Thursday, 28 March 2013

A day at Dalhousie University

This year I have been teaching at Dalhousie University in the Costume Studies department.  Now that the year is almost over, our first year sewing students have studio days to complete their final projects.  I am excited for them, being able to use the skills they've learned over the year and now also using their creative brains to make their final projects uniquely their own.

While they were sewing yesterday, one of the other profs and I were also working on sewing projects.  H was stitching up matching hoodie sweatshirts for her husband and son on a Marvel comics theme.  Me, I was working on 18thC clothing.  I think it is good for the students to see what I am working on in my own practice, becasue they too will eventually be creating historical garments.  They get to see how I do things and maybe they will use those same techniques in their own work.

So yesterday I worked on a new sacque backed gown for myself.  I bought material with a round gown or a fitted backed style in mind.  So when I re-thought the material into a sacque, I wondered if I would have enough for the gown, let alone enough for the gown and matching petticoat.  I cut it quite close, but with what I have, there is just enough!  Exciting!  I got most of the gown put together yesterday and one other day back in February.  The petticoat is together, needs a hem facing and to be pleated into waist ties.  The gown bodice is complete, all the skirts stitched on, now it just needs to have the skirts pleated and stitched to the bodice fronts, over pannier.

I am pleating the gown over pannier, but may never wear the pannier with it.  My persona in the 18thC is one of a formerly wealthy woman who's now found herself a refugee from the war.  I have few cherished posessions and some clothing, but it's been through rough travel.  Yes, I will be distressing the hell out of the gown once I've finished stitching it.  When I wear the gown, I will be pulling the hemline through my pocket slits like many Chardin paintings depict.

One more week of school, for both my students and myself.  Over my short break before summer term I will be getting caught up on some sewing.  Don't fret, I'll be blogging!  Maybe even with photos!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

the waiting game

The Centre for Craft and Design may have my application by now, I sent it out in the Monday post and it's only going to the other side of the city.  I can hope.
Now I play the waiting game to see if it's accepted.  Meanwhile I finish the term, with a major paper to write, one to edit and my CV and Resume to work on.  Two more weeks of school and I am off for three.

During that three week period, I plan to take the skirts off my riding habit jacket and raise the waistline a bit.  Then replace the skirts, possibly adding a bit more to them to give a bit more fullness.  I also need to shorten the sleeves and take them in a bit.  I also need to rebuild the waistcoat entirely, not happy with it at all.  Right now the whole jacket just looks sloppy on me.  But then I made the whole outfit in two weeks over Christmas so I'd have something warm to wear at the New Year's day Levees.  Time to rebuild, so I am going to get it done!

When my head is not swimming so much with Fashion and Feminist Theories, I will start the research on the textile project for the summer.

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Stopped into Fabricville this morning, the sale on the silk blends goes until the 8th of April.  I was feeling so bummed the other night, about not getting enough for a quilted petticoat when I bought the silk for fichu and aprons.  Now I can!

And I can wait until the third, and I've gotten paid again, because I also got a 15$ off cupon to be used between the 3rd and the 8th.  I will have a silk, quilted petticoat someday.  Now to find the time to quilt one up in my copious spare time...I am also embroidering an Elizabethan waistcoat, year three of that.  I get distracted easily.
But back to petticoats.  For an item of clothing that was so widely adopted, there are very few actually worn by re-enactors.  All of the local ladies are jealous of one of our newer ladies, as she is presently quilting one up and will have it ready for this summer season.  Maybe that's the boot so many of us need.  I probably won't get one made for this summer, but maybe next.

Tomorrow I will be putting together my portfolio for the summer residency, and maybe some embroidery.

Friday, 15 March 2013

a summer spent in the 18th century?

At the moment I am putting together an application to do a summer residency at the Nova Scotia Centre for Craft and Design.  If I am sucessful, I will be spending the summer creating 18th century household textiles.

On the waterfront.

I am just a little excited.  I will post regular updates of my progress.

We are also ramping up for a full re-enacting season.  All of our hard kit has been aquired or brought out of a long storage.  Just the fine tuning now, and of course, my textile production project.

See you at a Historic site in Nova Scotia this summer!