Saturday, May 30, 2015

Baa Baa Black Sheep

Well I found better pricing than finding people to fund a sheep and name it. Purchased 6 plush lambs. Two black, two beige, and two white in color. This is my mini flock and they are named. The dark ones are Ginger and Molasses, the beige are Sage and Thyme, and the light are Lavender and Rosemary. They have their respective leather belled collars and name in gold on each. Working out a corral respective for their size of 12 inches tall, so some random fun. Hoping to bring the flock for youth activities for cuddle time with the kids. This runs with my original late period shepherdess idea I had for my persona when new to the SCA.

Working on my class information and examples for Pennsic teaching, this is my first time teaching at Pennsic. Taught at two AEcademies and several local scollas but small class sizes. I find 6-10 is about as many sets of eyes I feel comfortable on me at one time. Teaching is a challenge due to some issues with stage fright that I haven't fully conquered. This is a small class too, I have limited 10 per class, will see who shows up. Important to get a good start and have it ready ahead. Its a class on center seamed coifs, designed to be a make and take class. Simple construction with basic hand-sewing techniques. So hoping to complete and outline by the end of the weekend.

Working on a mock up to show the process for the class.  So lots of prep for the pattern fabric, thread,
and needle kits with instructions I want for the class needing 20 kits minimum. So making kits will be another weekend project, though will need to be done soon.

I hope to work on some weaving to get another project on the whiteband skirt holders ready for use at Pennsic. This is a trial use of them with my woolen kirtles. I also want to make more kirtles for war though I think for the sake of time, I may have to purchase more garb to get enough for a week.  We shall see how it all goes, if I can manage to make a few kirtles via machine in time.

Speaking of weaving, looking at videos of fingerloop brading to do the late English version of making cord for my persona, compared to lucet that I learned. Though I want to keep my cord for coifs and laces close to English as possible. So looking at the Tudor Tailor site  and books they recommend finger loop braiding. So having a stab at it, will post some of the results. Also looking into future projects to have something newer out for A&S.  A few ideas and am going to see what sticks out to me the most. For now working on the class materials and some weaving.



Sunday, May 17, 2015

War Practice

At War Practice, saw many friends that I have not seen in many months. Camped near my haushold and met many new friends. Displayed some embroidery in progress, my black and gold-worked coif, and silk English gabled headdress. Received many a compliment on my work and my garb, which was very humbling. For the 3.5 days I wore a brown woolen kirtle, and a grey woolen kirtle, and a light plaid kirtle with partlet, coif twice day and this gabled hood pictured the last day of War practice. Hope a kind gentle had taken photos of my garb. Always forget to get someone to take a photo with my phone. Was showing this to Albert of my recently modified gabled headdress and how it looks worn.

While I was at my D&D game on Sunday, I completed two more partlets one double sided one in velvet for winter. Using left over grosgrain for the ties from Leos surcoat. The other is the second silk organza partlet using silk edging techniques to see if I can produce a rolled edge as advised by a Laurel friend I just met. Though her name escapes me at the moment. I met so many people, old friends and new, this weekend it was dizzying. I am looking for a simple silk black-work edge pattern for my undresses to give then some zing. In case as in the picture they want to peep out, they will look less out of place. They fit so nice and keep me cooler, glad the work properly as a smock.

Still weaving white silk gown straps for skirt hooks and have to finger-loop ties for the second
partlet. So some small projects in progress for Pennsic and future garb. Was lucky to get some 12th century gore dresses for Pennsic. Will be comfortable for camp and can save the more period persona wear for other occasions. I also found a linen undress, two pairs of stripped socks, a veil, two sets late period sleeves in the garb swap. So a very lucky and frugal clothing finds.

Other purchases were a shepherds crook for fun. Though with walking at Pennsic and my back issues that flair up with extended walking, this will help me lean and stretch when needed. After all Marrin is a shepherdess raised in Ireland so this is part of her early life then. I am also able to do some directing of youth with it was also an idea. A shepherdess of youth, however finding a flock of larger stuffed animal sheep would be fun too. Might put them on pull along wheels for Pennsic if its dry, however going to have to keep the Scots away. Though that's exactly what the crook's purchase was for the use if needed. Keeping my sheep out of trouble and away from bad influences.

 I received the Mary had a little lamb reference, Mary Quite Contrary and Little Bo Peep already this weekend. As a fan of nursery rhymes and fairy tales, I have fun playing along.  All very amusing and interesting persona development. Speaking of Persona Development, had a consult and submitted a name change for my Persona. Since my original name didn't pass in 2009, there is more information on late period Anglicized Gaelic names. As researched for my later time, its changing from Mairin O'Cadhla to Marrin O'Kealy to more correct to my time and anglicized Gaelic for the time. So similar but will have to get used to the change in spelling.

