When I first started this blog, I was an unemployed costumer attempting to create period gowns and costumes with very limited means. Although now employed, I still try to be as thrifty as possible. I am still "The Broke Costumer"!

In addition to posts about the outfits I make on a budget, this blog includes short research articles on fashion, history, accessories, styles, or whatever interests me at the moment.

I hope you enjoy my journey into the land of inexpensive costuming and short articles.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Myth Masque Ball 2014

After a much needed break, I started back slowing in to sewing.  Jerry and I had tickets to Myth Masque Ball, but I couldn't handle another elaborate 18th Century fantasy gown again.   I would like to go quite simple.  To get out of making a bodice, I decided to do a pretty corset with lace top underneath.  I wanted to make a simple, yet elegant skirt.  And I wanted a floral theme. First - make a floral headdress.

Searches on the internet yielded some lovely examples.  For construction, I needed a base to put the arrangement on.  On one website I saw a great idea.  Take a tennis visor, turn it upside down, and place on your head so the brim is straight up.  I covered with my skirt material.  A trip to Michael's when they had a 40% off sale on silk flowers allowed me to stock up on purple, lavender and pink flowers.  I started adding them to the covered base. I wanted flowers to hang down the sides.  I decided to take one of the thicker flower stems, bend it to the shape of the crown, and wire flowers to it.  It would be easier to attach the one, long piece to the crown rather than individual flowers.  Once the curved arrangement was completed, I used large quilting pins to pin it to the crown.  Then I filled in the spaces by hot gluing flowers in.   Then I did the back side by hot gluing flowers on.   Here is the finished front and back.

Next was the skirt. In Los Angeles Fabric District I had picked up 6 yards of a dark purple poly taffeta with black designs. It was $3 a yard. I just love making the Truly Victorian Parisian Trained skirt and decided to use it as my skirt - minus the front aprons.  I love the way it bustles at the top and flairs out at the back.  Where one would usually put a large bow, I wanted another floral arrangement to match the headpiece.  I took another sturdy stem from the flowers I bought and wired flowers on it.  To attach to the skirt, I used two kilt pins to secure it to the peplum part that  joins the upper back to the lower back of the skirt.  Here are a few photos.

As you can see from this photo, I added a light purple and black corset over a black lace T shirt.  I added my existing accessories, and I was set to go!  That is Casey, guarding the door for me.

The photos of construction I took with my cell phone, and it makes the fabric look blue.  Its not, its purple.

Now for some photos from the event.

One last photo for you....The first and last time you will see me on a stripper pole! This was the party bus shuttle back to the hotel at the end of the night :)

 Cost breakdown

$18  skirt fabric
$7  lace T shirt
$20 purple corset
$2 visor
$20 flowers

TOTAL    $67

Monday, May 12, 2014

Waking up from Sewer's Burnout

Hello, I'm back!    I have not posted since the Tartan Twin dresses in December.   After that outfit was completed, I felt very burned out.   I felt (and still do a bit) that I had lost my creativity along with my desire to sew.  No event in January so I took a needed costuming break.
February 23rd was Dapper Day at Disneyland, and that also happened to be my daughter's birthday.  We decided to wear cute retro dresses.  I got patterns and fabric.  I cut both dresses out.  I sewed half of my daughter's dress and part of mine.   Unfortunately, the fabric my daughter picked out for her dress made her "look like a shower curtain" (her words).   I never finished it.  I lost interest in mine as well.  I will finish it someday!  We wore dresses we already had.

In March the Costumer's Guild West was doing a Gibson Girl event.   I got excited about that.  What could be simpler than a skirt and blouse?   Cut it out, sewed half of it....did not finish.  Did not make the event :(

In April San Diego Costume Guild attended the House of England program in Balboa Park and we did a character parade.  I wore by same Beatrix Potter outfit again.   I wanted to wear the Gibson Girl outfit, which never got finished.   Sigh......

In April I also went to Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend.  I wore a purchased dress.  Oh!  Look at that cute pin up dress!  Look at that one!   $150???? I can make that for $30!    I see that I can make ALL THE DRESSES!!!!

In May was Gaslight Gathering convention, where I produced my 4th fashion show for the Sunday tea.  Guess what?   I never made myself a new dress for it.   I wore the Tartan.

Ok, enough!  Time to wake up!  Myth Masque Ball is two weeks away!  I usually start an elaborate gown months before. ( See Tea with Marie and Dark Marie posts)  This year I am going simplified.   Streamlined, easy.  I will post soon about this outfit as well as my daughter's outfit, as I ease back into sewing again.  I do love making skirts, and had the foresight to buy some awesome purple and black fabric the last time I went to LA fabric district.  How about a corset and bustle skirt?  I won't have to sew a bodice!   And....flowers!   a floral headdress.  Yes, this will work.

I am opening my costuming eyes again, and have plans for a great Comic Con  costume!  Lets hope I can follow through.