Jenny La Fleur
why do I do what I do? - Jenny La Fleur
adventures in costuming
why do I do what I do?
I've come to the conclusion that this Charles dress is either going to kill me off or it's going to be one of the most amazing things I've ever made. I'm going for the later but this frock is fighting my every inch of the way.

Why is that? Why is it, as myladyswardrobe so eloquently put it, that some gowns practically make themselves, whereas others simply don't want to be made? I haven't figured out a rhyme or reason to it but it is some small consolation that I'm not the only sufferer and that makes me feel a tiny bit better.

So after pondering why this particular frock doesn't want to be friendly (no conclusion), I made a momentous decision... *drum roll* ... to just enjoy the process. Novel thought - that!

I'm not in a race, I'm not going to Costume College, I don't have a deadline so why all this scrambling?

Somehow I've gotten into the horrible rut of costuming in a rush. I've been so focused on events, "using up" the stash, holding off CADD, feeling guilty work on my stuff when I have commission work to do or just plain finishing projects that I've lost the joy of doing. Which is silly because honestly my favorite part isn't the dressing up (the fun of that is all about the friends who dress up with me!), it's the creating. So why am I raising such a fuss about this bodice not wanting to play nice and trying to figure out the shortest possible route to the end?

Costuming In A Rush (TM)

Sometimes I wonder at my absurd ability to complicate the simple and to create my own drama. *sigh*

All that to say I've been working on my Charles dress in little spurts of time, as work and headaches/brain wattage will allow this week. The frock is still playing dirty but my change in perspective has me enjoying the challenge a bit more. Hey I’m actually getting work done on it too!

Well I guess that is enough of a break from the toileing... back to work so I'll post pics next time!

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15 comments | comment?
anielmom From: anielmom Date: May 31st, 2009 02:35 am (UTC) (link)
I like this new viewpoint. I'm glad your now enjoying the process. Looking forward to the progress shots!
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:36 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks! I'm working on getting them up in a logical order when I haven't really been working in a logical manner. It's a challenge!
unclrashid From: unclrashid Date: May 31st, 2009 08:12 am (UTC) (link)
I've done two dresses from approx this period and they are just a little bit weird and different enough from most other stuff that it adds to the difficulty. They have a shape that just different enough from a real body that you get the "moving target" effect. By which I mean that it changes your shape enough that no matter how carefully you fitted the muslin, when you add boning it makes enough of a change that it's almost like starting the fiting from scratch. (unless of course, you have a corset that's close enough to that shape to wear under your first fitting.

One of the dresses I made in this style won't fit the lady unless I dress her in it because everybody else thinks it doesn't fit, and they are halfway right. You have to poke her and say "stand up straight" or the dress seems two sizes to small. I probably shouldn't have made it with the period-correct, pulled back shoulders.
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:39 pm (UTC) (link)
That is definitely one of the challenges of boned bodices and stays. Luckily my 18th century stays are a similar shape so I can use them as a base to start from. That should minimize those unpleasant surprises.

I'd love to see pics of the gowns you've made - they sound lovely!
unclrashid From: unclrashid Date: June 3rd, 2009 04:11 pm (UTC) (link)
Sadly, I don't have digital versions of those pics (that was in the 80's). If we ever get a new scanner I could convert them to digital.
fancyfrocks From: fancyfrocks Date: May 31st, 2009 03:24 pm (UTC) (link)

"Sometimes I wonder at my absurd ability to complicate the simple and to create my own drama. *sigh* "

Ditto that! I'm sure your gown will be lovely. Some are just... difficult.
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:40 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks! See there is a reason we are friends. :>
From: hohenstein Date: May 31st, 2009 10:33 pm (UTC) (link)

Best things about, friends & afternoon tea!

vanityfairy From: vanityfairy Date: June 1st, 2009 11:08 am (UTC) (link)
Huh. Never thought about it that way. It really IS all about the process of creation, why haven't I thought about it that way?
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:40 pm (UTC) (link)
The silly thing is I had realized that about myself and then went and ignored it for a while. Silly Jenny!
girliegirl32786 From: girliegirl32786 Date: June 2nd, 2009 01:49 am (UTC) (link)
I do the same thing. I constantly guilt myself about missing self-imposed deadlines. Its a hard cycle to break.
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:42 pm (UTC) (link)
Stop that! :P

In all seriousness, it is hard. I haven't figured it out by any means but slowing down and allowing myself time to work certianly has helped the fustration.
bauhausfrau From: bauhausfrau Date: June 2nd, 2009 11:32 am (UTC) (link)


That's what I love about making costumes with no deadline. And nine times out of ten they turn out better than the deadline ones anyway.
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: June 3rd, 2009 02:47 pm (UTC) (link)

Re: Yes

It's true, although I can't sew without ANY form of deadline. No deadline, no finished product. I'm still working on the procrastination thing. :P However I'm finding that deadlines that aren't the actual date I'm going to wear a project work better. Like getting things done a month ahead of time (or in this case planning wearing my dress next winter sometime) way lowers my stress level.

Those tight deadline outfits never come out the way I want them too or if they do I'm too exhausted and stressed to enjoy them...
elegant_musings From: elegant_musings Date: June 3rd, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC) (link)
Aw... I know that same feeling of "rushing", whether or not the project has a deadline! :p I'm still learning how to let go on certain projects and just enjoy the creative process! *sigh* If you figure out any magic ways to do this, be sure to pass them on! ;) lol!

(Can't wait to see how this project is coming though... I'm quite excited about it!)
15 comments | comment?