theladyrebecca: (Default)
I really don't feel like I made that much this year. I'm not sure if that's because I just started sewing for the first time in two months, or if it's actually true, though. So here's what I made:

1830s plaid silk dress and yellow bonnet, made for wearing in Oliver, plus the Victorian Festival and Costume College

Blue wool coat, which I basically wear every day

Burgundy and mauve striped silk bustle dress, for the Victorian Festival and Costume College

Burgundy silk Regency dress, as a pattern test for Laughing Moon

Ripaway mermaid tail and Cinderella costume (and some other bits) as costumes for Disenchanted, for which I was Costume Coordinator

1890s Plaid "ice cream parlour" shirtwaist and navy walking skirt for Costume College, but also worn in The Music Man

Yellow 1890s Gala Gown for Costume College, including choker, royal order, bracelet, and petticoat with detachable train

A white cotton Victorian-style robe, which turned out to be the most practical thing I made for Costume College

Elephant dress for my friend's new baby

1910s white cotton and lace dress, worn to Snoqualmie Railroad Days

3 skirts and 3 playdresses through my etsy shop

Dapper Merida for Dapper Day; Also worn in White Christmas and to Christmas tea

Disney-print 1950s jumper dress

Princess Anna Frozen Fever

A bodice and skirt combo for the Silverbells Carolers, plus a few alterations for them

A "Totes Ma Goats" totebag as a secret Santa project

A skirt for my mom

A Marauders Map Fleece Blanket for my dad

The beginnings of an 1883 walking skirt (not finished, though I started cutting out a bodice mockup yesterday)

I guess that's a decent amount of stuff after all. But if I'm going to be on track for CoCo this year, I can't just take a two month break from sewing again!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I didn't wind up with as much sewing time as I had thought yesterday, because I forgot to factor in eating dinner. Whoops. So after running errands after work, walking Lion, and eating dinner, and before I had to go off to another audition, I managed enough time to cut out all the silk pieces for the gala bodice, pin them to their lining pieces, and cut out bloomer pieces (two legs for show bloomers, and two that I will use for bloomers for me - luckily, the actress and I are about the same size, so I was able to cut them all at once). 

When I got home from the audition, I assembled the show bloomers, which only took about an hour. I forgot to get bias tape for the knee elastic channels, so had to make those out of tucks in the fabric, which took a tiny bit longer, but seem to work fine. I'll pick up more tape before I make mine. 

This morning before work, I also wound up with a few extra minutes, so I flatlined the two back pieces of the gala bodice. I'll get back to doing the rest of it on Friday. 

After work, I'm heading straight to the theatre, where I need to 1) make a pair of fake legs to sit on top of the flying carpet, 2) figure out how to add ankle straps to two pairs of shoes, 3) sew together the apron waists/skirts/straps and put whopper poppers on them, and 4) finish decorating the carpet. And of course, whatever else might come up, but that's in order of priority of when they'll be needed in the show. I'm getting there about two hours before they start the run, so I'm hoping to at least get steps 1 and 2 done before they start. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I totally didn't finish the aprons yesterday. We got all the fittings done on everyone that we needed to, and I did finish the 6 eyelets on the one apron, and pinned all the waistbands in place. I've now handed those off so that they can have designs painted on them, and I'll do the rest of the sewing on them on Thursday during rehearsal. What I did last night instead was to start on making a flying carpet rig for one of the actresses. It's made of a piece of hardware store-grade foam core (from the insulation section). It was already mostly cut to size, but I cut wider the hole for her to stand in, and glued purple crushed panne velvet to both sides of the board. I also added straps out of wide grosgrain, which come up from underneath the board in the hole, and will go over her shoulders. It still needs trim, and will also have fake legs sitting on the carpet, with a black curtain of fabric to hide her actual legs. It's wearable currently, for her to use at rehearsal tonight, and I will finish it when I'm at the theatre for Wednesday's rehearsal. 

