December Catch Up!

Just back from San Diego Comic Con, but still playing catchup! So for now, way backtracking! Back to December!

Because Doris took such lovely photos, I can’t NOT share them.

I talked a little about the making of this dress way back when, and I thought I had more posts on it, but I can’t find them and I didn’t tag too well back then. Anyway, it was made with Truly Victorian bustle pattern TV101, TV201 for the underskirt, and TV463 for the bodice. I extended the tails and changed the shape on them a bit, added cuffs, and modified the neckline. All the other skirt layers were just draped, but my original inspiration for the whole outfit was Christine’s “Wishing” dress from Phantom of the Opera.

Anyway, so in December the lot of us went to Dicken’s Faire, and only one person took pics so my pics are the exact same as AJ’s, so in the name of laziness… here’s her post.

Then on the last weekend of December, the GBACG had a Victorian Holiday Tea 😀 I did want to make something new, but… I have forbidden myself from buying fabric until I use up or get rid of more of my stash, and I didn’t have anything on hand that would be suitable for a new Winter Victorian. Instead I made myself a hat to go with my dress 😀

All these lovely pics were taken by Doris!

Except where Doris is in the pic! Then Bunny or I took it.

At the last minute (well, the night before) I sewed some ribbons onto my train and bustled it up. The train is nice, but walking with it! Not so much so.

This was my first hat of this type! I used peltex, which in hindsight wasn’t a great choice. But I think it came out pretty OK.

This is the same skirt Bunny wore to our Summer Victorians shoot, look how different it looks with a different top!

I liked this little archway because I love how different we all look in it.

It just has a totally different tone for each of us!

This hotel has a lot of good locations for pics!

I love all the mirrors everywhere ;_;

Though for some shots I kept getting in the way >.>

The faux candles worked well too!

Posing like a pro!

All that fluffy goodness 8D

And classy too! XD

The tech shot 8D

Me thinking my gown should also be covered in fluffiness…

Total elegance!

And attitude!

I seriously have the loveliest friends! Just wonderful people <3

Close up of the hat! The most important thing for me was to put a bird on it 8D

Summer Victorian – Write up

I thought before I posted the pictures from the shoot I would do a making of post. So I sifted through my camera pics and found… one in progress shot. I’m 80% sure I took more but I can’t find them :/

Anyway, I started writing this up and it was taking so long, I got impatient and posted the pics 8D

But I figured I’d still do a write up, and supplement with other pictures! So again, the original inspiration for this shoot was a Tissot themed picnic.

Source: via Mi on Pinterest

After looking at loads of his paintings I picked some stylings I liked and started looking at extant dresses.

Making of!

This dress from the 1870s was my main inspiration, I really like how simple it is, but love all the little touches like the bias under the ribbons.

Then I flipped through my historical patterning books and found this dress:

In Patterns of Fashion 2 by Janet Arnold. That was super exciting because I bought this in Bath and was itching for an opportunity to use it.

So then I did a little searching to see if I could find a pic of the actual dress.

Pinterest to the rescue!

It’s not totally like my inspiration dress, but it’s definitely similar enough, and even in the same colour scheme! (as if that really matters)

So I made copies of the pattern diagrams and got to marking them up in preparation for scaling. Usually I loooove scaling, because I like numbers and mathing. But after scaling and cutting out a muslin of the bodice I found somewhere in there I’d made a mistake. I think my mistake was in the very beginning, a simple addition error that led me to believe the extant garment had the same waist as I do. Serious absent minded mistake :/ But so when I scaled, I did a direct scale and didn’t size up for me, resulting in a too small mock up.

Okay now is where I mention how I had TOTALLY procrastinated on this thing, and we had a scheduled shoot with a professional photographer and everything, a date set in stone. So I knew I didn’t have time to rescale, and it was my own fault ;_;

Instead I had to pull out the bodice pattern I’d used on my previous Victorian, the pattern modified from Truly Victorian 463, and go from there.

