Friday, May 30, 2014

Steamtopia Preparations: Post the Fourth

  1. Airship uniform is DONE. I kinda just picked a spot and went for it with the wrist loops, we'll see how it works.
  2. Airship corset still needs that eyelet replaced, but I might just do it at the convention.
  3. Wash overskirt is almost finished actually.  I sewed the waist and sides, including the casings for the drawstrings, cut and attached all the strings, pleated the back to fit the waistband and sewed the waistband on, flipped and pinned the waistband. All that's left is finishing the waistband, sewing on a closure, and putting a button and maybe another string or two underneath for the poofing of the bustle. 
  4. Gold polonaise: I washed the brocade, and cut everything out, including the facings / lining pieces because I had enough of the brocade so it seemed silly to buy something else. I also cut out the interlining which had already been prewashed. I had a date with my friend's serger to finish all the edges this past week, but I caught some kind of plague and have been sick since last Thursday. So we rescheduled for tomorrow. Once all the edges are finished, I'll start construction. I need to figure out how I'm going to finish the armholes, since I'm doing it without sleeves (facing or just binding); and buy some buttons and trim.
  5. Pretty sure the garrison hat's not going to happen, however, my papa gifted me with a vintage top hat he owned so now I have that to make hat bands for! I already have pieces cut out for one out of the brocade. :)
I also need to prepare for my panels: I'm presenting Mentioning Unmentionables and Prominent Posteriors, at 530 pm on Friday and Saturday respectively. I'm excited because they're having a stitch and bitch Thursday night -- just a casual social hour to hang out and sew, finish costumes. Should be fun!

By the way, we are at less than two weeks now! A week and five days left to prepare! Eeep!

A bientot, mes amis!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Fabric Shopping!

There was a fabric warehouse going out of business in town a couple weeks ago, so I headed over with my friend Mimi and we met Rachel there. It was $2 per yard, $1 per yard if you got 100 yards or more.

Here's what I picked up:

I took most of it off the bolts the other day and gave them a estimate measure. The gold on gold stripe is for a black and gold rococo punk outfit and there's about two yard of it.  The blackberry pink in the front will probably be an apron or short bustle skirt because there's only a little over a yard and it's 45" not 54" like the others.  The green and white and the white on white stripes are both Waverly prints, and will probably be a summery Victorian gown (maybe for Toledo War).  There's four yards of the white and a little over two of the green.. The pink on pink stripe is for me to share with Rachel, haven't decided what I'm making yet. I'm planning to take a sample of each and run them through the washer to see how they wash. After being in a warehouse, they aren't exactly clean...

Steamtopia Preparations: Post the Third

1. Edwardian chemise - DONE!

Edwardian corset and chemise. I was checking the length to see if I was happy with it.

2. Airship uniform - I actually *just* sewed the closures on. I can't really figure out a good place for the wrist loops, I kind of tried the side and the middle of the train and I feel like it just ends up looking awkward.

3. New airship uniform corset - DONE! I plowed through and finished it this past weekend, just in time to wear out to Privateer's Promenade 2.0. The corset actually took a lot of work: I screwed up the lining so I ended up putting it in a piece at a time by hand. Which makes for a prettier lining, but it definitely takes longer.  I used gold eyelets from my stash, a black busk, and spiral steel (two on each seam). Flat steel would've been sturdier but it does cinch rather nicely. I did pop an eyelet lacing it so that needs replaced before Steamtopia.

Almost finished corset, trying to decide if I wanted to use gold or black for the binding.

Finished airship uniform corset!

And my outfit for the Promenade! Everyone said I looked amazing, so I think this is going with me to Steamtopia.

4. Wash overskirt - Coming along. I added the red ruffle, which was a labor of love: 45 minutes just to pin the hem, then once it was gathered I had to hand stitch it all on. But that's all taken care of now and I've got the waist / side seam pinned for the next step. So it's getting there!

Pinning the hem on around 11 yards of ruffles takes a while...

All pinned on and ready to sew!

5. Gold brocade polonaise - I cut out and fitted the mockup, it was just a smidge tight so I'll probably do a 3/8 or 1/2 inch seam instead of 5/8 like my usual. Next up is buying lining, washing the lining and brocade (after I zigzag the brocade's raw edges) and then cutting out the fabric, lining and interlining. I should probably also iron the interlining before I cut it out... I think that's going home with me to my parents' this weekend. I need to have it done by next Tuesday, I have a date with a friend to use her serger to finish the edges of all the brocade pieces so they don't ravel.

