Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Life catching up with you

So... apparently, I haven't published anything since mid-September.  Opps.  I'd say, how did that happen, but I think I already know.  I got side-tracked from historical projects when I scrapped my initial plans for Halloween.  And then work got the way work tends to do, sometimes, with looming inspections and an unimaginable quantity of new responsibilites.  Stress means that I started spending my free time immersed in my preferred avoidance technique, reading fanfiction.  Combine that with a shiny new fandom obsession (hellooooo, Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Where have you been all my life?)  Then there was Arisia coming up and my responsibilities there were more focused on the planning of programming than the making of anything new.  So, yeah.  A creative dry spell and falling off the face of the blogosphere was bound to happen, as I always feel like I have nothing to say if I've got nothing to show.  But things have sorta kinda settled down with work a bit, and I'm ready to stop avoiding the craft room and get back to work.  So I share with you an overview of what I've been working on.

Scrapped Halloween Plans
My original idea for Halloween fit into the Alternate History challenge for the Historical Sew Fortnightly.  The spousal unit and myself were going as 'Victorian Spiders', inspired by some of the fantastical fancy dress costumes of the late Victorian era.  I already had the black underskirt, but I was able to bang out a black widow themed over-skirt and most of a brown gentleman's vest that was due to have an inverted fiddle applique on the back.  But this was the project that just stalled out on me and ended up getting shelved.  Nice part is that when I come up with another event needing something along these lines, it shouldn't take too much effort to polish them off.

Halloween 2.0: Marvel Superheroes
When the motivation to work on the Victorian spiders dried up, I decided to pursue a wild hair inspired by my current fandom obsession.  I made the Captain Marvel on the left for my bff (well, cannibalized a zentai suit and attached the mantle, hip scarf and accessorized), and my fem Captain America on the right (in which I Frankensteined a dress set out of a pair of stretch, textured tube skirts off the rack).  Wolverine in front and Star Lord in the center back completed our haphazard team.

Quilted Jumps
They were originally plotted out as an entry for the HSF challenge #16, Terminology.  Then they took a little while to get from drafted out to cutting and so got pushed back to #17, Yellow.  Then I found a funny reference in a poem while I was doing some research and they were totally going to be done in time for the challenge #18, Poetry in Motion.  But even on the machine, the quilting took FOREVER and I was like, that's it.  I know I've seen SOMEBODY do jumps in the last 18 months of HSF, I'll just write it in for inspiration and call it good.  Well, yeah.  They're still a work in progress.  I'm just about done with the binding, having left a few gaps to put in the boning that I ordered the other tnight.  So there's really very little left to do at this point.  I wanted a set of jumps to use as an alternative to stays worn under my chemise a la reine.  The yellow should be light enough to not be TOO obvious under the thin white cotton (or at least less obvious than my current gray and navy stays).

And what's coming next?

- Well, I've given myself permission to set aside the HSF challenges for now.  As much fun as they were, I was stressing myself out about getting to every single one of them and screwing myself over when it came to prioritizing projects.

- Figments & Filaments (a costuming convention here in Kansas City) is coming up and I've gotten a few panel ideas in for that.  I've not let myself be in charge of anything big, but I've found lots of little ways to get involved and hopefully make the experience a better thing for all involved.

- the deadline for getting in class proposals for Costume College came too soon after Arisia for me to be able to devote a lot of energy to them, but I was able to get one proposal in at the last minute for a workshop that would be uber fun to do, should it get selected.  Plotting for costumes for that, however, will just have to wait.  Before that is...

- Costume Con, which I had to miss last year and I was totally missing it.  Costume Con has a strong competition element to it (among a lot of other things), but as I'm one of those people that thrive on competition, it's totally my thing.  I find that having a hard deadline and knowing that someone is going to be looking at my costumes VERY closely really spurs me on.  I do more research, make my work neater and really put the extra umph into it, which results in a better finished project.  I've lucked out in that I have only one new 'from scratch' project in mind for this year, and that was being an extra in someone else's big group project, so I don't really have to do the stressful plotting and planning for it.  Just make a dress and show up for rehearsals, which is oddly relaxing.  I have a couple of pieces that were long languishing works in progress that I've brought out to finish up for this.  And a finished costume that totally fits a theme.  And my historical masquerade entry was 'finished enough to wear' but totally needs more work and the collation of all of my documentation.

So I've got enough to be getting on with, me thinks.  Mostly I wanted to get all of this down to swing myself back into this blogging thing.  As I wrap projects up, hopefully I'll remember to do the show-and-tell part that should come after them.


  1. Yahoo! Happy to see you blog about what's been going on! Love love love the Victorian Spider idea...may have to keep that in mind for this Halloween. Seperwar has a FAAAAABULOUS spider web tiara that I need an excuse to purchase. Your Fem Captain America outfit is wonderful! What fun you must have had!

    1. Your Spelling Bee dress was absolutely what gave me the idea for the Victorian spiders. Someday, I'd love to see a weird historical COSTUME costumes group happen, so we can wear them. A spider tiara? *grabby hands* Hey, do you have a good online source for tiaras? I'm still looking out for something to wear with a Queen Elizabeth visiting dress that's been on my 'someday' list for a while now.

  2. Glad to see you back. Those jumps are awesome and I love the Captain America. I second Gina on the Victorian spider. You could make a Victorian Black Widow costume, but then you'd have to fall down the DC rabbit hole.

    1. Oh, I already want a Captain Marvel bustle dress. The color schemes and recognizable symbolism of superheroes is SO much fun to play with.

  3. Woot! Update! With inspiration! :D I love the bustle dress, but I love that Marvel group more! It's perfect! All leaders too, depending on the series. You guys look great!

    Good luck on the stuff for Costume Con. I, too, need that atmosphere of friendly competition. Can't wait to see you there!