100 days to Halloween Shoot

I’m trying to get back on the regular-posting-train, I swear! I’ve been busy with teaching dance camps and sewing. I have some exciting news on that front, but for the moment let me share with you a quick photo shoot I pulled together to celebrate the official 100 days to Halloween countdown.  (Y’all know I live for this )


This was a quick costume, the pieces created at different times. It’s vaguely inspired by the turn of the century Edwardian gowns, but obviously with a modern goth flare. The new underbust corset is the piece that initiated the whole dress.



Our Halloween theme this year is going to be a witch’s town. We’ve decided to call our fictional town Dreadfell Hollow and this seemed to be the perfect way to introduce our theme. 050056

How fabulous is that pearl collar? I inherited it from my late grandmother. It’s faux pearls, but that makes me more comfortable using it for costuming purposes. Here I think it looks like a spider web made of pearls. 06420170722_173450

Hair styled by the fabulous best friend. certainly can’t do this ^, I get fed up with the weight of my hair and usually quit. here’s a tip, if my hair looks nice you can probably assume my friend was behind the scenes styling! 😉20170722_17385820170722_174428

Realized now that I failed to get a close up of the corset. It  has an adorable pattern of dancing skeletons on it and will shortly be available on my Etsy page.

Which, by the way, recently surpassed 20 sales! HUZZAH. (hey little steps are important!)


Not So Scary and Disney!

To finish up on all that happened in October here’s my post about the Birthday Disney trip!

My best friend and I just happen to have a birthday a day apart, I’m the 25th and she’s the 26th, this year she put together an amazing birthday trip to Disney where we also attended Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party.

The cool thing about NSS? You’re allowed to dress up! Obviously we weren’t passing up that chance!

I kid you not, we agonized for months about what to wear but in the end we had a stroke of genius and decided on Once Upon A Time characters. My friend as Regina, the Evil Queen, and I as Zelena, the Wicked Witch and evil (psychotic) half sister to Regina. A third friend accompanied us on this trip and at the last moment decided to accompany us in our theme and go as Rumplestiltskin. She wore the Rumplestiltskin coat I made a year ago but I had to make the Regina and Zelena costumes from scratch.

This was the dress my friend chose:


And this is Zelena’s main dress:

I toned down those weird hip pads but other wise followed the costume design.

And here is where I confess, I have almost no pictures of the finished products. I finished my dress at 11:30 the night before (and we left at 4:00 in the morning!!) and promptly fell into bed. I do have this one picture of Regina’s riding dress during its construction, half of it’s pinned and it’s missing buttons but you can see the general idea:

Minus the lace dickie she wears at the neck.

Minus the lace dickie she wears at the neck.

 The night of the event turned 0ut to be sadly rainy. We had fun no matter the weather but it didn’t make for great photo taking weather! We had a picture professionally taken in front of the castle but I havn’t gotten my hands on it yet!

Here’s one picture my friend snapped of me in my costume while we ate in Gaston’s Tavern. The rain had beaten down my hair so I gave up and put it in a bun to keep it out of the way.



The castle lit up while we awaiting the Villains show, hosted by the Sanderson sisters!!!!


And a picture of my dream home, taken earlier in the day. (AKA the Haunted Mansion)


But then there was something the really excited me. I found dresses!

We stopped in the Hall of Presidents and to my delight found two reproductions on display:

Reproduction of one of Martha Washington’s dresses. I wonder if the original dress was once black?


Reproduction of one of Ida Mckinley’s dresses


They also had a dress from a more modern first lady but eh, who cares about modern dresses.

The next day while we made our way through the line to the great movie ride I came across this gem:


Rose’s sinking coat from Titanic, this is the actual garment worn in the movie.


There were several other pieces on display but the line was moving too fast and I had to run to catch up with my friends so I didn’t see what they were :(.

We stopped in Epcot which is a place I’ve always enjoyed. however, I was IMMENSELY angry to find that the Norway section has been turned into Frozen-ville. A place that’s supposed to be dedicated to culture has been taken over by the most irritating movie to come out in this decade. If they had put the frozen related ride and shops in the Magic Kingdom I would not have cared, that’s what that park is for. But Epcot?!? I wanted to scream to Odin and rampage the place.

I did get this picture of a cool viking statue. Because Viking.

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Notice the little birds perched on the scabbard?

I promise to do a proper photo shoot of the Once costumes soon!

The Annual October Sewing Panic

So. Many. Things. To stress about!

Less than a month till my first show. Do I have enough wares? Will I be ready? Will anything actually sell? Should I put more stuff on Etsy or reserve it as stock for the show? And if it doesn’t sell at the show will it be too late to sell on Etsy because the Halloween costume shopping season will be over?

On top of this plethora of worries there’s the ‘normal’ Halloween sewing madness going on. This year my best friend is taking me to Disney World to attend the Not So Scary Halloween Party (which, despite its lack luster name, actually sounds awesome!) Costumes are allowed so obviously we are taking full advantage of this and I am sewing two entire gowns for the event. More on those to come!

Just because I apparently like to test myself to the limit, we decided at the last moment to have a Haunted House at our house this year in our backyard. There are costumes to make, props to create, scenes to set, scripts to write and the ‘actors’ and helpers keep bailing on me!!

Oh well, who needs sleep anyway?

