theladyrebecca: (Default)
Hmm... Apparently I never did any CoCo wrap-up posts this year. I had so many costume events in August that I completely forgot. Whoops!

So here's part one of a brief wrap-up, assuming I can remember everything. 

I arrived Wednesday into Long Beach, met up with a few other ladies (Sarah, Britta, and Patricia), and we drove (in our super fancy Infiniti rental SUV) to the Queen Mary. We changed into our Titanic-era clothing, and spent a few hours there. We dined in the restaurant, then did a self-guided tour all around the ship, taking a ton of pictures as we went (so many pictures, that by the end of it, my phone had died!). It was awesome. We got a lot of stares and complements, of course, and our pictures turned out sooo good! I would love to do something like this again. Here are some pictures:

We changed out of our costumes and left Long Beach around 8:30, I think, stopping for groceries on our way up to Woodland Hills. The next day, DodiRose, Sarah, Britta, and I went off to Burbank to check out the vintage-ish shops in the area. We went to Unique Vintage and Besame, among others, before heading back to Woodland Hills to change for the checking in and the pool party. That evening, I wore my burgundy silk Regency dress. I was pleased with the dress, but I wish I had styled my hair differently, as I don't think the pictures of me look very flattering. 

Friday morning, I took a limited class that they should not have allowed me to sign up for. I signed up for Hand Stitches in Millinery during mid-registration, but it overlapped by 30 mins with the class I was teaching (which I didn't notice until like 2 days before CoCo). Combined with the fact that that class was running waaay behind schedule, I learned about 2-3 stitches. It was a good class otherwise, though. I ran behind in the Making Royal Orders class I taught, too, because I forgot to factor in the time it would take to distribute materials (which was like 20 mins). That said, I saw a bunch of my students wearing their royal orders for the gala, and I got lots of good feedback on it, so I think it was still a success. I watched some of Jennifer's Dressing the Silhouette class before going to grab some lunch, before my shoot with [personal profile] quincy134  (it was so nice that she did that!) and I finished off the class portion of the day with Jenny-Rose and Abby's Pomatum or Hairspray class, which was really cool to watch. During the day, I wore my 1890s Ice Cream Parlour shirtwaist and wool skirt. 

Friday evening was when our Titanic group decided to wear all of our costumes. I loved the turnout on this! All my past costume groups tended to fizzle out, but we had nearly 20 people in this group, and everyone looked wonderful. It did make it really difficult to round everyone up for photos, though, and I know we missed at least one or two people in the big group photo, which is really too bad. Some of us made movie reproductions, others opted for costumes of the era, and we even had one person dress as the iceberg! Naturally, we took a bunch of pictures. After a quick tour of the marketplace, several of us gathered for champagne, cupcakes, and chatter in our room - it was nice to host a small room party!  

I'll do the rest of CoCo in another post, since this is already really picture heavy. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I actually met yesterday's goal! Not that it was that hard. But after the fitting for the show and grocery shopping, I came home, ate dinner, and sewed until (past) bedtime. Which is really what I need to be doing every day. I got the trim hand-sewn on the apron, and pressed and sewed the whole hem on the Regency dress. Success!

Unfortunately, I don't expect any sewing to happen today. I work till 3, then I'm going to the gym on the way home, then I have to start laundry and get ready for a friend's Anniversary party, and then come home and dye my hair and go to bed. I also need to pick out an audition song for tomorrow and practice that at some point. But hopefully I'll be able to sew in between the audition and another friend's housewarming party on Saturday. And Sunday, I plan to have another not-leaving-the-house-because-I'm-sewing-the-entire-day day. At least a little of that will have to be for the show - I have to make three faux waist cinchers that go with the aprons, and probably a pair of bloomers, but I also want to hem my gala gown and start on the bodice patterning. So much to do!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I finished all the theatre sewing I could yesterday. I don't have the fabric yet for the faux waist cinchers that make up the waistbands of the aprons, but the aprons are basically done (one of them needs trim hand-sewn on, which I hope to do today). I also altered the sleeve poufs for Cinderella, added clear straps for Cindy's bodice, and made arm poufs for Mermaid.

