Let’s Wrap It Up!

The end of the year all ready?! It must be, WordPress sent me an end of the year look back at this blog. Apparently the majority of my readers live in Germany? That’s awesome! Hello and welcome!

So let’s take a look back at 2015!

I started an Etsy Shop!

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Yeah! Go me! Sure, I don’t have a street front shop and no lackey’s under my command, it’s just me and my business cards, and my sewing machine, but I’m so glad I finally took the step! https://www.etsy.com/shop/LadyShredsDesigns

I vended at my first show!

And I can’t wait to find more! I had my eye on a Pirate Festival that we always attend in Fort Pierce but the time crept past me and now it’s too late to find a cheap hotel. Oh well, now I know better, there’s always next year for that one and in the meantime I’m searching for other shows!

My first Solo Dress commission!

A happy dancer!

A happy dancer!

Yeah, I’m still excited about this!

This Thing!

Guess who found a tea bag and ate it on my bedroom floor?

Guess who found a tea bag and ate it on my bedroom floor?

"Nope ... not me ..."

“Nope … not me …”

we tried to explain to her that dogs who sleep under the tree get kicked out but she didn't fall for it.

we tried to explain to her that dogs who sleep under the tree get kicked out but she didn’t fall for it.

What didn’t get done:

Well, one of my main sewing goals this year was to recreate the dress in the painting The Promise, by Alan Maley

https://dancingseamstress.wordpress.com/2015/04/19/alan-maley-the-promise/

Sadly this didn’t happen, with everything else I was doing I couldn’t justify the money on the fabric. YET. I still very much want to recreate this dress. Hopefully I’ll do something worth rewarding myself for in 2016, and when that happens, it’s splurge time!

A Feis

I didn’t write about this, but I had sort of promised myself that I would finally compete in an Irish Dance competition. You have to understand, I’m not afraid to dance before a judge, (I love performing!!) my nerves are fairly cool. I simply don’t like the idea, or the way our competitions run. Mostly I don’t see the point or the waste of money. But lately I’ve been getting a little curious… How would I do?

Well, I wimped out but just… maybe… next year?

Finish one of my ongoing manuscripts.

One is still neck deep in rewriting and others are half done. Pirate fest preparation really threw me off consistent writing. However, I am happy to report that I’ve quite suddenly made leaps and bounds in my rewriting-yesterday I had the best writing day in months!

So what about next year? Well, I’m not the type to make resolutions for the new year, but there are certain things I hope to accomplish in 2016. If I push myself I can maybe start querying again by, or before, summer, who knows? Maybe this will be the year I find an agent, and from there …??? I intend to further explore selling on Etsy and will be expanding my shop shortly. I also have some dance themed ideas in the works that will mix my dancing and costuming!

With so many possibilities, 365 days suddenly seems quiet short! Happy New Year to everyone!

Any writing/sewing/dancing resolutions out there? I’d love to hear them!

A Very How To Train Your Dragon Christmas

Which is obviously the best kind!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas/Yule/Hannukah or whatever else you may celebrate! We had a lovely quiet Christmas in which I made out pretty good loot wise!

This year I asked for the book The Art of How To Train Your Dragon 2. I highly HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who is loves HTTYD. It has tons of the original inspiration sketches and paintings plus lots of behind thes cenes insight from those behind the movie. I read it cover to cover immediately and the cover is so beautiful that the book has a place of honor on my dresser.

I was also the happy recipient of several other HTTYD themed gifts!

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Ignore the obnoxiously flowered pillow.

Pictured above are: The Art of HTTYD 2, a stationary set (so what if it was intended for kids in school, I’m a writer and I want a HTTYD notebook and pen, so there!!!) and two dragon figures.

A baby Thunderdrum and a baby Monstrous Nightmare. Funny thing was the Nightmare was packaged as Hookfang, which it clearly is not. Either whoever designed them is colorblind or someone messed up the packaging! I don’t mind though, this fellow is adorable!

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Meeting my Gronkle and Rumblehorn (it doesn’t count as ‘playing’ with them when you just introduce them, I mean, come on, I’m an adult!)

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Ok, fine I was playing with them.

And obviously I’m excited about the next part of Race to The Edge premiering on January 8th! 

 

Christmas Photo Shoot

After a sudden idea and a quick frenzy of sewing I got two of my friends together and held a small Christmas themed photo shoot. I had different ideas for each costume; mine was traditional. A Victorian bustle dress in the seasonal colors. The second was also a Victorian (inspired) gown but with a more Steampunk twist, my colors inspiration for this one was cinnamon; crimsons, browns, and coppers. The third costume was more fantasy, inspired by Yule and the older celebrations of winter. I called it Evergreen, the Spirit of the Winter solstice. This was done in black and green with a collar of ivy on the cloak and a matching headdress.