Tonight I hope to make a pair of bloomers for the show, and get my gala bodice cut out and assembled. I'm also going to Joanns to hopefully pick up the last materials I will need for the bodice. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
Like usual, I didn't get nearly as much done this weekend as I had intended to. I hemmed my gala gown skirt, figured out the trim placement for the skirt, and did a mockup of the bodice. Luckily, I started with my bustle-era bodice block, and then just had to alter neckline, armseyes, and hemline, so that wasn't too bad. I've ripped apart the mockup so that I can use it to cut out the silk, but I needed to switch gears and do some of the theatre sewing, too, since they go into tech this week. 

Unfortunately, I didn't leave quite as much time as I needed for the theatre sewing. I needed to make an apron neck strap, plus three faux-waist cinchers (the waistbands of the aprons), and one pair of bloomers. One of the cinchers is done, and the other two are started, but one needs 6 eyelets on it, and the other will hopefully have trim added to it. I'm putting them on the actors today before I add the whopper poppers, and I'll also need to go out and get more, since I only have three left. I didn't get to the bloomers at all. 

I have to be at tech rehearsal tonight, but I'm bringing my sewing machine, so other than the whopper poppers that I don't have, I'm hoping to completely finish the aprons tonight. I don't have to be at rehearsal tomorrow, so I'm making the bloomers then, and I hope to cut out, flatline, and assemble the gala bodice as well. 

For those of you who voted on my trim placement, this is the one I've chosen! Adding the marabou to the bottom would be a) more time consuming to sew, b) impossible to keep clean, and c) probably wouldn't last long. Plus I would need to go out and buy the marabou. So no marabou is a much better option. 

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 literally did not leave the house this weekend. And other than meals, sleeping, and taking 30 mins to exercise in the living room, I pretty much didn't leave the sewing room. On Saturday, I started messing around with the 1890s shirtwaist. I figured out the patterning for the shirt fronts. I started with an armseye/side seam shape from the new 1890s Butterick (ugly pink dress) pattern, but expanded the width to the CF by about 3x the pattern width. I knew I wanted tucks down the front, but didn't know how many. So I fiddled around with the pattern until I got all the tucks in the right place, then cut off the excess, sewed all the tucks in place (5 in the CF), and cut the neckline following the pattern shape. Then I did the same thing to the other side. Oh, and since I wanted to see how this would all look in the actual plaid, I took a risk and did all this fiddling with the actual fabric! I also pinned the three back pieces in that pattern on their seam lines, matching up the armseye, and keeping everything else as one large flat pattern, because I knew I wanted gathers in the CB at the waist. 

After I figured out all the shirtwaist body pieces, I switched gears to the mermaid tail, because that way I wouldn't have to change my serger thread twice. I serged off everything that I had hacked off during the fitting on Thurs, hemmed it, then added three tiers of the pre-ruffled organza at the bottom. While I was doing that, I was also waiting for the snap tape that I dyed turquoise to dry, because naturally, this is a rip-away mermaid tail. Once it was dry, I added the snap tape (ps - sewing snap tape to two layers of sequined material is annoying as anything), and I finished off the waist with bias tape. Done!

Then I moved back to the blouse. I sewed together the body pieces, then started on sleeves. I couldn't decide if I wanted a 3/4 sleeve or a long sleeve, so I used the leg-o-mutton sleeves from the Butterick pattern to start with, but I increased the sleeve head by about 2-3" on all sides, and dropped the width down to below the elbow, in case I decided on the 3/4 bishop sleeve. I flatlined the first one with organdy, made it up, and decided I hated the leg-o-mutton part. So I chopped off the bottom of the sleeve and made it up again. Too much pouf (I know, I don't think I've ever said that before). So I took it all apart, and took about 1-1.5" off all around the head, plus narrowed the sleeve under the arm just a tiny bit. Success! Of course, that meant that I had to take it all apart again and use it as the pattern for the other sleeve.

Once I had those assembled, I used a cut-down version of the cuff that comes on the old Butterick eton jacket pattern as cuffs for my sleeves, which worked quite nicely. Then I did all my buttons and buttonholes (16 total!), and moved on to the collar. I used a collar from an old early 1980s blouse pattern I have, increasing it to my size, adding about .5" in height, and turning it into a pointy collar. (I had pulled that pattern out a bunch as I was making the blouse, since it was kind of similar to what I was going for, but in a smaller size, with smaller sleeves, and with a totally different front tuck arrangement.) I hate sewing collars, but I wound up being able to complete this one with only a couple errors, both of which I was able to fix without undoing terribly much. And for me, that's really something!

