mrs_maupin: (midona)

I woke up yesterday just after a dream where I was sewing (I was making a completely ridiculous corset with all sorts of embellishments stacked onto it, it was hideous but in my dream I found it beautiful... dreams are weird !), and I got up all motivated, eager to sew and suddenly feeling like my motivation is BACK !
I almost hit a snag right after dropping off the kids at school, though. I had barely poured myself a cup of tea when the phone rang, and I was asked to please come pick up Toad, who wasn't feeling well. She slept on the couch for the whole morning, and was amazingly un-clingy during the whole day. In fact, both kids were adorable and let me work with almost no interruptions. sometimes miracles happen, I guess :)

I zoomed through cutting out and assembling mock-up  #3 for a bride, and the fitting today went perfectly - I am really really proud of how the dress and jacket fit her. Now onto the real fabric - if I could just find a fine, ivory and navy striped charmeuse for the jacket lining that would be perfect.

I also finished altering the pattern for the kid's costume. I'm buying the fabrics tomorrow and I will probably get it done by Monday (no sewing time foreseen on the week-end).

Maybe, just maybe I'll manage to get pictures of myself in the 1895 blouse during the week-end - come to think of it, I will have a period-looking house at hand on Saturday. In the meantime I have taken a few pics on the dress dummy, and I'll do a full write-up in the next few days.

Corsage-blouse en taffetas, 1895
Now if I'm very good I might find some time to start working on something for me, or some corset stuff before we leave for the holidays.
mrs_maupin: (midona)

I managed to blog my 1895 bathing suit. totally weather- and season-appropriate, of course. and I noticed after uploading the post I have forgotten (and likely lost) the black bow that's supposed to go at the neck. Oops.
Costume de bain 1895
Anyway, the post is up there, with more pictures, and the Flickr album is here.

That took most of my morning, but I managed to make a good dent in my to-do list. I did not venture into the workshop today, though, which is always a bit frustrating. Maybe I'll get around to play a bit with fabric this week-end...
As of now, my 1895 blouse like this - no closures yet except for the hooks and eyes that keep the lining shut, no sleeves,, and still missing the piece that craps around the lower back and probably something to spice up the collar. But all edges on the body of the blouse are finished in neat, invisible handstitches.
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mrs_maupin: (midona)

So the body lining of the bodice/blouse is done. I ended up moving a seam and the two front darts, adding a little horizontal dart at the bustline at CF (there's one in an 1895 dress in Janet Arnold, so I felt justified in doing so), changing the armscye, and I will need to take my usual small dart at center back at the neckline.
It fits nicely enough - maybe the armscye is a little too high on the shoulder, I will see. I mocked-up the standing collar and did neither choke nor get mad at A Thing Around My Neck. This is good, because I'm really bad at tolerating anything that hugs my neck too closely.
I haven't touched the sleeve itself much, jsut cut out the lining part for one to check how it works with the new armscye.

I got the clothes I ordered for the kids' Halloween costumes, and one of the leggings is the wrong color. Toad decided she wants to be Harley Quinn afer all - so I ordered black leggings and what I thought were red ones. except they are a dark pink/cranberry color. Nope nope nope. I am probably going to just use the black, add some red decoration on top, a red tulle skirt, and make her a two-tone hoodie.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

This is the vibe I am getting from the blush and black combination on the 1890s riding corset. The addition of lace only strenghtened the theme.20161011_16454920161014_133900
The corset is actually done, but I didn't manage to get good pictures of it yet. It is raining cats and dogs outside and the light is gloomy at best.
It is not as comfy as the black overbust I made this summer, especially when I don't move much, but it is amazingly nice to wear on a walk - which was sort of the idea. It is supposed to go under an 1890s hiking outfit at some point, after all.
It gives me between 7 and 10 centimeters down from my natural waist (depending on how much said natural waist expanded after a meal of fresh stuffed pasta and how tight I lace it). I know I can get down a further 2 to 3 centimeters, but that requires a really different patterning.
Now of course I have tons of idea for the next corset I want to make, or rather the five or six I want to make, oooooops. At least I am enjoying having some creative output again !

