was really pleased to hear that it's "right".


I was utterly exhausted come Saturday night, and knew that if I took my stays off I'd never put them back on the next morning.  Accordingly, I slept that night in my clothes... dress, chemisette, and all!  Woke up Sunday morning with my hair a fright, bright pink sunburn across my nose and arms, but otherwise not too rumpled.

Mike wasn't in bad shape for being at the tail end of an entire week of camping/reenacting (he and Tyler had had their own extended adventure), but I am clearly not as well put together as the day before:

The boys looked pretty spiffy in their new y-front suspenders.  I think they're trying to start a new trend with these.

The rest of my pictures are on flickr here.
gwendolyngrey: (Dreaming)
Am home again from a long weekend at Greenfield Village and have spent the day in a sort of weary daze.

The event was great though!  [ profile] reine_de_coudre (Samantha) had came out from California to spend a week and a half here in Michigan, and camped with [ profile] dandytailor (Mike), [ profile] rvqavalon (Katie), and myself.  I'm too tired to go into depth right now, but in spite of very hot, humid weather we had loads of fun.  Did a lot of sitting in the shade, but also got to see and meet a lot of people, did a bunch of touristy Greenfield Village things (including riding the carousel twice), took part in the fashion show, and danced nearly every dance at the ball.

Due to the awful cold I had a week before the event, I barely got the windowpane dress done in time, and was in fact stitching the trim onto the neck during the drive there.  I didn't manage to sew the trim to the sleeves as well, but the dress was wearable and, I thought, rather cute anyway.

New dress!

Wore the windowpane dress on Sat, and the Not-Cold-Mountain dress on Sun.  The new apron came in very handy as I actually did a fair amount of the cooking.  The weather on Monday turned a bit nasty... hot and rainy with scorching sun and pouring rain by turns, and the hem of my dress (cotton Not-Cold-Mountain) got quite wet and muddy.

I was quite excited to find this picture of myself on flickr that someone must have taken at some point on Sunday.  I rarely like how my face looks in photos, but I feel as though this is what I see when I look in the mirror...

I'll let some of my favorite pics from the event speak for themselves... )I'll let some of my favorite pics from the event speak for themselves... )

There are a whole lot more of pictures on my flickr page here.

And yes, both of my 1860s day dresses are made of fabrics with white backgrounds and blue patterns.  It's clear where my tastes lie, but I think I'm going to have to change things up a bit for the next dress... although the steel blue wool dress I'm planning still falls into the same color family....
gwendolyngrey: (after the show)
The sun is shining, a warm breeze is wafting through the open windows, and the banks and corners of the yard are filled with violets.

The air smells of life and possibility, and in spite of a rejection letter from Carnegie Mellon (not at all a surprise considering the interview) the world seems a wonderful place.

I wish it could always be spring... I am told that I would eventually grow tired of it and it would become ordinary and boring, but I do not believe that.  Springtime could last forever and never lose its charm and loveliness.

I do, however, need to settle down and finish at least one project in the next few days.  At the moment I have far too many things going, and flit from one to the other depending on my mood.  While this is fairly good for maintaining my interest in everything, it is not very good for getting things done.

Right now I am concurrently working on:

- Tyler's ever-lasting present (not quite half done... omg)
- an early-spoon Mildred Augusta bonnet (the frame is all put together and needs covering next)
- silk windowpane 1860's dress (the skirt is hemmed and the pleats are pinned... haven't started the bodice yet)
- crocheted sontag (pattern from 1866 Peterson's magazine)

Also, a couple days ago I made a mask for a demo we (Katie, Mike and myself) did at the Regency Exhibition Ball this past weekend.  Katie ([ profile] rvqavalon) has a couple decent pictures of me wearing it at the ball, but I only just have this crappy web-cam shot.  Whatevs.

And a couple pictures from the ball for good measure... first one of [ profile] sorchekyrkeby, myself, [ profile] dandytailor[ profile] rvqavalon, and Julie (not on LJ).  Second picture is, well, either a classic or a running joke, take your pick!  ;)

And this weekend is scheduled as Underwear Weekend!  Katie and I both need decent/more 1860's undergarments, and as nothing is more tedious than making chemises and drawers, we are going to get together and make an event out of it.  Hopefully the glorious weather that is predicted for the weekend plus having each other to keep us on track will prove sufficient motivation. 
gwendolyngrey: (W&D Cynthia and Molly bright)
I made a fairly last-minute decision to attend the annual Mid-Winter Civil War ball in Lansing with [ profile] dandytailor  and [ profile] rvqavalon  this past Saturday, and it was probably the best decision I've made in a looong time.

