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.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

So I caught some bug and have been sick for the last few days. Fever and a very sore throat, plus some stress and neck pain = bad sleep for two days. Now I am desperately trying to catch up on things for the bridal fair - I'm putting my booth up this afternoon, yikes !

It turns out it's great I had a fabric mismatch with Chardon, because I just learnt three days ago I only had three models in the runway show at the bridal fair. Yeah, how about tellign me that upfront when I booked the fair ?

I did get Madras done for the short version. The longer skirt, well, if by some miracle I get enough time, I'll try to get it done, but I seriously doubt it. I'm supposed to start putting things up in less than an hour and a half, I'm finishing lunch, and the car isn't loaded - but it's only a ten minutes drive, so that should turn out okay.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I had the little yearly chat with the kids. Heimlich wants to be Batman, and Toad, quite predictably, Elsa (I am rather surprised she hasn't asked before, actually). Now onto the brainstorming part :

Batman :
- will get black jeans, because I really don't want to make pants just for that
- check if black boots still fit
- make a "bat-ty" cape out of the black felted wool I have
- possibly buy a belt, I found some cheap ones
- make or adapt sweater with bat appliqué
- solve the mask vs. glasses conflict. Ugh.

- she may reuse her sparkly shoes - they're a darker shade of blue, but still good.
- cape of some sort, with sparkles
- sparkly dress, not floor length because I'd like it to last longer than one evening, thankyouverymuch
I don't really have any fabrics for her, though...

Not sure what I will wear... If I managed to make myself that silk 1890s blouse, I could wear it with the black skirt I refashioned and my Little Red Riding Hood cape, though. That's a bit much maybe for a month on top of regular work, but it sure would feel good to strike that one from the projects list...

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Not having the Home geek around is obviously not good for me. It seems my motivation flew away in his suitcase

I did get some progress on the Madras dress - only for two days I was un picking every stitch I made because I kept making mistakes, or not thinking through how I would assemble the whole thing. Today was better - rather weirdly as I had the kids around and it's usually hard to concentrate with them in the house. Everything on the main dress is done except for hand sewing a lot of little things. The detachable overskirt is assembled and needs a waistband. I think I have - theoretically - solved the problem of attaching it to the main dress.

The Chardon gown is now on the backburner - the silk organza I got from PureSilks was totally NOT the swatch they sent me. By some sheer luck I had also ordered another fabric that ended up being said swatch. It took abotu two days for them to accept that I send the fabric back (at my own expense), and they should send me the other fabric instead. and refund me the difference. Fingers crossed for that.
Needless to say, they have been moved to the "oy, beware !" side of my providers. Okay if I'm not in a hurry, and have some flexibility as to what I really want only. *sigh*

Today was a bit better, energy-wise. I suspect yesterday's ballet lesson helped - it was still intense, but a bit better than last week. After physical therapy this morning I dragged myself to the market - good food always puts me back in a good mood. I only really needed parmesan, and a few ready-to-reheat meals. We had tourtons (fried pasties with potato-based filling) for lunch, and tomorrow evening, since we will be coming home late form Heimlich's physical therapy, we'll have pumpkin filled fresh italian pasta. While I was there I grabbed some veggies - mainly because they come from a local producer and are generally tastier than what we can find at the Saturday market - the tomatoes are fantastic, and since the HG isn't home they're just for ME ! Fresh tomatoes with a few leaves of lettuce and a dash of olive oil, walnut oil and balsamic vinager, mmmhhh....

Sep. 18th, 2016 08:50 pm

Yay Fall !

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Temperatures have dropped a good 10°C int he last two days, and it is raining. Now I want to cozy up on the couch with a book/movie, hot chocolate and my knitting bag. which was about the program of the week-end.

I have been very low on energy the past few days, so decided to just give myself a break. We spent the days at the Darkstone's new and spacious home - I was hoping to enjoy the garden, but apart form marveling at how much butternut squash they will harvest in a few weeks, we mostly stay inside, dry and mostly warm - I am, however, very jealous at their vegetable garden. Especially of the tomatoes. Yummy, juicy, sweet tomatoes...
Well, the radishes have sprouted here, and with t little luck I will be able to get back into gardening a little more this year...

