19 April 2011

Freedom--So Close!

Exam tomorrow! So obviously I'm...taking a study break to write a post?

Full of plans for what I'll be doing with the rest of the week, month, summer. I need to swing into gear after tomorrow's exam on two things: 

-sewing the Easter dress, and
-prepping Easter dinner!

The dress is going according to schedule so far: I have everything cut out and hanging, awaiting my nimble fingers and quick needle. Or something. Might see whether C and K would agree to have craft night at mine tomorrow so I can start sewing in the eve. Hopefully the sewing process will go more smoothly than the pattern cutting did: that was absurd. 

It sounds, according to pattern reviews I've been reading online, that the cutting-out part of this pattern is the bitch. So it's still looking up.

Another thing I noticed, though, is that not too many people DO seem to have used the Oolong pattern, compared to the other Colette patterns. There are only a couple of photos on the site, etc. I wonder why that is? It's a really nice dress.

As far as Easter dinner: I have to start menuwise, grocery shop, and do all my cooking. I'm thinking lamb and trimmings, some funny Greek appetizers, tsoureki bread, and lots of desserts. But that'll be fun times after all this school stress.

14 April 2011

Insert Easter Parade Reference Here

...or just a picture:

Taking a break from the work thing for now...because I'm writing this before I leave to buy sewing supplies! I caved and am planning another project in my spare moments. It's justified, though, because I've got time limits here: I've decided to make my Easter dress.

Easter is a week from Sunday, and in addition to the Easter Vigil at midnight (and possibly the morning service, depending how swamped I am) I'll be having a (Big, Fat, Greek) meal and party for my friends and roommates and folks in the evening to celebrate. I planned to wear a certain shirtwaist dress I already had, but it seemed a little...plain for the party; then K gave me this crazy, superbright, sort of 70s-or-80s-does-swing-era dress, and it seemed like a winner 'til I realised that a) the bust darts only made it halfway (K is both shorter and narrower than I) and b) it was a little too fluorescent for church, and didn't really justify the "editing" it would have required to fit. That one's been put back on the shelf for the time being while I figure out what to do about the bodice.

So I'm making my own! The decision feels right: new clothes are a traditional part of Easter, after all. Besides, I've made a pledge with myself to make more stuff in general this spring, so why not kick that off with the most important spring holiday? Easter also marks the start of my summer freedom, so this'll be sort of a kickoff project in that way as well.

I'm using Colette Patterns' Oolong dress:

...which I ordered earlier this winter in a fit of wishful thinking, and a big $4 chunk of mystery fabric from the Goodwill (le Chainon, actually) on St. Laurent. It's quite cool: white with polkadots that look like blotches of watercolor in pink, green and orange. A burn test suggested it was something in the acetate family, but it feels lovely and smooth and I think it'll take well to the bias cut.

I'm also thinking of altering the sleeves to make flutter sleeves instead of the tight ones on the pattern, which seem so...plain to me. It's time I used the "alter any sewing pattern" section of my grandmother's needlecraft book again.

It's too sheer to self-line though (the polkadots show through awkwardly) so I'mma head out and pick up a couple yards of something (hopefully cheap!) to use as a lining. And pinking shears, since apparently K and I do not have a pair between us...

12 April 2011

Bell Canada Thinks I'm Ontarian

I'm not. But every time I try to pay them on the internet I have to reset the geographical settings on the web site.

I've hit another procrastination wall, I'm afraid. I'm meant to be working on school assignments pretty much nonstop this coming week (and have been meant to the past week or so as well) and I have been dutifully avoiding beginning any new projects, have come to a temporary rather than a permanent solution to my room-clutter problems, and am pushing off all similar endeavours until after my exams are all in. However, instead of doing the work required for them I find I am just planning ahead for that time: I've spent the morning so far looking at pretty dress patterns, checking apartment listings on Craigslist, and listening to Andrew Jackson Jihad instead of editing the one essay or beginning the others.

I need to get things together! Shee-it.

Okay, off the computer to make (and then STICK TO!) a more serious study regimen, but as a parting shot:

My grandmother's wedding announcement, which I stumbled upon while doing some procrastinatory genealogical Google searching a while back. I love the descriptions of not just the bridal gown but the bridesmaids' dresses and even the bride's travelling costume: "a black and white tweed suit with black alpaca lining, cloche hat of black velour, and black kid accessories." I'm sure almost half of the words in the announcement are descriptions of clothing or bouquets.

