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Aug. 2nd, 2011

River Tam

Shiny News

Recently got a new blog- www.quietserenity.blogspot.com Most (not all) of my buddies are on blogger, so I thought the switch was a good idea.

Also, I'll be moving out of my real life Barton Cottage soon, so the title doesn't quite fit. If I find I can change it, I shall.

Anyway, this blog will continue to be my reviews blog. I'd like to do a review on Cowboys and Aliens soon, but I can't guarantee it'll happen. Currently I'm working on two costumes for the Ren Faire, which is in ONE month.

Costume diaries will henceforth be found at www.awhimsicaladventure.blogspot.com, my business blog.

Reviews of various shows, movies, and other products will stay here.

Serenity will be my place for various thoughts, observations, and Deep Truths. ;-) Also occasional moments of angst, if I know anything about myself.

So, much as I love LJ, I'll be mostly moving out. You'll still see me after Doctor Who episodes, if at all possible. :-) And come follow me on blogger! You can do so from your LJ account, I believe.

God bless you all!

May. 21st, 2011

Alphonse Mucha

Review: The Doctor's Wife

FINALLY, Review of The Doctor's Wife, after all this time.


You can't archive something that hasn't happened yet.Collapse )

May. 12th, 2011

Amy Pond

Piratey Goodness- The Curse Of The Black Spot

...Not to be confused with the Curse Of The Black Pearl. ;-)

Okay, this review was actually written before my previous one, so forgive me if I repeat myself.

Most of my notes seem to be random quotes, instead of useful observations, so I haven’t much idea of where this review will go.


"YO HO HO! ...Or does no one actually say that?"Collapse )


Amy Pond

Day of the Moon Review

Well, reading over my notes I find once again that most of them are simply quotes that caught my fancy. And I went and wrote my Pirate review first. So I’m all turned around now. But I’ll do the best I can.


Day of the Moon (Spoilers!)Collapse )


Apr. 30th, 2011

Amy Pond

Doctor Who Review- The Impossible Astronaut

It's that time of year again! Aren't we all excited?

Since last year, a lot has happened (to me, I mean). I started an Etsy shop and listed some Doctor Who items this past week. If you want to check them out, here's the link: http://www.etsy.com/shop/elspethswhimsy
Check out the items sold ("2 sales" far down on the right column). I made a TARDIS bag that I'm pretty proud of, and am about to make two more incarnations thereof.

Now, on to the review/comments/ramblings.Collapse )Now, on to the review/comments/ramblings.Collapse )

Apr. 2nd, 2011

Alphonse Mucha

For my friend Wilf

I know, I haven't posted in ages. There will be more regular posts in the near future. Right now I just wanted to drop this off for a friend of mine.

Bach at his Phantomest. :-)

Sep. 1st, 2010

Alphonse Mucha

Down to the wire...

Okay. So.
What's new?

Well, I finished my cap. It's a little narrow at the top. I messed up when I re-cut it. :-S But it works. And I have to put a quarter cloth under it anyway, and I have the straw hat atop it all. It won't show.
Quarter Cloth: A piece of fabric folded up into a wide cloth headband of sorts. Wonderful for hiding bangs and other non-period hair stuffs.

Apron is likewise (almost) finished. I have the apron itself all hemmed up, and the ties are ironed and ready to be stitched. It's been ironed and starched and looks like a young maid's best Sunday apron, all ready for a market day visit from the KING AND QUEEN. :-)

Stomacher has been assembled and ironed. I just have to hem up the seams that will show (no visible machine stitching!). I decided to make it reversible, too, so if I wear the dress on the navy side, I can have an orange stomacher, and vice versa. Each side will have a band of the other fabric at the top. Hopefully it'll look like my (non-existant) kirtle has trim on it. I have a very good reason for this. In this way, if the top ruffles a bit, you won't be able to see that it's reversible. It'll be all one color along the top.

Sleeves are on hold as it's supposed to be 80 degrees Farenheit. I won't be needing the extra layer, so there's no reason to make them right now.