I picked up the knitting again, did the front and about half the back of my Espenson, maybe I can join them again in a few days. I finished a small  hat for Toad... and it was way, way waaaayy too small. So I frogged it and will now proceed to casting it on. Again. *sigh*

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I did some comfort shopping today (to console me from the fact that I am a single parent for the next two weeks, woe is me) - I went to just get a pair of black leggings (badly needed since my ballet stuff didn't come in time, grumble), and well... that escalated quickly. Three pair of skinny jeans, a Wonder Woman t-shirt (I can never resist geeky stuff) and... a pair of brown corduroy bellbottoms ? Not very wide, but with just enough flare to look almost exactly like some I had almost twenty years ago (and regretted ever since I wore them to death). I was tempted to buy two pairs, just to get me through until they come back in fashion yet another time...

Ballet wiped me out. It was... intense. Wow. The course is a bit crowded - for now. It was the trial course, so I'm not sure everyone will register for the year.

I did some work on Madras - fighting the printed cotton lining mostly, and piecing the hell out of it to get enough fabric for the skirt. And then I spent something like two hours ordering new  big format prints of some pictures for the bridal fair. That was beyond frustrasting, but it is done, and they should be here in time, yay !

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I had an epiphany regarding the Madras" skirt. It was getting too pale, so I just added one layer of bright red and another of hot pink tulle underneath the last 5 layers of white tulle - and now it's just perfect. I sewed everything together and made a mock-up of the bodice.

There really wasn't any time to do more, not two doctor's appointements today. She's never perfectly on time, and I waited about 20 minutes this morning, but she was really late this afternoon witht he kids. So after that, we just went home, ate pizza (yay for leftovers), and the kids went bed.
After dinner I started on a skirt to go with my black coutil corset. I have done the bulk of it, it just needs a waistband, zipper, and hem. And it has pockets, yay ! I love pockets, I just tend to forget them every time I sew a skirt for myself.

I also prewashed the cotton voile for Chardon's petticoat - I hung it on the clothesline just before dinner, and it was dry about two hours later, when I heard a storm coming. Sadly, it was just a bit of lighting and some thunder, not a drop of rain.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

My Mom went into the hospital today, my dear friend gets her MRI, so today is the day we shoudl find out  a little more about both of them. Fingers crossed and all that. Thank you for your kind words and prayers.

Not much sewing happened this week-end. I had a fitting appointements, which went extremely well - except the jacket mock-up being off, for an unknown reason the bust ended up waaaaay too high there. Next time a mock-up seems off, redo it, I'm probably right.
Dealing with *people* then wiped me out for the evening, I fell asleep on the couch while the HG was out to get pizzas.

We did a good deal of gardening, too. Since it's still hot and summery, we decided we'd try for some radishes. We planted a good half of the flower bulbs. We'd like to plant the rest on the other side of the house to make the entrance more... civilized ?
The HG put up the net under the hazel tree, and we picked a basket of hazelnuts from the ground. I'm not really lookign forward to cracking them all open and roasting them and removing the outer skin, but it will be worht it in the end. Homemade nutella, plus, those hazelnuts taste about 300% better than the store-bought ones.

I have cut almost 25 layers of tulle for the Madras dress... and I'm not entirely sold on the result. The skirt itself is cute and airy, I'm just not sure how to tie it with the white sergine and the orange madras print I have planned to use...
I am probably going to banish it to the naughty corner and work on Chardon today, since I got the fabric for the petticoat in the mail. Because  I thought I had lots of white fabric, but I did not have enough for a large crinoline petticoat, at least not in something that did not weigh the same as a dead donkey. Going to make said petticoat adjustable - since I'm making this, I can at least make sure I can wear it if I somehow get in the mood for a crinoline dress.