The best highlight for me was apprenticing to Her Grace Mistress Illish O'Donovan after court with friends nearby to witness. A very special moment and so glad Their Majesties were able to squeeze time in for us to do this. I have a lovely green silk belt Her Grace made for me to be appropriate with my time periods I play. Its so pretty, just right for my persona, and very pleased with how it all turned out. Looking forward to intently learning, laughing often, and loving the work to be done.

Working on the pattern and drafts for my Pennsic Class, 16th century coif- Make and Take. No decoration all simple construction and techniques. Working on images and reference for the class and then the pattern the basic finished example and create a step by step with pictures. This is my idea to make it visual to show as well as explain. No one likes to take a class and then forget the learning later on, and delving through finding out where one left off. So trying to give info, contact information and pictures to follow to make it easier to replicate at home. So lots of work to be done.

Well back to another week of mundane work, looking forward to seeing what's in store.

Busy as a Bee,


Saturday, May 9, 2015

Portrait of a Lady

By Hans Holben the Younger
Well working on a sheer partlet sort of like the one pictured. Hoping in warmer weather this is an alternative I may not sunburn through. Though the gradual goal is to make this outfit the right way from the skin out; headdress, veil, kirtle, smock, socks, shoes, and petticoats. So hoping that something like this would be good for the more period correct transformation I am striving towards.

Weaving silk white bands and formulating a way of making the metallic hooks on the end that stab and hold up the skirts. These "white bands" are a mystery to most costumers as to the use and purpose. In period portraits from approximately 1500-1540, we see white bands on noble and gentle woman alike.

 I am going with the theory you see in the drawing. Its a way of holding up skirts to show linings and would be another great way of showing conspicuous consumption of fabrics. So weaving a way to make an even length of band to try out pinning and use techniques on these unusual accessories.

Looking at learning fingerloop braiding as it would be appropriate
for my persona living in England. So having made a real mess of the first time, consulting a local weaving expert to better learn it and make a functional knotted mess instead of a rats nest. So hoping to make laces for gowns with points is the end goal.

Thinking more about period head wear, wondering how a gabled headdress class would go eventually? I found someone online is thinking similarly that structured headdresses evolved from pinning techniques of veils. Sumptuous outer fabrics added that evolved to solid forms of structure within and sewed to place. This is comfortable head wear, in my opinion. The lappets can be pinned for different looks, even in the structured later style. I know some folks hold contempt for a headdress that looks like a gable roof. However fashion is a winding trail with unusual
Beaded Coif
turns, this is a small segment of the 16th century. It goes in the same fashion intrigues as hennin hats, extremely long pointed french shoes and other clothing oddities.

Beaded Embroidered Frontlet
Though I was productive today, despite it being hot in the house. Took the precious beaded and goldworked embroidery that I made recently, devised to make a lined coif from it. With the beads still making an silk organza cover for it to protect the goldwork. Have to make one for another coif as well. I finished my silk organza partlet edged in velvet with silk lucet ties. Attached the embroidery to my silk gabled headdress as the crossing frontlet, it hides the front of your hair.

Silk Organza Partlet edged in Velvet

So very happy with tying up loose projects today. Wondering about time to write up documentation between appointments this week. Have interviews and hope to land that big fish I kept speaking about last post. In the meantime Its good to be busy and to finish pending projects. Hoping for continued productivity.

Keeping out of trouble and off the streets,


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Crown Tournament

 A very magical day was had on Saturday. Attended my first crown tournament and being fought for by my good friend Lord Leo Ignatius. Have been spending the month getting all the preparations done with his armor which we patterned, he sewed and I advised his progress. I made his red and black edged surcoat and painted a heraldic banner for the procession.

Was asked to wear my Polychrome Embroidered Jacket, for this event. If Leo is taking hits fighting for my honor, I have no issues wearing garb he requests. Was also told I should let it see the light of day for something that took 3 years of my free-time to complete. It looked great as usual, didn't realize how much I will have to take the under-dress in to make it fit my current size.

It was a sunny day but avoided sunburn except for the tip of my nose and just under my neck. Which didn't hurt nor peal at this point. The heart-shaped coif only protects so much. Will have to look at period portraits and see if I can devise veils for these coifs as well.  It may save me some discomfort with outdoor events in the future. Going to invest in a 10 X 10 easy up for events like these to have some shade to seek. Forgot all about this being an outdoor event, so focused on just completing the armor and garments needed for Leo. The roses were a lovely thank you and were distributed by the Queen for the consorts.

Glad I checked on Leo and left Queens tea early, he needed inspected and help with finishing getting into his armor. So it was good to make myself useful. I was able to finish getting our set up arranged and get ready for procession. Which was a long wait of about an hour and a half in the sun.  I didn't mind being in the back,  more time to watch what everyone else was doing and learn. I feel most humbled and in awe Her Excellency Countess Elena d'Artois had asked to be our herald, which she came up with a creative introduction on the fly. Also in awe that Her Excellency Countess Anna Leigh asked to be our banner bearer, didn't notice till later her dress matched Leo's heraldic colors. So that's a nifty detail as well as we were the only pair escorted by two ladies of the rose, a good omen I thought.