And I finished my sleeves for the Regency dress. They took way longer than I had anticipated, because it took me a while to wrap my brain around the fitted inner sleeve. I don't know why. I think maybe because it's been a while since I made a one-piece fitted short sleeve? No idea... But anyway, they're done, including all the binding on the scallop parts, and I used two layers of the silk organza for the poufs, which I think is the perfect level of opacity. I think they came out really cute!

I took a break from the Regency dress to do all the theatre sewing, and to allow friends to weigh in on whether the Regency dress needed the embellishments around the skirt. Naturally, everyone told me it did. Gah! I don't have time for this. And I possibly don't have the fabric. So instead of diving right into that, I'm going to hem the skirt as is (hopefully tonight, after a fitting for the show and getting groceries). Then if I have time for the embellishments after finishing my gala gown, I'll go back to the Regency. But at least it will be done for now. 

I also think I picked how I want to embellish my gala gown. It uses a little of the elements of my inspiration dress, but makes them a bit easier (I hope), and less prone to looking tacky (fingers crossed). This is my new inspiration image, though I will probably also pull from some other looks, possibly including my original inspiration:

theladyrebecca: (Default)
I started in on sleeves for the Regency dress last night after trivia. Or maybe restarted is a better word, since I was fiddling with sleeves a couple months ago when I set the project aside for being annoying. Anyway, after a little bit more fiddling, I figured out what I wanted to do! I'm doing the sleeves in the dress below. It will be silk organza for the white pouf (maybe two layers - I haven't decided that far yet), with an inner fitted liner of cotton, and the little scalloped silk piece over the top, with a silk band at the hem. I cut out the silk bands and all the scalloped layers (an inner and outer piece) and started binding the scallops. I'm binding them like tabs. I got one side of the binding done on one sleeve last night, and will finish them off this evening. 

I'm hoping that I might have enough of the silk left so that I can do one tier of the leaves around the skirt, but I'm not sure that's going to happen. I was thinking I would do one to two tucks in the skirt, since I made it long enough and haven't hemmed it yet, plus the leaves, but I'm almost out of fabric, so I'm not positive I'll have enough for that... If I don't, I might just do a fun roleaux trim, or maybe leaves that are a lot more spaced out. Either way, I'm determined to finish this by tomorrow night. Otherwise, I think I will just wear it to CoCo in whatever state it is in by about 10pm tomorrow. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I got a ton of work done on the Regency dress on Friday, which was surprising, since I didn't even start on it till about 5pm. I put all the bodice pieces together, including the piping, assembled the skirts, made a piped waistband (instead of doing a separate belt, like in the pattern), and sewed the sections together. I totally changed the gathering pattern that was suggested by the pattern - I thought it made for a much earlier Regency-era look (all the gathers tightly done in the CB). I spread them out, and gathered the front a little too (after taking in the bodice so much, I had some excess skirt width). 

Saturday, I went to a Regency costume event wearing my navy blue swiss dot from 2016 because I didn't want to risk my silk pelisse in the rain. When I came home, I decided to try on the new dress, since I was already wearing all the right undergarments. It turns out that, even though I made the lowest neckline option offered in the pattern, it was way too high. I cut it down by about 1 5/8" in the front, probably about 1.25" or so in the back, and about .5-.75" over the shoulders. Then I piped the neckline. 

I also marked the hem length, and I have enough excess length to either take three 5/8" tucks around the bottom of the skirt, or to cut off the excess and use it for ruched trim. I haven't decided yet what to do, since it will depend on how much fabric I wind up with for trim after I do the sleeves. At minimum, I want one row of ruching, and then I'll either do the tucks or another row of ruching, and I haven't decided which yet.

Last night, I sewed down the neckline piping and mocked up the sleeve in the pattern. I'm not doing any of the sleeve embellishment options that are in the pattern, and the sleeve seemed way too small for what I was trying to do. So I think I'm going to make one more mockup with a much larger sleeve, and see if that works, or if I should just give up on my idea and do something simpler/smaller. I have rehearsal today through Wed, though, so I probably won't have much progress in the next few days. 

