torstai 31. toukokuuta 2012

Book: History of Costume by Carl Köhler

History of Costume by Carl Köhler
Dover Publications
464 pages
First published in english by George G. Harrap and Company in 1928.
Cover image by Amazon

I've been reading this little book lately. It's about the size of a pocket book, so it travels well in my bag and is not too big to dig up on public spaces and easily slipped back into the bag. It starts the historical timeline from the ancient times and goes up to the 1870, which is understandable when you look at the first publication date.

The book is full of information about men's and women's clothing, some of the garments are patterned in the book and can be remade from the measurements given (with adjusting). The book is well illustrated, this edition has all the images in black and white. The 1928 edition had some of the plates in full color. I felt that some of the images were in odd places and when reading, I needed to flip forward or backward to find the image that the book refered. Since I have a few books from this period, I'm taking it as the style of the layout.

The text in the book is well written and full of information. It's very academic language and it sticks to the facts known when written. The language is rather tiring reading, even if it is very interesting.

I'm still not knowledgable enough about how much the information has changed since this book was first written and if there are errors in the facts of the book.

To whom I recommend:
- Anyone interested in clothing history.

To whom I do not recommend:
- Anyone wanting to read a very academicly written book.
- People who need pictures to understand the text complitely. There's a lot of information in this book, more than the illustrations can cover, and in some points I felt that it was hard for me to understand because there was no picture to help me.

My general opinion of this book is good. It has a lot of the information about the ancient and middle age eras that are a black hole in my clothing knowledge. Yes, it's hard to read and understand at times, but with a dictionary and slow reading I've gotten throught.

I found my copy in eBay, but it's also foundable in Amazon.

Please note that this is purely my opinion and impression of the book!

tiistai 29. toukokuuta 2012

A tip from grandma

Today I went out in a dress I got from my grandma. The dress is about a year older than I am, so it was made in the mid 1980's. The dress is pure polyester, which means that with stockings in my feet, the hem of the dress build up electrisity and stuck to my thighs.
My grandma's polyester dress.

My grandma noticed my problem while we were at the great grandma's (she's my grandma's mom) and told me a remedy I had not heard before. Rub a little balsam onto your stockinged thighs and it will keep it from sticking. Yup, the same balsam you use on hair.

And it works! After a day of walking in the skirt, not once did it get sticky. I have to say I was little sceptic when she told me to rub a little balsam, but I have to admit, it worked wonders!

I still need to make a petticoat to give the hem a little fluffiness and add a belt. The original thin leather belt that came with the dress snapped in two last time I wore this dress.

maanantai 28. toukokuuta 2012

Welcome to the Other Blog!

So, after a little thinking, I decided to open another blog. I want the Adventures to be strictly kimono related, so my sewing projects will be featured on this blog. To start with I'll introduce you to the project that I'm working with right now:

Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle (all 4 costumes) for Animecon 2012 in Kuopio, Finland.
Project goes like this:
1. Sakura
2. Fai
3. Kurogane
4. Syaoran

 Here's a few images of the Sakura's outfit: (it's still not finished)
Here's the bright pink petticoat. (there's actually another petticoat under this one to give it a little fluff.) Because of the upcoming summer and the comforts of the cosplayer, most of this costume will be cotton. This is also because the place they hold the convention is hot. I doubt that they have fixed the ventilation system, last year it only pumped the hot outside air into the already hot inside without cooling it. "Sakura" is having a lot of layers on her, so I want to make sure she won't pass out if the heat is on...

 Close-up of the waistband.

Hem finished.

White overskirt that will be part of the dress.

The top part of the dress. It's very kimono-esque in the picture, but to get the tight fit it seems to be having I took in the fabric. 

Right now I'm slowly putting in the collar. I'm making the sleeves as soon as the cosplayer will be dropping by for a fitting.

Patterns more-or-less used while making this dress:
Petticoat and skirt: Butterick pattern B4954
Top of dress: Hand drafted
Sleeves: Mönster till historiska dräkter; Figurskuren klänning med klockärm by Sophias Ateljes Förlag (I got this little pamflet as a gift years ago from the girl cosplaying Sakura).

Welcome to the sewing blog!