September has been really hard on me, stress, bad news, looming bad news that took ages to arrive... that really slowed me down and killed any motivation I had. The riding corset, even thought it was nowhere on my "to sew now" list, helped me get back into the groove. I have also joined Inktober - a bit late, but still. I managed a quick drawing per day for the last week. It is good to get back into the drawing habit. I am forcing myself to make this quick and easy and to not overthink it. Maybe I'll get back to more intricate stuff later, maybe not, it feels good to make things a little looser  and put away my perfectionnism once in a while.
20161012_160025
So this happened, and now I kind of want to make myself a tartan, victorianesque young McGonagall outfit... It hit a record number of likes on IG, too, which I really didn't expect.

I have started the Halloween stuff for the kids - Heimlich's bat cape just needs a closure. I have to make him a mask and arm braces after that, then I'll just wait on the clothes I need to customize for the rest of their outfits.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

After a second mock-up, I decided the fit of the corset was good enough and I just went for the real fabric,  a "dot" coutil with tiny black polka dots on a dusty rose ground. I am experimenting with single layer construction, placing the (contrasting) boning channel on the outside on top of the seams. It is looking good so far.
20161007_112709 20161008_153119 20161008_182302 20161010_221733
The only hissue was my iron deciding to start spitting out brown gunk, twice on the corset, once on the cotton organdi I need to iron to make Chardon's petticoats. I tried giving it a good cleaning but it doesn't seem to be enough, and, well, it's kind of old. I can't recall very precisely, but somewhere around 7 years is not too bad for an iron I use daily, one that has made quite a few jumps from the ironing table to the floor. The plate is dented and a little bent, the plastic looks half-burnt in some places... I am probably updating to a steam plant this time, and one with a scale deposit control thingie.

I'd probably have bought it yesterday if I hadn't had a sick Heimlich with me. First cold of the season, and as usual it turned into a full blown asthma attack. Off to the doc now, as it's no much better today.

Second rehearsal for the 2017 show was on Sunday, and we all stumbled through the Feurfest polka. It can only get btter, right ?

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I have a mock-up ! And it... mostly fits. There was some really odd sticking out at the bottom front, but it was actually an easy fix. The mock-up turned out a little big all around - although not evenly too big, so I have lots of small alterations to make.
Right now I took it in at various places (front and back at the bottom. The top has this slightly weird line that goes up between the breasts but doesn't really support the on the sides, I took it in very slightly but I'm not 100% sure of how it is supposed to fit there.
The waist ended up bigger than what I was aiming for. I think it is partly inherent to the cut of this corset, as it wasn't meant to be laced super tightly. I still feel I could go down an inch or two, but I'd need to change the lines over the hips so... I'm torn between following the original shape and making something that I find more flattering on my body.

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mrs_maupin: (believe)

Not really much sewing happened today - I worked a little ont he 1890's walking skirt. It now has piping at the hem and a partly attached large stirp of organdi at the bottom. when the strip is done I still have the waistband to finish, and I need to add something to support th epocket. and hope for the best as the skirt is insanely pieced.

I really really did not want to stay home this afternoon, so we tried out a museum I didn't know yet with the kids. Local history thing, not very big and a bit jumbled together. Half a room in bronze age, the next half room in iron age, then gallo-romans, then renaissance... On top of first Crhtistians stuff. Mostly I pointed out objects they might not know, oil lamps, coins, silex knives, and tried to give them big outlines. The museum advertised as including some kids' activities... couldn't find them, and the general language was geared more towards adults. they had pretty fabulous small scale models of prehistoric shelters and houses, so that was a clear winner.
The kids were pretty wiped after that, so we crashed at a nearby bakery and I let them have two pastries ech. Nazgulette ate one and a half, and the big roll ate his + what her sister left of her strawberry tart. I have *no idea* where he puts all of this. I was afraid they would'nt eat anything for dinner but they cleared their plate ( I guess making cauliflower pancakes helped).