I tried it all on with a vintage clip-on bow tie that I picked up at an estate sale a few years ago, and it went perfectly with this blouse. I had sewn gathers into the waist edge for the fronts and CB, pulled them up to fit while I was wearing it over the corset and petticoat, and finished off the bottom edge with bias tape, machine stitching it down because it's going to be tucked in and no one is going to see it. The other modern thing I did on this that made me happy was use a variegated thread that was pretty much the colors of the plaid. I enjoyed watching it change color as I sewed the whole shirtwaist. Anyway, I'm quite pleased with how it came out, and it makes me want to wear it in an old ice cream parlour and/or on Main Street at Disney. The funny thing is, I realized after I finished everything just how close this plaid is to the plaid of my 1890s suit, as you can see by the hat in the 2nd picture. 

I probably won't get to sew too much today, since I'm going to go to the gym after work, and then have trivia tonight. Tomorrow, though, other than hopefully going to the gym and watching the big fireworks show they do really near my house, I hope to get some sewing done, and I think I may stay in all day on the 4th and sew. I'm not feeling very patriotic anyway, and my goal is to finish the little fixes I have for Cinderella for the show and to completely finish the red silk Regency dress by Wed night. That way, all I will have left is the gala dress, which is going to take a whole bunch of experimentation, since I'm still not sure exactly what I want to do anymore.
theladyrebecca: (Default)
The 1890s walking skirt is almost finished, but I ran out of the wide bias tape yesterday when I was binding the hem. I plan to swing by Joanns on my way home so that I can possibly remedy that tonight. I think I made a big mistake lining the wool with twill, though. It is so freaking heavy! I thought the gala gown skirt was heavy, but this beats that one by a lot. I guess I should have bought lighter lining fabric, instead of using the stash. It drapes nicely, but boy is it going to be hot and heavy to wear at CoCo!

I also added in a CB panel to the mermaid skirt yesterday, and cut down the length of the waist (it was so high-waisted!). I want to do another fitting on the actress before I go any further with it, though. It's such a fitted garment, and with all those sequiny-type scales on it, it would show if I have to undo anything. So I guess that's done enough for now until our fitting next week. 

Of course, I skipped the gym yesterday in order to work on those, so I better get there today! My goal for today is to stop at Joanns for the bias tape, get home, take Lion for a walk, start laundry, give Lion a bath, clean the bathroom, vacuum the house, and tidy the living room, then go to the gym for a zumba class at 7, then possibly return some things at the mall before it closes, maybe pick up some snacks/food for while my mom is here, go home, pack my bag for our two days in Canada, and go pick my mom up at the airport (and take her to the Sonic that just opened about 10 mins from my house). She arrives at 10:30, and I get home at about 5pm. I'm not sure all that is possible, but I'm certainly going to try. In fact, if I wind up with extra time, I can even finish the hem on the walking skirt!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I was full of big aspirations yesterday, wasn't I? I didn't get home from the fitting until 7:30 yesterday, and then I had to make/eat dinner, and suddenly it was 9:30. I finished flatlining the 5 skirt panels that I had not yet gotten to, and that's it. Also, at the fitting I found out that the elastic on Cindy's arm poufs needs taking in, plus I need to add the clear straps to the bodice, and put the choker on a slightly longer piece of ribbon (I also need to not cheat and try glueing on the whopper popper to the choker this time, because that totally didn't hold). Oh well, altogether not too many changes, and probably will only take about an hour total, so not too bad.