I always enjoy a ball, but this one was just plain fun.  It was pretty long, with nearly five solid hours of dancing, there was a great mix of dances and the caller was really good.  It was also really nice to feel like we're starting to become a little familiar with the regular crowd there... and everyone seems more friendly than at the regency balls.  Not to mention, the Spanish Waltz is pretty much my favorite dance ever, and we had a particularly good one that night which was the last dance of the evening. 

This ball also marked the first time I wore contacts ever outside of the optician's office!  My dad had some medical funds stashed away that needed using before a certain date, so he offered to get me contacts.  I happily accepted this offer, and got myself to Lenscrafters.  I had a wretched time getting the contacts in though, and taking them out was ten times worse!  Fortunately, Katie showed me her very clever method of getting them in which does NOT involve poking yourself in the cornea.  And I no longer have to farb it up in my very modern eyewear.

I stole a couple pictures from Katie to post since my camera didn't make it out of my purse.

The galop was too quick for the camera, but this picture is fairly atmospheric and kinda pretty anyway. 

Call me narcissistic if you like, but I love how my dress looks in this picture.

And after the ball... yes, Katie frequently thinks I have lost my mind... ;)
gwendolyngrey: (Default)
It's been nearly a week now since I got back from Remembrance Day at Gettysburg, and it's high time I posted something.

First things first! The paletot was done in time... well, sort of. I didn't bother putting on the red velvet ribbon trimming that I had planned, although I'll probably add it on later. I got the paletot to this wearable state several days before the trip, but kind of enjoyed wearing it out and about too much to "finish" it entirely. It's made of brown wool obtained from [ profile] rvqavalon 's impressive stash, and lined with tan silk taffeta also from said stash. Mike and I joke frequently about "shopping" at Katie's house only because it's true. ;)

And a back view.

We arrived at Gettysburg on Friday evening, and as we drove into town we went over a hill and I suddenly saw the Lutheran Seminary silhouetted against the twilight sky. My heart nearly stopped as I thought "Gen. Buford was actually IN that cupola. Wow, it's just like Gettysburg... OMG, I'm IN GETTYSBURG!!!"

And it all kind of went up from there. The town of Gettysburg is such a wonderful mix of cool history and frightful kitsch that I fell in love with it immediately. Of course, it probably helped that the streets were nearly constantly filled with a steady stream of colorful figures which made for some prime people-watching. Touring the battlefield was amazing in a totally different way. On one hand, it was really educational to see it first hand, as simply reading about the battle and watching the film doesn't really give one a remote idea of what the actual scale and scope of events was. Nonetheless, it was impossible to forget that this was a battlefield, and that thousands upon thousands of people died on that very ground. It was rather sobering and awe-inspiring and something that I'm not likely to forget.

Anyway, Mike, Katie, and I all drove out together and met Tyler (who was coming from Delaware) there in Gettysburg. I was already acquainted with some of the guys in Tyler's unit, the 116th Pennsylvania, and it was great to get to see them again and chat a bit. Mike and Tyler went off with the unit on Saturday and did military-ish things and marched in the parade while Katie and I moseyed about town shopping and taking in the sights. The parade was rather impressive and rather noisy, and nearly every other group was followed by a drum corp or a drum and fife corp or brass band. Most of them were so close that you could hear the music from the next group coming before the first was out of earshot. Still, it wasn't too cacophonous, and it was fun to watch the troops march by. We didn't watch the whole parade though... after about half an hour spent watching row after row after row of the Union guys there didn't seem to be much point in sticking around to see the Confederates.

Saturday night we all got dressed up and went to a soiree at a private home in town. It was a lovely little place, all lit by candles and lamps, and the hor d'oeurves and champagne were delightful. Sadly, we didn't stay very long as Katie was rather tired, but it was quite fun nonetheless.

