Sunday, August 3, 2008

Sara's Sewing Endeavors have Begun...

So the time is quickly approaching (the end of August, that is) where I need to have complete outfits for both myself and my husband for our first Civil War event together.

My last Civil War event, I borrowed all of my clothes except my drawers (undergarment) from both Jennifer and my sister. They were able to pull together a really nice outfit for me.

This time I wanted to have my own creation on my skin. However...I don't think it's going to happen. I definitely waited too long for one reason or another to get started on this big project so I just don't think I'm going to be able to pull it off. (It doesn't help either that we will be gone for 10 days in August for our annual camping trip - this severely limits my sewing time!)

So instead of trying to pull a rabbit out of a hat and create two complete ensembles, I am going to only focus on my husband's as we do not have any men's clothes from others we can borrow.

He is going as a civilian (although, we aren't sure what kind yet) so I need to make some pants, a shirt, a vest, and possibly a coat (the coat may have to come a little later as I don't want to kill myself and the other three pieces will be quite enough for now). For myself, if I have any spare time, I will work on my undergarments. Whatever I don't finish for myself will just be borrowed again. While I love new clothes I also love my sanity.

I asked Jennifer for some tips on what patterns to buy and she had some good recommendations.

So based on her recommendations and my quick research, I ended up purchasing the following on Friday morning:
1. Mid 19th Century Men's Shirts Pattern - Smoke & Fire -
2. Vest - Buckaroo Bobbins -
3. Pants - Laughing Moon - - Item #106 California Pants
4. 1858 Frockcoat - Smoke & Fire -
5. Men's Sack Suit Jacket - Smoke & Fire -
6. Misses Civil War Chemise and Corset - Simplicity - - Item #7215
7. Misses Civil War Crinoline and Petticoat - Simplicity - - Item #9764

I ended up just using Simplicity Patterns for myself as 1) you could get 2 patterns together which helped with the cost and 2) I know I can sew Simplicity patterns.

Later, I will go back to the Past Patterns website and probably buy some of their patterns. (They were just a little too much money for me right now plus, I want to make sure I have plenty of time to really devote to them.)

I also purchased two coat patterns as I think it would be nice to have a little variety for my husband. (Hopefully they will both go with whatever persona he creates so he can wear them both at one time or another.)

Next for me is to plan out my schedule to be able to accomplish this monster of a task and then I believe it's on to the fabric store.

I would love to buy all the fabric this week and start cutting out the pieces, but I'm not sure how soon I will get the patterns. We leave very early on Saturday morning (3am to miss the traffic through LA - yes, there is traffic on Saturday mornings) for our camping trip and I won't return until late the following Sunday night.

Some of the websites do tell you exactly how much and what type fabric you need for that pattern which is useful to at least get started on buying the fabric when you don't have the pattern yet.

I will definitely be applying a lot of the good tips and instructions Jennifer gives in her new eBook "Modern Sewing Techniques for Historical Clothing Construction" with these projects. I am just so thankful I have this handy tool to help me along the way with this monster of a project.

I will be sharing my progress with you along the way, so stay tuned!

With that said, I had better get back to work on our camping stuff so that when those patterns do arrive, I can devote my time to that instead of packing.

P.S. Jennifer is in the final day of Costume College. I spoke with her on Friday and she said that it has been great so far. She will be updating us with what went on when she gets back. I can't wait!

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