With all this weighing on me, every finished piece feels like a small victory. My latest completed piece is particularly notable to me  because I finally feel comfortable with sewing corsets. I mentioned my corseting troubles back here https://dancingseamstress.wordpress.com/2015/08/15/corset-drafting/

I needed a break from pirate so I dug out some scraps of cotton and on a whim made this Autumn inspired corset, which turned into a full Autumn Fairy Dress.


My self-drafted pattern is much improved, it’s comfortable and everything stays where they’re supposed *ahem* . I was wary of the steel boning but now I can’t believe I ever tried to get along with out it. If you are getting into corseting, take my advice. Bite that bullet and buy the steel boning. Plastic does not cut it. Yes it’s pricey but it is well worth it.

So comfortable I kind of wish I was keeping it.

So comfortable I kind of wish I was keeping it.


Observe how I manage to look serene when I’m actually freaking out because I know I should be working instead of posing.

If you like the look of this outfit check it out on my Etsy shop! There is still time before Halloween!

As for me … well, I guess I better go get to work. You know what they say: You can sleep when your dead after October!



Welcome to the Manor

I know it’s been quiet here, but you’re going to have to be patient a little longer! Halloween is looming and I’m a little behind my sewing. It doesn’t help that I keep changing my mind about what to make AND I got hit with a bad case of Costumer’s A.D.D.

I did find the time to transform the house, though. These will have to do until I finish some costumes and find the time to post them!

We’re not completely done but it’s a good start!

Welcome To The Manor

Welcome To The Manor

Do come in ...

Do come in …



Thanks for looking! I’ll be back soon, I promise!

Halloween Sneak Peek

My floor has disappeared. Well, I guess it’s there somewhere but I can’t find it beneath the piles of fabric and half-sewn costumes! My room has been taken over by Halloween sewing.

Applique detail on a a skirt.

Applique detail on a skirt.

 I’ve pretty much finished my viking outfit and one other costume but as predicted a few more have been added to the que.

When I’m not working on Halloween I’m stalking researching agents and trying to keep my hopes up regarding those agents who currently have my queries/pages.

More pictures of costumes to come eventually but for the moment I have to get back to sewing.

The Grey Lady Bustle Dress has been updated —->

100 Days till Halloween.

100 days till Halloween!


We are officially in the Halloween pre season! The craft stores are starting to haul out the goods and costumers around the world are turning their attention to this years costuming frenzy.

So what is on my upcoming sewing schedule? Let’s take a look.

Finish my Viking outfit.

Make my mother’s Viking outfit.

Make my brother’s Viking outfit.

Make my costume for Boynton’s Haunted Pirate Fest.

Make my mother’s costume for Haunted Pirate Fest.

Make my main Halloween costume.

Make my mother’s main Halloween costume.

Make various other costumes at the last minute for surprise events/parties.

Make accessories for almost everything.

Not to mention my mother just bought a bunch of fabric so I can make her some skirts. This is the realities of being the only one in the family who knows how to turn on a sewing machine. Virtual slavery.

In light of the enormous amount of work in front of me I’m getting ready to start my main Halloween costume ASAP. If I don’t do it now it will be pushed to the last moment and barely get done as I slave over everyone else costumes. How fair is that since I’m the one doing all the work? Thank you, I’m glad you agree with me.  

All complaining aside though, I LIVE for this. So celebrate! Halloween is coming. (Seriously, go make pumpkin cookies or something.)

I’m too excited about my costume to keep it a secret so next: The Halloween Costume, Revealed!

Gowns of Halloweens Past

Is it Halloween yet? No, don’t answer that, you’ll just depress me.  It’s only April and I’m already busy planning Halloween.  We picked our theme two years ago (you read that right, we usually figure out decoration themes a year or more in advance), and I’m 90% sure I have my costume planned (not telling!). Now I just have to wait.

     To tide me over I thought I’d post a review of my last two Halloween costumes. Last year we chose ‘Haunted Faery Tale’ as or theme and the year before that was ‘Wrecked Pirate Ship’.   My costume and the decorated foyer are featured below. 

The Pirate Ballgown.

The Pirate Ballgown.

We covered the walls with black plastic tablecloths then ripped cardboard into planks and painted them to give them a wood texture. Then we glued plastic crabs all over and draped some tattered fabric. With dim, green lighting and a wrecked-ship sound effect CD it looked amazing.

My costume for that year was based on Georgian ball gowns but given a pirate flare.

Here’s a different angle, from when I wore it to a pirate fest, sadly I have no close ups.

(Historical costumers, please forgive the horrible silhouette, I could not even properly lace the gown, much less wear stays, because I had to go straight to a performance after the Pirate Fest)

Second Wearing at Haunted Pirate Fest.

Second Wearing at Haunted Pirate Fest.

The second costume I want to share with you is from our Haunted Faery Tale party, I went for a generic Evil Queen look.

Evil Queen.

Evil Queen.

 Please excuse my vanity, this was the best picture of the dress but the weird face I’m making . . . not so much.  For this dress, I took inspiration from my favorite costume designer, Colleen Atwood ( Sweeney Todd, Snow White and the Huntsman, to name a few of her movies). She frequently uses the opening pattern on the front of the bodice.

Hope you enjoyed looking at my work, I have a huge backlog of costumes that will eventually be posted (except I’m getting distracted by new ones, begging to be sewn). Happy weekend.