Sunday, January 26, 2014

Historical Sew Fortnightly - Planning (again)

Now that I've finished the first HSF challenge, I've realized that I might be approaching this whole project a smidgin over-ambitiously. I had hoped to try to complete all twenty-four challenges, but I also have two dress commissions (one of which is a wedding gown with a good bit of pretty involved handwork) to complete this year, and I really want to spend time making each project well, instead of rushing through them. Quality over quantity and all that.

So, I've re-planned (at least for the first few months) my goals for a half-HSF, or a sew-monthly. I might switch some of odd-numbered challenges out for even-numbered challenges (if they are more likely to round out my wardrobe), but I started with the odds (possible evens are in italics):

  • #1: Make Do & Mend: obviously this one makes the list, I've already finished it! I made a half-robe, which is a good addition to my wardrobe because a) it is a separate, so I can switch out skirts to change things up a bit, and b) it is a bit more working-class (I think), so that gives me some flexibility of impression). 
  • #3: Pink: As far as I know, I don't have any pink fabric in my stash. As pink is not my favourite colour (I don't think colours are to be hated, each one has its place, but I do not love pink.) So... This challenge will probably be switched out for the 4th challenge, Under It All. 
  • #4: Under It All: I need a new corset! Or an updated one - my assets do not fit so well in my current long corset. I have cable ties and hemp cord, and I think I have sturdy cotton. I would love to imitate Sabine's lightly boned stays as shown here, and here, or maybe a pretty coloured pair like Nora's, here.
  • #5: Bodice: I was planning on making my lad a waistcoat, but I haven't found any fantastic fabric, and I don't want to make something just to make it, so for this challenge I would like to re-visit his linen tailcoat. Does that fit into this challenge? I have observed people using UFOs for the challenge before, and this is not a UFO nor a new piece; it is mostly finished, but I want to pick it apart a great deal, and re-cut some things before putting it together again. I would like to:
    • piece a little more fabric into the collar and correct the spread (it's a bit wide at present)
    • remove and re-attach the cuffs (they are a bit crooked)
    • unpick the entire front cutaway, and re-shape  more appropriately to Kenny's body
    • add the pocket flaps (which were somehow completely forgotten when I packed my sewing for the drive to Louisville) 
    • stitch the buttonholes! And permanently attach the buttons, of course. 
  • #6: Fairytale: I don't even have a plan for what I would do for this challenge if I could fit it in - I just love the concept! Fairytales are open to to so much interpretation, and they are so fun. I will be scheming about this one... 
  • #7: Tops & Toes: both Kenny and I need headgear. I would like to make myself a muslin cap, or find a nice straw hat to trim out. If neither of those works out, I would like to make Kenny an undress cap, for wearing at home with his banyan (if that ever materializes.) 
  • #9: Black & White: this one is easy, and I can fit some serious staples into this challenge. Kenny needs a black tailcoat, and I really need at least one white dress. I am leaning towards making a white dress, I think I have already found the perfect fabric. While I would love to whip up a classic black tailcoat for Kenny, I already have a quantity of green wool for his next coat and need to spend some time tweaking my pattern before embarking on any new coats. 
  • #11: The Politics of Fashion: possibly the most fun to research - I think politics' impact on fashion is fascinating. But I haven't decided yet whether to lean French Revolution or Prince Regent, so I don't know what type of garment I would make. Time to research! 
  • #13: Under $10: have to check out my stash to figure out what to do for this challenge. I think I have enough fabric for something like a spencer, but I don't have much in the way of trims. I also could fit some staples like a chemise (or two? Maybe that is a bit ambitious.) or apron into this challenge.
  • #14: Paisley & Plaid: I want a plaid taffeta ballgown. Like Molly Gibson's. Or this lovely extant example. I have found some fabric might work (here), but I would prefer something really bright and interesting, perhaps like this. This project is fairly high on my priority list, so it may bump out one of the other challenges.
  • #15: The Great Outdoors: would LOVE to make a great-coat for Kenny. However... that would require a lot of fabric and a great deal of time. My wedding dress commission is due at the beginning of November, and my goal is to be finishing it up in late September, so that might get in the way of this. I could also make a pelisse, spencer, or something small like a pair of gloves. 
  • #17: Yellow: another color challenge! I haven't really come across anything that screams, "MAKE ME IN YELLOW!" yet, so we'll see about this one. I am more fond of yellow than pink, so I'm sure I will find something. 
  • #18: Poetry in Motion: It would be so fun to make a dress/garment from a traditional Celtic folk song!! I have a list of them, just need to find a good one. Like The Green Wedding or The Highwayman, or Lady of Shalott. Lots of goodness here. 
  • #19: HSF Inspiration: as we've only gotten through almost two challenges thus far this year, I have no clue what I'll be wanting to do for this. But there are so many great costumers participating in HSF this year, I'm sure it will not be hard to find inspiration once we are a little farther in! This is a super-fun idea.
  • #21: Re-Do:  I am sure I will have to re-do one of the above projects by the time we get to this point! We'll just have to wait and see which one. 
  • #23: Modern History: I have been tossing around the idea of making Kenny a banyan for this challenge, but I am not sure if that is stretching it a bit - I think he would wear it around the house everyday, but that doesn't necessarily make it useful for modern wear. Another idea is to make myself a wool coat c. WW1, because I love that era and would totally wear it out and about. I also need a new wool coat and have been resisting buying one, because I know I could just make one for myself that I would like better. 

I will probably re-figure this list again once or twice before the end of the year, but it is nice to start with a plan! Even if the plan changes now and then. 

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