Once we got back to the hotel after the soiree Katie crashed out, but it was only about 10:30, and I did not want to stay cooped up in a generic little room. After half changing into 'normal' clothes, Mike, Tyler, and I went back out... popping into a tiny little bar called the Mineshaft for a few minutes before walking out of town. We sort of followed the fence along the road through the dark battlefield, most likely scaring the occasional moterist the few times that we dashing across the street and over the fence. It was a clear night, all the stars were incredibly bright, and in spite of the soggy ground it was rather magical. It seemed like such a shame to turn back and head for town and the hotel, but reality always manages to intrude sooner or later.

And then on Sunday we toured the battlefield and headed home. The end. Sadness.

I didn't take very many pictures over the weekend, but what I did take (plus one or two that aren't mine) are here on Flickr, and Katie has a pretty good write-up with a bunch of the photos that she took.
gwendolyngrey: (Lady of Fashion)
The past two days were wonderfully pleasant.

Saturday was the day of the Civil War Harvest Ball held in Lansing (in the same church as the regency balls).  True to form, my dress was re-trimmed (up-trimmed?  I added lace medallions and beads to the bodice and the ruffle and and zig-zags to the skirt.  It still needs a couple more ruffles and beads on the skirt) at the last minute, and I finished the headpiece about half an hour before walking out the door.

The ball itself was great!  I couldn't help but compare it to the regency balls I've attended in the past, and, while I enjoy English Country Dancing, I can't help but think that the mid-century dances were a whole lot more fun.  I went with Mike and Katie, and while Mike divided his time pretty evenly dancing with both of us (and a couple dances with other girls) I didn't experience such a lack of partners as I have at past events, and only sat out two or three dances.  The dancing was also of higher quality than at regency balls... with more experienced dancers and fewer children to clog up the dance floor. 

Perhaps the best part was at the end of the evening, when, after the last 'official' dance, the band struck up a polka.  Mike popped up, seemingly out of nowhere, grabbed my hand and whirled me onto the empty dance floor, where we basically led everyone else galloping and flying around the room.  Best polka I've had in ages, but I was completely out of breath at the end of it!


Mike, in his annoying habit, made his entire outfit (sans shirt) in the week before the ball.  I don't think I've ever met anyone who can churn out full outfits as quickly as Mike, and still have them look that good.  My only consolation is that he still has a lot to learn about making ladies clothing, but once he does, he'll be unstoppable.

The whole event was quite an ego boost as well.  Got more compliments on the dress than I could count, and had a great time chatting with Jackie of Past Reflections and Kimberly from The Dressmakers Shop, both of whom were really lovely (and very complimentary!).  We also received several flattering comments from the dance caller, Glen Morningstar, after the ball was over. 


After the ball, we went back to Mike's house, where Katie and I spent the night.  We all parted ways on Sunday, and I went back to Grand Rapids where I spent the afternoon with a couple good friends.  Had lunch at a wonderful vegetarian restaurant, and then listened to old records and played Scrabble and card games over tea and cookies all afternoon.  It was beautifully relaxing.

gwendolyngrey: (Dreaming)
I figure I should probably write something about the 1812 reenactment I was at last weekend, the Siege at Old Fort Erie, before life rattles on and I become distracted by something new and fresh.

I planned on taking things easy in terms of prep work, and had decided not to worry about making anything new for the event... except for a straw bonnet.  Oh god, that bonnet.  I blithely imagined it would take a day, perhaps two days tops, to stitch the straw once it had been pinned and formed.  Instead, I was at it during every spare moment of the week leading up to the event, and spent the majority of the six+ hour car ride  sewing like mad.  As it was, I finished the bonnet form in the car, and added the basic trimming Saturday morning sitting outside our tent while the guys were off doing drill and other militaristic things.

It ended up looking a little wonky though, as I had dampened the straw so as to sew it more easily, and it dried not-very-flatly overnight in the tent.  The trimming around the edge has wire in it though, which helped the bonnet retain some sort of decent shape.  Still, I think it turned out all right in the end, and after all the hours I put into it, I'm determined to enjoy this bonnet... at least until I make a couple more.  ;)


All that aside, I did have a very good weekend.  I've always had a soft spot for the 1812 period, probably a result of watching and reading too much Sharpe and Jane Austen during my impressionable teenage years, and it was somehow intensely satisfying to look around and see all the men in their dashing regimentals (most of them, anyway...) and the women in empire fashions.  We were with a very good group of people, the 1st Regiment of Volunteers, most of whom I'm very much looking forward to seeing again at future events. 