The mermaid tail was way too small, as I rather expected. She has to be able to sit in it, and there's no way that would have been able to happen. So I'm adding in a panel up the CB of the skirt, then I can add in the snap tape closure (it's a ripaway, add all the pre-ruffled organza fabric at the bottom (I was so excited to find pre-ruffled fabric!), and bind off the waist and hem. Shouldn't be too bad. *knock on wood* But I want to finish the 1890s skirt first. I want to get both of them done before Thursday night, though, since my mom is coming to visit and will be here until we're able to have our next show fitting. (aka no sewing time this weekend) I may have to sacrifice trivia night or a little extra gym time for that. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I spent most of my three-day weekend sewing, and it was wonderful. Literally, all I did this weekend was sew, see The Incredibles (which was fantastic!), go to the gym (every day except Friday), and make one run to Joanns. Cinderella is completely finished, even though I wound up running out of lace on Friday (hence the run to Joanns). I also made the Mermaid tail to the point of it needing to be fitted on the actress. That involved altering a pattern, cutting out/flatlining the three pieces of satin to the outer sequin layers, and sewing the pieces together. And I only had to change the serger needle once! 

Here's Cindy:

Once that was done, I switched to my 1890s skirt. I didn't get as far on that as I wanted, because (as usual), I underestimated the cutting time. I'm using that new 1890s Butterick pattern with the hideous pink dress on the cover (or at least, I'm using that for the skirt - I'm probably going to combine the bodice pattern with an old Butterick shirtwaist pattern). Anyway, it's a 7 piece skirt, so 7 pieces of lining (I'm using twill), 7 pieces of the outer skirt fabric (a dark navy mid-weight wool), and 7 pieces of hem interfacing (I had just barely enough hair canvas). And then attaching all the hair canvas to the twill, then flatlining all those pieces to the wool. I have about half of them flat-lined at this point, and the rest of them are pinned, ready to be serged (which is how I flatline). I was watching The Alienist while I worked on it, which seemed very appropriate, but now I've finished the season. Any recommendations for another 1890s show available on Netflix or Xfinity on demand?

We have a shoot and fitting this afternoon for the show, but I'm going to skip the gym this evening in favor of putting the skirt together. I think maybe there's a chance I can actually finish it? Or maybe come close? I guess it depends on how long the fitting takes. Once I finish that skirt, I'm going to move back to the Mermaid tail. Then it's a toss-up whether I'll do the 1890s blouse or move on to the Frog Princess ballgown. Who knows - I might just hand that off to one of my stitchers. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
Monday's fittings went really well for the show - there were several tweaks to be made on Snow White, and one pair of shoes that needs to be reordered, plus one of the actors had a plane delay and wasn't there, so unfortunately we didn't get to try out anything on her (and she has three costumes!). I didn't get as much done on Cinderella as I had wanted to before the fitting, so it had too many pins in it, and I didn't want the actress to try it on. But luckily, they've pushed back the promo shoot to next week, so we have all weekend to finish the costumes.

I was able to hand off Rapunzel, Belle, and Mulan to my second stitcher, and my first stitcher has Snow, Frog Princess's 2nd costume, and Pocahontas. I'm working on Cindy, followed by Ariel's tail. We need to try stuff on the Ariel actress before we can work on anything else for her, and we also have the Frog Princess's ballgown, Sleeping Beauty, and Balroubadour (a take off of Jasmine), and we open in exactly one month. I think we're in a good place. 

I have nothing going on this weekend, so I was planning to spend all weekend sewing. But my weight has been up this week, so I've decided I'm going to use some of my free time to try the free 5-day pass at LA Fitness. I've been debating about which gym to join, so maybe this will help me decide. Anyway, other than that, I'm going to see Incredibles, finish Cindy, hopefully make Ariel's tail, and/or start on my 1890s shirtwaist/skirt. Yesterday, I sewed down all the piping on Cindy's bodice, and added trim to Snow's corset, so at this point, pretty much all I have on Cindy is hemming two of her skirt layers, and attaching the skirts to the bodice. Shouldn't be too bad. And on the plus side, all this work I'm doing on the show has already paid for my fall trip to Dapper Day at Disneyland!

I have been deliberating more on my gala gown, though. I just can't get into right now, and I'm wondering if that means I have to change my whole design plan. Luckily, right now all I have is the base skirt, so I might just have to play around with various embellishment options, and see what calls to me. But that will be after I do the shirtwaist/skirt. Maybe by then I'll want to go back to the original design anyway. 