I also had a case of CADD this weekend, and did a test of things for my gala dress. First, I tested whether I should use satin fabric with a grid pattern of metallic silver thread, vs actually weaving strips of ribbon together. The satin fabric won out, so hopefully I'll be able to pick up some this week. I tested it on a heavy satin twill from Joanns, which looked nice, though seems awfully expensive for poly! I also tried dyeing one of my feather boas with tea to make it ivory, and it worked! So I dyed all 7 boas. I blow-dryed them for a while, but I need to spend a little more time fluffing them with the blow dryer, which I will probably do once I finish the Regency dress. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I didn't get very far at all on the Regency dress yesterday. I took apart the mockup, made adjustments to the paper pattern pieces to reflect the mockup, and then cut out the silk for the bodice. All the pieces are pinned and ready to be flatlined with the serger. It took extra time because I decided I didn't want a darted bodice like the pattern had, so I darted the lining, made the silk piece just a little it larger, and ran gathering stitches at the top and bottom of the front piece. I'm worried I added a little too much, since now I think it's gathered more than I had wanted, but since it's the CF, I can't fix it without putting in a CF seam, and I definitely don't want that. 

Anyway, I have rehearsal tonight, but only for 1.5 hrs, so I should be able to come home and sew afterwards. At this point, with only tomorrow left before the Regency tea this weekend, it's looking extremely unlikely that I'll wear this new one. I'll probably just pull out the navy swiss dot and go with that instead. But I think I will wear this one at CoCo, most likely in place of the velvet-trimmed Edwardian dress I wanted to make. I think that's just going to be too labor intensive, considering I still have my gala dress to make as well. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I had just enough time to fit my mockup yesterday between work and heading to the movie theatre. It was waaay too big. I didn't realize how much smaller my bust measurement was in my Regency corset, and so I had cut it to my uncorseted and Victorian corset bust size (which is basically the same), but which is about 2 sizes too large for the Regency measurement. So anyway, I think I wound up taking in the bodice by about 5" or so, mostly under the arms, though I also took a pinch out of the back/side-back curved seam. I also took out about .75" of the shoulder width, since it would have put the armseye seam way too far out.

It's possible that I may be able to use the mockup pieces as the lining, but I have a feeling I might have to recut. Oh well. I have about 2.5-3 hours for sewing this evening, so I'm hoping to get all the bodice pieces cut out and maybe sewn together. I think I would like to pipe the side-back seams, so that may delay me a little, but first I have to figure out whether or not I actually have enough fabric for as much piping as I would prefer (side-back seams, neckline, sleeve bands, sleeve ribbon things, belt).

Speaking of the belt, this pattern calls for a separate belt. But I feel like I've seen Regency dresses more commonly with a band between the bodice and skirt, as opposed to a separate belt. Is this true?
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I finished cutting out all the corset mockup pieces yesterday, but didn't feel like assembling them. So hopefully I won't lose anything before I put them together!

Instead, I switched over to the Regency dress. I decided to go with the red-shot-black silk taffeta I had in the stash, because that's just more sensible. I got all the skirt pieces cut out, and cut out and assembled a mockup of the bodice. I'm hoping to be able to fit it today, though I'm most likely seeing a movie tonight, so I'm not sure how much time I'll have. The funny thing is, the fabric I used for my mockup is an old floral bedsheet, which is the same fabric I used for my first ever Regency dress, when I was in high school (it's the second "historical" costume I ever made). I'm thinking about just using that for the bodice lining, as a little nod to that first dress.
theladyrebecca: (Default)
Brief change of sewing plans. Although I was planning to jump into the s-bend corset, I've signed up to do a pattern test for a new Laughing Moon Regency dress, so I'm switching gears to that. Or at least, I will be shortly. I want to finish cutting out the mockup of the corset and then I plan to sew it together, because I don't want to lose any of the pieces. I've cut out about 2/3 of them so far, I think, since I really didn't get any sewing time last week.  Once that is assembled, it will be put aside for the regency dress. 