I'm too tired at the moment to go into much detail, so I'll just put up a couple pictures.
    See?  Doesn't the 1st Reg look fabulous?

The thing that seems the most strange about the weekend, when I stop and think about it, is that is was actually in a foreign country.   I'd driven through bits of Canada before, but had never spent any time there, and I couldn't help but be struck how very much like home it was.  It shouldn't have been a surprise, Michigan and Canada are near neighbors after all and share a lot of history, but as someone who's never traveled down south or out west, I imagine that many parts of the US would feel far more foreign to me than Canada does.

Now, however, I have to concentrate on THIS century, as I have a black denim jacket to finish for my brother before I can go on to anything else more fun.  There are lots and lots of plans though... mostly 18th century and regency... I need more fabric.  ;)

gwendolyngrey: (Anne- kindred spirits)
This past weekend was a kind of eclectic mix of reenact-y fun of different sorts plus some straight up non-historical good times.

I left home fairly late on Friday night and drove down to Mike's place where we both stayed up too late finishing our new Civil War outfits.

We were up early Saturday morning, and headed out to a timeline event at Ft. Meigs in Ohio where we met up with Tyler.  Since it was a timeline, we could wear whatever we wanted, and decided to go with the 18th century for the majority of the day.  Mike and Tyler hooked up with Daniel O'Connell from the King's 8th Reg and borrowed various pieces to complete their kits, although Tyler later on joined up with some other friends for an Australian WW2 impression. 

(In order: Tyler, me, Mike)

I wore my basic 18th cen ensemble, and finally got decent pictures of it. )

We met, and talked to, a lot of people at the fort.  It seemed we could hardly walk a couple of yards before someone else that Tyler knew came up and engaged us in conversation.  I quickly discovered that while hanging out with Mike and Tyler is great fun, spending time with a group of guys is very, very different from hanging out with a girlfriend or two.  The biggest difference was the style of shop talk.  All of Tyler's aquiantences are very knowledgeable, and care deeply about their specific time periods and crafts, and can wax poetic on the most mundane of topics.  The latest Big Thing within this particular group of people is the recent forming of an 1812 group, the 1st Regiment of Volunteers, which Mike, Tyler, and I are all planning on being involved with.  This resulted in what seemed like hours upon hours of talk about haversacks and cartridge boxes and buttons and coatees vs. jackets and hats and shakos and cockades etc. etc.

All of the uniform talk made me very grateful to finally get a chance to meet Ericka Osen, who I'd exchanged an email or two with, but had never spoken to before.  She was incredibly friendly and welcoming, and basicly offered to set me up with anything I might need at a reenactment with the 1st reg.  I felt fairly privilaged to spend time chatting and shopping with her, as she really, really knows her stuff having been head of clothing at Conner Prairie and Greenfield Village for quite a few years.

All the talking aside, we pretty much just mosey-ed about the fort all day. )

We ended the afternoon just relaxing with the WW2 guys, before heading back to Mike's home. 

Katie joined us there that evening, as did a couple girls which Mike had met at Greenfield village, and we tromped through the woods behind his house to the place where we had planned on camping.  It was incredibly soggy out from the torrential rain the night before, and it was a fairly unanimous decision to NOT camp and just have fun anyway.  We rounded out the evening with a swim in his neighbor's pool before the other girls left, and Katie, Mike, Tyler, and I crashed in the basement where we watched most of Zoolander before falling asleep.

Sunday the 21st was Mike's 21st birthday.

We went antiquing in the morning, and even though I hadn't planned on spending money, I found a really nice fashion plate from 1828, which was priced ridiculously low, that I had to buy.  I think Tyler got a print of a Remington painting, but the others came away empty-handed.

We got back to the house shortly before lunch, where we were joined by a couple others, and all got dressed in our finery for an afternoon of shooting flintlocks.

I wore my brand new Civil War day dress, which ended up not really resembling the dress from Cold Mountain at all.

True to form, it wasn't entirely finished (though I suppose I can cut myself a little slack this time as I had less than a week to make it in).  I didn't have time to make a collar and cuffs, which it desperately needs, and I'd like to add some more trim on the sleeves.

