All posts filed under: Textiles & Costume

A red silk 1780s petticoat

A red silk 1780s petticoat

I made a thing! Right now my life is a sea of toiles for the next Scroop + Virgil’s pattern, and it seems like I will never get to sew anything that isn’t calico (that’s muslin for those in the US). So it’s doubly exciting to have taken a little time to make something not-toile, and in such scrumptious fabric too. I have some 1780s sewing (to go over the Scroop & Virgil’s Augusta Stays of course!) planned for this year, and I looked at all my fabrics, and realised that what they all had in common was that they would look great with a red petticoat. I had no suitable red in stash, but when I was shopping for fabrics for the Robin Dress samples I let myself linger in The Fabric Stores silk section (always a dangerous activity) and they had an amazing silk-cotton faille in bright red. I wanted a dark red, but the fabric was so scrumptious, and such a perfect match to the weight and hand of one of the …

Waitangi Day Garden Party

The Governor-General’s Waitangi Day Garden Party

Or, an awkward post that combines pretty and serious about an awkward event that combines fun and fraught history Waitangi Day is NZ’s founding holiday, somewhat analogous to the American 4th of July, Canada Day, or France’s Bastille Day. It commemorates the first signing of the Treaty of Waitangi on 6 February 1840. Te Tiriti was signed by representatives of the British Crown, on one side, and Māori Rangitira (chiefs) on the other. The Treaty was drafted by British representatives with the intention of “establishing a British Governor of New Zealand, recognising Māori ownership of their lands, forests and other possessions, and giving Māori the rights of British subjects.” (quote taken directly from Wikipedia, as I don’t want to risk paraphrasing and getting it wrong!) As the major legal agreement whereby non-Maori have the right to be in NZ (making us Tangata Tiriti – ‘people of the Treaty’, and Māori are Tangata Whenua ‘People of the Land’), all aspects of modern NZ law & government are considered based on whether they agree with Te Tiriti. …

Regency costumes,

Regency Ladies by the River or, Playing the Plantain Game

I’ve been working on my photography skills over the last year and a bit, getting better at settings, and angles, and playing with new things. I still get 1 decent image for every 25 I take, but hey, practice makes perfect (or at least, a little bit better…). The Wellington historical sewist have been letting me practice on them every time we do a dress up event. There was lots of practicing at our 2019 Sew & Eat Historical Retreat. (Practicing does include me setting all the functions and handing the camera over to someone else). I’m still most comfortable with ‘people stand perfectly still and pose photos’: But once you’ve done those, and the obligatory ‘smell the flowers and look into the river’ photos… And pretend to push each other into the river… Then you have to get more creative! So I taught the ladies how to play the plantain game. It’s a shooting game you play with plantain grass heads. My first memory of playing it is with my family outside one of …