Ideally, I'd love to whip it up really quickly. I'm going to a Regency event on Saturday, so if I can get it wearable by then, that would be fabulous! Of course, naturally, I'm still torn on just what I want to do. I have a piece of red/black changeable silk taffeta that I've had in the stash for a few years, and it is only 4 5/8 yds, so it's almost definitely enough for this, but not enough for basically any other era. So that's what I'm leaning towards. But at the same time, I'd really like a versatile day-to-evening dress that I can add long sleeves to, if I want to. And it seems like there's more cotton dresses like that than there are silk. I know as of a couple weeks ago, Joanns still had that semi-sheer dobby stripe, but I don't really want a white dress for this. In fact, I found a green dress that I kind of love, but then again, I don't look good in that shade of green. 

Naturally, all this indecisiveness is really unconducive to actually finishing this project by Saturday morning... That said, I only have rehearsal one night this week (though I am at least planning to see one movie this week) so who knows what might happen!

These are a few of the dresses I'm most inspired by right now:

theladyrebecca: (Default)
Wow, look - Saturday's post already!

I believe I just took two classes on Saturday - Heirloom Sewing Techniques, and Tailor's Canvas. Both were super useful and informative, and taught me a lot of techniques that I had no knowledge of previously. Now I just have to find the patience in my sewing to actually utilize them. 

I wore my Victorian skating dress, which was very warm. It made me really glad I hadn't attempted to pack my green wool winter bustle gown, which is even warmer! I'm going to have to try to remember not to bring winter-wear to CoCo, even if it is air conditioned. Too bad, since I think winter-wear is actually my favorite.

As usual, it seemed like there wasn't enough time to get ready for the gala (why don't I ever learn?!). And like I vaguely remember last year, the gala red carpet line was ginormous, so we had to walk outside to get to the picture area, where our dinner group had planned to meet up. Too bad, as I would have liked walking the red carpet with my giant train. (Also, trying to round up 25 costumers at a gala red carpet line for dinner is like herding cats.) We did make it over to Maggianos, though, which was as tasty as usual. And I didn't spill anything, which was good, since I didn't have time to take pictures before dinner! I liked that everyone seemed to be hanging out in the hallway/CoCo lobby area instead of in the ballroom, since it's always so crowded and loud in there. And I actually put my train down a couple times (though really only if someone was taking a picture). I spent way too much time on that train to let it get dirty or stepped on! Overall, I really enjoyed wearing my gala gown this year. I need to figure out what else I can (safely) wear it for!

And now, picture spam of the finished dress!

I wore my new Laughing Moon pattern-test pelisse on Sunday. (PS, with the new wallpaper, the hallway past the photo studio makes for great daytime photos!) I hit the Bargain Bazaar in the morning, and found a couple gems - namely, 6-7 yards of dark navy wool, and an antique bodice! Not sure how I managed either of those, since there were at least 30 people who were ahead of me in line. No patterns this year, though, which is a little bummer, but I think I also got a couple trims, too. The only classes I remember taking on Sunday were Cynthia and Cathy's corset binding class, and Jenny-Rose's hair class, both of which were great. 

On Monday, I took the bus to the fabric district, and bought way too much silk, especially considering I had bought some on Thursday. But on Sunday, they did have the goldenrod taffeta I was looking for Thurs, so now I have both. Of course, it turns out I'm doing my gala gown out of the butter yellow anyway - oh well, I guess I'll have beautiful fabric for a future project!

Wow! I actually finished all my recapping! 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I feel like I made almost nothing this year. I honestly think I did too much theatre for one year, and the past few months, I've just felt very worn out. That, combined with working all year (instead of being unemployed for 8 months like I was last year) means very little sewing actually got done. 

But this is what I did actually manage to do:

I completed the green wool bustle gown. Most of this was done in 2016, but I think I did the neckline dickey area and the hem in 2017. I also made an adjustable length quilted petticoat that I used for this dress and my skating dress, and decorated the hat. And apparently I never took any pictures of the quilted petticoat. 