Sep. 7th, 2016 10:05 am


mrs_maupin: (midona)

Serre-taille en cours de patronageI've got the 1890's riding corset all patterned and traced out. I didn't go as far as mocking up yesterday as I had hoped, though.
I used a mix of their intructions and of the drafting method I've been taught this summer - starting from my true measurements to place the waist, under-bust and mid-hip line. For the rest you just need one vertical line per panel, and the instructiosn tell you how to divide the width for each panel from there.

I also cleaned out the bodice pattern for the Chardon gown (grey silk organza on white ottoman, big round crinoline of doom), now I'm just waiting for the silk organza to arrive.

The other fabrics came in jut yesterday morning (like, lightning fast !), with a HUGE envelope of swatches. I think I have about a swatch of half the fabrics my provider carries - definitely of the most interesting ones. And I finally have a swatch book of their tulle with the color codes on them. Because there's nothing harder than trying to differentiate a very fine peach tulle from a very fine camel tulle when all you have is a 1 x 2 inches swatch.

Yesterday I had a lovely day with Lady Darkstone - we were supposed to cut tulle, but neither of us was feeling it, so we did some drawing, I traced off the pattern pieces for the corset, and we talked a lot and drank tea.
We're looking at working on some art togetehr in he near future, depending on how fast I work through my bridal fair gowns.

Sep. 2nd, 2016 11:30 pm


mrs_maupin: (midona)

It is one of those weird periods where the same themes suddenly pop up simultaneously in the most random places. One (but not the only one) of them has been dance.
Toad wants to start ballet lessons. The 2017 runway show is all about dance. My gift to Lady Darkstone for her birthday was a ticket to Swan Lake in February. Foundations Revealed competition theme for 2017 is ballet... Apparently FB ha spicked up on this because it keeps offering me to buy tickets to various dance shows.
So, since it looks like I won't be able to make it to the printmakign course this year (thanks new course schedule conflicting with Heimlich's schedule), I decided what the hell, I might as well pick up ballet again. Out of all the dance offers in my area, it's the one that tempts me the most, that has a schedule I can work with, and that doesn't require the HG to sign up with me (because apparently he has developped a strong aversion to dancing... *sigh*).

I have finished editing the pictures from the shoot with [ profile] heileen.
I am not too unsatisfied with the pictures I took. I am slowly, very slowly making progress at this. And Heileen looks fabulous.
IMG_0604 IMG_667
I have another shoot ( my old 1895 green and gold ballgown) coming up in September, then Ursula in October. I'd love to shoot Effie Trinket, my Florentine and Florence (florentine-inspired wedding dress in white and gold), possibly before the end of October.
I'm amazed at how far photoshoots have brought me since I started reaching out to models and photographers. and also at how much of my time it takes up to organize them ! I haven't even scheduled half of the shoots for this year's collection, and here I am starting to work on next year's...

I finally ordered two different fabrics from PureSilks, I hope they work together - they should from the description. If not I'll have to make them, somehow. II have another fabric order pending from a local supplier for things like duchess satin and ottoman - they're cheaper, almost local and polyester. I'll work with dead dino for dresses that will be worn multiple times by hurried models, trailed through the mud, exposed to sweat, make-up,... thankyouverymuch.

I mostly mocked-up the wedding gown for Miss C (sleeves need to be sewn and attached to the jacket, no skirt yet). Palanning to get that done early next week.
I finally finished my bathing suit's bloomers. The tunic needs hooks and eyes, the waistband needs some form of closure, and then it will be done... in time for next summer.
I meant to start on the 1895's riding corset in the "Corset for the modern body" book, but it is gettign too late to get past the measurements stage. I'll see tomorrow how I can use the book without tracing a complete body block - am I the only one who thinks it is a bit much to trace a complete block with dart over the bust, armscye and neckline, to draft a corset ? Anyway, I'll keep you posted.

Aug. 29th, 2016 02:54 pm


mrs_maupin: (midona)

Feeling super-tired today, thanks to my period, helping with the move, reunions to plan the next runway show. As the day goes on it seems les and less likely I will leave the house today, although it would be nice if I got Toad's dance lessons sorted out - oh wait ! I just checked and they're only open after 5:30 today anyway. I'll just make a detour after picking up the kids.