6. New white petticoat - DONE! It's really basic and simple but it's a new petticoat!

Basic, white batiste with white denim at for the hem facing and waistband.

7. Swimsuit - I ended up buying one from JCPenney's. It's a bikini and has this black lace / cut out that looks vaguely like ironwork and I think gives it a steamy feel.

8. Garrison hat - Haven't started or even really found a pattern yet, but I think I'll have time for it before the convention.

9. Grey bodice (the Governess bodice) - I took out some stitching on the ribbons along the front edges and restitched them down after tucking the ends under a little more. The ends were starting to come out so it went on the repair to do list. But now it's DONE! 

Also, Sock Dreams had a sale so I picked up a few things for Steamtopia:

L to R: Black Paris knee highs, black sheer to waist pantyhose, black striped lace topped thigh highs and white ruffled shorts to wear with the Edwardian underwear

T minus three weeks and two days! Cuz all the prep needs done by the 11th.

A bientot, mes amis!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Steamtopia Preparations: Post the Second

First of all, here's where I'm going: Steamtopia and here's the Archon and regular Facebook events for it. I should be working the Costuming track and presenting a couple panels on historical undergarments, but I don't have 100% confirmation of that yet so...*fingers crossed*  But they have a lot of awesome stuff planned, so even if I don't end up working the convention, I'm bound to have a great time! As of now, the Archon departs Columbus at noon on June 12th. :)

Secondly, I did find some time to sew over the weekend!

  • Edwardian corset -- DONE! Sewed the hooks and eyes to the bottom of the corset while at Family Camp with my church. Totally sat outside on the deck overlooking the stream with a friend and sewed. :)
  • Edwardian chemise -- Mostly done, including handsewing lace onto the front yoke. It ended up a little short and a little more high necked that I would have liked, so I pinned in a piece on the shoulders in between the shoulder seam to lengthen and lower the neckline. Haven't stitched it into place yet though. Once that's sewn, I'll try it on with the corset to check the length and decide if it also needs a ruffle at the bottom. I also plan to add more lace to the side and back neckline, but not the back yoke because I want to be able to tell the front and back apart!
  • Hand sewing lace onto the chemise yoke.
  • Airship uniform -- Still haven't touched it.
  • New airship uniform corset -- Basted the interlining together and fitted it, decided it was okay so I took it apart and cut out the gold satin and black pleather lace (for two panels only), basted all the layers, then sewed it all together.  Then I measured everything and ordered the busk and boning yesterday. Going for all steel this time! Trying to figure out the eyelets though, cuz I think the gold ones I have are too brassy. I can order black ones online though so that might just be the way to go... Once I have the busk, I'm going to put it in and do a fitting because I need to see how it fits through the hips.  I may have to make some lacing strips for that as well. Then comes the bone casings, the boning, the eyelets and the binding. I haven't decided 100% if I'm lining it or not.
  • Corset in progress.
  • Lobster tail bustle -- Finished replacing all the ties while at Family Camp, sitting on the aforementioned deck!
  • Wash overskirt --The apron has been trimmed in black and silver plaid bias strips, I cut the placket into the sides / back and finished it with bias as well. The placket isn't the prettiest thing ever, but it'll be covered by the bodice's tails so ... I also made more bias strips and pinned it to the hem of the sides / back.  Currently trying to decide if I want to add a red ruffle as well or not, out of the same fabric that the bodice is lined in. The hat has a tiny bit of red, so I kinda want to bring that on down.
  • Gold brocade polonaise -- I've been measured by a friend, and just figured out what size to make. So the next step is tracing the pattern and cutting out the mockup. Probably out of the interlining fabric so that I can then just use it as the pattern and as part of the finished garment. Once I get the brocade cut out, I'm going over to a friend's to use her serger to finish the edges. And I've been shopping for trim, cuz I'm gonna need a LOT of it.
  • New white petticoat -- Nothing, but I think I'm just going with a quick and easy pattern not the TV one I have. It'll be a lot simpler plus I don't think I have enough for an 1870s or 1880s TV petticoat.
  • Swimsuit -- Nothing. In fact, this is getting marked off. I really want to make it, but I've never made a swimsuit before and if I rush to get it done before Steamtopia, I'll just foul it up. So I'm better off to just say no to the project. And go buy a new one instead! Cuz I seriously haven't bought a swimsuit in like...7 years.
  • Also I'm thinking I need a garrison hat to go with my airship uniform. And I think I'm going to ask if I can borrow my dad's top hat as well, it'd look good with the polonaise...
HSF-wise: The chemise needs done by June 1st so I can take my pictures for the Art challenge. And I'm thinking I may just pound out that petticoat for the Black and White challenge, but the deadline is soooooon (May 15th) so I'm not sure if that's gonna happen or not.