Fur-trimmed skating dress + trimming an old vintage hat

Finished my crewel-work 18th c pocket

Designer Disney Snow White

1860s corset

1860s Giant Turquoise Ballgown, which also included making royal orders and a headpiece. I made this in two parts, completing the base dress by the beginning of April, and then making the train and trimming it in the lead-up to Costume College. 

Belle-inspired jumper dress

Regency Laughing Moon Pattern-test Pelisse

Elizabeth Swann

Rose's Deck Dress from Titanic

Two Halloween skirts

Velvet Regency spencer

Reversible Disney tote bag, Thumper, Dumbo, Dr. Who Scarf

Plus a commission for altering a Zouave jacket and making another Victorian jacket, and 14 little girls playdresses and 2 skirts for etsy orders.

This post has made me realize that I haven't put anything from this year on my website, and I never did a CoCo wrap-up post for Friday through Sunday, either, or completed outfit posts for Elizabeth Swann or the Turquoise Ballgown. Whoops. I should probably do those! 

I sewed!

Nov. 7th, 2017 07:58 am
theladyrebecca: (Default)
Actually, I've been doing a fair bit of sewing. I have about 2/3 of the trim on the commission at this point, and I managed to make myself a new spencer after all!

Last Sunday, the night before I left on a work trip for Las Vegas, I mocked up a sleeveless spencer (based on the pattern I used for the back and under-part of my bib-front dress, with the front altered into more of a deep v). Then I cut it out of some red velvet I had laying around, and flatlined it with some leftover ivory silk. I sewed the five pieces together by machine, and sewed one side of the binding down around all the edges. Then I threw it, some trim, and my handsewing kit in my bag for Vegas. I whipped all the bias down, and added trim around the neckline, and was able to wear it Sunday night for the Regency ball!

theladyrebecca: (Default)
 I was determined to finish the pelisse last night. I only had about an hour to work on it during the day, but when I came home from seeing Sister Act last night, I went straight into the sewing room to finish. 

I did a machined hem, with the cotton batting inside the bottom inch. I did two rows of stitching higher on the hem, too, to represent where a second padded row should be, but since it's not actually padded, it doesn't really show up. Maybe that's something I'll change in the future, but I doubt it. I also added my tassel/button trim at the CB, inspired by the extant one.

And here it is:

theladyrebecca: (Default)
I got out of rehearsal early tonight, so I was able to finish all the closures on the pelisse. This means I just have the hem, buttons/buttonholes on the wrist straps, and sewing a few tassels onto the back of the belt. I'm hopeful that I can get at least a little of that done tomorrow, though I do have to work and go grocery shopping (finally), and I'm seeing a show tomorrow evening. 

The reason why I haven't had a chance to start the hem yet (besides work and rehearsal) is that I want to pad it like I've done the CF edge, the collar, and the sleeve bands. So I need to have the time to cut out the batting. There is a possibility, though, that in doing the padded hem, I might be able to just do the whole thing by machine, which would obviously be a total timesaver. I guess I'll find out tomorrow. 

I really want to be able to move on to trimming the turquoise gown this weekend. I have rehearsal in the morning/early afternoon, and then I'm ushering a show in the evening, but I should have a few hours later in the afternoon, and I have all of Sunday to sew. No sewing is going to happen Mon-Thurs, though, because I have tech rehearsals. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I got about 3/4 of the hooks and eyes attached, of those that I already had. And I stitched closed the lower front of the pelisse. But unfortunately, that was all I had time for today. 

I'm hoping to be able to swing through Joanns on my way home tomorrow, but since I also have to go to the grocery store, that likely won't leave time for sewing. It's tempting to put both errands off till Friday, and come home and do my hem instead, since that's the last "big" part of the pelisse left. I just want to finish it and move on to trimming the turquoise gown!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
Welp. Didn't finish the pelisse. I only had a few hours of sewing time today, and at least two of that was spent just on the belt, since I had to make all the piping for it as well. I did get all the facings tacked down as well, and I figured out where I want the hem. 

