Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Monday

Happy Easter Monday!
Once again we celebrate Christ's triumph over death and the grave!

I hope that all had a lovely Easter Sunday and is enjoying spring.

We went to our church for Easter morning service and stayed for the Easter breakfast that followed.
We then had a family dinner late afternoon.

It was a pleasant enough day, despite the pouring rain.

A part of what makes Easter so special for many people is the new (or rarely worn) outfit that they get to wear. I made myself a new outfit this year.

As I mentioned before it is a 1950's inspired sun dress. I designed the pattern myself using a basic block pattern that I had purchased from McCalls.

It has a fitted bodice with a sweetheart neckline and four darts in front. The back is composed of four pieces and has a v neck.

The waistline is at my natural waist and the skirt flares out from there. It is a gored skirt with box pleats at the seams.

I also made a fitted jacket and belt.

I had wanted to go outside and take a bunch of cute pictures with the flowers and lovely foliage. However, it rained all day and we have rain in the forecast for the next week. Sigh... I suppose I shall have to be satisfied with these pictures.

Without the jacket.

I also made matching kanzashi flowers for my hair.

I made the jacket reversible to give it a more finished look and to increase its durability.

I enjoyed working on this and shall try and post latter more details into the shaping that went into the bodice of the dress. Overall the bodice had 16 pieces that made it.

Thats all for now. Have a great Easter Season and enjoy whatever weather you are having.
(Yes, there can be joys to lots of rain. It means no going outside. Thus lots of sewing.)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Birthday

Today is the celebrated birthday of William Shakespeare. William was the son of John Shakespeare who was originally from Snitterfield. His mother was Mary Arden, the daughter of a well known landowning farmer. He was born in Stratford-upon-Avon and baptised there on the 26 of April 1564.

His actual birthday is still unknown, but is traditionally observed on 23 April, St George's Day. This date is now known as an 18th-century scholar's mistake. It has however proved appealing to biographers, since Shakespeare died 23 April 1616. So thus we celebrate today as the birthday of one of the greatest playwrites of all times.

So Happy Birthday William Shakespeare!

Seussical the Musical

Seussical the Musical has come to the completion of its run.

We closed last weekend and had strike last Monday. All the costumes have been cleaned and stored, the set has been dismantled and the lighting taken down.

Sigh, I suppose all good things must come to an end.

My job with this production was assistant costumer and wardrobe manager. I ran the show and did all the costume changes. It was a lot of fun and was great getting to work with all of the wonderful people here.

As a part of my job I did the hair for several of the girls in the play. These lovely ladies were gracious enough to allow me to take pictured of their hair to share.

Let me first explain about the play.

Seussical is a musical based on the works of Dr. Seuss. It has about 17 (I think that is what we counted) books of Dr. Seuss represented.

Some of the main characters were Horton, the Cat in the Hat, Gertrude, Maize, the Major of Whoville and his wife, Kanga the Sour Kangaroo, and others.

The main ensembles were the jungle (this includes the bird girls and Wickershams) and the Whos. There were other groups also but those were the main ones.

Anyhow, the jungle was set in 1920's from the costuming perspective. This meant 1920's  costumes, makeup, and hair.
The popular hair of the 1920's was the short bob.  Pretty much all of the young ladies had beautiful long hair. We were not going to require them to all cut their hair. If they wanted to the could but it was not a requirement. The young lady playing Maize was the only one who decided to cut her hair. This left all of the other ladies with long hair that needed to be put up. This was just fine with me as I love doing hair. Several of the ladies were able to do their hair themselves, leaving only a few for me to do.

Here are the pictures that I took of a few of the completed hair styles. I apologize for their poor quality, they were snapped quickly as we hurriedly prepared to go onstage.

This lovely lady curled her hair every night so that it would go up easily. Her hair is medium length to start with.

I just divided the hair into segments and curled them into loose pin curls at the nap of her neck. I believe there were about 8 pin curls all together.

This next beautiful young lady has some of the prettiest hair that I have ever worked with. It is so thick and massive. It was a lot of fun to work with. Although the massiveness did provide some challenge as to where to put it all.

I started by pulling most of it up and making a small bun at the nap of her neck as a base to build on.

I then started dividing it into segments, twisting it and adding it to the bun.

Unfortunately I do not have any pictures of the finished hair. I thought I did, but they were not on the camera. That is what happens in a rushed dressing room.

Finally, this young lady had long, straight blond hair. So that the hair would work better she put some curl into it using a curling iron before she came in.

To start I divided her hair into four segments. I then twisted them into small buns (pin curls) at the nap of her neck.

As you can see the buns in the middle had the most hair in them and the two on the sides were much smaller.

That is all of the pictures that I have from the ladies hair that I did.

I shall try and see if I can get a hold of pictures of the costumes to post possibly.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Hello Wide World

Fear not.

I am still alive.

I have just been really busy... with stuff.

We are currently in the second weekend of performances of Seussical the Musical and I am wardrobe manager. This means that I have been in charge of all costume changes. The week before performances started I was at theatre regularly doing costume construction. I shall try and bring a camera to the theatre tomorrow and take pictures of all the costumes and hair that I have been doing.

Costuming patterns and stuff

I also have been working on designing a formal. I started draping one dress and half way through I decided that I did not like it. Thus I and threw it out and have started anew. I have been taking step-by-step pics and shall post them.

I have finished my 1950s inspired Easter dress and shall also post pictures.

I have a few designers that I have been studying and preparing to post on.

I have been drafting corset patterns and taking pictures.

And of course I have also, somewhere in there, found time to do school and house hold chores.

Anyhow, this is some of the things you have to look forwards to in future posts. Once again I apologize for my lack of interesting posts lately.

Oh, and one more thing, I have also taken step-by-step pictures of the process that we went through in order to dye my brothers hair blue for his part as Thing 1.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Playing with "hair"

I decided that I wanted to play with synthetic hair and learn how to manipulate it. So a few weeks ago I got out the only piece of synthetic hair I have and began to play. This started out as a wavy ponytail extension.

I started out by rolling the hair in curlers.

I then heated a large pot of water on the stove. I brought it to boiling. I using a pair of kitchen tongs I quickly dunked the hair into the pot of boiling water. I left it in there for a few seconds then removed it and placed it on a towel to drain/dry.

After allowing it to cool and dry for a bit I slowly removed all of the curlers. Tada, perfect ringlets.

I then combed it with my fingers to see what it did. It poofed quite nicely.

Now I had a curly mess of an extension. So I decided to try straitening it out. So I reheated the pot of water and dunked in the hair.

I ran a comb through it.

I then dunked it a couple more times and also shampooed and conditionered it a few times.

I then hung it out to dry.

Here is the final product.

Overall I think it went really well considering the age of this hair. It is a 12 year old hair extension. It lost a significant amount of hair and the extension is a lot thiner. This is mainly because I used a brush and not a large toothed comb.

It also was begining to lose its coloring. I think that is partially due to age and the lack of synthetic hair cleaners.

It was alot of fun and I learned alot about synthetic hair.