Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Chevron Dress - Part 1

 I'm sure you all remember me talking about making new dresses, right?  Okay, good.  This is the Chevron dress, not quite the right name for it yet, but I'm working on that.  It came about from the delighted discovery of two curtains (I do love curtains) at Goodwill for around $3 each.They were reds, purple, and yellows in bold cavalier stripes and it was love at first sight.  Initially I envisioned them as a steampunk ensemble, however I am madly in love with what they are becoming.  I used the same pattern for this, Vogue 8286 (circa 1992), as I have been playing with lately with my other dresses.  None of which are done yet!  Ugh.

Anyway, I fussed with this one for a long time in my head.  At first it was a vertically striped ensemble with a gathered skirt (I do love some fluff!) and then, in a stroke of epiphany, I came up with chevrons! Just for the bodice, perhaps?  Skirt?  Both?  The possibilities were boggling.  I just went at it, 'never mind the maneuvers' as was said of Lord Nelson.  Sometimes you must needs dive in with guns blazing in order to put aside your fears of something new, of mistakes.  I was so afraid of making a mistake with this fabric that it was holding me up from actually playing with it.  I believe this is a common fear among stitchers for we treasure our fabric so.

What came together amidst a flurry of newspaper patterns and straight pins was a mind boggling confection.  And I must say, I am terribly pleased with it so far.

Quite by accident, the skirt "Vees" away from the body and towards the bodice, creating an "x" at the waistline.

Delicate purple pocket lining!

Jaunty yellow zipper!

And, voila!  The (almost) finished product.  It is languishing with the demands of school-work and reading for Theatre History, but I have since fixed my dress form and popped the Chevron confection on Ophelia to tempt me while I read.  The last thing I am fussing with are sleeves.  I would very much like short, set in sleeves with black turned-up accent along the hem.  So far I have made eight versions of sleeves and gained no insight.  I took the pile in to my Costume Design professor and asked his advice.  Apparently the hole for your arm (the armseye) must be as close to the actual joint as possible in order to achieve the greatest range of motion for the limb.  Rather counter-intuitive for me, but once I played with pattern pieces, made more sense.  A closer sleeve will pull less of the bodice fabric away from the center back seam (one of my problems) and allow the armseye seam/sleeve to do most of the moving.  Huzzah!  
Right now this dear little dress has a muslin sleeve waiting patiently for me to fix it.  Then hem it up, pop some yummy black lace along the bottom for added interest and wear until dead! Heehee.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Wedding Fodder...

or..."The Dress, The Hair, The Ring, and The Man"

Old friends ask me, "When are you getting married?"  It's become so old hat to reply, "When I'm done with school." that I don't really think about something two years+ away.  Until I found these pictures, courtesy of Tumblr, and began dreaming.

The ring is a family heirloom from his side.  It was custom designed by Great grandfather and has been handed down from father to son for four generations now.  When the couple reaches their 25th wedding anniversary the ring is tucked away (in the original box!), to await the romance of the next generation, and a new ring procured.  I'm thinking something gothy?  Steampunk?  Or just plain lovely.

My grand scheme is to make my dress, probably as a senior project for school, and go from there.  I have struggled with what silhouette I want and then I found this fun purple (made from a tent!) frock.
I love the neckline, not terribly keen on the sleeves, but that's okay.  I also adore the button sash.  I'm such a sucker for button details...

Then I stumbled on this photograph and fell madly in love with the hair idea.  By the time I actually get hitched my hair is going to be so long.  I'm thinking peonies, or something equally sumptuous.  Or just a crown of autumn leaves.  We are getting married in October after all. 

Oh, yes, the most important part.  My honey-bunny.  Couldn't do this without him!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Status Quo

Well, Cornish is back in action and despite it only being three days back, it feels like a whole week or so.  I am enjoying the majority of my classes as most of them require me to perform duties directly related to my intended major!  Such fun.  Studio is one of these.  In Studio we design a hypothetical play from reading it and gaining first impressions to sketching up designs for lights, costumes, and sets.  We basically do every aspect of production except the actual physical building.  It's a way for us as young designers to hone our skills, have a little practice at working together as a team, and to test our talents.

I'm also taking a lighting class, a Theatre History class, 3D design, and Scenic Painting (which is awesomely messy) on top of being the ASM for the school's production of Pride and Prejudice.  All in all very satisfying and very busy.

So I leave you with this lovely dress.  Alas, I have misplaced the show this was from, but it's made from a tent and I'm in love with the neckline silhouette as a possibility for my wedding dress.

More later!