The gown still needs to be hemmed, but as the bottom of the skirt is the edge of the fabric anyway, in a pinch I can go without hemming it.

"Purse". I found the basket I was looking for. A sweet little brown wicker thing. I'm going to make a little drawstring top to sew in and therefore make it more secure. Don't want any pickpockets snatching my camera!

So all in all, I think I'm doing well. Hopefully things will continue to go along smoothly. Keep praying for cool weather and swift costume construction!

Aug. 31st, 2010

Alphonse Mucha

The continuing drama of the Renaissance Festival Gown

I'm happy to announce that my gown is FINISHED!

Well, sort of.

The gown itself (not the extra bits) is done except for the hem.

But perhaps I should back up and regroup.
Click Me To Read The UpdateCollapse )

Aug. 25th, 2010



Okay, so not really... but it was quite upsetting and I was very put out.

As some of you have already heard, the beautiful cranberry fabric was snatched up over the weekend. When I went back to buy it, it had been taken already. I did not cry, but I pouted royally.

Eventually I settled on a color called "picante". I think it looks sort of like pumpkin pie.

So now the color scheme is navy and pumpkin. At least I hadn't chosen black. If I had it would've ended up being a halloween color scheme. Ick.

Progress report:

-The sleeves are now sewn on to my smock, meaning that it's basically the side seams, hem, and cuffs left to do!

-I have the apron cut out and ready to go, and I hope to cut out the cap tomorrow. I'd love to do it now, but it's near bedtime and I have the other things to keep me busy awhile longer, so it isn't necessary.

-I cut out the bodice from the picante today. And took pictures of it before I did. Behold my awesome patterns!

The bodice front had to be extended a bit, as the pattern was cut a bit too narrow.  From left bottom to right top: Bodice front, Bodice center back, and Bodice side back. The original pattern was princess seamed, but no more! Now it has the odd seaming one finds in the paintings of Renaissance peasants. I doff my cap to the painters who took the time to paint seams and ties and such, making it easier for folks like me to reproduce the clothing.

Now for the gown sleeves. I wasn't sure if I was going to make these, but I bought the extra fabric, so I figured I may as well. It'll probably be too warm to wear them, but I'll have them at hand for future events.

The gown sleeves are all their own. They have a pointed top and tie to the bodice of the gown. Here's a good picture of them in action: http://lowcountriescostume.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/market-scene-unknown2.jpg In the background you can also see the same style gown without the detatchable sleeves. I believe in this example the sleeves are pinned on. It's really quite amazing how many straight pins go into the wearing of Renaissance garb. Nevertheless, I plan on tying mine, so as to not have the pin snag my partlet. Either that or I'll temporarily tack them in place with a few stitches.

Photo of very odd sleeve pattern:

Believe it or not, it should come out right. I added a little bit on both sides, though, and I'm not sure how that will affect the shape. But it'll be fun anyway. :-)

Tomorrow I plan to continue with the sewing of the smock while at work, and start in on the apron if I have the time.

Pray for me. My dad told me tonight that the house is too small for me to do sewing projects and if I'm going to sew, I need to go somewhere else to do it. He's letting me finish this one, but beyond that, apparently my sewing days are over, unless I lug the machine to some obliging person's house.

It seems so unfair. This is how I unwind- I create things. I know it blocks up the living room, but can't it do that for a few days? It's not like it's an every day thing- I've monopolized twice in seven days, for only a few hours each. But Da has spoken, so from now on, any sewing projects must be small and not take up space.

For those of you who have given me comissions, fear not. They'll still happen. The doll clothes are small enough to not be a problem, and the full-size gown, I think, will be okay. If not, worse comes to worst I'll set up in the church basement. :-P

Another thing- Shoes. Sometime this week or next, I'm headed out to hunt down a good pair of somewhat dressy but very comfortable shoes to wear to work and to the festival. I don't think it's impossible to find a pair thus. I actually did find a pair, but they won't ship in time. :-(
Prayer that that end victoriously is also appreciated. I'll probably have to get off work to do it, which could be tough.

