The Seamstress and the Duchess

So I said I would share my costume musings with you and here I am. I did not really have much time this summer to make any costume for Steampunk due to making lots of bags and quite a bit of work stuff to do .

Anyway was a bit unsure of what I really wanted to make, what would really inspire me. The lace on the jacket and boots were a stopgap and both will be worn for everyday as well and the top hat has had plenty of wear since I made it.

I have been considering various options and have looked through all of my fabric stash and have finally decided on a make.

I have been inspired almost simultaneously by two sources, the Seamstress Squadron and a blog, ย American Duchess and helped by a recent Ebay purchase or two as shown below!

 

 

Ebay tablecloth 1

Ebay tablecloth 2

Ebay tablecloth 3

The blog I discovered through Pinterest on the way to Ellie’s on the train and spent a happy hour looking at all the lfantastic costumes that they make.

I noticed that one of my costumed lovelies at Lincoln had a badge saying Seamstress Squadron which I thought was pretty cool, and was talking to the lovely lady Allison in the sewing themed dress later on and noticed that she had one too!

Seamstress Squadron patch

Turns out that this is a Facebook group of like minded people who share costume ideas and make wonderful things. They even had a couple of meet ups over the Lincoln weekend.Here is a picture of their sewing motif banner outside the cathedral.

Seamstress Squadron banner

I have joined the group and looking through all their lovely ideas made me realise that I do want to make something original, just for me rather than buy one of the many pretty outfits available.

So what would I make, what really sums up me and what I love fabric wise? Walking into my craft room the answer was obvious, I love vintage embroidery, linen , lace and crochet. Could I combine this into an outfit?

July bags and pouches 13

July extra pouches and bags 7

Once again Pinterest is my friend and inspiration here. I had thought of just putting patches on a garment like the lovely patches I have made for my bag below but then I remembered the tablecloths.

Vintage log cabin bag 1

I was going to cut out the motifs and use them for various things but actually think that there is enough fabric in these tablecloths to make shirt.It was Ellie that gave me the idea as I was talking about a black satin one and she suggested a white one to go with my new purple skirt.

Look at these gorgeous things, all made from tablecloths, doileys, lace and bits of crochet!

Tablecloth garment 1

Tablecloth garment 2

Tablecloth garment 3

Tablecloth garment 4

A quick Google search turned up this lovely pattern for a jacket and skirt set that can also be adapted to make a blouse, I got it half price in the sale as well ๐Ÿ™‚ I think this may be the one Allison used to make her outfit as it does look similar.

Butterick pattern 1

Butterick pattern 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am very pleased with my musings, hopefully I will be able to make something lovely and unique as I realised the things I loved most this weekend were the very quirky and individual ones and I can make the most of this sewing themed outfit. I will be able to use up some of my sewing charms as well and will be decorating this purple hat to go with my theme and making a bag.

Farmer Phils 14- Purple hat

And the great thing is that if it all does go terribly wrong I can still cut it up and make patchwork!

I am going to start this adventure in fabric next week as soon as the tablecloths and pattern arrive. I know Lincoln is not until next year but we will probably go to a couple of other events in Nov and Feb and if I leave the project until next year it may well get forgotten about like the new peasant dress I keep meaning to make every season ๐Ÿ˜‰

Wish me luck and I will keep you updated on the progress!

Thanks as always for visiting and for your lovely comments.

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Like mother, like daughter

I taught Ellie to sew when she was about 7, it took her about 6 months to finish her first piece, a cross stitch, and she then went on to make all sorts of things. She is very talented and I was so impressed with her outfit for this weekend.

Steampunk Ellie 2

She had taken inspiration from Belle from Beauty and the Beast and turned one of Kerry’s old medieval dresses into this fantastic costume. She removed the sleeves and neck trim and altered the lacing on the back.

Steampunk Ellie original dress

Steampunk Ellie original dress 2

She added all the little charms to it on the shoulder and the broach parts to the skirt to make it Steampunk and with the addition of a bought belt and cape has got herself an amazing outfit for very little money.

Steampunk Ellie 1

There are tea cup charms here and roses and clocks on the belt and she has a little purse with a rose petal in.

Steampunk Ellie 3

Steampunk Ellie 4

She also made the necklace, using bits of old jewelry and charms. The back features a train made from a sari she picked up at one of the medieval markets.

Steampunk Ellie 5

She even found a beast to dance with!

Steampunk Ellie 6

I am so glad that she enjoys being creative, she has already started work on not one but two outfits for next year!

I had added lace to my velvet jacket and boots, the jacket was a charity find and the boots I have had for about 10 years.

Steampunk Alison 1

Steampunk Alison 4

Steampunk Alison 3

With the addition of some more keys on my hat and another charity shop bargain bag I had an outfit for Saturday and wore an adaptation of this for Sunday with one my new hats from the festival and another lace chocker.

Alison Steampunk Lincoln 1

Steampunk Alison 2

Steampunk Alison 5

Steampunk Alison red hat

I also bought some fab new/old boots. the ones I wore on Saturday while gorgeous were not comfy so Sunday I started off in a pair of lacy flats until we passed an antique shop on the way in and I saw these beautiful shoes at a bargain price.

