We made it to November! Congrats, Team! I’m so very proud of you. Time to clean our studios, wash and repair this season’s costumes for storage, and settle in for a simple, quiet, sleepy off-season. What’s that you say? There are events the next six weekends, you currently have three costumes in progress, and one of those has a hard mid-Winter deadline? Oh, cool. Well, no rest for you then. Back to work!
My little family closed out September with our first Society for Creative Anachronism event, the Tournament of the Fallen Stag. Over the years, I’ve received invites from numerous friends for SCA revels, but I’m always busy or getting to them takes too much effort (i.e. leaving my house). Pennsic with my dance and drinking buddies is a dream that I keep putting off, but I think we’re getting closer. In this case, the stars aligned, and I was already knee deep in fitted kirtle mock-ups in need of a test run, so we decided to go. The organization deals with pre-17th century history, so I dug around in the closet for some generic “olde tyme” clothes for the babies and husband. Once reasonably attired, we headed out and watched the fencing and fighting from a shaded spot in the park. I don’t see a membership in our immediate future, but all of the people we met were very nice, and we’ll certainly keep an eye out for coming public events.
My October sewcation week was filled with not-sewing, primarily to declutter our severely neglected home and to pack for Baltimore Comic Con. However, I did take a day to prepare to be Mystery Reader for the Princeling’s kindergarten class. After a month of searching for a new-ish book that would allow me to wear the new green Elizabethan gown, I relented and chose The Storybook Knight–a great book, just earlier period than I wanted. Let me backup a bit. The volunteer Mystery Readers choose an age-appropriate book to read to the class for about 20 minutes. In order to engage the kids and to make the experience memorable, readers are encouraged to dress to the theme or to come in costume as a book character. I was put on this Earth to do this thing (and to dress my kids for the 5th grade renaissance banquet, but we’ll get to that in a couple of years). I pulled out the blue fitted kirtle again, ordered a new crown (and an extra for the collection), and made my first sideless surcote with a book-relevant coat of arms. One of the sweet kinder-babies asked if I was born to be a queen. She is my new favorite small human.
At this time, I would like to acknowledge my ability to refrain from making new costumes for Baltimore Comic Con this year. You may now applaud. I’ll wait.
Thank you. In addition to packing during my week off, I gave Livewire an update by finally sewing on all of the contrast and joint pieces. Outside of that, Hench Hubby opted out of playing dress up, the kids chose costumes they already had, and my only goals for the weekend were to get some signatures and photos in my Blink and Livewire costumes at the Sanford Greene and Valiant Comics booths. The weekend with friends and family was fun, as always, and we even had time record a podcast episode (you should listen to it).
What I should have been working on during my five days of homebodied bliss were the secret squirrel ren faire costumes that my genius, beautiful friend came up with. She, too, is a mash-up fan and suggested Elizabethan Ghostbusters for the final Halloween Weekend at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. Before she finished her thought, I was trying to figure out how to make a John Dee-meets-Witchfinder General style proton pack. Alas, I was only able to make four [barely] wearable costumes in the time allotted, but they were very well-received. After some refitting and trim additions, we’ll definitely be wearing them again. In all, we had two original Lady Busters, one reboot Lady Buster, Prince Slimer, Lord Stay Puft, and Vigo the Carpathian. I absolutely loved this group costume!
Finally, rounding out what was traditionally the end of my costuming season, we have Halloween. With the number of cathartic rants I’ve had in my “Hallo-whine” Instagram story, this post, that post, and over at the OPP blog, I realized that this year’s work costume needed to come from my existing costume hoard to reduce my mental energy expenditure over dealing with the pettiness of mundanes. And, again, I stuck to the script! Over the summer, I made a couple of fixes to my blue Tudor gown in the sleeves and hem (my two least favorite parts of a gown forever), but didn’t get to wear her to the faire this season. With a new girdle and freshly trimmed French Hood, I added fangs and a poorly placed stake to become a “Mid 16th Century Vampire” (yes, that is how I titled my costume contest entry). The idea is that my assailant missed the mark, hence my continued undead animation. This was my first time working with latex paste, and, despite the lack of blood–because I didn’t want to clean it up–I’m extremely pleased with the look.
Looking forward, I plan to clean the studio and the basement storage/work area, then get back to the grindstone on Orko (due March 4ish for pre-debut photos). Medieval Link and 18th Century Princess Allura are also on the work table, but I plan to take my sweet time with them…until I need them immediately for some random outing. The calendar has a few cons and local events between this weekend and mid-December, so I’ll need to make decisions on which costumes to pull out. With holidays on the horizon, my 9-to-5 is going to seep into overtime, so we’ll see how much gets done in the off hours. Fall was quite a ride!
Thanks for stopping in!