I'll post pics of Cindy soon - I keep forgetting to take them!
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I think my super hectic life is going to get a little easier this week. Which is good, because I have so much sewing to do. I started on Cinderella last week, but didn't get super far. On Friday, though, I did a costume portrait session in my Titanic deck dress during the first part of the day, proceeded to get stuck in horrendous traffic trying to get home (it took me over two hours to go 37 miles), and then spent the whole evening sewing. I was able to finish getting everything cut out for Cindy, and sewed together the base of the skirt and the whole bodice (including piping!). It was a lot of cutting - the bodice is made of 9 pieces (it's an alteration to the Simplicity Frozen bodice pattern, but I added in an extra seamline on each side-front), and each of the pieces consists of a cotton layer and a sequined satin layer flat-lined together, except for the CF piece, which is cotton, satin, and lace together. 

On Saturday, I subbed in to two children's shows, which were located in waaay northern WA. I left the house at 6:50am, and we got back to the Seattle area at about 5pm. The shows were well-received, but that was just way too far. Then I had a fitting with two of the actresses for the show - the Cindy bodice fit almost perfectly - it was about .5" too long at the waist, but that's an easy fix. The skirt was about 3" too long, though, but I hadn't hemmed it yet, because I figured something like that would happen, so that wasn't terrible. We also did a fitting on the Frog Princess, and we had them try on all their accessories (which all fit! yay!). Then I went home and fell asleep on the couch right after dinner. 

On Sunday, I went to an estate sale way out in the edge of Auburn that I thought from the pictures was going to be in a historic house. It wasn't. I bought hangers, but it was otherwise disappointing. Then I went to Joanns and picked up a bunch of patterns for my stitchers, and then I saw a local production of Shrek. Then I came home, ordered what are hopefully the last accessories/notions that I will need for the show, ate dinner, and sewed. I made the necessary alterations to Cindy's bodice, which now just needs the piping at the top and bottom hand-sewed down and lace added to the top, plus some decorative buttons, and I shortened the three skirt layers. I also (mostly) made her bloomers. I ran out of elastic for the knees, and I have to add lace to the knees as well, so I'll be picking up more elastic today. I also dyed Belle's dress fabric, since I remembered at 10:30pm last night that I hadn't done that yet (whoops), but it came out pretty much just right. And I separated out all the fabrics/patterns/notions into kits for my stitchers. 

We're having a fitting for the whole cast today at their first rehearsal, and I'll have both my stitchers there as well, so I can hand off at least a few more projects. I think at this point, there's just 2.5 costumes and a couple of accessories that aren't ready to be handed off, and they open in just over a month, so we should be in a good place. I'm excited to get the 4 large Joanns bags out of my sewing room, too! After I finish Cindy, I'm going to make Mermaid's tail, and then I think I'll do my 1890s shirtwaist/skirt. Other than rehearsal tonight, and a photoshoot for them later this week sometime, I have nothing else I'm committed to this week or weekend. I'm super excited. I haven't had this much time in who knows how long, so hopefully I'll get a lot of sewing done! 

So as to make this a post with pictures, here's a few selfies I took at the portrait session on Friday. I forgot how comfy that dress is. I just hope the shoes are comfortable enough to wear for both the Friday night social and the gala at CoCo, since they match both outfits!

theladyrebecca: (Default)
I put aside the gala gown last night, and decided to work on Cinderella for Disenchanted instead. After work yesterday, I dropped off all the materials for three of the costumes with one of my stitchers, then went to Ross and picked up a few of the ready-to-wear pieces I need for the show. That all took a big load off. When I got home, I started cutting out the patterns and fabric for Cindy. I got her bloomers all cut out (cotton and glitter organza), and her underskirt (satin and glitter organza), but then I had to go to bed. I doubt I'll have any time to sew today, since I'm going up to Seattle to see the Hunchback of Notre Dame tonight (so excited!), but I'm looking forward to working on her more tomorrow.

