Monday, January 24, 2011

Only 28 Days in February?

This is how I ended my last blog post:

"I'm not sure what I'll actually be sewing next. I'll let you know when it calls out."

Well, it called. Or, actually, it Facebooked, in the form of my Marine son's best friend (Reko) who is working the Bay Area Renaissance Festival this year. Reko asked if I can sew his costume. I told him he can't afford me (haha!), but that I would sew for free if he buys all the supplies. He has a $200 budget. For me, it will be a fun challenge. The Festival starts February 26. With this and the MPB Men's Shirt Sew-Along, February is shaping up to be a busy sewing month!

Reko and Pvt Cook (at Parris Island):

Reko sent two photos for the general idea of what he's looking for. His character is a Spanish ambassador, nobility with some money, so no peasant clothes for him. He requested red and gold.

First, the doublet. This is the general shape, and Reko wants the long sleeves. (I've since learned that most sleeves on doublets are detachable — interesting!)

And the pants, "paned slops" in RenFaireSpeak. I'm learning a whole new sewing and fashion vocabulary.

After a day spent Googling and Ebaying, patterns are on their way to me as I type.

This one is expensive ($21), but comprehensive. I've decided I'm paying for it since I want to keep it when we're done.

This Simplicity, which I just missed the Joann's sale for, so I went to Ebay. I think I'll use this for the doublet, unless the one above is simpler than I'm anticipating (but I don't think it will be).

And finally, this one for the slops because I like overkill. ;-)

Back of pattern:

Next up was fabric. I looked at my usual online sources without success. Back to Ebay, for this:

And this:

I'm going with two fabrics because the first one above is too expensive to use for everything, and, well, I was really getting into the "designing" aspect. This is the basic premise, but ours will have long sleeves for the doublet and I think we'll be leaving off the codpiece. ;-) I'm not sure about the white shirt underneath. Reko is going to look for one to buy, but I may end up making that too. We'll see. It's not hard, but time may be the biggest factor.

* * * * *

In MPB Sew-Along news, I received the pattern I'll be using (McCall's 6890) and have checked to see if all the pieces are there. They are. I've pressed them and while I'm waiting for the RenFaire supplies to arrive, I'll be comparing the vintage McCall's to the contemporary Kwik Sew pattern I used for Michael's way-too-big-muslin and sharing the results here. I'll also be sewing a down and dirty muslin because even though Peter has already made this pattern for Michael, ya never know, ya know? Better to be safe than sorry.

Now I've got to call the repairman because my convection wall oven blew up yesterday. As in really blew up. It made a loud noise, turned bright yellow/orange inside the oven, and went dead in a big poof of smoke. Thankfully, it's still under warranty and I have a non-convection oven below it. But what a pain. Especially since nearly simultaneously, the well sprung yet another leak and it took DH hours to fix it. Not having a shower scrapped my grocery store outing, but today is another day. It was not a boring weekend.


  1. What fun projects!!! The DS has asked me about making dress shirts for him and I usually change the subject. Maybe one of these days. And, the costume looks like it will be a great but fun challenge. I'll be following along.

  2. How fascinating! So very out of the range of what we normally sew. Looks like it will turn out great.

  3. Whoooaaa. Your design and fabrics are outta sight. He is going to swish that cape dramatically all summer.
    Rats about the oven. At least it's still under warranty. Be tthe manufacturer regrets that :-P whatever, they made it too cheaply!

  4. That is one ambitious project! I love those fabrics.

  5. wow! you ARE going to have a busy month! Sorry about your oven. :)

  6. Oh, this is so gonna be fund to watch!

  7. Fun! I have been costuming a few Festies here in MN for 4 years now. A word of caution on the shirt - even though the sleeves look enormous & you will be tempted to narrow it for your slender guy - DON'T - follow the pattern. The last one I made I cut 15% narrower at the participant's request - Now according to him it doesn't "feel right." Tell him you want a few comp tickets for the sewing ;>} Sue in MN

  8. Sounds like a very busy February.

  9. I admit that I also enjoy sewing historical costumes because I get to spend so much time doing research. You definitely learn a whole new vocabulary.

  10. FUN!!!! my favorite kind of sewing! i made similar pants for caleb when he was in 6th grade:

    i cannot wait to see your progress!

  11. I know these patterns are a couple hundred years later, but they are cool nonetheless. Good luck with the Ren. Fair outfit!

  12. @Rebecca - definitely a cool link! Thanks so much. :-)


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