Katie ([ profile] rvqavalon ) already posted pictures from the day, and I have a bunch of photos from the afternoon (and more from Ft. Meigs) on my flickr page as well.

We shot for an hour or two, and were completely dripping with sweat by the end of it.  The weather was hot... sunny and humid, and we were all grateful to strip off our many layers of clothing and jump in the pool again.  Swimming, brandy, chocolate cheesecake, and pipes filled the end of the day nicely before Tyler headed back to Ohio.  Katie and I left for home the following day, and that was that.
gwendolyngrey: (Default)

This past weekend I experienced my first Civil War reenactment as a participant.  Granted, I didn't camp out overnight with the others, as my grandparents live about five minutes from Greenfield Village where the event was held and I wanted to see them, but it was a lot of fun nonetheless. 

Mike and Katie had pitched their tent near the other civilians, and we used it as a sort of home base and general storage area since we spent most of our time hanging out with Tyler's unit, the 26th Michigan.  It was a lot of fun getting to know the 26th MI guys.  There were some really interesting characters and they were very welcoming and generous (and authentic... in an 1840s dress I was the farb of the group!).

I actually remembered to bring my camera with me, but only have pictures from Sunday, as I left it in the car on Saturday. [info]rvqavalon has a bunch of Saturday pictures (plus a few from the ball) on her journal.  I apologize in advange for the absence of an LJ cut... it doesn't seem to want to work for me today.

A few of the guys from the 26th MI posing outside the tintype studio.  From left to right:  Ian, Tyler, Craig, and Ethan.  Ian and Ethan seemed to be an inseperable duo, and I was constantly confused as to which was which, though by the end of the weekend I think I had it down.  Craig, the sargent, was in charge of the unit and seemed very... comfortable with his position of authority.  I liked him though.  I liked all of them.

At one point in the afternoon, Mike hauled out a Meijer bag and asked if anyone wanted a gummy bear.  Gummy bears?!  WHAT?  We refused, and Mike grinned for the camera.

While Katie and Mike bustled about making lunch, Tyler and I sat in the shade with the kids and messed about on the tin whistles.  The two boys with the whistles belonged to the 26th (and were very intelligent and entertaining, they added a lot to the group) but the kid with the drum seemed to be their groupie and kept popping up out of nowhere.  He was a very peculiar child, and nearly had a conniption fit when he found out that Tyler didn't know how to play Battle Hymn of the Republic. 

I picked up Tyler's whistle and managed to remember a couple of Irish jigs from ye olde days of playing with Rebekah's fiddle class.  I hadn't played for several years, but it came back very quickly and kind of made me miss it.  I should dig out my music and get reaquainted with the whistle.

Craig and Tyler got all kitted up for the grand tactical demonstration. (Which I did not attend.  As one of the other ladies said, once you've seen one battle, you've seen them all.)

And then we got ready for the ball!  Mike had just whacked Katie with his riding crop, and I am at an utter loss as to what to DO with these people!

And then Katie got a hold of the riding crop...

... and came after me!

Things calmed down a bit and we started walking to the ball.

Tyler had my camera and took all of the pre-ball photos, so this is the only one he's in.  ;)  He took a similar picture on Katie's camera too.

Group picture after the ball.  The guy sitting between Mike and Tyler is a friend of Katie's from her first year at Michilimackinaw.

I have to leave for work shortly, so that's all I have time to put up and write about.  There are a whole lot more photos on my flickr page.

Overall conclusions?  I quite like this Civil War thing, and am looking forward to my next event (whatever and whenever that may be).  I came home filled with all sorts of ideas and inspiration for dresses and accessories, and can't wait to start putting together a proper wardrobe. 
gwendolyngrey: (SBP- air is filled with exclamation poin)
All right, I know Katie already posted this but our f-lists aren't quite the same, so I apologize if you've seen it already.

However, we're having a ball in March!

Join us at the Felt Estate
Laketown Township, Michigan

For a spectacular historical costume ball!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Click the picture or go HERE for more information on the dance, what to wear, and who we are. 

If you want to visit me Michigan, and enjoy good food and good company, you should definitely come!  I would be more than happy to put anyone up who's coming from a distance, I know costume events in the midwest are few and far between, and hopefully this will fill the gap a little.   Pass the word, and we hope to see you there!  ([ profile] lindseyerin37, I'm looking at you...)

April 2017



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