I think it should go together fairly quickly - I have an overskirt section, arm poufs, and the strapless bodice as well, and I won't be able to actually finish hems and binding until after the fitting next Monday, but I'd like to get the whole thing plus Ariel's tail done before then. And maybe work on my 1890s skirt and shirtwaist a little, too, though I doubt I'll get that far, since this weekend is very full. 
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I still haven't touched the Regency dress. I feel like all my will to sew on it has gone out the window. I should probably put it aside and do other things, but since it is tech week this week, I know I'm not going to get any sewing done anyway. I have a ton of lines in this show, so I've really been trying to stay focused on it. I did do an alteration commission last week on a formal dress, which literally took up all of my Mon-Thurs sewing time, even though it wasn't a big alteration. And on Friday, I styled a few wigs for the show, which is fun because they're nice quick projects that I can do in front of the TV. 

Here's a couple of the wigs I styled:

The other thing that has really been on my mind is that my dog, Lion was diagnosed with glaucoma in one eye about 1.5 weeks ago. I have been raising money through a GoFundMe, and had scheduled his surgery for May 14, so that it's after the show opened. But then this weekend, he developed hyphema as well, which is basically an emergency situation. So now this morning I had to drop him off at the vet for eye removal surgery. I'm going to miss that eye! And I've been sort of on edge and worried all day since I dropped him off. Hopefully I'll be able to pick him up in a couple hours. But anyway, for the last couple weeks, I've been more focused on him, so instead of sewing, I just snuggle with my puppy. 

You can see the hyphema in his right eye in this picture:

My goal is that Monday, once the show has opened and I have evenings free, I'll jump back into sewing. I'd love to finish the Regency dress and get it out of the way, but by then all my materials for the 1890s gala gown skirt should have arrived, so I might do the skirt, then mockup the corset, then go back to the Regency dress while I'm waiting on corset supplies. Though of course, part of me just wants to do the 1890s shirtwaist and skirt project really quickly, too, and get that out of the way instead. I guess I'll just have to wait and see how I feel on Monday. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I finished my plaid 1830s dress yesterday! Here's some pics, and I should hopefully have pics of it on me on Monday, when we start dress rehearsals. 

Next, I'm going to make a super floofy cap to go with it. Should I use cotton organdy, silk organza, or something else (that would have to be available at Joanns)?
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I did a bunch of work on the 1830s dress this weekend, though not nearly as much as I was hoping to accomplish. In fact, I spent all day Saturday trying to get the bertha to work. I need to remember to try the bias strip method the next time I make a bertha, instead of just pleating bias fabric and attempting to get it to be perfect, because that is basically the most time-consuming and annoying thing ever. 

But anyway, the whole dress is entirely done at this point except the hem (part of which is pinned), and the sleeve hems. I'm hoping to do most of that today, since I'm able to do a fair bit of handsewing while I'm at rehearsals. 

I decided to go with hooks and eyes up the back and to wear my Regency corset, but with the wooden busk replaced by two side-by-side steels. I'll wear the corset whenever I'm wearing this dress, and I think I'll put it back on before "Who Will Buy" as well, since that's one less thing I'll have to change between the end of the song and the next Widow Corney scene, and the choreo for that song is pretty simple. I tried doing the choreo for "Consider Yourself" with the corset on, but it's way too complex, and requires a lot more flexibility than the corset allows, even without the wooden busk. And then for "Oom Pah Pah," I'm supposed to be drunk, and it's harder to be floppy drunk in a corset. 

I'd like to make a big floofy 1830s cap for this, too. Does anyone have any pattern diagrams that they recommend? 


Jan. 19th, 2018 08:09 am
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I re-pleated the second sleeve yesterday, and am halfway done adding the velvet bands. Today, I need to pleat the lining for the second sleeve, finish stitching down the velvet, and set the sleeves. 

I'm facing a conundrum, though - I'm wearing this first in Oliver as Widow Corney. Although I'm not dancing in this dress, I am dancing in the ensemble numbers in the show. Now, I built this dress to fit over my long-line Regency stays, but with the wooden busk in those, I can't do the choreography. So I figured it probably wouldn't be too big of a deal if I wear an underbust Victorian-style corset for the show, and just move over the hooks and eyes on this dress closure if necessary. But the underbust corset actually causes my mid-back (just above the corset line) to be too large to fit in the dress with the overlap required for the hooks and eyes. 

