Friday, February 28, 2014



Finally, the post on how to turn a modern suit into a Regency costume......but first:


The play we needed the costumes for is called Arcadia written by Tom Stoppard. It's set in 2 time frames, 1809 and 1812 and present day. When staging a play "present day" means now, not when the play was written. Arcadia was written in 1993, we chose to set it in 2014. The scenes switch between past and present, using the same set, an English manor house's dinning room. There is 2 casts, one past, one present. The scene break down looks like this:

Act I    scene 1: April 10, 1809

             scene 2: present day April 10, 2014

             scene 3: April 11. 1809

              scene 4: present day, April 11, 2014

Act II    scene 5: present day, April 12, 2014

               scene 6: April 12, 1809

                scene 7: present day, about a week later

               scene 8: early  June, 1812

There's a really good Wikipedia article about the play, if you're interested. On to the costumes.........

We had about 3 weeks to get the costumes done for this one, which is way we had to take a short cut on the men's costumes. I've only tailored one men's suit and that took 3 weeks. We needed 6 Regency costumes. SO..................................................

We went to a shop downtown called Looking Good, and bought some styling Stacy Addams suits, which have a wonderfully long jacket.


 On the male form you can see the marking lines where the fabric is going to be cut off.

 Here's a back view. The brown jacket on the left has already been cut up.

 Here's Nick, who played Ezra Chater, wearing the finished costume. To get this look, you mark the cutting lines, sew up the cut edges, take the collar off and sew it back on upside down, turn back the fronts and sew the buttons on. The pants were also cut into knickers. To make the tails on the coat longer, use the cut off fabric. Because it's theatre, the seaming doesn't show.

 On stage, Matt, who played Septimus Hodge, is wearing the finished costume from the first photo. Also note that Matt's jacket is cut in a different shape than Nick's.

 Septimus in a different costume, with Ethan in the background as Capt. Brice. Lady Croom, played by Jenah is wearing one of the 3 dresses we made for her. You can't fake that time period's woman's costumes.......or can you?

Past meets present. Thomasina, played by Jenna, wearing a 1960's vintage prom dress altered to mimic  a Regency dress. Tess, playing Hannah Jarvis, is in the present day.

I had to wait for photos to be posted and wish I had some better shots. I hope you can see what was done to the suits.

The first 3 photos are mine. The production photos were taken by Travis Hunnewell and Michael J. Morgan.

Now, off to Argentina!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014



This one may get buried face down in the yard


The other day, I opened the doll cabinet and she jumped out and tried to bite my leg! Ok, she fell off the shelve and landed on the floor.  I'm not quit sure if she's a bride or what. Made out of paper mache and her hands, feet and head are way out of size for the body. Or maybe she has the mumps.

I'm getting all stressed out getting the house cleaned up to sell it. Where did all that stuff come from? We've already taken 2 car loads to the charity shop and tossed a bunch of junk away. And I've taken stuff to my shop (I don't need to pack bias tape), still more to do.  I had to have the plumber come by on Monday to fix a leaky toilet, thank the gods I didn't need to buy a new one. Wish us luck!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

52 PICK-UP: Roaring 20's!!!!!!!!!!


I gave up looking around my house this morning for the vintage 1920's evening dress I've owned for about 30 years. It's someplace. This costume I made and designed for the stage play of Enchanted April will have to do.

It's sea foam green satin, with trim in the shape of leaves. The 2 shoulder pins are from a local department store.  For some amazing 1920's fashion, you should check out Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries. You can watch it on Netflix or public tv. Our poor dress form came apart, so I fixed her with gaff tape.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014



Dang, it's Wednesday already? The weeks are flying by.


Poor dear, lost an arm, her decal eyes peeled off and her head isn't stuck on right.  But she's sweet anyway. Plastic souvenir doll from the 50's or 60's (maybe). The dress is vinyl but her moccasins are suede. I wonder who bought her on vacation? I always wonder who bought the souvenir dolls from distance lands.  My Dad brought my sister and me Eskimo dolls from he's travels in the Air Force. Those dolls are long gone, I wonder what happened to them too.   

Tuesday, February 18, 2014



Calm, down Drama Queen! It wasn't that bad. I didn't have an internet connection for 2 whole days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

On Monday  I went and got a new modem from the service provider. 