I also decided that I will sew the pelisse closed until just below the hip, and then use hooks and eyes for the top of the skirt and the bodice. I only have half as many as I need right now, so Wed, I'll be running to Joanns for the rest of those and for the buttons for the wrist straps, but hopefully I'll be able to sew the nine that I do have tomorrow. I also plan to close up the bottom front tomorrow. I doubt I'll get to the hem, since I only have about 45 mins between work and rehearsal tomorrow afternoon. 

Does anyone have any tips for getting old stitch lines out of silk taffeta, by the way? I had to redo my darts, since they came up way too high, and now I have stitch marks on the most prominent place on the pelisse. 

I don't have time to mess with Dreamwidth's images right now, but here's a link to a picture of it from yesterday on my instagram:

theladyrebecca: (Default)
The pelisse is nearing completion. I've worked on it a ton this weekend, and at this point, all I have left is the hem (or hem treatment, since I haven't decided if I'm going to do the puffed rows that are on my inspiration), stitching or tacking down the facings, making the belt, and finishing off the wrist bands with buttons and buttonholes. Hopefully I'll be able to do all that tomorrow, though I do also have to mow the lawn and hopefully take Lion to get his nails trimmed. 

Oh, and I also need to do the closures down the front, but I'm not quite sure what to do there. Were pelisses ever worn without a dress underneath? I'd really love to wear this with just a petticoat, since that is a) less to pack for CoCo, and b) less heat in Socal. Obviously, that means I would need closures all the way down the front. However, my inspiration pelisse has no visible closures. Would they have used hooks and eyes, and is there a good way to do that down the front of the skirt, where there won't be any tension? Or are there any other closure options anyone recommends?

Thanks for your advice!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I used most of my brief time at home today quite wisely, and was able to cut out the mockup pieces for the bodice of the pelisse and sew them together. Mostly because I didn't actually have time to go grocery shopping, so that's been pushed to tomorrow. I'm still keeping my fingers crossed that I'm not called to rehearsal tomorrow, but I likely won't find out till the morning. If I'm not, I should be able to try the pelisse on, and see if I have to make any adjustments. If it fits right, then I may do a mockup of the lower sleeve, mostly just to check length. And then I can cut it all out in my silk!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I wanted to start on the pelisse in the 1.5 hrs I had between work and rehearsal today, but first I had to put several hooks and eyes on skirts laying on my sewing table, then clear off the rest of the sewing table. Which naturally meant that after ironing the mockup fabric, I ran out of time. I have to go grocery shopping tomorrow afternoon, so there likely won't be time then either. But there's a possibility that I won't be called for rehearsal on Wed, which would be awesome, because then I could see a show a bunch of friends are in, and have a little time beforehand to sew. And this weekend I'll have a four-day weekend, so my goal is to sew for pretty much the entire time, and finish the whole pelisse. If I do, I think there's a chance I might get to the Elizabeth Swann dress before CoCo. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
My 2016 Goals changed a few times over the course of the year, but this is what they were:

Navy blue swiss dot Regency - Done!
Black silk taffeta bustle ballgown - Done!
Child's Victorian Gown - Done!
Daniel Deronda Riding Habit - Still hasn't happened, and is no longer on my specific upcoming goals list.
1860s Fully Handsewn dress - Didn't even pick this up all year. Maybe someday, but probably not anytime soon.
Turquoise Silk Mid-19th c  Giant Ballgown - I kind of knew this was going to be a 2017 project, and sure enough, it will be.
Fur-trimmed bustle-era skating outfit - Coming up next; I've already started cutting pieces out.
Winter bustle gown - Almost done!
Super-secret Disney-related project - No longer super secret. This is the Snow White Designer Disney dress, and will be made for the CoCo pool party this year.

In June, I added an Elizabethan kirtle and Mary Poppins Jolly Holiday to the list, both of which I have since completed.

And here's picture proof of everything I made!

Click here for pictures )

I think that's everything. Overall, not a bad sewing year, though being unemployed for the first eight months of the year certainly helped in that, and as you can tell by my posts, my sewing has definitely slowed down since I started working in September! 

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