Monday, July 30, 2012

Well dang!  It's been a while!  I have upgraded into a more-than-full-time job and I've been focusing a lot on service, running  events and putting out fires and such.  Did you know that when you're awarded a Purple Fret that they expect you to keep doing more work? HA!  I knew there was a trick there somewhere.

But in all seriousness, I'm checking in before I leave for Pennsic tomorrow.  I miss thinking and writing about my medieval projects!  I am stepping away from running events this year (I did 12th Night in Ealdnordwuda and Squire's Tourney this past year) and focusing on ME!  My arts have gone by the wayside even though I have learned a few new things.

I've been gone from blogger so long that the format for posting has changed!  Good changes, very easy to use.  Very intuitive.  So here's a picture of one of the new things I learned: threaded-in split-pack tablet weaving...

The very beginnings of beginnings. I found this pattern extremely beautiful and easy at the same time--a rare find.

The pattern is based on an Anglo-Saxon find as described in this link

I'm really excited at the ease with which I picked this up.  I also finally understand how to do brocading on table weaving, but I don't have any examples yet.  Hopefully I can take a class at Pennsic this year to be able to show you.

I'll bring back lots of pictures since I'm going to try to take at least 1 class a day while I've there since I'm always working my Pennsics instead of enjoying them.  Don't get me wrong, the volunteering is great, but I need to feed my artsy fartsy side.

In Other News:

I helped last year in making a bunch of short-sleeved fighting undertunics suitable for breastfeeding and quick changes for the now Her Excellency Runa Kirri, but who was Pennsic War Queen last year for the Midrealm.  Enjoyed it immensely since I got to be a little creative in colors and finishes for our stoic little queen.  Can you imagine giving birth while crowned and having so many responsibilities and issues to deal with?  I mean, it's pretty historical in precedent, but our current middle ages seem somehow less forgiving than the originals.
I really can see a difference in my technique improvement from tunics I made several years ago to now.  My finishing is tighter and more precise, I finally forced myself to iron everything properly as I go along (it makes an incredible difference in finished look), and my hand sewing is even better.

The hand sewing has always been my stronger suit, which is lucky for medieval clothing since the fitting and cutting and construction are all aimed as hand construction rather than machine construction.  Godets and gores and gussets fit better if put together by hand, easing in sleeves and around curving fitting lines and darts are easier.  Shirring and pleating (especially cartridge pleating) are beautiful and look authentic and crisp.  Finishing a handsewn project is a great feeling too.  Those long, long hours of hard work and I always get more compliments on my hand sewn garb than on my slapdash pre-Pennsic rush gowns.

So in short, new classes being written for hand sewing techniques, will be trying to teach them as a series through the winter months at various events.  Teaching and sewing are coming back to the forefront for me!  Very exciting!

More pictures after Pennsic!