Whoa, so I just looked at this uploaded and it's a bit illegible. Am going to transcribe the text because I'm a cool kid (and so I can avoid work a little longer):

Miss Elizabeth Broback, Donald H. Bagger Married Saturday in Presbyterian Church

Miss Elizabeth Claire Broback, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Juel Irvin Broback of 420 Wychwood road, became the bride of Donald Hartvig Bagger, son of Mr. and Mrs. William Rambusch Bagger of 636 Hyslip avenue, Saturday evening at an eight o'clock candlelight ceremony in the Presbyterian church. The minister, Rev. Dr. Robert M. Skinner, officiated. The church was decorated with ferns and white floral arrangements. Following the ceremony, there was a reception at The Monday Afternoon Club, Plainfield.

Escorted and given in marriage by her father, the bride wore a gown of ivory slipper satin with a portrait neckline trimmed in French Alencon lace, basque bodice, long pointed tightly fitting sleeves, and bouffant skirt falling into a flowing cathedral train. her long fingertip imported illusion veil was draped froma  half hat of matching sating and Alencon lace. She carried a prayer book with a marker of baby orchids and stephanotis. 

Miss Barbara Ann Broback of Westfield, sister of the bride, was maid of honor. Bridesmaids were Miss Martha Ellen Brumback of Toledo, Ohio; Mrs. James Alden Marsh of Danvers, Mass.; Mrs. James Painter MacEntosh of Westfield; and Mrs. Arthur Wellington Pinkham Jr. of Lee, Mass. All the attendants wore strapless gowns with bodices of purple velvet, coachman's style, and bouffant skirts of orchid nylon net with matching stoles. They carried semi-crescent bouquets of blush pink snapdragons, pink sweetheart roses, and small purple asters with matching floral headpieces. 

Norman Bruce Bagger of Westfield was best man for his brother. Serving as ushers were James Alden marsh of Danvers, Mass.; Kenneth Molling Schubert of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Emile Werly Grewell of Dunellen; and Harry George Donhauser of Springfield. 

For travelling the bride wore a black and white tweed suit with black alpaca lining, cloche hat of black velour, and black kid accessories. After a southern wedding trip, the couple will reside in Westfield.

Mrs. Bagger attended the University of Mexico, Mexico City, and was graduated from Wellesley College, class of 1950. Mr. Bagger is a graduate of Harvard College, class of 1947, where he was a member of Hasty Pudding Institute of 1770 club and Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. A Navy veteran of World War II, Mr. Bagger is secretary of the Newark Chamber of Commerce and since 1950 has been a councilman in Westfield.

09 April 2011

An Entry in Five Parts

I'm currently living in the bottom of an academic pit of despair, so I've disappeared for a bit and will for a little longer following this post--but I'm feeling procrastinatory right now and it's Saturday morning, so what the hell, posting time. The library can wait while I deliver a few snippets of what's been going on in my life:

1) Knit the Three-Hour Sweater this past week during craft time and on the bus/metro; still waiting to sew it up and wear it. Used some wool from a yarn store trip to my old neighborhood a couple weeks ago, a light-dark blue color combination. Will let y'all know how it turned out when it's actually a garment instead of pieces in the workbasket!

2) Am currently (as in, at this very moment) watching/listening to a documentary on 2-Tone music a friend found in the process of researching a paper on Madness (she is taking the pop music class I'll be in this summer). So far (part 4 of 10) it's mostly concert footage with some voiceover action at the start setting the scene:

"All over Britain, signs like this flash their nightly invitation, and in response, over half a million people go dancing every week all the year round..."

3) On another ska-tastic note: I went to an amazing show last Saturday! The Fundamentals, who are pretty much the definition of awesomeness, and would be even if I didn't know some of them, played with some Torontonians called the Harmonauts, and it was one of those shows where everything is just really, really good from start to end: K and I danced from moment one, we made a couple of concert buddies, both bands played great sets, and even when, back at K's, I thought I'd lost my phone, it turned out to be safe behind the bar at L'Absynthe. A-plus evening.

IF YOU ARE CANADIAN: the Fundamentals are on tour this summer! You should go see them, they really are excellent if you like ska even a tiny, tiny bit.

IF YOU AREN'T: you should still go listen to them on the internet.

4) Oooh, section 6 of the documentary has a bunch of fifties-sixties news footage about the rise of the teenager and different dance crazes!

5) Got two packages in the mail the other day: a box of typewriter ribbons and a bubble envelope full of folk punk CDs from Plan-It-X. I think that combination of purchases is a funny summary of me as a personality.