That’s the advice I always give people when they start in their own historical costuming journeys. Unfortunately, I rarely ever follow my own advice.
The competition started as all good projects do: with procrastination. You see, the day I had planned to start with cutting everything out and getting most big pieces pinned/basted together, my mother and sister arrived in the van. And what does my college aged brain immediately assume?
Oh dip, free lunch!
It took two hours on the road, and DFW to be in our rearview mirror, to realize that we were not, in fact, getting lunch. I had gotten myself kidnapped to be a kennel maid in my mom’s dog show that weekend, and I’d brought no sewing to keep myself entertained on the 6 hour drive there and back. Hell, I hadn’t even brought a change of clothes.
So it was Monday when I finally got started, and I quickly began with my most exciting part of the project: the smokkr. This was cut from a 2/1 lightweight twill dyed with indigo, which isn’t quite the lovely diamond twill of the grave, but at least has the color that the original wearer has. I mentioned that my model has unique tastes, and those will be revealed as the month goes on, with hopefully every garment making that clearer and clearer.
So far, Ive got it cut out, with both gores sewn together and two panels of the torso sewn in. Next up will be felling, and this will be felled with a visible topstitch in contrasting golden thread.
I had intended to be quicker, but this morning awoke with a severe pain in my sewing hand, and thus spent the majority of today sewing with my left hand, in order to stay closer to my plan.