Leo fought his bouts very aggressively and with much honor. I am very proud of his performance, the
first combatant he fought THL Bluestar came in 3rd. Lots more practice and more time to adjust to his newer kit, I think he will find his comfort zone and may surprise a few folks. Leo was able to watch and listen to some instruction from other knights later in the day, which he found the information very educational. My educational part was just making and sewing armor parts and learning how it all goes together.

Another portion of my Sca education is teaching. I am working on my class for Pennsic on 16th C. Coif and how they are constructed. Drafting my pattern and coming up with my example piece this week is my goal. Currently seeking how to make silk organza covers for my embroidered coifs to save the stitches from snagging. I saw one made this way and covers like these in Flemish 16th century paintings. As well as veils for my heart shaped coif is on the docket of projects. So making accessories right now for a change of pace.

I did complete my second wool kirtle for Pennsic this is in shades of
brown. So one in grey and one in brown is currently ready for war. I have yet to make one in orange cotton duck and one in black wool.  A blue Italian is in the works but have to work out the details. On the embroidery front, I did complete a beaded embroidery with, ruby, emerald, and sapphire beads and freshwater pearls. Thinking its going to be a pouch at this point since it wouldn't be in the right shape nor wide enough to make a coif. Its non documented project, it was a just for fun. Well got to get back to searching for work and sewing.

Busy as Usual,




Tudor Q and A

What is a Tudorosity?

A mashed combination of the words Tudor and Curiosity to create the word Tudorosity. Tudorosities is the plural form and the deffinition is as follows.

Tudorosity- an desire to learn or know anything about the Tudor dynasty assocated with years 1405 through 1603.

Most people ask my why I make the Tudor garb ?

I find the clothing of this era not only beautiful but also challenging to sew. There is much more care and purpose put into making garments and wearing garments in the Tudor Era. I love the look of Tudor so much I wanted to explore the way clothes were made back then and the subtle changes in fashion and styles of time.

How did you get started in this interesting hobby?

I started with art first, I love to draw, paint, and sculpt all the traditional fine arts. So being able to draw helps me visualize the looks I want to create in my garb. History has always been a huge interest of mine and I've had a knack for sewing since I was 6 years old. It all started with doll clothes and I learned cross stitch embroidery from my grandmother when I was little. I am self taught sewer, crochet, knitting, embroidery and tatting. My methods are learned from books mainly and there is still so much more to learn.

What is my favorite outfit and why?

It would be like picking a favorite out of one of my future children, its impossible. I love all my gown creations and really like the distinct differences in all the styles clothing I make for the Tudor Era.

Do you make the whole outfit including hat, shoes, and undergarments?

I do have a goal of making a complete Tudor from the skin out. As of right now I make 80% of my gowns and accessories. The shoes, corset, stockings, and petticoats are bought online and the petticoats are a close reproduction but not made by me. Though someday I plan on making a reed corset and petticoat to wear under my gowns, as well as other accessories.

How long does it take to make a gown?

It all depends on the type of gown I plan on making and the time period and class of the design. Generally if I work on it 8 hours a day on a sewing machine it will take 3 days to get the basics and another 5 days to do finish hand-sewing details and beading. So a week to a week and a half if working on it steady for that amount of time. I work a full-time job so it does take longer than a week to complete. I put over 40-100 hours per outfit depending on its complexity, its like its own full time job of sorts.

Do you make renaissance clothing for sale or custom orders?

No, due to new employment and changes in my lifestyle. Unfortunately, I have no time to support sewing for others. Though I recommend sewing lessons for those adventurous few. There are many fine folks who make and sell historical clothing. I suggest guidance with sew from many fine historical enthusiastic costumers out on the internet.

How long have you been making these elaborate costumes?

I have been in the Society of Creative Anachronism coming up on my 10th year. Active since 2004 working at demonstrations and volunteering when I could between working and other life's distractions. I really concentrated on Tudor sewing in 2007 and worked with patterns to learn proper fabrics, techniques, fit, and silhouette. I really enjoy the eras transition from a medieval form fitting layered cotterdie to the boned Tudor kirtle and then to structured Elizabethan clothing.

Tudor Rose

Tudor Rose

Lady Willoughby

Lady Willoughby

Tudor Rose

Tudor Rose

Peach Elizabethan Noble

Peach Elizabethan Noble

Tudor Rose

Tudor Rose

Mauve Waistcoat Elizabethan Gown

Mauve Waistcoat Elizabethan Gown

Tudor Rose

Tudor Rose

O'Cadhla Heraldry

O'Cadhla Heraldry

Queen Mary I of England

Queen Mary I of England