I just finished Frankensteining the waistband for the breeches (I cut it in several places, instead of taking it off, regathering the pants and reattaching it).  I feel bad about this "shortcut" because it's not the best solution and probably end up taking me as long to do it as it would have been to do it the right way.  If Brad really likes these, I will redo the waistband in the future...put probably not until after this season of fest.

In other news...the Northstar VSA has changed to the theme of this year's masquerade ball (not that it was ever made public anyway, so I'm not sure I should be sharing this) to Dance Macabre.  All things dark and deathy, I suppose, since our Ball is going to be on Halloween night.

I was upset about this at first because the original theme would have been the perfect excuse for me to rewear my wedding gown, but if we can do it next year, I'll have the perfect excuse to make an 18th Century gown, or at least the underwear for it! 

My idea for my costume (so far) is to wear my wedding gown, and modify it by adding an underbust corset, a cloak, a mask, and possibly adding some new elements to the dress (beadwork).  Also, I can play everything up with jewelry!  I'm thinking a blood red velvet coat, lined with silk (I've always wanted one, and now I have an excuse).  I also thought Brad might want a cloak though I'm not sure what other apsects he has in mind for his costume (men can get away with wearing tuxedos).   All in all it sounds like it's going to be a fun theme for us.
 
I had the chance to put on the Venetian again (no small feat) and checked the new strap placement.

I do have before pictures, but they are on my home computer...just know the strap never wanted to stay on my shoulder, and that the lesson I've learned from this will be forever burned into my brain because of how frustrating it's made wearing this otherwise satisfactory dress. 

In these pictures, the placement of the strap isn't permanant, just basted into place and pins where changes needed to be made.  I think I've mentioned it in previous posts, but I'm using a trim I found for the straps, and will end up trimming the front of the bodice in it (which I wanted to do anyway, just not with this particular trim) to make it look more intentional.  I would like to add some beading to the trim for more glitz and glam...you understand!  Not sure when I'll get around to beading though.

The last picture in this series is less about the dress, and more about the beautiful antique mirror my wonderful hubby gave me as a wedding gift!  It's from 1893, and it's one of my most treasured posessions.
And below are Brad's breeches, with other pieces of his fest bought garb...I'll include a picture of what it his outfit normally consists of (I hope he still feels inclined to wear these once in a while, it's not everyday a lady gets to enjoy her man in such close fitting clothing :D).

The last picture is because with his boots on, the pants are too short buttoned...if we unbutton the legband, they work, but we're not sure how comfortable they'll be, so Saturday is our testrun before I make the real breeches (which are all lined just waiting for our testrun to be put together).

The breeches fit Brad now, so I'm going to finish up the buttonholes and waistband and then DONE!

Note:  After contemplating using this pattern for my own breeches (for under the Venetian) I tried these on to figure out how I would need to alter them: they are too long, and 6-8 inches to wide in each leg fo the look I'd want, and my calfs are bigger than Brad's so the legband would need to be longer.
 
 
Sorry it's taken me a while to get these up...somehow I cracked the screencover on Brad's camera and feel so terrible about it that I hate looking at it anymore, much less using it.  The camera still works, it's just marred. 

Picture
Above are the "pantaloons" I've made using fabric from the salwar kameez.  The fabric with small flowers was the orginal pant fabric for the outfit and the stripe down each leg is from the dress part of the set. 
 Above are the wearable mock-up breeches for Brad.  This fabric might be hot because it's a mystery brocade (and the manliest floral brocade I've ever seen, how about you?)  Brad's response to "these might be hot, are you sure?"  was, "they can't be any hotter than my leather jerkin"...Ah!  Good point!

I still have to finish up the waistband, the couple of buttons & holes and the fly, and buttons and holes on the legbands, but I included the button we're going to use, so you could see it!
 
This past weekend was my sort of last push to get anything done before the start of Renaissance Festival!  I'm excited that it's starting on Saturday, but it marks so many things.