I have a few other things to mention, but I'll save them for another time. 'Til then, I'll keep plugging away!

Aug. 23rd, 2010


Costume Update

Well, Saturday I bought my fabric. I had no idea it would be so hard to do!
Correction- /one/ of my fabrics. I think I said this already, but I didn't share the mess it took to get it. You see, I'd planned to go to the bank and cash a check, then go and buy the fabric. But I dawdled through the morning, forgetting that banks close at noon on Saturdays.
So I scrounged around and managed to come up with just enough to buy one color. Which wasn't too bad, since I only planned to buy one, having only one coupon. I figured I'd get one that week, then get the next week's coupon and use it on the other color.

Amazing thing. This week's flyer contains TWO coupons, one of which is 50% off instead of 40%! So I'm actually getting the cranberry for cheaper, and getting the lacing for cheap, too.

So the cost for this dress has come down to about $40 instead of the original $150 or so. Bardingtide will be happy to hear that. Less than a day's wages.

Yesterday I drafted the pattern, and boy was that fun! I used the old Simplicity pattern for Arwen and Galadriel (not the one with Eowyn's dresses in it), but changed it beyond recognition. So the mock up fits... let's hope the actual one does. And I now have about 3 1/3 yards for the skirt, which I think will be enough. If not, there's always the bum roll to make things more full. :-P
I'll also have a long strip of extra fabric. I haven't decided what to do with it. I may make sleeves (sleeves tied on back then) or I might use it to create a bag, or something of a non-costume persuasion.

The smock continues to go along, bit by bit. I got the sleeve pieces put together, and have started french-seaming the side pieces.

Last night I drafted a tentative pattern for my cap. I had to do a lot of re-cutting from the original, which turned out huge. But after I cut it down properly it came out pretty good. I've all but decided to do a straight side rather than a more fashionable curved side. They're easier to sew, for one, and I'm going to be a very plain peasant.
I may change my mind on that, but for now I have the smock to finish.

The Continuing Drama of the Lack Of Purse-
I continue to believe that a basket is a bad idea. However, I've also ruled out pockets. I don't know what I was thinking there. Last year I tied my little bag to my belt, and had back trouble halfway through the day. Pockets are a bad idea. So no pockets, no basket. Right now I'm thinking another little bag/reticule/pouchy thing I can carry on my wrist. It's not right, but it's better than nothing. My last recourse is a green crocheted bag (crochet was not invented yet! Gack!) I wore the first year. If all else fails, I have that.

Also I'm going to start examining paintings to find out how the ladies carried their things home from market or while traveling. Probably more baskets. But you see, I'm planning on doing some real shopping this year (perhaps even the long-wished-for Celtic pin) and I don't want to be carrying a plastic grocery bag around. Oy. So perhaps instead of a little basket, I'll take a bigger basket with my little pouch inside. Perhaps.

If anyone has other ideas, I'd love to hear them!

Plan of Attack-
Today, I work on my smock and try not to be too chatty at TLC. Of course, I still have my job to do, but free time is sewing time, first and foremost.
This evening after work I go to buy the rest of my supplies, wash my fabric, and hopefully cut out the cranberry bodice.
Tomorrow, Wednesday, and Thursday I try to finish my smock and start on the apron and/or cap.
Friday I have Emily and will probably get very little done. Perhaps I might do some embroidery if I'm far enough along (doubtful).
Saturday and Sunday (afternoon) I'll be stitching away, putting together the bodice and starting on the skirt. I don't know how far I'll get, but I need to be as quick as possible. The fourth is coming soon!
Next week is the same, with possible machine sewing in the evenings if I haven't finished that by Sunday evening. Also during that time I'll be putting together whatever I settle on as a stand-in for a purse.

If I get really ahead of schedule, I might go ahead and try for that white partlet. It looks so pretty- I really want to wear one.

So that's it for today. I'll continue to update you as time goes on. And don't forget to suggest purse options if you have any!

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