Monday, April 4, 2011

Civil War Dance Preparations: Sewing, Crocheting, Shopping and Fun!

Just over a week ago, my daughter was invited to a Civil War dance that took place this last Saturday. Exciting! However, she didn't have anything to wear...yet. Excited and determined to go, she got some helpful advice from the friend who's taking her and his family. Then, she did some research on the internet where she found a tutorial on how to make a skirt and a blouse. She and her friend went shopping for fabric and she quickly got started.


The skirt went great! The blouse, not so much. We ended up buying a pattern and more fabric for the blouse. That worked out much better. She made a black sash to finish it off. I'm so impressed that she pulled this off in one week and she is too. It was very exciting when she tried it on for the first time...


Here's a close up of the sash tied into a bow on the back. Isn't it pretty?...


After she brought this beautiful wine/red colored fabric home, I got an idea. I had two balls of "Garnet Heather" (red/black) Knit Picks Palette yarn I had purchased last November. I thought it would make a perfect shawl for this outfit and my daughter loved the idea. We immediately decided on the "Tea Wrap" pattern. It's her favorite and she's been wanting one. While she sewed, I crocheted like crazy to make the shawl in time to block it and have it ready by the end of the week. My hands were very tired but I did it! Here it is before blocking...


I love the texture of this and the ruffly bottom before it's blocked...




Blocking this shape of shawl and making sure both sides are the same can be challenging. It requires patience and lots of measuring. But, luckily, I figured out a way to do it on one of my first shawls that works really well. It's quicker, easier and much more fun. I washed, rinsed and rolled the shawl in a towel to get out the excess water; wove a blocking wire down the center back of the shawl; layed it out on a sheet spread on the floor; pinned the wire down; stretched and adjusted the bottom layer and pinned it; layed the other side down and stretched it out to match the bottom layer, and gently and pinned it in place. Luckily, my trusty little helper was there to supervise the whole process...


I bent the wire out a little on the bottom of the shawl in an attempt to make that part bigger/wider and keep those pretty ruffles...


Duchess layed next to the shawl on and off all day to be sure everything went just right. After all, this is for her favorite gal! What a cutie!...


It's done and it's beautiful!






The best part of this project was when it was upinned from blocking and my daughter lifted up. She gasped and said, "it's beautiful!...I love it!" Wow! That feels so good!

This shawl turned out small as I only had two balls of yarn (this was from that glitched Knit Picks order from last November where I got two red and one green instead of three red. Ugh!). However, for this shawl it turned out to be the perfect amount. It's short enough to allow her pretty sash bow to peek out. And, it's a wonderful splash of color, texture and pretty for her Civil War outfit.


She looked beautiful in her new outfit and shawl that night and she had so much fun!

She, my husband, and I have been interested in going to a Civil War reinactment event for a while. Now, that she's getting involved, we're getting even more interested and excited about it. So much so that I sewed a skirt for myself a couple days ago and almost have an entire outfit ready. Over the weekend, my husband and I went shopping and started getting clothing for him. We're already having fun and making memories with the preparations...researching, sewing, crocheting, shopping...and we're not even there yet!

I'm excited about going to one of these events and seeing what it's like. Although, I am little nervous because we've never done this and we're a little on the shy side...especially my hubby...but, it looks like a lot of fun. It sounds like it will be a great learning experience too...about history, people and old fashioned dancing. :-D

6 comments:

Benita said...

What did she use as a crinoline?

I think her outfit is absolutely stunning! The shawl is the perfect touch and I am sure she garnered lots of attention in the outfit. I love 19th century clothing - any decade, I just love them.

jomamma said...

What an awesome family pastime! The costume is beautiful.

Erin said...

Oh my, everything you guys made is just amazing! Great job to you both! Beautiful!

Sandra said...

fan-freaking-tastic! What a superb story - both about re-living history, and creating your own family history by seeing your daughter following in your creative footsteps. THe outfit if perfect, and the shawl (and her reaction) are the crowning glory.
Well done, both of you!

pineneedles4 said...

Absolutely stunning! You both did a great job!

Vanessa

Pickyknitter said...

OH WOW!!!!