I’m slippin’ this month’s update in under the wire, so hang on to your flat caps!
First off, this is not the bewb post. I got super distracted, but I promise you, they’re on the way.
Second, I’ve been getting some super weird follows on social media of late, so I just wanted to make a couple of public clarifications. I believe in science. While I’ve had some life-threatening experiences with professionals who couldn’t be bothered to do their jobs properly, I still get all of my shots like a champ and my family does, too. Keep the anti-vax nonsense out of my messages. Next, I’m Black. I get that angry version of terrified when I see marked vehicles following me, or honestly, any make & model that looks like it might be an unmarked vehicle. There are places I won’t go in my own hometown because I know that one sideways glance can end my actual, literal life. I’m also afraid of oversized pick-up trucks. Related, while I love dressing in historical and vintage-inspired clothing, I only go where I have a pre-planned exit strategy. I’ve been used as a token most of my life and it’s left me in scary situations with no backup. Similarly, I don’t follow-for-follow, and I sure as hell don’t pimp brands who just realized that We exist back in June of 2020. As a self-care practice, I don’t engage with idiots. I take a screenshot and then block, delete, or restrict, as the case warrants, without follow-up. Some people just can’t be trusted with Sam Wilson’s internet.
Third, I finally did a reset on my YouTube channel. Two vlogs and the Princess Tiana mock-up ‘Get Ready With Me’ are live! I used to post my dance performance videos there, but that part of my life is in various forms of therapy right now. I do hope that you’ll stop by and give a watch to the new costuming content–it’s a bit rambly, but I promise it’s leading somewhere.
Speaking of which, I finally cut the fabric! The gown construction for 1790s Princess Tiana has begun. Waiting on the new-to-me embroidery machine was no longer feasible for my sanity. I’m going to do the embroidered bits in smaller applique chunks on my existing embroidery machine and use decorative machine stitching to bring it all together. I am beyond excited to churn this beauty out, so the process will be documented on YouTube.
This month, I’ve been participating in the Hamilton Spencer Sew Along with Certain Sundries. I tacked the project on to my Regency Sailor Mercury, so it’s been an interesting challenge, bending the pattern to my will. The Costume Skills Institute hosted a three part series with The Modern Mantua Maker herself, Carolyn Anne Dowdell, that has been absolutely inspiring. Both Mercury and Tiana are benefitting from this particular pursuit of knowledge, and I’m so pleased to spend my time with groups who keep me excited to carry on and costume.
Comparably, in the last two months, I’ve attended quite a few lectures on textiles and the historical figures that benefited from them, created them, and those that were left out of the narratives we’ve been given. I encourage everyone to pay attention to these “academic” spaces–museums, libraries, historical sites–to ensure that all stories are being told in a more rounded perspective than has been the norm. It should be said that all of the lectures I attended were very good, but we shouldn’t have had to wait so long to gain access to them. Modernize those museums, kids. And while we’re on education, I had the privilege to speak to both middle school and college classes about the force that costuming has been in my life. I love talking ‘at’ students in the Zoom format, giving visuals that were not possible in a Career Day setting and answering questions without the kids feeling the burden of peer pressure or embarrassment. The future is geeky AF.
In the Completed column, my Tudor Star Wars waistcoat-turned-IG-reel was a quest chain that I did not ask for, but am glad that I finished. I also whipped up the Burnley & Trowbridge–Ruth Watkin mini mannequin for more historical sewing courses down the road. The Margo Anderson gamurra pattern arrived, so that might be a nice weekend project for…soon. My online shopping had a bit of an uptick with books, fabric, and shoe pre-orders. It’s been a productive couple of months for sewing, but I’m going to have to stay at it to keep up with the direction that my closet is going.
Thanks for reading!