Monday, April 8, 2013

Gypsy Girls - A to Z Blogging Challenge Week Two

Welcome to week two and day seven (already!) of my A to Z Blogging Challenge! Today's post focuses on Gypsy Girls, some of my favorite costumes.

Back in 2007, I decided I was going to sew, dangit! I had a lot of patterns and some fabric my mom and I had chosen when I was in high school for various costumes, but due to different issues (time, motivation, et cetera) I never made the costumes with her. There was some lack of communication as well - I think I expected HER to make them, and she expected ME to be guided by her but mostly making them myself. Then I moved to Wisconsin, where I worked full time and didn't have a good sewing machine, so the fabric and patterns sat in boxes. Fast forward three years, and I was living with my husband and only working part time, with an unquenched love of costumes. 

What's a girl to do?

Make costumes!
This was my dream costume for years, a gypsy! I had drawn the design over and over, patterned a character after wearing it even. The pattern and fabric was just waiting... well that really pretty print fabric was. I got the black silk from a friend's destash, and the bronze, gold, and red from remnants at Joann when I decided to really make this already!

 I wore the costume at GenCon 2007, I was lucky to have the costume! I stupidly forgot ALL my hanging costumes, waiting by the door, when we left for Indianapolis. But this costume was folded up in my suitcase, so I still had it!
 There's a billowy peasant blouse with two puffs and dangle sleeves, a corset-vest, and a skirt with an overskirt. The scarf on my head is just a folded over piece of scrap fabric - sometime I might hem it so I don't worry about it rolling out and showing edges! I pulled the jewelry from my own collection (this was before I started making jewelry big-time), and the belt was a great find on the convention floor! (My funny pose was an idea from the pattern model, looking back, I don't like it much, but can't change old photos!)

Three years and a baby later, and we were planning on going to a renaissance festival for the first time. I had made a few things for my daughter by then, and decided on a whim - baby gypsy costume! I had a pattern that would work, as a miniature of my costume. Instead of two pieces, I decided on a dress with an elastic waist I could hide with a little corset-belt, in a style that would make a cute dress, then transform as she grew taller to work over leggings.

 I didn't have enough gold fabric for the middle layer of the skier, so I bordered two corners with the print fabric - perfect!

 Here's my little model trying it on for the first time!
 I even covered a headband with gold, to match my scarf! This was on the way to our first renaissance festival, but the princess fell asleep in the stroller and we didn't get any good photos.
 These two photos were taken at and after Halloween events of the same year, matching costumes are fun! And she does look like a gypsy baby, stolen from another family, since our hair is so different!
 The photo below was taken the next year, 2011, I just love this photo of us! She's not looking at the camera, but the scenery is so perfect. I miss Michigan's Renaissance Festival already...
 Here are the costumes on their own, first hers, a little close up of my jingly belt, then both of ours together

My costume could use some modifications - the corset doesn't fit as well as it did before I had a baby, and her skirt needs steaming. I have also considered making a different skirt for my costume - but I am not changing that shirt for the world! I love it, always so much fun to wear! I wonder how the costume will look on my daughter this year?

Do you have any favorite matching costumes? Or a favorite piece of gypsy-style jewelry? Share in the comments!

Thanks for joining me, come tomorrow for something that starts with H!

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