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!

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