All posts filed under: Miscellenia

Sew & Eat Historical Retreat thedreamstress.com

The 1st Annual* NZ Sew & Eat Historical Retreat

This time last year, when I realised that I couldn’t afford to go to Costume College 2018, I sobbed** about it to some friends, and the amazing Miss Priscilla said “Awww, we’ll throw a New Zealand CoCo for you”. Which is a pretty amazing offer considering that Priscilla isn’t a historical costumer! In wonderful synchronicity, Nina of Smash the Stash had had me bring back a bunch of Regency sewing patterns from CoCo 17 so she could make a Regency wardrobe, and she started holding monthly historical sewing get-togethers. So once a month for all of 2018 Nina, Priscilla***, Eloise of Linen and Lining, and Hvitr of Historical Living (and sometimes Madame O) have been getting together and working on historical sewing projects, and planning a reason to wear what we were working on.  And our reason, while not quite NZ CoCo, was wonderful and lovely (and maybe even better). We settled on a Labour Day Weekend sewing and dress up retreat, and found an adorable cottage on a beautiful estate just an hours drive from Wellington …

Toi Whakaari New Zealand Drama School Costuming

#mytoistory Toi Whakaari the New Zealand Drama School

I’m delighted to (somewhat belatedly) announce that at the start of May I accepted the position of Senior Tutor, Costume Construction at Toi Whakaari: New Zealand Drama School. Toi Whakaari is New Zealand’s oldest and largest performing arts school, and offers the only tertiary course focused on costume construction for stage and screen in New Zealand.  The two-year Diploma course covers everything from dyeing and corsetmaking to leatherwork and worbla.  It’s very small, with a maximum intake of only 8 students each year, and very competitive.   Teaching at Toi is the perfect job for me: it gives me the opportunity to teach both academic and hands-on craft skills, and to expand my own learning, both through historical research and technical experimentation.  I’m incredibly privileged to be able to contribute to the next generation of costumers, and to learn from all my immensely talented colleagues. Teaching at Toi is also almost literally a dream come true.  When I first moved to New Zealand almost 13 years ago I looked at the career options in Wellington, …

What I’ve been up to, May edition

I can’t believe 2018 will be halfway over in a month in a half!  It seems like it just started. I’ve been very busy, as evinced by my slightly slower blogging rate.  I’ve kept you (mostly) updated with my sewing (lots of shorts, Georgian accessories, and Regency unders), Scroop Pattern-ing (Otari Hoodie & paper patterns!), historical research (swimming in Edwardian wool swimsuits), and photoshoots (30s blouses, geekiness , Edwardian, and bathing suits). But we’ve been working on a lot of other stuff too. We’ve had the kitchen that was destroyed in the Great Black Bean Pressure Cooker Explosion of June 2017 fully fixed and replaced – ceiling done, walls painted, floor replaced.  That took lots of organising and following up, so ate up huge amounts of my time.  And it turns out they used the wrong kind of paint, so I’m going to have to repaint it.  Grrrrr…. But it does look lovely! We’ve also been doing our own home renovations.  We sanded back the terrible old blue door, and filled all the gaps and …