Sunday, April 28, 2013

Historical Sew Fortnightly: Challenge #9: Flora and Fauna: Capote Restyled

I've fallen a little bit off of the sewing wagon...but I have a good excuse.  I am slowing inching my way back into the Historical Sew Fortnightly Challenges...beginning with Challenge #9: Flora and Fauna.  Below, I've posted several c.1800 fashion plates that I found on Dames a la Mode.  They were the inspiration for my project: My Capote, restyled, turban inspired, and sporting an ostrich feather.

A darling, blue velvet turban, trimmed in white, and with a curving ostrich feather.

Another turban, sporting a single ostrich feather.


Capote styled like a turban.

A couple more fashion plates that inspired me can be found HERE and HERE.  Both of these are sporting chin straps...and after wearing my turban styled capote (it's very heavy and slides off of my head easily,) I can see why a strap would be useful.  I might have to add one later.

Once I found the inspiration, it was easy to transform my Capote.  I turned up the front brim, and twisted, pleated, folded and pinned the fabric into place until I got the shape I wanted.  What makes this hat acceptable to the Flora and Fauna challenge?  The bonnet is made of hemp straw (flora), the fabric is linen (also flora), the white trim is silk (fauna) and the ostrich feather (obviously fauna.)

Just the Facts
The Challenge: Flora and Fauna: Capote refashioned turban style.

Fabric: Linen

Pattern: None, draped.

Year: c.1800

Notions: Thread, silk trim, ostrich feather

How historically accurate is it? The design, notions and fabric are accurate to the period.  It is hand sewn, but I'm not sure the construction is what they would have done...I sort of winged it as I went.

Hours to complete: About 2.

First worn: Today, but only for the photo shoot.

Total cost: Free, sort of...everything was from my stash, so I didn't purchase it now, but at some point I did.  Maybe $8?

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Our Victorian Lady

Welcome Home!

Well, we've moved.  We've been in our new home now for about 2 weeks, and it is a very happy house.  We still feel a bit like we are on vacation, sort of living in some other person's house, but I know that over time, it will start to feel like home.  I love nearly everything about this new home, with the exception of the horribly outdated 1960's era kitchen (not shown because of its hideousness.)  I suppose the outdated kitchens and baths are the main reasons that we were able to purchase this house so cheaply...because the rest of it is gorgeous.

Will you allow me to give you a tour?

*The Foyer*

*The Family Room*

This lovely Victorian Lady was built some time in the 1880's by a local artist and photographer named  C.H. Bryan.  I don't know much about this man and his family, but I think it's amazing that he was a creative, artistic man, and now another (humbly stated) creative person is living here.  You can really see his artistic influence in the details of the architecture.  There is definitely a Victorian aesthetic apparent, but there is also a bit of Orientalism and signs of early Arts and Crafts influence.  Mr. Bryan was a pioneer in local architectural design.  I think it is incredible that the original interior design has survived, and is in such good shape after all of these years.  This home certainly has been loved.  I only hope that I can do justice to his vision in every way I can, as I maintain and restore his lovely home.

*Fireplace Details*

*The Library*

There are still many bare walls, and not all of the paint colors are what we would choose, so some things will change. We need a rug in every room, but funds say otherwise, so for now, house slippers are keeping our little toes warm.  Also, the home is almost twice the size of our last home, and some rooms are sorely lacking in the furniture department.  The dining room, because of it's massive size, dwarfs our table.  I'm hoping to find a nice antique one to fill the space.

*The Dining Room*

One room that I am really excited about isn't very architecturally stunning, but is extremely special to me.  There is a small sun room located off of the Library and Family Room that I am calling my Studio.  This is my creative space, made full of light, perfect for sewing, drawing, painting, etc.  I am really excited to have this space, because it is the first time in eleven years (since graduating from collage,) that I have had a place that has the sole purpose of fostering creativity and that allows me to do art.

*The Studio*

 The yard and garden are nearly as incredible as the interior of the house, but it has been neglected over the past few years, and is seriously in need of some clearing out, weeding, and restructuring.  Even so, the spring blooms are gorgeous, and we wake to a chorus of birds every day. 

It has been a dream of mine to own a historic home for as long as I can remember.  I feel really blessed to have been given the chance to take care of and live in this home.  Every day I pinch myself.  Thank you for allowing me to take the time to share it with you.  I only wish I could invite you over for tea, or an evening dinner lit with candle-light.  This house invites hospitality.  Ooooh...and think of what Christmas will be like!