Steampunk Alison new boots 1

They are flamenco shoes so very appropriate for the amount of time I spend in Spain.Think they might need a little lace as well though!

Steampunk Alison new boots 2

I have been thinking a lot about my next make and have come up with a plan which I shall tell you all about in the next post. This was partly inspired by a conversation with this lovely lady.

Steampunk sewing fabric dress 1

You may recognise the fabric that she used for her jacket. I bought some of this at the Steampunk market here last year as I already had it in the grey and black colourway.

I have used mine for a bag for Yarndale and have bought some more fabric from the same range from this year’s market which I will show you later.

Steampunk sewing fabric dress 2

I love this outfit, she looks so fabulous! Thanks Allison for letting me take pictures of you and share them here.

Steampunk sewing fabric dress 3

As well as outfits people create and adapt some wonderful vehicles, this was an amazing VW camper, absolutely incredible the amount of detail that has gone into this by the creators, The Bucyrus Brothers.

Have been steadily working away at bags and pouches in between marking, enjoying the lull before the storm as term starts in a few weeks and I am teaching most Saturdays until mid November.

Will see you again in a few days when I shall share my musings with you.

Thanks for visiting and have a fun week.

Ladies from Lichtenstein and other delights

As we expected the Steampunk event at Lincoln was amazing, we were again in awe of all of the costumes and I have so many pictures to show you. I have come back with lots of ideas for new costumes for both Steampunk and festival wear.

There were a group from Lichtenstein who won the fashion show last year and they were there again this year, with new costumes. We loved these dresses as it just shows how varied things can be made from the same fabric.

These were their new outfits, how beautiful!

Steampunk Lichenstein new 1

Steampunk Lichenstein new 2

Steampunk Lichenstein new 3

The loveliest thing is chatting to people about their outfits and the pride that people take in having made things themselves. I talked the lady in purple about her fab, and very comfy, shoes and to the lady in the pink hat who told us how she made it. She did a fantastic job and it looked amazing.

There are lots of people dressed in things they have bought and they look wonderful but I really love meeting the people with the more quirky outfits and will develop that for my future outfits.

This lady I met last year with a gorgeous cross stitched butterfly dress and this year she had based her outfit on the nursery rhyme, ‘Mary, Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow’.The work that had gone into this was incredible and I loved the grass background fabric, inspired!

Another lovely one was this outfit based on crazy patchwork, I talked to the woman who had made it all herself and she said that the ribbon embroidery square was her favourite one.

Steampunk patchwork 5

Another wonderful quirky one was this patchwork of knitting and buttons, with peacock feathers and a wig and a fab top hat, just love it!

Then there were the absolutely stunning ones like these dragon and dragon egg costumes.

Steampunk costumes 4

This lady was there last year in a peacock dress and her new dress with wings was amazing. Her bodyguard also looked stunning.

I will return with another post with our outfits once I get a ,’before’, picture from Ellie as she transformed a dress of Kerry’s into her outfit. I was pleased with mine, not as fantastic as some of the others but I felt good and had my picture taken quite a few times which was a nice complement.

Take care and thanks for visiting.

 

 

Hexagon challenge

You all know by now how much I love hexagons and am in the process of making a full size double bed quilt from some using the Grandmother’s Garden pattern.

Well we were really thrilled to come across some wonderful miniature needlework during our recent visit to Nunnington, they have a series of miniature rooms that are part of their collection.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 3

Rather than being one dolls’ house these are lots of different rooms like this grand staircase in the picture above and most contained amazing examples of miniature cross stitch and needlepoint.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 2

When Ellie was little we bought her a dolls’ house and spent many years furnishing it and I stitched rugs and and made bedding for it. When she went to University we gave it to the family across the road who had 8 girls and I am sure they must have loved playing with it.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 4

Now she has her own house she has decided she would like to have another dolls’ house and has bought an antique cabinet to house it in, similar to the many we have seen in historic houses.

I said I would make some rugs etc for her but we also came across this miniature hexagon bed quilt in the display so I am going to attempt something like this for her. I have no idea if it has been paper pieced or not. I can’t imagine how you can cut paper and fold them that small as each must be only 1/4 cm across. I may well have to make my pieces bigger!

Nunnington -miniature needlework 6

There were also miniature sewing tools and work in progress like this needlepoint frame and lace making pillow and tatting.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 1

Nunnington -miniature needlework 5

Nunnington -miniature needlework 7

All wonderful stuff and so cute! I have been looking for information and as usual there is lots of inspiration on Pinterest so after Yarndale will have a go at a mini, mini, mini quilt. I have found a site that sells tiny papers as well!

I found this amazing mini quilt show on Pinterest, no idea who created it but look at the tiny loveliness here.

Mini quilt show

This weekend we have the Steampunk event at Lincoln, sadly our medieval show has been cancelled due to structural problems at the site BUT that means two whole days to enjoy the Steampunk and marvel at all the lovely costumes. My very talented daughter has been working on a fabulous costume for this year so all will be revealed next week!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Nunnington needlework

We had a great mini trip up North, the first place we visited was Nunnington Hall in North Yorkshire, a lovely stone house dating back to the 12th century surrounded by beautiful countryside.

