Thursday, June 6, 2013

Of toiles, Costume College, and an apricot tree... Not necessarily in that order.

 While the last five days have not given me Hell, they've certainly gifted me with a quantity of mid-level annoying setbacks. For instance: 
 Yes, dear readers, this is what greeted me bright and early Sunday morning as I went to take out the trash. Someone in our apartment building left a hose running all night at the base of our apricot tree, and that (combined with our gardening service's complete inability to prune it correctly) caused it to sag and block the driveway.

My mother, her partner and I spent most of the day lopping off branches in an attempt to right it, and while we were successful, we lost about 90% of the fruit. Mr. G (my mother's partner) says that the tree is probably traumatized and that we'll have to wait and see if it recovers.

Further annoyance came when I went to start my next HSF challenge and realized that I was out of cotton duck, which I use to interline the bodices of my costumes. The nearest fabric store that carries it is two hours away by bus and had none in stock. I ordered some online and it should be here soon, but it's eating into my challenge time waiting for it.

I've also been getting ready for Costume College. I'm planning an 1870's/80's evening dress for the gala on Saturday night, which brings me to the next annoyance on the list: Toiles
I hate cutting out toiles at the best of times, but when the fabric seems to shred at the slightest provocation and the sewing machine decides to mangle it even further? That's when I tend to throw it across the room and the cat steals it and buries it in his litter box. There was just barely enough fabric left for me to cut another one out and so far it's behaving, but between this and waiting for cotton duck, I've spent very much effort for very little gain!
So having accomplished nothing this week, I'm off to make up for lost time and do battle with toile 2.0 once again.
Wish me luck.

Monday, June 3, 2013

HSF Challenge #11: Squares, Rectangles and Triangles.

I admit I phoned this one in. I had another project to work on and I could think of nothing more simple than a pair of undersleeves. I found some reasonably priced non-shiny black silk organza from Dharma Trading Company and when it arrived the sewing portion went surprisingly quickly. Afterwards I found that I had enough left over for a matching chemisette that I will eventually get around to sewing on my next spare afternoon. The chemisette and sleeves will be worn with the Hyacinth gown to the Victorian Grand Ball in November.
Unfortunately, I don't have any photos of the sleeves on my arms as my regular picture taker was elsewhere.

The Historical Sew Fortnightly at

The Challenge: Squares, Rectangles and Triangles
Fabric: Silk Organza
Pattern: Um, no.
Year:  Pick one
Notions: Thread
How historically accurate is it? It's sewn completely by hand.
Hours to complete: 3
First worn:  Will be worn in November
Total cost: 9 bucks plus shipping