melaniesuzanne: (Burlesque 092914)
Jotting down the notes so I can remember what the heck I've done and what I'm going to do.

Regeneration Who - March
8th Doctor (Night of the Doctor version)

Steampunk World's Fair - May
Fri day: Suffragist
Fri eve: Soiled Dove
Sat AM: Military pseudo-diesel punk
Sat PM: Blue gown

Awesome Con - May
Sat: Star Wars pin-up
Sun: Star Trek security/services

Richmond Wizard World Comic Con - August
8th Doctor (TV movie or Night of the Doctor version)
Patsy Stone
Cruella de Vil?

Shore Leave - August
Rose Tyler (The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances version because I'm getting a photo with John Barrowman come hell or high water)
Star Wars pin-up
Star Trek security/services

Steampunk unLimited - October
Sat day: Pink striped bustle skirt and jacket (which has been on my project list for over a year)
Sat eve: Blue gown? Soiled dove?

Halloween - October
Who the heck knows? Not I.

Richmond WWCC is tripping me up pretty badly in that I don't want to be in costume when I get a photo with Billy Boyd. For that, I'll probably wear my One Ring skirt with black top & shrug. [ profile] pirategirleee and I are definitely dressing up as Pats & Edina and I want to get more wear out of my 8th Doctor duds. I've already worn "Night of the Doctor" and I have all of the pieces, including wig, for the TV movie version. There were two other NotD!8s at Regeneration Who and I've seen only one movie!8 at a convention thus far. I guess that means I'm leaning towards movie!8. And Cruella... hm, that's a lot of make-up work and I'm not sure that I still fit in the dress. Dang it. It was bad enough that I could barely fit into some of my SPWF clothes; I've got to drop a bunch of inches. More exercise indicated.


Mar. 26th, 2015 10:03 am
melaniesuzanne: (LotR: Hobbit approved)

The guest list for this year's Wizard World Comic Con in Richmond, VA was looking pretty thin and [ profile] pirategirleee and I were starting to think giving it a pass this year would be the thing to do. But today she discovered -- and kindly passed along to me -- that BILLY BOYD will be in attendance.

I'm dying. Dyyyyyyying.

PG sort of mentally shut down when we met Bruce Campbell at last year's con. I hope, hope, hope that I don't do that when I meet Billy. As the exchange in "Pulp Fiction" goes:

Jules: Now Yolanda, we're not gonna do anything stupid, are we?
Yolanda: You don't hurt him.
Jules: Nobody's gonna hurt anybody. We're gonna be like three little Fonzies here. And what's Fonzie like? Come on Yolanda what's Fonzie like?
Yolanda: Cool?
Jules: What?
Yolanda: He's cool.
Jules: Correctamundo.

Coincidentally, Henry Winkler will also be in attendance at the con...

Now, I don't want to be That Guy, but I might have to dress as a hobbit for a portion of the con. My 8th Doctor frock coat and waistcoat would fit the bill beautifully. Throw in a pair of capris, a shaggy wig, and some furry feet and I'm set!

Nerd Love

Feb. 20th, 2015 12:04 pm
melaniesuzanne: (Geeeeeek)
Shortly after we started dating, the beau made a Star Wars Rebel Trooper Uniform complete with blaster and helmet but he's never gotten to wear it. His attendance at both conventions I attended last year was usurped by either prepping for a kart race or actually participating in kart races. This year, however, he will debuting his uniform at Awesome Con DC in May, Lord willing and the creek don't rise.


I will not be in coordinating Star Wars costume for Awesome Con as I'm working on Flame Princess v2. However, I am considering ordering a suit of Stormtrooper armor from a Star Wars costumer with whom the beau has a friendly Rebel-v-Imperial rivalry. The beau is, obviously, thrilled by the idea and is hopeful that we could make the armor adjustable enough for either of us to wear it even though I'm a little short for a Stormtrooper. He's even started working on a Stormtrooper blaster. The main reason that I want the armor, though, is for wearing when the beau completes his (dun dun DUUUUUN) original series Star Trek Redshirt uniform. That coordination gives me the giggles.

melaniesuzanne: (Me at SPWF2014 (by John T Riley))
The 2014 edition of the Steampunk World's Fair was held in lovely Piscataway, NJ, over May 16, 17, and 18. I didn't know exactly what to expect and I enjoyed just about every moment I was there. Granted, I don't consider what I've made or worn up to this point as "steampunk" and view my participation in the steampunk scene, such as it is, as a neo-Victorian verging on quaintrelle. This will, hopefully, change with the plots and plans I have brewing for next year's ensembles, but more on that later.