Not only was the house beautiful with lots of light and airy paneled rooms as the house has been displayed as it would have been in the 1920s, but there were also some wonderful examples of needlework connected to the family.

Firstly this Durham quilt, hand quilted by the last owner’s grandmother.

Nunnington -quilt 1

Nunnington -quilt 3

Nunnington -quilt 2

Then these stunning Jacobean crewelwork panels in the bedroom, they have been restored by the Trust, mainly to mend the linen backing, but the colours are still wonderful even though they are faded.

Nunnington -crewelwork bedroom

Nunnington -crewelwork detail

Panels this size must have taken so long to make, they were originally made for a bed.

There was also a very pretty needlepoint chair cover and some samplers dating from 1785 and 1835 with the makers’ names on.

Nunnington -needlepoint

Nunnington -sampler 1

Nunnington -sampler 2

This is not a good picture of the sampler due to the low light but here is a better one from the National Trust Collections site here. It was stitched by 10 year old Betsy Pickard in 1835 as a firescreen and is beautifully done.

Another thing that I really liked were the little cross stitched signs, someone has been working very hard to theme the information given.

Nunnington -label 1

Nunnington -label 2

There was also some very impressive other needlework that I will share with you in a later post, I absolutely loved it and it has given me an interesting challenge that I will share with you then.

Today will be mainly finishing off items for Yarndale, I have a basket and needlebook in progress and there is always more embroidering of sheep to be done!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

If you want to get ahead …..

I had a lovely time in Spain, no photos for you except this one of wine during a meal at one of our favourite beach bars as the rest of the time was spent being very hot and so sitting in the shade or being in various pools and the sea.

Spain - August - wine

It was a lovely time with family but confirmed my already fairly certain view that I was born for colder climates. I really admire all of the people working there in that heat, I could do nothing more than sit with a cold drink mopping my brow!

A quick turnaround saw me going to my first ever proper festival, Farmer Phil’s in the gorgeous Shropshire countryside. I loved it, and will be back next year for longer so we can take advantage of the lovely area and go for walks. Look there was even blue sky.. in England!

Actually the weather was very good for August with only rain on the Sunday night which necessitated a much appreciated tow out of the muddy field.

I stayed with my sister Jacky who has recently bought a new camper van, I would dearly love to own one when I finally learn to drive so we spent some time wandering round looking at all of the lovely ones at the festival.

Farmer Phils 1 - tent

I was staying in Jacky’s pop up tent next to her van and we had a very lovely time catching up as we have not seen each other for a while, during which she has become a grandmother! Seriously we are not old enough for this sort of thing ๐Ÿ™‚

Loved the music, lots of folk and folk/punk bands and great musicians generally and discovered some ย new people to listen to. Just lovely to be in the sun, not too hot though ๐Ÿ˜‰ , drinking delicious rhubarb cider and enjoying the event.

Farmer Phils 6 - stage

I think my favourites over the whole weekend were Nick Parker who is a brilliant songwriter and Bar Steward Sons of Val Doonican who have some brilliant comedy rewrites of classics such as Lady in Red (Lady in Greggs – which for those of you outside the UK is a sandwich shop and bakery) and Beyonce’s Single Ladies which they have turned into a wonderful song about Dinner Ladies.

Farmer Phils 7 - sons of VD

We also had a great baked Camembert and cheese platter at the Cheezy Vinyl bar where platters are old records, that was delicious and will definitely be going back next year.

Farmer Phils 12- Cheezy

Farmer Phils 13- Cheezy

As well as the music my other favourite things were festival outfits. There were some gorgeous outfits, some brilliant fancy dress and lots of bright colours, face painting and general loveliness.I think the combination of the rainbow unicorn head dress and the jacket with spoons on below was one of my faves.

I am going to work on some more lovely stuff for me to wear next year, definitely need more of the floaty summer hippy chic that lots of people were wearing! Oh and I also need some nice boots rather than my very old walking boots, not sure which of these are my fave so far.

As the title of my post says, if you want to get ahead….. get a hat so I treated myself to two new top hats for festival wear, I love top hats and have decided to wear them lots at events and wanted some that I could further embellish.

Farmer Phils 14- Purple hat

The purple one is great for wearing with my flower crowns as here and I am planning to make some removable bands for it as well and I will add some more bling and lace to the black one.

Farmer Phils 15- Black hat

Ellie and I are off again this weekend, I know, will the fun never stop! We are going to see a fab live spectacular show, Kynren, up in the North East with a little National Trust visit en route. Then it is only one week until the combined Lincoln Steam Punk weekend and medieval show where I shall get some nice pics of my newly lace embellished jacket and boots for you.

In between all this gadding about I am also still working on things for Yarndale, have got little to show you that is finished but have been embroidering and paper piecing for the final pouches and needlebooks.

Have a good weekend ahead, whatever you are doing and see you next week. Thanks for visiting as always.