But convention prep-wise? I feel like I'm pretty on top of this!! T minus FIVE WEEKS and I'll be on the road headed to the wild northern lands!

A bientot, mes amis!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Steamtopia Preparations: Post the First

I haven't gotten too much done yet, but here's my project updates:
  • Edwardian corset -- In a bag with hooks and eyes and blue thread
  • Making the Edwardian chemise -- Cut out and the first seam pinned
  • Airship uniform -- Nothing. Still in my garment bag.
  • New airship uniform corset -- Cut out the interlining, lengthening the pattern a little for a different look. It's pinned together for basting so I can try it on.
  • Lobster tail bustle -- Cut out all the old ties and started replacing them. I ran out of ribbon, so I think I have like four or five more to do. There's a lot of ties.
  • Wash overskirt -- Plan one: back and sides in silvery grey, front in black. But didn't have enough for that. So...after thinking about it, and asking friends, and thinking about it, and asking the HSF group and the Truly Victorian boards, and thinking about it some more, I decided to cut everything out of the grey satin, and just shorten / narrow as needed. So the apron is about 4 or 5 inches shorter than the pattern, the back / sides are a couple inches shorter and maybe a foot narrower than the pattern. I also pinned the darts and cut out the waistband.
  • Gold brocade polonaise -- Nothing so far, except reading the directions.
  • New white petticoat -- Nothing.
  • Swimsuit -- Nothing.
All in all, not too shabby for a few days work! I'm supposed to go to church camp tomorrow with my church family and maybe stay overnight (don't work til 2 pm on Sunday) and I have a Cinco de Mayo party to go to after work on Sunday, so I don't know how much I'll get done this weekend. But I figured a couple little hand sewing bits could go with me (like the Edwardian corset and the lobster tail bustle) and if I get the chance, I could sew.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Greatly Revised To Do List

If you read my post on SES, you'll know that I had a super awesome time. So awesome in fact, that when I found out about another steampunk convention happening up in Michigan this summer, I knew that I had to go.

The consequence? My to do list for this year and my HSF plans are basically screwed, because now I need to make new things for Steamtopia. So...Here's what I'm working on:

  • Actually finishing my Edwardian corset (hooks and eyes at the bottom)
  • Making the Edwardian chemise (this will actually be an HSF challenge!), which is already cut out!
  • Actually finishing the airship uniform: the skirt and petticoat need hook and eye closures on the waist, and they both also need wrist loops on the trains.
  • Making a new airship uniform corset that actually fits. I have some awesome ideas for this! I probably also need to either make a little bolero to wear or get a cute short sleeved black blouse to wear.
  • Fixing my lobster tail bustle. I used random bits for all the ties and some of them don't hold well at all. So I need to replace them with some grosgrain ribbon.
  • To go with my Governess bodice and black underskirt: a new overskirt in grey and black, using the TV Wash Overskirt pattern. Of course, I don't have enough grey for everything, so I'm trying to decide how to make it work.
  • Also to wear with my black underskirt: a gold brocade polonaise, using the Truly Victorian pattern. I'm the most nervous about this one, as it's going to need a mock up which means it'll take more time to make than usual. So cross your fingers!
  • I'd also like to make a new white petticoat, out of the rest of my poly cotton batiste. Mine is old, and if it's hot a sheer petticoat would be nice. But if it doesn't get made, no huge loss.
  • I'd also like to make a swimsuit, cuz Butterick just released a new Patterns by Gertie pattern for a super cute one! But ... time.
There's some pictures of fabrics and such over on my Instagram (midnyghtsnow)  And just in case you're wondering, I have six weeks. Actually a little less, because in six weeks, I'll probably be on my way to Detroit.

Six. Weeks.