Read more... )
melaniesuzanne: (Peacock me)

This bad boy took about ten hours of construction. I started with a plain straw hat from Michael's Arts & Crafts and, using this tutorial as a jumping off place, I covered the crown, outer brim, and inner brim with cotton fabric left over from a waistcoat I'd made for my beau. I covered the joints around the base of the crown and just under the brim with braided gimp. I then sewed one side of the brim to the crown, hiding the stitches in the gimp.

That was an absolute pain in the keister, let me just say. There was SO MUCH dried glue that I had to sew through. I needed a thimble to push the needle in and then small pliers to pull the needle out on the other side.

Eventually, I felt that the connection was secure and moved on to lining the inside of the crown with scraps of black linen. I covered the transition join between linen and cotton with another length of gimp. At this point, I'd been working on the hat for about four hours and was too pooped to continue. Feathers would wait until the next evening. )
melaniesuzanne: (Peacock me)
While my beau has been constructing a Zulu War-era military dress uniform in prep for the World’s Fair, I’ve been completing accessories for the both of us. Last night, I put the finishing touches on my peacock hat, decorated my bowler, and sewed up two bow ties for himself.

The bowler took about an hour, I guess, with getting the feather spray wired and glued into place, the ribbon set just right, and the flower attached. The gold ribbon I chose for the band was much too yellow and bright when I compared the hat against the jacket I will wear it with and I knocked down the brightness with some “Black Cherry” craft paint. I am positively squeeful about the gorgeous coppery color it became and how well it coordinates with the feather spray. The rose, which a friend spray-painted black, looked dull against the hat and I dry brushed it with some metallic gold craft paint. I’m fairly happy with the results; although, I’m fighting to keep from applying more geegaws to it.

The two ties took about two hours to construct, are made of cotton fabric quarters with fusible interfacing, and come from Miss P’s tutorial and pattern. SO easy! At this point, I’ve made three ties for my beau and will probably knock out another this evening so he’ll have one to coordinate with a garish waistcoat he fell in love with at the thrift store.


I’ll post photos of the peacock hat later. It’s pretty massive and took about ten hours to construct.

A fitting

Jul. 17th, 2012 10:43 am
melaniesuzanne: (sewing)
Last night I fit a friend for a c15 Venetian gamurra bodice. This was my first solo fitting and I think it went fairly well all things considered. Her shoulders aren't at all even and, due to some back issues, one actually points forward. Thank goodness draping is my strong suit.

She's excited about making her new dress and I'm excited for her. She says that if it comes out well, she will tell everybody who helped her. I asked that if it doesn't turn out well, she not tell anyone. :)

So. She has a useable toile and I ~almost~ have a renewed desire to make some Venetian clothes. Almost.


Jul. 25th, 2011 09:07 pm
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Up - I don't have to sew anything for Pennsic. While procrastinating on ironing linen with which to make Roman clothing, I pulled all my linen dresses and boy clothes out of the SCA closet to see what, if anything, might work for this year. Happily, everything I couldn't wear last year now fit perfectly and a few items are actually much too big. I left the fabric on the sewing table and spent yesterday ironing dresses, tunics, and smocks. I cannot express how thrilled I am not to have to sew.

Down - Got into a self-loathing spiral after taking my measurements while celebrating being able to get into clothes. I've lost one inch on my tummy, waist, and hips since February. But but but... I've lost 10 pounds and I've been working out and and and... Of course, that would explain why I haven't done much in the way of dropping pants sizes in many, many months. Hubbyfink tried cheering me up by reminding me how strong I've grown this summer and how I'm able to do things that I couldn't do two months ago. I hate getting all tied up in numbers. I need to focus on how I feel and I felt pretty great until I pulled out that blasted measuring tape.