I haven't been very good at posting my daily pictures, or at takign them. I'm trying to get into it again. Not really easy this week. Although I am very proud of the pictures I took of the kids today, because for the first time ever I shot in manual, and the result was reasonably good ! Woohoo ! Not going to abandon auto-focus anytime soon, though, I just can't see if the picture is blurry before it's on my computer screen with my eyes :(.
IMG_6914 IMG_6919 IMG_6959
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mrs_maupin: (1890s)

I posted all about my corset cover. It's just a corset cover, but still a long post.

IMG_6307 DSC_0441

The post is here.

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mrs_maupin: (midona)

Nazgul-girl is down with a cold and  a fever. I think she's staying home tomorrow. That will somewhat put a damper on sewing things.

Coat #2 has been sent and weather-tested. There are some adjustments to make - including ht efact that for some unknown reason, the coat seems to have grown since the last fitting - or the wearer has lost a lot of weight. Or maybe I was drunk/high on jasmine tea while cutting. No idea, but we're figuring something out. Weird. Not big dal, just... weird.

Olympa has made some progress... and then I ripped the center back seam apart because it was pulling. It's sitting in the time-out corner of my sewing area now, because I'm angry at the dress. I'm thinking about adding a center back gore for more hem width, it might help with the pullign, too.

I have done a good job at adding velvet gore into the black 1890s skirt today. Tomorrow, if Nazgul-girl allows it, I want to add some length at the hem, apply the old pieces on top and sew the panels back together. Alternative plans for the day include finishing the blog post on my corset-cover and doing some painting with the kids - I was thinking about a museum visit first but with a sick kid that's out for this week.

mrs_maupin: (duckie)

And so, by chance, I discovered that the current state of the website remodel doesn't allow me to easily link to a picture hosted on my own website.
Option one was find another plug-in and a way to go around the limitations of the current template. Estimated time to understand and fiw the issue : two weeks. Option two : just move everything I can to FlickR.
Guess where my fashion plates will reside in the future ?...  Sometimes, it's just not worth my time when I have a simpler option.

One hiking coat is done-ish. It should have been delivered yesteday but the train didn't cooperate, so I still have the coat and E. is hiking in the woods with her old one. Which means I have time to fiw the small things I couldn't do before, like ordering the right cordstops and adding grosgrain loops at the hem.

The corset cover is also done, I'll try to take pictures on Monday.

I have started takign apart my old black skirt to upgrade it into a better mid-1890s piece. It was a quick and dirty job and served me well, but I can do better now. Plus, it's too small in the waist now..The plan is to take it apart entirely, see if I can piece some fullness to the back from the fabric I have, and add gores of black velvet between panels. I have a few reference images of that, and it seems like a period-correct approach to altering a garment. It uses up fabric from the stash ; and they *loved* using velvet as a trim.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Ok, I think I'm done with the phone and emails for the moring...

Checked some details for the latest commissions by email.
Contacted models for the runway project.
Organized one hair-dresser, possibly another make-up artist.
Invited them to next week's prep reunion.
Organized my participation in a group exhibition in two weeks.
Finished the blog posts about my 1780s stays. I still have a bunch of pictures to edit but I have enough to make the post.

Shooting corset rococo Corset années 1780 en brocard

Blog post to be found here.

On the sewing side, the corset cover is done and awaiting the right ribbon.
With some help from the Home Geek I tamed the zippers for the hiking coat, and I'm now back to sewing them in place. Still scared of zippers, but at least now the sliders can't zip off on their own anymore.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

One hiking coat is coming along nicely, mostly sewn togather now.

After dinner I switched to the "free time" project, aka corset coveR. It is done... mostly. Mostly because I don't have the right ribbon to thread through the eyelets, I haven't tried it over the corset, and I swed the last button on th wrong side of the fabric. I'm taking this as a sign I should Go. To. BeD. Now.