Ursula's sequins are almost all on. I'm crossing fingers we manage to squeeze a shooting somewhere in September. Everyone has conflicting schedules, I have a possible whole week-end booked for another shoot project, and the first week-end of october is the bridal fair. I haven't even looked at hair and make-up yet...

The first meeting for the runway show was... interesting. We had a big round of people suddenly not feelign interested/committed anymore in just a few days - several of them starting by skipping the meeting, THEN telling they changed their mind and wouldn't partipate this year... We rearranged things around the new line-up, and it seems I still have quite a LOT to do. Like, 6 new dresses (I think ?), plus some menswear. perceneige wa splanned to get another outing then, but the model dropped out, and the replacements are more standard sizes.

I'm a little grumpy from tiredness, so I am fighting this by bidding on a bold of yukata fabric. It is pretty, it is purple, and it has butterflies on it !

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Arms and legs are a bit sore from yesterday. We washed, sanded and repainted the walls and kilometers of moulding the bedroom, one wall in teh kitchen got a first coat. Then we filled two cars of cardboard boxes and furniture and moved those to the new house. All with two kids in tow. We got home late, but I managed to toss my clothes in the washer before crashing, and got most of the paint stains out, yay !

We're doing another round today, except this time we're bringing the food and we're havign a belated birthday celebration for Lady Darkstone. I made a summer veggies pie, a salted olive-and-bacon cake, the HG made a giant plum crumble before I sent him off to the market while I took care of the laundry. I even have a few minutes to type this and work a little, yay !

mrs_maupin: (duckie)

IMG_1255I'm getting closer with the sequins on Ursula. One half is "good enough" done - I could add more, and will try to do so, but it looks okay for now. The other side has one really small tentacle left, the tip of another, and some places where I want to add sequins on the corset itself. I should be seeing the photographer and the model on Sunday, and with some luck we'll decide on a date for a photoshoot while we're all in the same room.

The Gold waistcoat is done except for buttons and buttonholes. Bright me figured I'd better try it on Lord Darkstone to check the fit before actually cutting the buttonholes. You know, just in case it doesn't fit exactly as I had planned.

As for now, I'm off to help with the Darkstone's move. Time just flies by with two kids home... I am getting impatient for the school to start again so that I can have the house to myself again, just for the silence and the chance to not be inerrupted by one of their quarrels. They're adorable but thie Mama needs alone, down-time to work efficiently.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Les Dernières Modes de Paris Les Dernières Modes de Paris Les Dernières Modes de Paris Mai 1922 (?) Mai 1922 (?) Mai 1922 (?) Mai 1922 (?) Mai 1922 (?)
I just finished scanning all the fashion plates I bought during our vacation. That just leaves me with all the bound magazines and a huge pile of hat plates Lady Darkstone dumped on my lap before summer. I'm not even attempting to put them on the website. That's what FlickR is for, right ?
They were marked 1922 by the selles, it doesn't seem too far off... but other plates had a wrong date, so proceed with caution.
Now I want to sew little girl's 1920s dresses

The Gold waistcoat  : I'm finishing handsewing the collar, then I need to bind the armholes, find buttons, make buttonholes.
I started draping another wedding gown, one for my portfolio and for september's bridal fair - I needed to get a rough idea of how I wanted it to calculate yardage and order fabric. That is going to be a LOT of silk organza. And a lot of tulle.

I did some tidying up in the workshop - a giant crinoline of doom suddenly makes you realize you have too much clutter in your workspace ! I made a huge bag of scraps to give away to Toad's preschool, a small pile of shiny/silky/taffetas-ey fabrics I might use for bowties and the like, and a small bag of printed cotton scraps I want to use to make an 18th century "patchwork" pocket. Not all prints are period correct, there will probably be one period pocket and a "sentimental" one in whacky fabrics, like the scraps from the pink Eiffel tower skirt I am wearing today. Which remidns me I shoul trace the pattern of this skirt, because it is awesome and I need to remake it.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Thre's one thing that particularly amuses me in our neighborhood.
There are lots of plum trees here, semi-wild ones that plant themselves just everywhere, and give a ton of fruit (we have a big one, one year we stopped counting after 70 kilos). Every person who had one land in their garden will tell you no one can possibly eat all of it, even with jam, freezing, and way too many plum crumbles for one's digestion.
Yet every once in a while I encounter an old man (not always the same), plucking a handful plums from branches that reach over the street, who look like cheeky little boys caught in the act when they realise someone is watching.