 

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And what costume would be complete without a matching one for the dog?

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And some of the behind the scenes pictures!

"No. More. PICTURES."

“No. More. PICTURES.”

"You said photo 'shoot' right?"

“You said photo ‘shoot’ right?”

Molly lost her nerve in the dark park and needed a little cuddling.

Molly lost her nerve in the dark park and needed a little cuddling.

 

Sadly our preparation took so long I didn’t get the pictures I really wanted in the park. We rushed out the door as the sun was sinking, certain we were going to be too late, as the parks close at sunset. But we had some luck! The park was open late for some game and we were able to take advantage of the forested area. This was perfect for the Evergreen photos but not really for the two Victorians. We certainly had fun though so that’s definitely what matters more.

The corset for the Evergreen costume will be for sale on my Etsy page shortly. Here are some close ups of the costumes!

006The Evergreen Corset, the color is washed out since I was too lazy to take a proper picture ;). It’s forest green and black the green lace panel is sewn over black taffeta so the black subtly shines through and the main fabric is green shot with black, very pretty! It’s steel boned and laces up in the back with silver grommets. Slightly larger that Sue here so it’s only pinned and thus looks loose.

001 I ended up leaving the bullet baldric off, I’d originally considered putting candy canes through the loops but never got around to buying them. This was cobbled together from several pieces, the only costume I didn’t make from scratch for the shoot. However, I loved how it went together! Definitely want to use this again.

 

And A few more shots of my dress; I admit it, I’m VERY proud of it. I need a proper bustle cage, here I simply used a bustle pad and after a while it just stopped working, (which, of course, made it more appropriate for the natural era style bodice I’m wearing, but HA wasn’t my main concern here, I just kinda did whatever I wanted!) but the dress itself made me extremely happy! Except those wrinkles on the green panels … I’m properly corseted and the jacket top is not even tight or pulling, WHY DOTH THOU WRINKLE??

I can’t help but be extremely critical of my work and as I get better I’ll probably look at this and gasp in horror that I wore it but whatever, I wish I had another reason to wear it!

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My bustle deflated after driving to and from the park.

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I’m grateful to my friends for being willing to help me with these silly projects, they endure pins I’ve left in the costumes, a burnt ear from the heated hair curlers, and being forced to stump around in the dark posing. Can’t believe they still talk to me, actually!

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“It is a truth universally acknowledged that a family possessing dogs will never again take a picture without a dog wandering into the scene.”

Christmas Bustle Dress Sneak Peek!

On a whim I threw together this Christmas themed bustle dress out of same fabric I had hanging around. I had maybe two yards at the most in which to squeeze this dress out. Plus, the whole reason I pulled the fabric out was to make a Christmas dress for Molly (Then I had a vision of us in matching dresses and BOOM!) so I also had to squeeze enough fabric for a little dog dress out of the short length.

I didn’t pick any particular year or fashion plate to model the dress after, I mostly just draped, cut, and sewed it up however I felt like! (Though with the long bodice and minimal poofage in the back it’s more natural form)

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The buttons pull a bit on Sue but it fits me perfectly. I also didn’t realize till now that the bustle/overskirt is a little crooked and deflated, but I only threw it on her real quick to snap a picture so my bad for being lazy!

I am trying to get together a photo shoot with some friends and other gowns, hopefully in a week or so! When it happens I’ll post on my facebook page first so be sure to go check it out! https://www.facebook.com/Lady-Shreds-Designs-461550964005686/

And the little beast that started the idea.

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This dog LOVES getting dressed up. Once she knows I’m sewing something for her she sits by me and watches till it’s done. As soon as the finished piece is on her she runs down to show everyone because she knows she’s the cutest darn thing ever. I tried to take a good picture but she was too excited to stand still so instead I snapped this surprise picture of her sleeping on a bag of fabric -_-

A Challenge to Writers

Someone recently shared this list of obsolete words with me. I found it extremely interesting, both the words themselves and the way that they have faded from common use. But why should they be forgotten? We’re writers, right?

And our work is going to be published one day, right?

Well, why not try to bring some of these words back into use?

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Click for a larger image

The word ‘Yestreen’ caught me by surprise as I’m actually quite familiar with it, as the above states, it is popular on Scottish folk songs which I love.

So how about it? Let’s see if we can use any of these words in our current work!

Although, perhaps we should not encourage the spanghewing of frogs and toads…

 

(After publishing I noticed that I had misspelled my title, and on a post regarding writing, too! How embarrassing!)