This post would have been from Saturday: What I got for Valentine's Day

A card from MTW, 2 little boxes of chocolates for $1.00, and a racy Harry Potter Valentine from one of our students. That's one of the tamer ones. She found them on the internet somewhere. On Friday, we had dinner at our favorite Mexican restaurant. 

We finished the upcoming show and will be moving on to Evita, so don't cry for me. 

Friday, February 14, 2014


Not a big fan of guilt trip "holidays" , so here's an outfit post!!

I took this after work, as I've been having a hard time getting the light in the house right. It's been either to dark, to bright or just plain hot mess. A coat from the 80's.

 It wraps across the front, has a snap at the shoulder pad, then the other side hooks at the other shoulder. It does not have a lining. I love the color.

 It was made in France. MTW found it at Buffalo Exchange in San Francisco about 15 years ago and gave it to me as a gift. It reminded her of me.

 It was a 2 sweater day, so I'm wearing a purple funnel neck Anne Klein sweater  bought at Dillard's (on sale) and a funky cardigan I knitted.

Here's a better look at the sweaters. Yes, that's a cheap plastic swizzle stick holding the sweater closed.

 Token shot of the living room. Because I'm nosy and so are you.  Both the living room and dining room have strange walls. The wall where the table is sitting is on the diagonal , the wall behind the blue chair goes north and south, the wall behind the wooden chair goes east and west. The dining room does the same thing on the other side of the house. I've never seen that before.

The wooden  arm chair was found at a church sale in the mid-80's, I think it cost $4. It has ugly yellow vinyl on the 2 cushions, which I've recovered with scrape fabric. The 2 green pillows are thrifted. The gold table was from a yard sale, it wasn't gold when I got it. Underneath is a basket turned cat bed, also from a yard sale. The blue chair was free from a friend, and has been in need of recovering for years, It's (badly) covered with throws after being used as a giant cat scratch post. The rug's from ebay.  The lamp and curtains were bought new. 

The year has been a bit of a whirlwind. The forth show that I've worked on opens next  Thursday. And I promise to post about how to turn a modern suit into a Regency costume. I think we've done that to 4-5 suits. It should be interesting, so stay tuned.

Have a safe and warm weekend.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014



I think this is a Russian doll. If it is, this is a tribute to Sochi 2014!!!!! If not, oh well.

This is another one taken with the old camera. Or, maybe I got better at taking photos? 

I have been watching the Olympics. I enjoy snowboarding, figure skating and speed skating. The rest, not so much. Although I do think it's strange to hold a  winter sporting event in a city with palm trees.

About those outfit posts.......well, I've been really busy with work and have been putting most if not all my effort towards getting that show done. And sortenizing ( sorting and organizing) my house for the upcoming listing it for sale. Where did all this crap come from? The car trunk is full of stuff to donate. When we went to the donation drop on Sunday, we were 2 hours early and have yet to find time to go back.

When the shows opens, in a week, I promise to have an interesting post about turning modern suits into Regency (think Jane Austin) costumes. Until then, have a lovely week!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


In honor of Spy Girl, the 52 Pick-up Challenge  this week is dots!


I gave this lass the MTW and she added the apron and bracelets. It's her tribute to Exene.

Remember last week? It was 34F and haling? Well, yesterday when I got home from work, I turned on the ceiling fans and opened the kitchen was 82F!!!!!!!!!! Someone is playing tricks on us. 


Saturday, February 1, 2014



First link-up: Style Crone's Hat Attack!!!!!


 Cthulhu hat made by my friend Kristina. If I wear this when it's windy, the wings flap. Cthulhu is a monster from the books written by H. P. Lovercraft. Yeah, another bathroom selfie, this time of the year it's the only room with decent light

Link-up #2: Share-in-Style: Gothic

 One of the few photos of me not smiling.

And the show: Every year we do a children's tour. This year it's called "Eventually, Ever After", a ballet based on fairy tales.

Here's Cinderella (Elly), The Mad Hatter, White Rabbit, Little Red, and the Big Bad Wolf. The show was written and choreographed by one of our dance faculty, Sarah Wildes Arnett, she also took this photo. The costume were designed by my student assistant( and fake grandson) Matty Hogan. This is his first design project. He's also stage manager for the tour. 

I made Elly's dress and the White Rabbit's Hammer pants. The show is a re-telling  of popular fairy stories set in modern times. The cast also includes the wicked Stepsisters and Hansel and Gretel.