Rather productive day - I traced the basic pattern + sleeve for my next commission, worked on the blog some and had a long sequining session on Ursula. I also crossed quite a few things from a very, very long to-do list of things-I-need-to-do-before-school-starts. Ugh, not looking forward to chauffeuring Heimlich from one medical appointment to another again. I will try to negotiate that he only gets two weekly sessions of various reeducations, not three.
The Gold waistcoat is till in progress, though. I'll do some work on it today, promise !

mrs_maupin: (midona)

It was a long and nice break from work. On Friday I helped Lady Darkstone move - it was a work-out, and dfinitely an experience managing this with two kids in tow, and no car big enough for the bed. Some things might still be waiting for us when we celebrate her birthday next week-end.

Then we had a couple of friends and their two kids over for the week-end,a dn they stayed the bigger part of today. It was a great, fun, relaxed time, with adorable kids, good food, good company. We managed to go on a short hike (that's what happens when you take a long lunch... less walking !) on a trail we didn't know yet - but we will probably come back to.

I have briefly seen two 'work" emails waiting for, but decided those will wait until I am officially back "at work", tomorrow morning.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

Really minor annoyances :
- the art school has completely mixed up the schedule for the printmaking courses. We were told they'd keep the Advanced class the same... no such luck. It is now every week, on Wednesday evening 6-8PM. Which SUCKS because a) that time of day is when we have dinner with the kids, and among the little time we get together with the HG during the week, b) I don't have a sitter on Wednesdays, so the HG would have to come home earlier and c) I've done that time slot once. It's the last one of the day so basically you spend the last 20 to 30 minutes cleaning up the workshop instead of printing. Nope nope nope, several levels of it. Oh, and it's a two hours weekly course instead of four ours every other week, which I found much better. I have been toying with just dropping it, in the end I think I'm going to go with 2 hours weekly, every Tuesday 2-4PM. It's still jsut two hours, and weekly, but at least it doesn't conflict with the family's schedule.
- The moment it rains is of course when I have laundry outside ont he clothesline. And by raining I mean it poured, suddenly, and I was just getting in the shower, so there was no getting out real quick to save it from being drenched.

Happy mail day(s) :
- my zone-front striepd anglaise came back, I just need to check it
- my Vena Cava order arrived, very quickly, and I now have tons of pretty coutil for corsets
- this morning I recieved my Fortuny book, which I got for a pretty ridiculous price for such a big book

The kids have been true angels for the last two days. I have been a little lazy (I get trapped in my books way too easily), but things are still coming along. I want to get the gold waistcoat for Lord Darkstone done this week, that would be one thing off the sewing table.

mrs_maupin: (midona)

For some reason I am incredibly tired lately. I vegged out yesterday, and today I was only productive in the morning. I did just a little bit of sewing in the afternoon, but not much. I've had a mild headache all day, not excruciating but enough to get on my nerves, and to make me nauseous if I was a bit too concentrated. Here's hoping it disappears with a good night's sleep.

I put up a post with pictures of one of the small black capes Lady Darkstone entrusted me with.
It is some sort of fueled wool, with soutache and crepe trim. It is a ready-made item (coming all the way from Paris to a village in the mountain), and we're having a hard time reconciling the date I'd want to put it with any deaths in the owner's family. The earliest death we could find was 1918, and that seems pretty far for the style. I'd appreciate any input ;)

Aug. 16th, 2016 01:55 pm

Meme !

mrs_maupin: (midona)

I just typed a whole lot of business stuff, and I certainly deserve a little break.

1. Do you like blue cheese?

Read more... )

I'm alive ! I'd have a hard time doing anything else without THAT.


mrs_maupin: (Default)

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