Up - The monitor, mouse, and keyboard Bossman sent last week arrived today and work perfectly. I'm so happy to once again have a fully functional workstation.

Somewhere in the middle - OMG Pennsic land grab is this weekend!!!!! Wait, this is totally an Up, provided the labor disputes don't turn into a strike and I have to give up my vacation. Bossman keeps telling me to plan on being able to go camping, but I'm still a bit fearful.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Nothing's been happening in the costuming department. All my grand plans have fallen to the wayside as I focus on improving my fitness level. Plus, I decided against putting a lot of work and decorating into two dresses which will swallow me whole with the loss of another thirty pounds and then another. No point, really. Maybe it's a little bit defeatist. I'm pretending that it's me looking forward and saving my energy for when it will make the most impact. Yeah, that's going to be my story.

I do need to start and complete a particular sewing project, though. Mom will be here in three short weeks and I need to sew curtains for the craft/guest room so she can have privacy and relief from the Eye of Sauron in the common area out back. I've got the fashion fabric, I've got the blackout fabric, I've mostly got the know-how, I've even got the time. It's a matter of sitting down and actually doing it.

The other project I need to finish is the Virginia year-end financial report. That's numero uno on my list of projects for this weekend. The spreadsheet WILL be in [ profile] carthew's in box by Monday morning.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I'm feeling frustrated again by my inability to make my hands do to fabric what I see in my mind's eye. I futzed and futzed with various sizes and shapes of velvet strips which should have been the trim for the neckline of the bodice of the green dress. After three hours, many pinpricks to my fingers, and much sneezing and watering of eyes from the cotton velvet "dust", I finally gave up. The velvet trim won't be in place for KASF and I'm mostly okay with that. I'm not displaying my garment or anything like that so it doesn't have to be completely blinged out yet. I did, however, succeed in getting the hem pinned to the correct height so I can work on that during a concall tonight.

Also on the schedule for this week is ripping out that awful cotton broadcloth which currently lines the purple overdress and replacing it with a yellow brocade. The brocade is laundered and ironed and ready to be cut into the correct shape. Cutting and sewing will commence Wednesday unless we get stormed out of Alle Psallite practice again tomorrow night. I want to make the fake hanging sleeves, too, and trim the opening of the overdress with dozens of pearls. I foresee sewing in the car/at the hotel Friday night.
melaniesuzanne: (Venentian: Purple & green)
I wore my purple, yellow, and green ensemble to Ponte Alto's Baronial Investiture event yesterday. The dress received many oohs and aahs, which completely made my day. The ensemble isn't complete, but it will be for Kingdom Arts & Sciences Festival in two weeks. Two weeks! What a luxury of time!

I started with a few inspiration pictures which showed me the shapes of the necklines, the hemlines, and fabric textures as well as various ways to style my hair. Inspiration. )

[ profile] belfebe kindly snapped photos of me at the event. I didn't think to pull the overdress back to show off the yellow lining. Trust me: it's there! :) In the side view, my St Ursula-inspired fall and ghirlanda is visible. Many thanks to [ profile] allasondrea for styling my fall.

Mardi Gras ensemble, 1/22/11 Mardi Gras ensemble, 1/22/11
At Ponte Alto Investiture. Photo by Laura Martinez.
Mardi Gras ensemble, 1/22/11 Mardi Gras ensemble, 1/22/11
Baronial Investiture. Photo by Laura Martinez.

One last photo. Imagine my shock and delight at rediscovering THIS color combination in my collection of pictures of late 15th century Venetian ladies. I've been reinspired with how to embellish my overdress. Mmmm... pearls, ahoy!