In the interest of time I traced the pattern directly onto my muslin, modifying as I went, which is pretty much my standard M.O. because I always procrastinate :/ I totally removed the seam for the faux vest, did away with the dart (but that’s because my waist isn’t different enough from my hips/bust to need it), modified the neckline, and chopped the whole thing off a few inches below the waist.

It fit almost perfectly, I only had to modify the shoulder line (per usual, curse my tiny shoulders!). Then I had wanted to semi-replicate the center front of my inspiration dress, and wanted to have a 2” inch opening, with the ties going across, and a chevroned panel behind that.

Which is where my one actual progress pic comes in:

Chevroning is probably one of my favourite things to do ever 8D

Anyway, I think it was right after I took that picture when I thought “Huh, this panel seems pretty wide…” and then I looked back at what I’d done aaaaand, instead of a two inch gap I’d cut two inches off both sides. Far too late to do anything about it so… I just had to go with a 4” center front panel. This is why I keep telling myself I won’t procrastinate, because I make stupid mistakes when I’m rushing :/

Here are some pics I took just this morning of the bodice, I really should have ironed it first…

This is the back, more chevrons! I also tried to match up the side back seams’ stripes as well as I could, but curved seams so what can you do. Which is why I love the piping in the seam, it breaks up the line juuuust enough.


This is the shoulders and back, I also piped the shoulder seams for much the same reason. Beyond just liking piping. That piping was actually a pain, I used a Joann fabric from the casa collection, the crepe I think? Anyway, the blue matched really well, I bought the rest of the bolt, which was something like a yard maybe a yard and half. For bias tape I thought that’d be plenty. Nope. I ended up having to go to another Joann for more, and the dye lots didn’t match, so I used one dye lot for the plain bias tape, and one dye lot for the piping. I think with the sheen it’s not so obvious…


I found some ribbon that matched really well, so was able to use that for small accents as well. This is the sleeve, with really light gathering. I ended up not doing the strip of striped bias with ribbon/solid bias like my inspiration picture because I realized I’d have to hand sew that and there was so not enough time 8D


For the front I ended up using the ribbon and buttons to try and make it seem less… wide. Then I used some scrap of bias tape and gathered it into that flower. I don’t know if that’s historically accurate? But I liked it.

For the skirt I combined the Janet Arnold pattern with Truly Victorian 201, which is what I used for the brown underskirt of my other Victorian. I cropped the train from the JA pattern a bit, and lengthened the TV skirt. There’s a plain white cotton broadcloth underskirt, because my fashion fabric is a bit see through, then the main skirt is basically the same thing, with a bias border and piping in the seam. I looooove piping! And bias cut stripes 😀

For the 2nd/over skirt, I went back to the JA pattern but lengthened the pattern in the back.

I really like the back of this dress, so I wanted to do something similar. Once the piping and trim was on, I pinned it to my dressform and draped the side ruching. Which reminds me I reeeeeally need to reform my dressform, it’s a nice hanger but I can’t drape anything truly fitted on it :/

What else…. I ran out of time to do as much trimmings as I wanted, but then I also really like the simplicity of it, so I’m not sure I will add to it… Oh hat~!


I took a straw hat I had on hand for something else and tore it apart, then zigzaged it back together in a circle.


Then I took leftover crepe in a rectangle and free hand pleated it to the edge.

I did a running stitch along the free end and just gathered the whole thing into the center and tacked it in. Then covered the edge with bias tape.


(Sorry my hat is really smushed right now D:)
My mum is really good at make ribbon rosettes so I asked her to make a bunch of varying sizes and tacked and glued them on “artfully.” And I think that’s it!

Summer Victorian Shoot

Alright, catching up on posts so: Summer Victorian!

So back in July, or maybe August, the GBACG was doing a Tissot themed picnic, which I planned to go to and then decided with Comic Con just a few weeks prior, this just wasn’t going to happen in time. Then my other lovely ladies also decided to bail on the picnic proper, and we arranged a photoshoot with Jeffrey Kuo instead.

I’m just posting the same pictures my other ladies posted 8D Because I figured if I sifted through myself, it would take even longer, and not get posted. But I may post again later 8D I have a few in mind, I just have to find them….