The end of Summer, that State Fair will be starting shortly, the return to school, the beginning of Fall...and that all leads to the end of the year, which always arrives strangely soon, leaving us wondering what we did with the past year and always making plans to move onto the next.  It's a circle. 

But, to What I actually accomplished this weekend...not much!  The great thing about Fest is that since it runs for 6+ weeks, there's time to do stuff while it's on, which is actually very motivating! 

Saturday we did some errand running and ate lunch while we were out.  We slept in, which gives me less time to get things done, but I did press Brad's black linen before we left the house and when we got back, I put my corset and Venetian dress on and Brad helped me with the frustrating secondary straps.  I'm going to try the dress on tonight to see if I attached them in the right places and make adjustments if necessary.  Putting the corset on reminded me that the corset is too long, so yesterday, I cut it down a couple of inches (not as easy as it sounds since I also have to cut bones and melt them down, not difficult, but it is work). 

Venetian To Do:
This week I would like to repleat the front of the dress.  If I have the time I would also like to reattach the whole skirt because there is a fabric wrinkle where the skirt and bodice meet which means too much fabric.  I should be able to get it done, but I have to be sure to give myself enough time.  I really like the look of the trim that I'm using as a secondary strap, so I'm thinking it would look more intentional (these straps are necessary because I didn't know what I was doing when I made the bodice pattern and it's easier to add them than to make a new bodice) if I trimmed the bodice with it.  Then I could add some fun beading!  I was also toying with the idea of paned sleeves using this trim, though I'm not sure there's enough of it for both (there should be).  Finally, I need to do a mending job on the camicia shoulder.

Pantaloons:
I did add a yoke to the pantaloon...mmm...no!  The yokes makes the pants really puffy around my waist, so I'm thinking of adding a waistband or making a different pair of pantloons completely.  I might scrap this idea for this year if it gets too involved.

Brad's Breeches:
I pressed his linen, as mentioned above, and cut all the pieces for his real breeches.  Unfortunately, I forgot that this fabric needs to be lined *headdesk* so I need to cut more fabric!  I'm hoping to get this done tonight.  Also, today I should be finishing up Brad's "mock-up" breeches.

Doublet:
I got the doublet mock-up sewn up last night.  A few things need to be changed, the armhole was too small and the collar too high.  I may need to add some length to the waistline as well, but we'll have to double check it tonight.  I also need to trace the sleeve pattern in Brad's size so I can get those cut too.  Getting thse done isn't necessary to the doublet, but then I guess it woudl be referred to as a Jerkin.

 
I sewed up the pantaloons yesterday, and it went rather well except for the fact that the waist is too short, so now I'll have to add a yoke (I think that's what it's called) to make up where they are lacking.  Hopefully this will also make them a little longer because I did sort of want them either less full and below the knee or puffy and above the knee. 

Eitherway, I think I should have thought about the fact that the plan is too show off my legs (unintentially, I really only want to show off the shorts) because I feel very silly.  Hmm...

So, I'm not sure these are going to work...right now anyway.  They may just be too small for my thick thighs, so I'll try fiddling with them to see if I can get them how I'd like them with my current body, and if it doesn't work, come up with a plan B.

Today I'm planning on working on some graphics for my blog, and if I get to them, some advertisments for the upcoming VSA Masquerade Ball and a possible corsetry workshop we're hoping would raise some funds to help us survive.
 
Yeah, I'm sorry that I haven't gotten any pictural evidence that I have actually be doing stuff on this end, but I will! 

To follow up, the button placement is fine, but I am needing to make take the waist in a little.  I can probably finish this stuff up today, but because I'm so close to being done with them, may just procrastinate and work on something else, like I'm known to do.  *smirk*

Also, I fiddled with the pants I had from the salwar kameez set, and think they should work for pants...I believe these have been worn by another person, who must have been very oddly shaped because the waist is pretty big in these pants while the legs are SO skinny!  I did want to add a litte extra pattern from the top into the pantaloons because I love the patterns and colors so much, so to add some extra puffiness to the pantaloon, I'm adding about a 4 inch strip on each side of the leg.  I also wanted to line these, so I'll need to locate the fabric I bought for that. 

