Fashion Crap: And I do mean CRAP – recent costumes…

October was kind of a sewing nightmare. I really, really hate sewing. Like, I’d rather stab myself with a rake than have to deal with the cutting, the pinning, the seamripping, the rumpled fabric (right, I don’t even OWN an iron)…yeah, can’t stand it.

Well, since none of my beautiful Regency wardrobe fits (still), I had to pull together an 1814-ish evening gown out of my trusty-dusty purple silk sari (not a very period color, I know) for the Bay Area English Regency Society’s Congress of Vienna Ball. I had a role – Princess Bagration, the White Pussycat and Naked Angel – so I needed something that looked lush. At any rate, the job’s not TOO bad for a rush. I didn’t have time nor a proper pattern to make period stays, so the silhouette’s not the best. Oh well.

For Halloween, I made myself a Patrick Nagel “Rio” outfit, perfect for “dancing on the sand.” This image was apparently the alternate cover image considered for Duran Duran’s legendary sophomore album.

More images in my photo album.

Cindy’s Birthday Tea

This past weekend, I went back down to OC for my friend Cindy’s birthday. It was a wonderful few days! For her party, a group of us went to the Tea House on Los Rios in San Juan Capistrano, the same place Cindy and I went back on November 1. Here are a couple of photos from the event…

Cindy and Kali at tea
Cindy and Kali in Edwardian costume at the Tea House on Los Rios in San Juan Capistrano on February 7, 2009.
Cindy, Kali, and Haydee at tea
Cindy, Kali, and Haydee at tea.

Cindy wore a mid-Edwardian dress she made herself. I wore my 1912 tea/luncheon gown (made by Tracie) and the 1911ish “Lunardi revival” hat I’d put together for the GBACG “My Fair Lady” event last August.

Fun in OC: My new 1880 gown

A new gown! Or is it? Actually, it’s a new variation on an old theme of mine: Winona Ryder’s Newport archery ensemble from Martin Scorsese’s 1993 Age of Innocence adaptation.

Ensemble from the film.
Ensemble from the film.

The ensemble is fiercely cute, with little faux pannier-looking things radiating out over the hips from a shirred panel on the skirtfront and layers of eyelet ruffles cascading down the skirt.  It’s a little reminiscent of the gown on the left in this French fashion plate from the early 1880s:

Natural Form Eyelet
Early 1880s natural form gowns.

My friend Tracie Arnold of Past & Present Creations made the fresh iteration of my original, beloved version of this gorgeous natural-form era ivy dress.  The first dress – constructed by Victoria Riddenour, hand-embroidered by me, and photographed beautifully by Lani Teshima – had become too small to even THINK about wearing.

I wore the new ensemble to San Juan Capistrano on Halloween weekend, where my pal Cindy and I had tea and generally caroused around the old town area.  Cindy wore a beautiful, embroidered black velvet ball gown that she’d made for Bat’s Day.

Kali in 1880s natural form eyelet ensemble, photographed by Cindy
Kali in 1880s natural form eyelet ensemble, photographed by Cindy.
Kali and Cindy in old San Juan Capistrano
Kali and Cindy in old San Juan Capistrano.

Outfit notes: The straw skimmer is a Victoria Riddenour original.  My corset is Denise Nadine‘s late Victorian “Nettie” style.  I made the combination undergarment (which you can’t see) from Truly Victorian’s 1876 combination pattern (TV105).  My garnet earrings are from Lacis.