[personal profile] tudorlady
After thoroughly humiliating myself with the French Meme yesterday (I got the lowest score of anyone else I know who took it), I have a couple of things to say in my defense: ::ahem:: I grew up speaking a dialect, and (b) the other girl who flunked first year French with me was a girl from West Africa, for whom it was her first language. I also think I was trying too hard. I do, on the other hand, know some interesting obscenities in French, not just the usual - and I can use 'em in context.

So, with that disposed of, let's talk costume:

You want to see the shift that absolutely ruined me? (Hey, wait, this is sort of a repeat of the French meme - I'm about to show you what a complete moron I am...)

Shift from hell, and my cat, Violet. Violet has the largest overbite allowed by state law.

Take another look (at the shift):

See? A perfectly normal square-necked shift. Anyone can do it. It's just rectangular construction. I should be able to do a dozen of them in my sleep. (Sure. Anyone can. Unless they're sized for someone (like me!) with an incredibly narrow collarbone and knockers from here to Croydon. In that case, you actually have to - well - change the proportions a little, don't you think?)

Hey! Detail of the fairly Decent Embroidery. I didn't have any silk floss, but I do have enough cotton floss to go from Earth to Pluto twice, so I used that. The Evil Fairies must have been listening when I made a snide remark about how beautiful and tidy the back of the embroidery is (well, it is.) that they decided to teach me a lesson. Is this embroidered on a separate piece? Why no, no it is not. So I have to trash the shift to get the Decent Embroidery off of the Shift That Doesn't Fit.

And now, what you really came to see:

A terrible picture of my adorable new kitten, Octavia. Say hello to the incredibly kind and patient people, Octavia!

Date: 2008-08-28 03:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] farmleaf.livejournal.com
OMG! She's Keiko all over! :)

Date: 2008-08-28 04:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mentalhygiene.livejournal.com


Date: 2008-08-28 04:08 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] daf9.livejournal.com

Date: 2008-08-28 04:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] otherwind.livejournal.com
The kitten may be adorable (ok, yes--totally), but so is the shift--don't trash it if you can't make it work--maybe there is something I could trade you for it! (I just _love_ the embroidery).

Date: 2008-08-29 12:40 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (costuming)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
Don't worry, the embroidery is going to survive! It was easy - I freehanded most of it. Would you like me to do a (smock) collar of it for you? No problem, just send me the fabric from your smock and the measurement you want for the collar piece.

Also, I need to talk to you about web pages - I'll email. Which address is best?

Date: 2008-08-28 05:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sstormwatch.livejournal.com
Cute kitten!

And can you add in some gores to make it swell where you need it?

Date: 2008-08-28 05:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fjorlief.livejournal.com
Ditto on the incredibly cute kittenling. and I can't remember why/where the shift doesn't fit. I know you told me, but I am having no brain today. Is the neckline too wide? That is the only thing I can think of that would make it irredeemably unwearable. Not that I question your abilities dearie, you are anything but a moron in my book... but as Sstormwatch said can not gores or shaped panels be added?

Date: 2008-08-29 03:40 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (Default)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
Yea, verily, for the neckline, she is too wide. Among other things. (As long as I don't move or breathe, it's fine. Otherwise, slip city.)

Fear not - the embroidery is going to be grafted on to another smock. I just haven't decided quite which one yet, and I need new ones.

Date: 2008-08-28 07:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lorihalia.livejournal.com
I third the question on adding gores - if it's that the body is too narrow. If the neck is too big, is it too deep, or too wide? There may be a way to maybe carefully take in a tuck and 'blend' it by matching up the remaining embroidery?

Just kinda thinking out loud here, nevermind me if it sounds silly. =)

And Yay kittens! =D We just recently had a red tabby kitten show up on our porch, and *wouldn't* leave it for three days, including when the dog went out. So I figured he adopted us, gave up and brought him inside for a flea bath, food, and introductions to my cat.

Date: 2008-08-28 07:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] the-thread-lady.livejournal.com
Welcome Little Cousin!

I see you found a suitable Meowmy - let me know if you need any training tips. Imp and I will be happy to help out.



Date: 2008-08-28 08:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sorchekyrkby.livejournal.com
I love your kitties! *squee*

Would you be willing to sell/trade for the shift? Because I think it's lovely! And as of Friday, I'll have monies!

Date: 2008-08-28 10:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] attack-laurel.livejournal.com
That one needs the axe.

Date: 2008-08-28 11:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] she-of-emeralds.livejournal.com

... er, I just mean, very cute. Also, the shift, to my non-sewing eyes, seems very nice--wish I could help w/recommendations. Best o' luck.

Date: 2008-08-28 12:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] attack-laurel.livejournal.com
Oh, and I made you an icon. *see above*

Date: 2008-08-29 12:46 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (Default)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
So guess what my new default is. ::hee!::

I'm afraid she and Lennie are going to be two of a kind.

And I'm looking for a tiny axe to hang on his collar - if I can find an inexpensive charm or something like that that's appropriately axe-shaped, he's getting it. Maybe I should get two. ::sigh::

Onward with costume stuff. Kittens and all.

Date: 2008-08-28 01:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] horsearcher.livejournal.com
Awww! Kitten!

Date: 2008-08-28 01:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] theholyinnocent.livejournal.com
Hello, Octavia! You're a real cutie.

Date: 2008-08-28 02:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nokidsdammit.livejournal.com
Of course I've always avoided being 'period appropriate' on anything I do....