Besides the extras I'm doing, these were fairly easy to make, even though I'm reusing/recycling previously cut fabric. 

Crystal told me there was a really easy way to make simple "drawers", and I found this website with instructions and illustrations!  (I'm a very visual person)  http://www.geocities.com/sheikhani_troupe/costume1.html

I used Brad's breeches pattern to trace the crotch, and what do you know!? I have pants! 

So...looks like I at least have a plan and can get these done soon.  Tonight I have a VSA meeting, but I am getting off of work at 3, so I hope I can get some stuff done before I have to leave for the meeting.
 
That wasn't as bad as I built it up to be!  I have made hundreds of buttonhole stitches before by hand for my corset lacing, but just never to be used in conjuction with an actual button! 

So, that main pant buttonhole is made...now I can move on to lesser holes.  Heh.

I do have a bit more work to do as, when I asked Brad to show me where he would button these, he took the fly and stretched it across his tummy, like the pants were too big!

#$%^&*@!!!  They fit the other day, after I changed the size of the waistband AFTER they were too small before...What the heck!  Well, rather than have a wonky fly (haha!) I'm deciding to resize them the right way.
 
Well, almost done. 

I'm almost finished with the wearable pair of mock-up breeches!  I need to add buttons and buttonholes, and something tells me that even though I'm almost done, that will take a while.  This is a handsewing project I can do at work, while working at other stuff at home in the evening.  The buttonhole foot on my brand new sewing machine seems to be faulty...so I'm going to have to make them by hand. 
*sigh*
I'm nervous.  I haven't made a buttonhole for a real garment ever before.  I'll just need to make sure that I research it well.

Beyond that, I've decided (with the help of a smart & trusty friend) that since my Venetian is almost wearable, I should be spending a little time getting it ready for opening weekend.  I also need to fix the chemise because a seam in the shoulder came apart last year.  I'm hoping adding this extra pair of shoulder straps will only take one evening to figure out. 

After that I need to figure out what to do next, and I'm not sure what it should be:
Mock-up Brad's doublet
OR
Make the linen breeches

I feel that since this pair of breeches is so fresh in my mind, it may be a good idea to get the linen breeches made, but I am excited & curious to get his doublet started.  Also...making the linen breeches will probably only take a couple of days since I've already worked out the questions I had with the pattern.

I guess that means I should move ahead with starting the linen breeches, but while I'm cutting the pieces for them, I will also cut the 1st mock-up pieces for the doublet. 
 
We had a productive weekend. 

Saturday Brad and I had plans in seperate directions.  He had to drive south for an oil change and I took Mindy to the vet to get her stitches removed.  That took less than 10 minutes, then I had plans to see Crystal and do some fabric shopping!
 
Well, I got the mock-up waistband on the 2nd draft of the pants, and it looks good.

Though I really didn't want to and procrastinated until very late, I got the real mock-up (in the mock-up fashion fabric that I'm hoping become a wearable pair of pants) waistband and the interfacing for it cut!  Yay me!

I am going to aim to get the waistband on tonight, but since my mudroom (which is where most of my sewing storage is) is driving me nutzo, I might take some quality time to try to organize it--Again!  The problem in that room is that my main storage is a massive built in cabinett from the 70's, but it's not very...what's the word...it's not a very effecient use of space.  The top cabinets are like 2 feet high, but are 6.5 feet off the floor, not easily accessibly by a 5.3 foot woman....and the biggest cabinet it 5 feet tall..so I have stuff stacked on stuff, stacked on stuff, and stuff stuffed into the sides of it...disasterous!

We'll see if I can manage to come up with a solution, the whole situation in the room is temporary anyway.