Dorothea Zacarias Dorothea Zacarias
Unknown Venetian Artist, c1505: Dorothea Zacarias from the Memorie della famiglia Freschi.
melaniesuzanne: (Venetian: pink cioppa)
I'm so happy with how my green under dress is turning out. It's not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it has the correct look for 1495 Venice. I've decided not to cut the excess length off the skirt and instead roll it into the hem. That way the skirt will be long enough for chopines whenever I get around to making a pair of those. At this point, I need to finish the sleeves and sew up the hem and the dress will be ready for pictures and wearing. I don't think I'll get the trim and pearls in place for Investiture, but the dress should be all blinged out for KASF in two weeks.

The over dress is making me nervous. The lining fabric will -- if the UPS site is to be believed -- be on my doorstep this evening. I'll let that launder while I hem the under dress. Then I get to cut, pin, and sew the overdress skirt tonight. That'll give me Friday night to hem the overdress and build an appropriate mess o' Venetian hair.

I cannot overstate how excited I am to wear an ensemble that looks Venetian. My now-too-big gamurre and giornee were made in the Florentine style because I didn't know any better. Granted, this new under dress is not self-supporting, but I allowed myself that cheat so I could more easily take in the dress as I shrink. I think that's fair for the time being. But, most importantly, new clothes! Yay!

Oh, and I realized that I didn't explain why I'm calling this the Mardi Gras ensemble. Well here you go: purple overdress lined in yellow and green under dress trimmed in gold. Powdered in beignets. No, I'm kidding about the beignets. But you know, a King Cake would make one bitchin' (if a bit sticky) balzo.
melaniesuzanne: (Venetian: pink cioppa)
Whoo! It took about three hours of trial and error and drafting and draping and I have finally developed a bodice pattern for a Venetian overdress, circa 1495. I'm mostly happy with it. Tuesday's choir practice is canceled and I will use the newly freed-up time to pleat the skirt into the bodice and see if my pattern works.

I'm looking forward to the test. I'm also looking forward to starting the underdress.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Firstly: I'm going camping this weekend! *squee* And, the weather guessers are predicting a GORGEOUS weekend for outdoor activities. Of course, it's only Tuesday and we've got a couple of stormy days between now and then, but I'm hopeful that they are correct.

Secondly: I think I may have figured out how to make a cioppa (the Italian overdress which isn't the tabard-like giornea). Making that sharp v-neckline work with huge tracts of land has been problematic for me in the past. I've been studying period artwork for months trying to figure out the lines, but I think I've finally got it. Will put theory into practice tomorrow night (tonight is choir) and see if it works. If so, yee-haw!

Thirdly: The fifteen yards of 2.8oz white linen from arrived this past weekend. Before being washed, it was like cheesecloth. Since being laundered, it has tightened up a little bit, but it's still very, very sheer. I'm so excited about the camicie I'll make from this.

Fourthly: Margie and Oreo were snuggled forehead to forehead at the foot of the bed this morning. What a peaceful change from the yowling and yelling between the two of them last night.

Fifthly: I need to get my nose back on the grindstone. Laters.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
That's what Margie's doing. When she and Oreo aren't chasing each other around the house like crazed weasels, that is. I don't like how still and heavy the air is, and the pressure is hurting my ears. I'm ready for the storm to break (which should be any minute now if the Weather Channel is to be believed).

The truck is sporting her new plates. Now I need to carve out some time to turn in the older plates and GPFINK plates to the DMV.

My Droid Incredible arrived this afternoon and is charging up. It's so pretty and I can't wait to play with it. Hubbyfink's looking forward to playing with it as well so he can decide if that's the direction he wants to go when he gets rid of his Blackberry.

I've got costuming ideas bubbling in my brain and will probably fire [ profile] pippas_projects back up in a week or two as I dissect the dress depicted in this 1495 drawing by Albrecht Durer. The back of the dress has a similar construction to those depicted in Gentile Bellini's art; although, most of the women in Bellini's pictures are in the background and it is difficult to determine the construction. But anyway, thinking about this style of dress is my current diversion from slipping directly to sleep when I crawl into bed.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Hey! Not only am I upright, I am also in the office. Whoa. That hasn't happened for two weeks. Not only am I in the office, I was in early because I suspected there might be a call with the engineering team in India (there was). I won't say that I'm bursting with energy, but I am happy to be out of the house and wearing something other than PJs or sweats. I've had only one horrific coughing fit in the last two hours -- while on the phone with Bossman, natch; he said, "Okay, okay, I believe that you've been sick. You don't have to put on a show!" -- which is a personal best since last Tuesday. Spending most of yesterday crashed out on the sofa and/or in bed definitely helped with the healing.

While I was zombie-esque this weekend, I couldn't do much besides grind away at Farmville (shut up; I can quit anytime) and dream about things Venetian. I've decided that my next sewing project with be a ca. 1490s ensemble like that depicted in Durer's "Drawing of a Venetian Lady". I also want to learn how to make chopines. The chopine project will have to wait until the basement remodel is further along, though. In the meantime, I can research to my heart's content. I'm also noodling about teaching a University class about Venice's history beyond courtesans, canals, and Carnivale. We shall see.
melaniesuzanne: (Mouse & cheese)
I couldn't sleep last night and slipped out of bed and into the craft room where I strung two necklaces. If I'd realized that I was going to *still* have trouble sleeping after that and would still lie awake for a while, I would have gotten a jump on tonight's homework. Ah well.

Instead of doing homework tonight, though, I want to make a camisia and revamp my gamurra sleeves. I really want to wear my Italian clothes to Holiday Faire tomorrow -- might have longjohns underneath since the clothes are linen -- and I'd like the smock and sleeves to look better than they do today. Hrm. We'll see how long the still life takes because, of course, I'm not pushing my schoolwork aside. Gotta keep up the best GPA I've ever had in my collegiate life.
melaniesuzanne: (device)
In other news, I will be at Ponte Alto's Chalice of the Sun God IV this weekend. I'm heading down Friday night to assist with set-up and will retain for Her Majesty during the day on Saturday. Hubbyfink has elected to stay home and remove nasty carpet from the basement (glory hallelujah!!) which means I'm going to stay over Friday night and skip multiple hour-long trips to and from the site. We've got a lively bunch who are staying in the staff cabin Friday; should be a fun night!

I'm trying, mostly successfully, not to make a new giornea for the event. The gironee I made for Pennsic are too short and it's driving me crazy. But, I'm reminding myself that I don't want a long and draggy garment if I'm traipsing through the woods and tall grasses. Yeah, that's the ticket. And, more importantly, I don't want to waste even MORE pretty fabric until I fix my pattern. I do, however, really need to fix my gamurra sleeves. That's a much saner project. I should probably also make a new braid since I've changed my hair color; I don't think the braid I made for Pennsic will blend as nicely...
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I realized that my gamurra sleeves are just a skosh too short to pin to the dresses. A quick eyelet at the top of each sleeve and a lacing ring on each shoulder strap of every dress fixed that little problem.

I tried making a full cuffia (coif) last night but having too few brain cycles left provided me with a less than satisfactory result. I have jettisoned making any of these until next month at the earliest.

I have also jettisoned finishing the pink gamurra from the project list. Maaaaaybe I'll take it to Pennsic and do the handwork in camp. Maybe.

I have figured out which hat I will wear to the Mad Hatter Tea Party. Muahahaha!

I'm two days in to "Torchwood: Children of Earth". I didn't read under anyone's lj-cuts about the mini-series, but I couldn't help but notice all the emotional posts in plain view at the end of the series. Speculation which contains a spoiler for Day 2. )

In other TV news, I've got the DVR set for "Being Human" (vampires AND werewolves? It makes both Hubbyfink and me happy [we're both ehh about the ghost]) and "Doctor Who: Planet of the Dead". We should be home from Land Grab in time to watch DW, but I'm taking no chances. I can catch up on "True Blood" via OnDemand so I don't have to give up precious DVR space for that show.

Oh hey, "Coraline" and "Robot Chicken: Star Wars Special Episode Two" are out on DVD. I might have to snag those and "Children of Earth" when the latter is released next week.


melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Mary F'ing Sunshine

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