Summer Victorians!

So lemme point out here, Judy on the far right? Made her dress in three days. She’s crazy talented.

(And augh, I tried to be mindful of my posture, but obviously I wasn’t :/)

How great is this location? It’s Stanford campus!

Bunny, 2nd to the left, and I are sporting earlier Victorians than the rest of the ladies. We decided it’s because we’re poor country relations.

Doris and Wei Ling here actually used the exact same pattern, but Doris pleated and WL ruffled. Isn’t it neat how different they look?

Their trimmings here made me want to go back and put ruffles ALL OVER my dress 8D

When we did solo shots I went last so I could watch what everyone else was doing, because even after all this time I don’t know how to pose. Actually, I’ve been watching modeling shows recently to try and pick up tips 8D;;;

Here you can really see how my dress and Bunny’s dress differ in shape from the others’.
You can also see on the dress 2nd to the left how not having a bustle effects the shape (that’s my dress from before, but we didn’t have an extra bustle for her).

And here are some pics Doris took on her cell phone:

I look so intent because I’m studying what the other ladies are doing for their poses!


Victoria & Albert Museum

More posts from earlier travels~

My friend who I was staying with had exciting per-existing Gilbert and Sullivan plans, so we bussed in to the area and I went to the V&A yaaay.

I think I took this on the way there. Because it screams Why yes, I am in England.

I was quite taken with this statue of Eve.

But we all know why I was reeeeeally there right?


AND THIS WAISTCOAT. 17th century I believe, I have a pic of the label somewhere.



But I’ll dial it back.

Do you see that sleeve detail? Gorgeous.

I reeeeally liked the skirt of this outfit, but with the poor lighting and my shaky hands it was hard to get a good pic. Also, around this point my camera died. And I’d neglected to bring extra with me. So I took pics on my mobile for a bit, I didn’t want to leave. I wanted to soak up every last bit of amazingness. But I did finally run out and find a local mini mart type thing and grabbed some batteries and rushed back.

I used to find this period fairly ugly for women’s wear, but I’ve been watching a lot of dramas of that era lately and there’s some I really adore (particularly this stripey dress seen in everything).

60s! Not a fan of orange at all, but I was really pleased with how accurate, style line wise, my 60s TARDIS dress was.

Hobo chic of the 70s.

Lookit all that wooooork

Loved this ensemble but most of my pics were blurry of it ;_;

Sleeve puffers 8D

Then I think maybe aralias came back and we wandered? Or maybe I’m out of order and this was before we parted ways. Because I can’t imagine why I would have left the clothing section independently.

Part of a tomb~ so fancy and also I like Arabic sooo.

This is a hat.
Seriously. Blades. For killing.

This this was amazing! If you wound it up, it would move and the tiger would eat the British soldier. I found it hilarious. Also very pretty.

Japanese porcelain bowl. I want it.

In between sections there was this big wide space that was where they had things in storage, or being worked on, or something like that. He looks so disapproving.

There was a theatre section! Which I hadn’t realized, and aralias took me and eee more beautiful costumes.
That’s Scar from The Lion King.

Adam Ant.

The Producers.

We were in that section until they turned the lights off on us. Then we had food and parted ways. I bussed back aaaand had an adventure! I was supposed to get whipping cream and strawberries, well they didn’t have either at the Tesco by the museum.
So I asked the flatmates and they thought… Quick Mart? Whatever it’s called, they thought that might have it. So basically, I went out and walked and went into every mini mart type place until I found some (four in total if I remember correctly). It was all very exciting, since walking around and poking my head in places is one of my favourite things to do when traveling.

Mission accomplished I went back and organized my backpack while watching Miranda (which I’d never heard of before) until Katy got back from the show. Then she made me… Eton’s Mess? I think is what it’s called? Whip the whipping cream, cut up the strawberries, pulverize the Very Large Meringue, and yay dessert! It was delicious 😀

And thus ends Sunday! My last full day in England D: