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May. 22nd, 2018

I finished the petticoat on Friday, minus the detachable train. I quite like how it looks currently, and I'll just have to wait and see how much of a train it needs. I also sewed together two panels of the fabric for the skirt lining. The back piece of this skirt (from Patterns of Fashion) is sooo huge. I'm actually not sure where I'm going to be able to lay it out to pattern and cut it. It's definitely too large for my sewing table. I'm hoping that I can fit it on the floor in my bedroom, because that means I can close the door. If I wind up having to do it on the living room floor, there's nothing to prevent my dog from walking on it, and especially once I get to the silk layer, that will be quite a problem! I'm hoping to buckle down and do it tonight.

It's weird, though - now that I don't have my regular rehearsal schedule, I feel so much more scattered, to the point where, even though I probably technically have more free time, my brain is spending so much effort trying to figure out what all I'm supposed to be doing that I have no energy left for sewing. For example, today I'm doing a fitting, and I need to mow the lawn and do laundry. I also need to study my lines, and sew. Yesterday, I ran some errands and spent the evening working on stuff for my costume coordinator gig. Tomorrow, I'm meeting with a friend to study for a Harry Potter Trivia event on Sat, and going to a non-themed trivia tomorrow evening. And Thurs, I have a poorly timed rehearsal 2 hrs after work (not enough time to warrant driving home and back in traffic), so I'll be working on lines and costume coordination between, and won't get home till 8pm. I miss having a regular schedule...

May. 17th, 2018

The petticoat (minus the detachable train) is almost finished. I just need to hem the bottom ruffle. What I wound up doing is having one ruffle that goes all the way around the skirt, but is about 10" closer to the hem in the front than in the back, because I was seeing that on some extants. Then I put another ruffle that is wide at the CB, and tapers out at the sides, then another shorter ruffle that goes all the way around the hem, each ruffle attached to the one about it. And naturally, because it is so ruffly, it ate up at least 7.5 yds (if not more) of my 9 yds of fabric. So now I'm not really sure I have enough pimatex left for the train...

I think once I hem the bottom ruffle, I'm going to move on to the skirt, so that I can see just how much oomph I need for the train portion. That way I can also tell if I can supplement with a different kind of fabric, or if I need to order more Pimatex. I don't know how much of it I'll get to this weekend, since it's the final weekend of my show. But I really want to be done with this petticoat and get going on the skirt. Time is quickly running out, and to add to that, I just accepted a gig as Costume Coordinator for a show this summer. 

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Petticoat Progress

I don't really know why I didn't do any sewing last week. I think it was a combo of time and of mojo. Or rather, a lack of both. But I did have time yesterday evening! The petticoat now has a waistband, and the base layer has a hem, and there is one tier of a ruffle on, too. I'm going to add another tier of ruffle, hopefully tonight. And then I have to make the detachable train part. I have no idea if I'm doing this right at all. I'm trying to make a good 1890s shape that will work for the gala gown as well as for the shirtwaist/skirt outfit I'm making. Hopefully I didn't make the hem too long for that.

I bought some navy wool at a flash sale, which arrived over the weekend, and I'm planning to use that for the shirtwaist/skirt outfit, so that I don't have to cut into the heavier weight wool flannel I have. Part of me really wants to work on that, but I think the reason for my really bad CADD is just that I know the gala gown will be a long project, and making the petticoat (and corset for it, assuming I have time) are the most boring parts. I want to do the pretty skirt decorating! 

In other news, I did a big overhaul on my costumer website, and the gallery is almost completely reformatted and updated. Check it out and tell me what you think! ladyrebeccafashions.com

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I sewed!

And then I unsewed. And then I sewed again. 

I had pulled out TV 121 because I liked the detachable train, and it said it would work as a petticoat for the 1890s, even though it's supposed to be natural form. Except it totally doesn't work for 1890s. And naturally, I realized this after cutting out all the skirt pieces and a couple of the ruffle pieces, and sewing together the front panels of the skirt. 

So then I was left with, how do I take what I have already cut out, and translate it into something that actually works. Luckily, I also had TV 170 on hand, and view 4 says it's for the 1890s. Maybe this time it will be true? Anyway, I am doing a modified version of the 170 pattern now, since I was trying to use what I had on hand, at least a little. I completely recut the center front piece (luckily, I got a whole bunch of the Pimatex for this), and cut the side fronts out of the four front panels of the 121 pattern. For the back, I cut the top layer of the 121 back in half, and added in the bottom layer in the center. It's pretty much exactly the back width of the 170 piece now at the waist, and it flares out wider to the hem, which I think will be better for me anyway. I have just the side seams to go, then all of those will be together, and then I have to figure out how I want the ruffles. I do still want to do a detachable train, too, since the skirt will have a big train. I am a little tempted to start on the skirt, though, so that I can see just what shape I need the petticoat to be, and then winging it from there.

I don't know why I thought this would be as easy as grabbing a pattern off the shelf. I'm incapable of making things easy. 

And of course, now that I'm back in the mood to sew, I need to stop and spend all my free time cleaning the house, because my mom comes to visit on Thursday night. 
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. 

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CoCo Plans

Ack! I'm flying down to Costume College three months from tomorrow morning. Where has the time gone?

Anyway, for my own sanity, and if anyone is interested, here's a breakdown of what I'm planning to wear to CoCo, and their current status. 

Thursday Pool Party - Red Silk Regency Laughing Moon Dress - needs sleeves, hem, skirt trim. Maybe a bonnet, but I might not bother. 
Friday Day - 1890s plaid shirtwaist and navy skirt -
Not started. I know I have the fabric for the shirtwaist, and I think I have the fabric for the skirt, but I'm not positive
Friday Night Social - Yellow Titanic Deck Dress - completely finished (I'm also wearing this on the Wed afternoon before CoCo for a visit to the Queen Mary, if anyone wants to join me. We're going to wear our Titanic outfits)
Saturday Day - 1830s plaid silk dress and yellow bonnet - completely finished
Saturday Gala - Yellow silk 1890s evening gown from the Hermitage
- not started. I also plan to make a new corset and petticoat for this.
Sunday - Mauve and Burgundy striped bustle gown
- completely finished

I think I'm in an okay place, especially since I most likely won't have rehearsals from May through CoCo. The gala gown will be a lot of work, but the shirtwaist/skirt should be relatively simple, and the Regency dress doesn't have too much left to do on it. I think it might also be slightly less of a nightmare to pack this year. The only thing besides the gala dress that will be difficult for packing is the yellow bonnet for the 1830s dress, but I can always carry that loose on the plane if I need to. Of course, I'm still unsuccessful in overlapping undergarments. This will require 4 different corsets, 7 different petticoats, and at least 4 pairs of shoes. 

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