Wednesday 24 April 2013

Therapy Sewing

Everyone has rough days, where they feel unsettled and cranky and generally lost.  Some people wallow in it, and some people have methods of pulling themselves out of the funk.  I have a couple of methods.  One of them is baking, cakes or muffins or pies or bread...and the other is sewing.  Naturally.  So yesterday when one of Those Days came along, despite the pile of work growling at me from the corner of the living room, I decided to ignore it and make myself a dress.

This was the pattern I went with.  It's one I've used before for a full length dress.  I intended to make another long dress, but the way I work is by finding a pattern I can run with and then seeing what pieces of fabric I have that I can use.
In the deep recesses of one of my boxes I found this piece of rust/dark salmon/hard to determine coloured fabric.  I have no idea where I got it but probably Value Village.  There's some really awesome fabric there.  All different sizes of pieces but some really cool stuff.  This one is some sort of uber cheap polyester but it's all shiny and crepe-like in texture.  It could totally pass for silk....

My main problem was that apparently last time I used this pattern I didn't put all the pieces back in the envelope.  My bad.  But I extrapolated from the pieces I did have and managed to cut it all.

The other thing was that I was going to use black cotton for a lining....and started cutting it until I realized that fabric I needed for the play I'm designing.  Oops.  Had to salvage that.

 Also had to run to Fabricland for some notions.  I love how they call this stuff notions.  It makes sewing sound that much more fanciful.  So I got some black lace trim and buttons.
 Oh it was only a matter of time.  The cat thinks she helps with sewing. 

She's wrong.  But she won't get off my lap while I'm working.  I've become an expert at working around the cat.
 Empire waists are so fun.  They always look weirdly huge and flouncy but once the waist and sleeves are pretty!
 Like that! 
And trimmed with the lace like this!

Side note, I love my old sewing machine.  It's a hand me down from my granny and it runs beautifully.  I love the old mechanical machines.  This one breaks down from time to time but I can open it up and see what happened and fix it.  I'm like MacGyver!'s the finished product!  Although this picture makes me realize I really need to iron it.  Oops.  But I like the general look.  I'm pleased with it as a quick afternoon therapy project!

Monday 22 April 2013

Projects Galore

It was a big weekend of fun with costumes!  Well, Saturday anyway.  I took Sunday to do just about nothing.

Saturday morning, my incredible roommate S. M. Carriere had organized a video shoot for the YouTube adaptation of her Your Very Own Adventure Project!  Which meant going out and lying in the woods for an hour or so in cloaks, wool, vaguely medieval/fantasy forest dweller costumes and fake blood.  Oh how I love fake blood.  There are a billion recipes out there, but my adaptation that works best for everything I do is straight corn syrup mixed with red food colouring and cocoa powder/chocolate syrup.  It darkens and congeals and sticks and oozes just beautifully.

When we got home, I got down to work on my sister's prom dress.  The prom isn't until June but with all the projects I have coming up I want to get it done sooner rather than later!  It's tea length, strapless royal blue/indigo satin with tulle under, with an overlay of peach lace with cap sleeves.  I got it all assembled, including the zipper (which I HATE because sewing zippers SUCKS) and then she came over to try it on.

And it fit really well!  I was so happy!  It needs to be taken in at the shoulders and minor tucks here and there, but it'll work out just beautifully I think.  I need to be working on that now but I'm procrastinating instead.  That's my real talent.

Friday 19 April 2013

Milling About

I have a lot of projects on the go right now, as usual.  All my job titles are technically either "Costume Designer" or "Assistant Costume Designer," but yesterday as I sat working away surrounded by felt and buckram, I realized - for this one play, I'm basically a milliner.  There are three specialty hats that need to be made, and combined with the bonnet I made a couple of weeks ago, I've been learning more about making hats than I ever thought I'd bother with!

But hats are fun.  A lot of work, and in my case because I get bored reading directions, a lot of trial and error as I'm determined to figure things out myself.  They're worth the effort.  Buckram is such a cool thing to work with - I've been using my steamer to wilt and shape it and it's kind of magical.  If you're looking for a new thing to experiment with this weekend, I'd recommend it!

Wednesday 17 April 2013

The Season Begins!

I like to call it "The Season."  It conjures up images of dancing debutantes and high society.

But MY Season is Film Season.  Theatre Festival Season.  Birthday Season too, along with Equestrian Archery Season.  Basically, it's Costume Design Season!  Life is about to get much busier - I'm currently working on the design for a Youth Infringement Festival show, a series of short films, and am reading the script for a feature film that I'll start work on late this week or early next, TBD.  I'm also working on an 1830s style dress just as a project for me (pictures will be up soon!) as well as making my sister's prom dress.

One last note - if you live in Ottawa and are interested in working in the film industry, make sure you come out to THIS event tonight.  The Ottawa Film Office is hosting a job fair so come on out with plenty of resumes and much optimism!

Friday 5 April 2013

Well, this is new...

I never planned on blogging.  I never thought I'd be that interested in having an online journal going on.  But as people see the stuff I've sewn and created, I get a lot of questions - the most common being "why don't you have a website?" goes....

So what is this for?  I love to sew, costumes mainly (historical, fantasy, sci fi, that kind of thing), and knit, and cook, and bake...basically I have all the skills needed to make me a very good pioneer housewife.  Of course, it's 2013 so those skills aren't as practical as they once were, but they're still fun.  So that's the point of this blog.  A place to show off my creations, such as they are.  And see what evolves!