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 [livejournal.com 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: (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 [livejournal.com profile] renna_darling.  It was her first time at Ft. Erie, and I hope to run into her at future events! 

Katie/[livejournal.com profile] rvqavalon, Mike/[livejournal.com profile] dandytailor, Tyler/[livejournal.com 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: (northanger abbey possibilities)
Today has not been a total waste.  Finished the sleeves of the brown print regency dress and cut out the skirt.  I still need to attach it to the bodice and hem it yet tonight, but it's so simple I have no doubt I can get it done before going to bed.  (knock on wood)



Also, I cut out a chemisette which I plan to quickly whip together before leaving for Ft. Erie tomorrow.  It's just a simple little thing made of voile with a couple of neck frills. 

I had originally knocked around the idea of making two new dresses for Ft. Erie, but was violently sidetracked by a new painting instead.  Last night I finished the final sketch for a steampunky painting (which the wings from my last post will feature in) and primed a sheet of wood in preparation.  Since I leave shortly after 5pm tomorrow, I won't have a chance to actually start painting until I get back from Erie, but I cannot wait to get going!  I'm so excited for this painting!

This afternoon I had my phone interview with C.W.  I think it went pretty well, but it's always so hard to tell!  I was told to expect a call within a week whether or not I get the job.  If so... then I will greatly rejoice.  If not... I'll just have to start searching for something else.

And completely unrelated to anything else, LJ is utterly dead tonight.  I blame Costume College.  Damn you all for having fun!
gwendolyngrey: (art magic button)
I don't have pictures of my brown print regency dress... mostly because I'm avoiding setting in the sleeves.  The bodice is done, and one sleeve is pinned in, and now I'm perfecting the art of ignoring less-than-pleasant sewing tasks.

This is what I did instead.


And this:


The second sketch is me trying to work out steampunk wings for a painting I'm planning.  I know, I know.  Reenactment this weekend, I need a new dress, I should be sewing, yadda yadda.  But it's been OVER A YEAR since I picked up a brush, and right now all I can think about is painting and I have so many ideas simmering in my head at the moment.

Besides, this summer was nothing but hardcore sewing.  I'll get the dress done, but I need this change of pace for my creative sanity.

And speaking of sewing, I have a phone interview set up for the tailor position at Williamsburg!  Wish me luck!
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 ([livejournal.com 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 [livejournal.com profile] sorchekyrkeby, myself, [livejournal.com profile] dandytailor[livejournal.com 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: (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: (W&D Cynthia and Molly bright)
I am *tired*.  If I could curl up here in the computer lab and sleep through my shift at work tonight I'd be... well, not happy, but at least asleep!

This is partially because I stayed up quite late last night taking decent portfolio-worthy pictures of the stuff I've finished recently, and partly because I haven't been sleeping well for a week.  I lie in bed and my mind whirs and whirs frantically, and it's all I can do to STAY in bed and not leap up at 3am and sew that seam or look up that detail or do anything.  But still, I just have three more weeks to push though... it'll probably go much faster than I would like anyway.

Sent in applications today for several summer-season jobs... we'll see if anything comes of it!

And thanks to my self-timed photo session last night, I have pictures of the 1830 dress, the 1810 spencer, and the new Victorian corset! (plus decent-er ones of the 1810 and 1820 dresses)


I quite like the shape of the skirt (which you can clearly see in this photo).  I just have a (fairly skimpy) corded petticoat and little ruffly bustle underneath, but it seems to work really well! That, and I think my stab at 1830's hair wasn't too terrible either.  I have no hairpieces (need to remedy that at some point...) and my curling iron is, at a 1" diameter, too large to make cluster-y curls.

And here's everything else! )
I'm in the middle of updating my website(s) with everything. Official "portfolio-y" website has everything up already, but I'm still working on Behind the Tapestry. 

Any you know what?  In spite of being exhausted, I am somehow enjoying all this.  We'll see how I feel in three weeks though!

I just have to make the 1840 dress now, and then finish the paintings.

gwendolyngrey: (W&D Cynthia and Molly bright)
Item #1:  I have a new camera!  Actually, "new" isn't the right word here, as I never had a camera of my own before... I finally HAVE a camera!  It's a Canon PowerShot SD1100 and is blue.  The family camera is a large and clunky Canon PowerShot of an earlier vintage, but the menu and buttons are laid out pretty much the same way on mine as on the old one.  I'm very grateful for this as it means I didn't even have to take the shrinkwrap off the instruction manual.  So yes, I have a pretty, petite, blue camera.  Did I mention it's blue?  It's blue.  :)

Item #2:  I used this nifty new camera to take some pictures!  Unfortunately, there are no nice, neutral backgrounds anywhere in my house and nothing looks very 1810-like at all, but I guess it's the dress that really matters anyway.



And before you ask or wonder, no, I am not wearing any socks.

More pictures under the cut... )

I'm afraid my spencer is in the same condition I left it in at my last post; that is, in the state of being a fitting muslin.  I'm getting together with Mike and Katie tonight with the idea of actually working on the spencer, but seeing as how we're also planning on watching The Duchess (which I haven't seen yet), I'm not sure if I'll get much of anything done.

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