Sunday, 23 December 2012


When life gives you lemons you make... a scarf.

There is a lot going in our personal lives so there is not much room in my head for a more complicated project. I started this scarf  because I needed something to do at the Anton Pieck Parade that was authentic and simple.  Now it's a good way to keep by hands and brain occupied. My husband really liked it, so he called first dibs. And as my son really would like to have one as well, I guess I'll have to knit one for him too.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Anton Pieck Parade 2012

This was my costume of the Anton Pieck Parade, with temperatures below zero outside, this is the only picture of me without my coat!

Two friends of ours joined the fun this year. Don't they look awesome!

Artists at work

With coat and snow (yeaahhhh!!!)

Both friends are wearing one of my costumes.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Two days to go before the Anton Pieck Parade

Today is the day after St. Nicolasevening. Which means there is a lot of cleaning up to do. With only two days to go before the Anton Pieck Parade I am a little bit stressed. There are lot of things I still need to do and not a lot of time to do them.

My costume is very nearly finished.

This is a detail of the cuffs on my 3/4 length sleeve

And I have added some of the same trim to the hem of my skirt.

The biggest problem now is finding something to do. There are a lot of options but most of them need some preprations and I don't have a lot of time to do so. So i will have to keep it simple. But first I need to decorate my hat and finish the bodice completly.

My husband through away our old Christmas Stockings a couple of years ago because we had tehm for years and he was bored with them. Last year we tried buying new ones but couldn't find any.
So I made these Christmas Stockings a  St. Nicolas gift, for him a little while ago. He got them yesterday and he was very happy with them.

With this link
I turned this fleece blanket and a white fleece scarf into Christmas Stocking.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Bustle Era Dinner Bodice

I am converting this Ball Gown Bodice into a Dinner Bodice with 3/4 sleeves. Hopefully it will be done in time for the Anton Pieck Parade on the 8th of December.

I have been trying to work on it for days now, but my personal life keeps getting in the ways. There are tons of things I have to do in order to prepare for his upcoming birthday this Friday and Sinterklaasavond (Sint Nicolas Evening)  next weekend. No to mentions my household chores.
The sleeve will become a little bit shorter than they are now, because the end up being in between 3/4 and full length and black lace will be added to them as well. The shoudlers had to be taken in so I had to take of the glass jet deocrations. I am thinking of replacing them with lace or ribbon.

Here are some images of dinner bodices with 3/4 sleeves from the bustle era, for your and my inspiration.

Dinner Dress, c. 1883. Designer: Charles Frederick Worth.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Victorian Bustle Overskirt

The inside of my bustle overskirt. With the pleats pinned to the waistband. The netting adds volume and stiffness. The pleats have to be sewn by hand first, before sewing the skirt to the waistband with the machine. My husband pinned the pleats for me because I didn't have the patience for it.

Honey does my bum look big in this outfit?

This is how far I got with overskirt untill now, I still need to sew on the ribbons on the inside of the skirt to create the poufs in the back. I started working on that last night, but was too tired and make mistakes  so I decided to quit. When the skirt is finished I am thinking of decorating it with red fabric roses. has a nice article on how to make them.

I always fight with my hair , especially the morning of the Anton Pieck Parade, when I have to get up early and try to manage my unmanageable hair with my sleepy head. Sick and tired of this beauty stress I deciced to look for a solution and bought a braided bun.

It's a clip -on by Balmain from the Elegance Collection. It arrived yesterday and though I am happy with it's going to take some practice, and some more hairpins, to keep the thing in place.The clip it small and not very strong and hasn't got enough grip on my hair.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

I'm Back!

The last weeks we have been without a proper pc. So I couldn't post anything.
Here a pictorial update of what I've been up to.

I made necklaces to go with my 50's style blue dress.
And a 50's bolero from an original pattern. I still need to sew on the collar.

My son made a halloween ghost together with a friend.

I started work on my victorian bustle overskirt. This is a picture of the front panel. At this moment I am trying to figure out how to pleat the back to the waistband, as it is quite a lot of fabric.

I fell in love with a victorian style travellerbag

And decided I really "need" it because my luggage has to go in style to the Anton Pieck Parade.

Bought two patterns of fashion books written by Janet Arnold because it was a bargain !

Went to the market to buy black ribbon for my victorian bustle overskirt and came home with the ribbon and  fabric.

And then I came here to find that I have 100 followers! 
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

50's style blue dress

My blue 50's style dress is almost finished. I only need to adress a problem with the zipper. I still find it very hard to sew a zipper into a dress and it didn't turn out as good as wanted. Hopefully my husband can solve the problem by hand. The other option is taking the zipper out and trying again.
For the rest I am really pleased with the end result. And as I found out yesterday, while showing the dress to my husband. The dress looks even better with 50's style underwear. My What Katie Did Merry Widow corselet does wonders!

And I hope to turn this earlier version of the top, I made a lot of them before I had the right fit, into a bra.

The pattern I used for the top is from Mrs Depew Vintage, you can find the shop on Etsy.
I think I am going to give one of her 50's bra patterns a try. But first I got to work on my victorian project.

Thursday, 27 September 2012

More ladies in bowler hats

I am still on the hunt for images of victorian ladies wearing bowler hats. Even more so because of my recent plans to wear one with my 1885 bustle costume.

Here is one from 1880 out of  la Mode Illustree.
source: In the long run

source for both pictures: Corset & Crinolines

Awesome picture!
source: Grand Ladies

The young lady on the right is holding a bowler hat.
source: Ebay

Source: Ebay

And the search continues

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Anton Pieck Parade 2012

The Anton Pieck Parade will be held again this year in Haarlem on the 8 th of December. It is a victorian style event to honor the dutch artist Anton Pieck. Who lived in Haarlem. I just got the confirmation this week and I am delighted it will be held again. So many great events seized to exist lack of funds. The only downside is that my head immediately filled up with victorian costuming ideas. 

Although my purple Edwardian costume was great, especially the big Merry widow hat. It was a little bit to demure for my personality. I like to make a big impression.

I promised my husband to save time, money, space and stress by not making a whole new costume for this event again. So I have to do like the fashionable victorian ladies did back then. And change the look of my black and red bustle costume. By making some changes and adding new accessories. The idea right now is to wear a different style of overskirt and a new hat. My signature hat with this costume is a top hat. Absolutely fab but very recognizable. I also have a small late victorian hat but it's really not my thing. 

While looking for inspiration I found these pictures of Rachel McAdams as Irene Adler in Sherlock Holmes (2009) and Sherlock Holes: A Game of Shadows. 

The hat in the first picture look like this hat sold at Nehelenia Patterns.
The hats in the second and third pictures look like a bowler hat, maybe a little bit modified.
As my husband gave me a bowler hat this year for my birthday this will be my first option.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Blue dress update

This is the last version (6.0) of mock-up models for the bodice of the blue dress. The pattern I used is from Mrs Depew Vintage with some adjustments.Looks promising, doesn't it?
My hands are itching to make it out of the blue fabric. But this week I will be busy cleaning up stuff from the viking event and getting out the things I need for the medieval event. That we will be attending upcoming weekend. So I guess I'll have to be patient for a little bit longer.