So good night word !

mrs_maupin: (mulue)

So the fabric for the hiking gear came yesterday, and I sent the first batch through pre-wash as soon as I was semi-functional. It dries very quickly but tonight I still have one length hanging in the staircase, because my machine had a hard time actually washing it. Naturally water-proof fabric is a little TOO waterproof for its taste.
I thought I'd be all cut out by tonight but most of the day was spent ironing (yay...), re-rolling, then planning out the steps to actually sew the whole thing. So many tiny details I'm really not used to. This is way way waaaay out of my comfort zone ! I actually made written list of all the steps and how I should do them. That's a first.
I have started laying things out on the fabric for one coat, but I'm not done yet. I hope I can finish tracing all pieces before the kids rampage through the living-room tomorrow. the cat has already found the fabric, but she's an old lady now, she just quietly sits on it and won't cause much damage.

Down to 15 eyelets to make on the corset cover, due to a few small breaks here and there and nighttime sewing yesterday. I'd really much like to get it done for the photoshoot on Thursday. I haven't yet decided on the lace I am going to use. I have the lace I used for my chemise and matching drawers, but only the fake (and a little scratchy Valenciennes, there's no more of the whitework. I'm considering only using whitework, I think I have enough in the stash of a scalloped something.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I have finished mocking up the "Olympe" dress, and cut out most of it. I ended up havign to do a second, full length sleeve mock-up, and then cutting out all four layers of left + right sleeve + lining in duchess satin kinda killed my hands. The duchess satin seemed lighter on the roll, but it does have a good body when I want to cut it ! It's not silk (display item meant to be ahuled around various displays + photoshot in the woods = needs to be very washable), but it's still very pretty. Especially when the rool unrolls itself on the floor and the workshop gets a temporary shiny blue floor covering.

No pictures yet because it doesn't look like anything yet, really.

I added a few more pictures (with description, that's actually what takes up most of the time) to the 1894 FlickR album. I also uploaded a bunch of older pictures - as in 2006-old. I needed them available online to plan a photoshoot. The photographer came today to have a look at what I had and we're probably going to work with the two late bustle dresses I made. They need some minor repairs and alterations - I'm waiting until I have a firm yes from the models to really look into it.

I have done all the front eyelets on the corset cover, marked those in the back and started on them. Not counting yet because that would only be depressing :p

mrs_maupin: (midona)

The blog post is slowly taking shape. It should be done by tomorrow.

The Oympe dress (modern evening/bridal wear for my protfolio) is mocked-up except for sleeves, which are partly mocked-up. I want to avoid making a full mock-up if at all possible. The skirt part should be fairly straightforward - simple angled panels for fullness. I'm running short on musling for mock-ups, I should probably pick some up before the kids come back, but I don't want to brave Ikea just yet.

Since I was good today I gave myself some time to play and scanned a bunch of pictures from my magazines collection. All of them from La Famille, January 1894. I'm putting them on FlickR for now, because my website is awaiting a complete overhaul and I don't want to upload things there until it is done. (BTW, I also worked with the Home Geek on the website, I'm waiting for him to arrange a few technical things and then I can get going on updating it for good. One more thing accomplished !)
Just a small selection of the pictures below :
28 janvier 1894, La Famille Toilette habillée Robe de deuil Jaquette de demi-saison Robe de soirée ou de grand dîner

I am trying to be good but there are a couple volumes on eBay that are calling my name right now. Not that I have scanned more than a teeny-tiny part of the whole collection, mind you. Today I have moved a few of the books, and I had to take some upstairs because they no longer fit in the downstairs shelves. Or maybe I should put the comic books upstairs and leave the living-room shelves for costume books + board games (another thing that we have an ever-increasing number of and tha I  have no intention of trimming).

I might also have spent a good part of my work breaks dreaming about 1790s riding habits. I might be thinking about a Théroigne de Méricourt inspired costume. What is sure is that right now I don't have the time for this, nor the occasion... But dreams of costume ar sweet dreams.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I'm kid-free for two weeks ! I thought I would jump right back into work, but no.

So instead I made progress on the current historical me-projet - aka finally a corset cover.



I hadn't realized how many eyelets I will have to sew. At least I will get a tad better at it, I guess. And rewatch a lot of Dr Who.

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