Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Picture Perfect

 Sometimes, a great photography shoot just happens (at least it does when you are married to a professional photographer). And this is one of those shoots.

 I wasn't particularly planning on shooting this outfit but my hubby had the backdrop and lights all set up for a client so I jumped on the chance for some nice photos.

I tend to prefer outdoor shoots for outfits because the lighting is easier and we can often get away with no flashes but studio lighting can be magical too!

This setting needs some hair light since shooting black hair against a black background is hard but I'm loving how I look in this shoot!

I know I'm so lucky to have a professional photographer as a hubby because he makes me look good on film (or, you know, in pixels).

 Thanks to my hubby for making me feel more glamorous than usual!

 photos by: Will Thorpe Intelligent Design

Monday, December 30, 2013

2013: A Year In Review

With 2013 almost gone, it's always time to take some time to reflect on things I've accomplished this year.

Favorite Make: BBQ Dress / Least Favorite Make: 1940s tropical wrap dress

Favorite Outfit: Bubble Gum / I wish I'd worn more often: 1950s patio dress

I'm proud that I: made more separates this year / I'm excited that: I finally got retro glasses

I'm most proud of making: 1950s plaid silk dress with crazy plaid matching skilz on the set in sleeves / Favorite knitting project: Teardrop Bolero

Plaid Silk Group Project

Thanks for making 2013 a great year! Happy New Year!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Historical Sew Fortnightly: A Year In Review

Phew! It's been a busy year on the costuming front! This was the first year that I actually felt like a costumer rather than a seamstress who occasionally makes a costume. Participating in Historical Sew Fortnightly really helped keep me motivated and get stuff done for Costume College.

Challenge #0: Something Simple-19-teens bra

Challenge #1: Centennial-1913 combinations

Challenge #2: UFO-1930s style pjs

Challenge #3: Under it all-1916-ish corset

Challenge #6 Stripes, Challenge #7 Accessory and Challenge #8 By the Sea-19-teens striped skirt, belt and middy blouse

Challenge #12 Pretty, Pretty Princess-Late 19-teens Renaissance inspired fancy dress

1910s dress-0233

Challenge #15 White- 1914 day dress

Challenge #18- Remake, Reuse, Refashion-Elizabethan Sleeves

Challenge #19- Wood, Metal, Bone-Elizabethan fitted kirtle

Challenge #20-Outerwear- Faux fur partlet

In the end, that makes 12 of the 27 challenges and I've already started on things for next year!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

New Year's Eve Glam

This week's tutorial is a glamorous look for your New Year's Eve party. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

HSF 2014

With a new year of Historical Sew Fortnightly just around the corner, I've been thinking about what I want to focus on. With the inclusion of 1938-1945 for next year, I'm sure there will be some early 40s sewing but my Elizabethan court dress needs some major work.

When I first made this dress, I was 30 lbs heavier and not nearly as good of a seamstress. I decided that the easiest thing would be to completely scrap the current bodice and start from scratch. I've already made two corsets for this dress and I really want to wear it with my new wool kirtle since it gives me such a good shape.

First, I drafted a new pattern from my kirtle pattern. I shortened it since my kirtle is a bit long in the waist, added a point in the front to match the original design of the bodice.

Next I added a bit of boning in the same locations as the original bodice-three on the front and one on each of the back pieces.

Next, I'll be using more period construction techniques to make the bodice and then I'll make hand sewn eyelets.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Youtube: Victory Rolls with a Twist

Today's hair tutorial is a twist on the traditional victory rolls which is great if you want to change things up or if you haven't mastered those elusive perfect center part victory rolls.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Graduation Dress

This weekend, I graduated with my Master's in Chemistry! Woot! And I made a dress for the occasion!

I used Simplicity 3997 from 1940 and made it up in a beautiful navy wool.


This dress had a lot of difficult bits including grading up from a 30" bust, making bias binding, making bias cording and some sleeve fitting issues.

But I conquered this dress and I love it!

I accessorized it with a vintage maroon hat and pearl earrings.

I still want to make a matching belt for this dress but I ran out of time and didn't have enough belt making supplies on hand.

I'm so loving the early 40s right now so expect some more early 40s sewing in the new year!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Last Chance

Sometimes you just have things that don't work. And that is the story of this dress.

It never fit quite right but I did tweak it a bit so it's better.

I think the green turtleneck helps a lot but I'm still on the fence about it.

I think the neckline is what throws me still. It's way high and just odd.

So what do you think? Does this dress deserve some more work or should this be it's last chance?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Knit for Victory and other things

I've been busy knitting away for Tasha's Knit for Victory knit along. So far I'm working on a lovely sweater from A Stitch in Time Vol. 2.

My Ravelry project page.

I've also picked up some gorgeous emerald tweed yarn for this sporty jacket and matching hat. Can't wait to get started!

The graduation dress is still coming along. I did finally buck up and make my own bias tape for this project so that part is done. Just sleeves, a zipper and hemming to go!

And we have a new addition to the family! Kiwi, a green check conure!

He's still quite shy but so cute! :D

Monday, December 9, 2013

It's a Wonderful Life

This weekend, my hubby and I and some friends went out to see a play of It's a Wonderful Life. The play was really great! They did it like a radio show with four actors doing almost all of the parts. There was also an a capella quartet, a pianist and a sound effects guy. I'd never seen It's a Wonderful Life but I really loved it.

It was quite fun and I never pass up an opportunity to get dressed up!

I love this dress! It's a black taffeta with a velvet "print" on it.

Since everything goes with black, I choose to pop the outfit with pink accessories! (Well, actually, I picked pink since this hat went best with my hair.)

The hat is vintage but the earrings are lucite repros from Sparkle Lux. I love them! I also got a great blue pair too.

Also, I finally got my new glasses in! They are actually a very pale pink. I love them!

It was quite a fun night! And they did a great job with the costuming too. The main actress who played the wife Mary had a fabulous dusty rose dress and a great hat! So wanted to steal it!