Friday, May 12, 2006

Really pretty excuses

Yesterday was my first blog entry in over a week. Yowch. However, there is a reason. I've been spending my evenings making some new SCA garb for my daughter. The new outfit is meant to be Italian Renaissance in style, based more or less on the dresses in this portrait. The outfit consists of a white cotton chemise underneath, with a verrry fancy dress on top. I made the top dress out of two matching Indian wool shawls. They've got metallic embroidery on them and they're reversible.

(No, this isn't knitting related. But it is a textile-related project, and it's my blog, so keep your hair on.)

Having been in the SCA for almost ten years (ten years?!? When did that happen? Aieee...) I've made a fair bit of garb, and I can say with absolute assurance that I have never taken such pains at sewing anything as I have been doing with this project. No corners are being cut. I finished seams, I was precise, I handsewed the pleats...and it looks INCREDIBLE. It will easily pass the 'Laurel handshake' test*. I didn't know I could be this good at costuming! Check it out:

good shot of DD

good shot of the garb

The glorious thing about this dress is that it has been carefully (and cleverly, if I may toot my own horn once again) designed to grow with my daughter. In typical Italian Ren style, there are laces everywhere. The front and back lace together at the sides and shoulders. The sleeves lace closed, and then lace to the dress. The skirt has about seven or eight extra inches of length on it, and can be let out as my daughter gets taller - the trim at the bottom can be easily cut off and reattached further down.

All this means that as DD gets bigger, the dress can simply be re-laced and let out so that it will continue to fit her. (She'll need new under-chemises every few years, but that's a simple sew, no big deal.)

When I explained this all to DH, he was really impressed. "So, it's going to fit her until she's like, what, ten?"

With any luck, yes.

I so rock. The question is, do I rock hard enough to get the chemise hemmed at cuffs and bottom for the big event tomorrow? And maybe the matching cap, too? And get all the packing done? And preparation for maybe going to a birthday party after? All taking into account the fact that I am dangerously underslept at this point?

No idea. Wish me luck.

Black socks for Dad
I think I've done a row or so on this since my last entry, just as 'cover' when DH sounded like he was coming downstairs and I had to hide his birthday knitting. Woo.

Self-patterning socks #2 for DH
Hell Heel has been turned! The journey up the leg is going well.

Stornaway sweater for DH
Ball #1 is now toast. I'll have to wind myself up another one before I can keep going, because there's no freakin' way I'm carrying a two-pound cone of yarn around with me.

* This is an SCA cultural reference. The Order of the Laurel is an honour bestowed to those who have achieved mastery in an art or science. The joke goes that a Laurel will offer to shake your hand, then turn your wrist over, flip up the cuff of your sleeve and meticulously examine your seams.


rachel said...

I don't do gushing over children as a rule, but your daughter is gorgeous and that outfit totally rocks!

Tanya said...

I LoveLoveLoveLove it!!! (Your DD is just wonderful, and it *will* pass muster quite nicely t'boot.)

It was soooo nice to see you guys yesterday. I hope you've had a magnificent Mother's Day.

Carrie K said...

That dress (and daughter) looks fabulous! The Laurel Handshake test??? Oh no! I'm supposed to be making my brother an outfit for his SCA foray and now I have to do it right. Phooey.