If the neckline is too narrow, tacking ribbons at the side of the neckline just below the edge and above the embroidery, then blanket stitching over it toward the center for a tie, would allow decorative adjustable gathering without disturbing any of the previous work.

If the bust area is too wide, turning the neckline area into the yoke, keeping the skirt if it fits, and adding a shirred panel, or inverted pleat panel, in between might offer enough space, and perhaps look intentionally styled rather than an alteration.

I've been meaning to get back to my smocker, but I have quilting to do first. I've ordered a smocking book, though.

Date: 2008-08-29 01:13 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (costuming)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
You're correct in thinking that the neckline is actually too wide - this will teach me not to follow someone else's idea of 'small' necklines and listen to my gut.

The solution you propose would work, of course. Not period, though, and that's the biggie at my level. There really were such thing as drawstring smocks at the time, thousands of Renfaire girls notwithstanding. Italian camicias (which is what that particular look is derived from) were all pleated onto a solid band, which wasn't always visible. Which is where that myth came from.

Anyhow. The embroidery is going to be saved, it's just not going to be on THAT smock. ::sigh::

Date: 2008-08-28 03:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jillwheezul.livejournal.com
I just want to dangle a yarn right in front of tavvy cat. She looks ready to pounce - very squee and adorable she is!

Date: 2008-08-28 04:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fountainoffilth.livejournal.com
Octavia looks like the pics I've seen of Velcro at that age. :)

Your embroidery is amazing!

Date: 2008-08-28 04:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elfie-chan.livejournal.com
I still think the shift is lovely, and so is Violet.

And Octavia...OMG SWEET KITTEN! *snuggles*

Sorry. I sorta lose my mind. She's absolutely adorable.

Date: 2008-08-28 05:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] conejodanz.livejournal.com
A perfectly normal square-necked shift. Anyone can do it.

HAHAHAHAHA! I'd have better luck making myself understood in French!

In any case, the embroidery is lovely, and Octavia is adorable.

Date: 2008-08-28 07:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sfw-dc.livejournal.com
That was my thought. I am the woman who, when forced to sew, tried, I swear I tried, and then, well, um, no matter how you tried to put on the wrap-around skirt, it was inside-out. I know it HAD an outside, there just appeared to be no way to properly wear it.

Date: 2008-08-28 05:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cleothyla.livejournal.com
Octavia is lovely. And so is the embroidery. I wish I could free embroider, but I need a pattern. :)

Date: 2008-08-29 12:49 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (Default)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
I DID use a pattern - I drew in the circles using a coin and sectioned them, and sort of doodled in the vines between. Instant pattern! It's what you do from then on that's important.

We have a lot of examples of period pattern books - by no means was all that stuff original. I can show you ways to transfer stuff, if that's what you're interested in :)

Date: 2008-08-29 01:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cleothyla.livejournal.com
That would be great. A lot of what I do is cross stitch. I just haven't had time to cross stitch onto a piece of clothing yet. :P

Date: 2008-08-28 07:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] varro.livejournal.com
Eeeeee! We have to see kitty this weekend!

Date: 2008-08-28 10:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bwliadain.livejournal.com
First of all, Rover says that Violet is beautiful.
Octavia is too cute - heart Siamese kittehs!

If the shift is too small at the bust but fine elsewhere, would a nice set of diamond gores in the underarms give you enough room? The embroidery is spiff....

Date: 2008-08-29 01:04 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (Default)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
I've tried several possible fixes, with unsatisfactory results. I'm going to take the embroidery off and put it on another smock.

This is what I get for not trusting my gut *and* following someone else's instructions, basically. The neck opening is just a teensy bit too big, even though it was the smallest dimension given.

If the embroidery was, however, anything like what you were doing earlier (I was stunned into silence by the fabulousness) I think that they would have had to talk me down from a bridge.

Date: 2008-08-29 02:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bwliadain.livejournal.com
Is why I always wimp out and work my square-necks separately, then apply them to the smock....
That neck bit is a pain. A centimeter or two too big and it falls off you... I do a mock-up before even designing my embroidery, because 1st measurements are always wrong somehow. Prolly I'm measuring wrongly...:-)

And thanks! (Don't tell anybody, but I HAVE taken scissors to some of my embroidery.. didn't need helped off a bridge, but closer to bailed out of jail for disturbing the peace with shrieks and Bad Bad Words!)

Date: 2008-08-28 11:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] florentinescot.livejournal.com

I want to know how you wound up fixing the shift. I'm in your skin ... you're in my skin. Whatever. I have no back. It's all boobage. :-(

I think that the embroidery is pretty.

I didn't take the french test at all. I know "parlez vous francais," "oui," "non," and "bon jour;" I think that's the sum total of my knowledge of the French Language.

Date: 2008-08-29 01:07 am (UTC)
ext_41593: (edwin)
From: [identity profile] tudorlady.livejournal.com
None of the period kosher fixes gave me really satisfactory results with that smock. So I'm starting over from scratch. The embroidery will get put on something else.

Thirty pounds would fix 97% of my problems. I'm working on it, inasmuch as I'm not letting it get worse, which is the first step.

I know how to say "I'm a really good fuck" in French. Grammatically correct, even ;)

Date: 2008-08-29 01:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] florentinescot.livejournal.com
Well... I'm 5'8.5" When I weighed 110 pounds, I was a 32DD .....


LOL! At least your French has the ability to be more useful than mine! (in the presence of a really hot Frenchman, at least)

Date: 2008-08-28 11:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] woffproff.livejournal.com
Joins the long line of kitty worshippers!!!!!



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