So now I have a decision to make - for wearing it in the show, should I just put in a zipper, since I only need a .5" seam allowance for that? (If I do that, I need to figure out what to do with the pleats at the CB, since I might have to reset them to match up with the extended bodice.) Or should I see if I'm able to wear/dance in the Regency corset without the wooden busk (maybe stitching in a couple boning channels in the busk pocket and adding German plastic boning, which I can then remove later)? I don't think I have time to do a corset change in addition to a costume/hair change...
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I worked on some costuming stuff for my show over the weekend. My bf and I distressed six lab coats, attacking them with scissors, an exacto, a belt sander, coffee, eyeshadow, and mascara until they looked appropriately grimy. I also made 14 cotton shoe bows, turned a pair of old leggings into bike shorts, and made red sequin bows to pair with my crazy 1830s hairpiece, since I'll be using it for the show.

I'm still trying to figure out what to do with my hair in act 1. I bought some new braids to try out that match my current haircolor, but I can't decide whether I want two hanging loops, two braided buns with the rest of my hair down, or a crown braid, or a high braided bun, or some combination of those. It's supposed to be a casual hairstyle worn with pajamas, but also possibly a tiara. The baroness is a bit crazy, after all.

I'm also finally starting the giant turquoise ballgown of doom. I think I can get both the skirt and the train out of about 12.5 yds of the 39.5" wide silk, which leaves 2.5 yards left for the bodice, so that's plenty. However, I don't think that's enough to cut all the ribbon trim out of the actual fabric, which means I have to find turquoise ribbon to match. This is my first time doing a court train, too, and while I'm lining the skirt with cotton organdy, I have no idea what to line the train with. I don't have enough fabric to line the train with more of the silk, but I feel like cotton isn't nice enough. I don't suppose turquoise silk organza would work as a liner, right? I want whatever I use to also give the train a lot of body. And let's be honest - probably the only time this train will be allowed to touch the ground is for the CoCo red carpet and pictures. After all, it's about a yard of trailing on the ground. (and is that even enough?)

Just as a reminder, this is the dress:
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I got one more gusset and seam done today, but that's it.

But rehearsal was sooo much fun! We choreographed the Bombie Samba (I'm playing the Baroness), and I don't think I've danced that much in a long time. It is so fast and so much choreography, but our director/choreographer is amazing, and all the other dancers are incredible, and it is going to look so good!

Hopefully I'll have some energy to work on my corset after my caroling gig tomorrow, though it's probably unlikely. 
theladyrebecca: (Default)
I did do a little work on the sheer dress before I took my sewing break this weekend. I got the bodice assembled, and started to fit it. I had one of the front sides fitted before I got overwhelmed (the sheer outer layer needed quite a bit of altering). I have since fixed the other front side to match. Most of it involved redoing the shoulder seams twice, and taking out quite a bit of excess fabric from the shoulder. I also enlarged the armseye slightly, since it still seemed way more dropped than it should be for the 50s.

Then today, I tackled the back. I was going for a back that was gathered into the waistband, but it just looked ugly and poufy, so I made a CB seam in the sheer layer to match the layer underneath, and it is now a fitted back. I also hemmed the skirt. I'd really love to get sleeves done tomorrow, and maybe even do all the bodice finishing, because then it will be done! I need to finish both this and Ariel by the end of next week.

Here's a pic from when I put it on to figure out the hem today. I'm wearing my old hoops with no hoop connecters on the bottom two hoops. I'm trying to keep the bottommost one around 100" circumference, but I don't want to cut my hoop steel, especially since you can't buy it anymore. It seems to keep itself in place pretty well, even without anything holding the steel in place besides the channel, but does anyone have any suggestions for actually securing it?

Oh, and in completely unrelated news, I found out an exciting bit of casting today! I'm going to be playing Rose Alvarez in an upcoming production of Bye Bye Birdie. It's my first time playing a lead role since 2010! :)

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