Monday, May 13, 2013

More music

Remember when I went looking for information on the repertoire for the Concerto delle Donne? I then got distracted by home buying, but it has been at the back of my mind.  Today someone in the ever helpful Elizabethan Costuming group on Facebook posted a link to the Petrucci Music Library.  It is chock full of public domain scores and can be searched by genre, instrumentation, time period, composer, melody and several other ways.  I'm having far too much fun!

I went looking at the major composers associated with the group. So far I've turned up several compositions by Luzzasco Luzzashi. None of the vocal pieces, but I'm fiddling with a round for 5 recorders which looks like fun. I'm almost overwhelmed by all that is available from Carlo Gesualdo.  There are 5 complete books of madrigals and part of a 6th. Luca Marenzio also has an extensive collection (55 pages.)  I haven't gone past that yet.  I'm going to be humming and playing along on the recorder and fiddling with these for some time to come as I see what I like.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Apology for not posting, and I think I know what I want to do for next year's IRCC

I have been working on projects, just not posting. I finished the embroidered shoes, went on a jewelry making jag, and am currently assembly line sewing my kids 6 outfits each in order to go camping in June.  So why no updates?  My kids destroyed my camera and I can't take pictures. Our new house closes the 14th, so we have been putting all the extra money into inspections and repairs and such and trying not to touch any of our savings.  There's a bit of spending going to go on once we begin the move-- yay for new furniture! I'm planning on sneaking a new camera in there too.

In the meantime, you can drool along with me.  While I don't really like the entirety of this family portrait, the details on the lady in red (Laudomia Gozzadini) are amazing and I want them.
Portrait of the Gozzadini Family by Lavinia Fontana  1584, Pinacoteca Nazionale, Bologna
I have been wanting a lynx zibellino for ages. They're unusual and that interests me, but I also like the scale of them.  With my height, the minks can look a little bit lost, so I'd like to see how the lynx would work with my proportions.  The fur itself runs about $300+ so it has been low on priorities.  I have, however, found some bobcat pelts and am exploring that option.  The selling point for this portrait is the cutwork lace cuffs.  They're incredible.  With the rules change to encourage extensive handwork, I'm hopeful I could start on them this fall/winter and have them ready to finish once next year's contest starts.  

I adore the pinked/slashed sleeves and the dress and veste.  And then there's the jewelry.  Mmmmm.  She's wearing two sets of bracelets; one set above and one set below the cuffs. There's the girdle the zibellino is attached to.  A ring on each hand. She has two necklaces, one with a nifty pendant. It looks like there is a small nosegay in there as well. Just above the ruff she has earrings. There is also a sheer gold striped veil.  Loads of fun details to play with make up a project that should be interesting to work on.  I just need to start being on the lookout for a great red brocade.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Making wool shoes with Sister Scholastica

Photo by Jeri Foster
The Barony next door had an arts and sciences night last month and I got to make some fun slippers. Viscountess Leah de Spencer OL. OP. KSCA, came as her "twin sister" Sister Scholastica and taught a class on wool slippers as worn by those in Medieval cloisters.

We have documentary evidence that monks did wear felt slippers, but due to both the way that such utilitarian items are worn through and the way wool felt becomes compost, there are no surviving artifacts. So, how to make these is a big conjecture. Ours were made as a basic turnshoe using "boiled wool" (a felted wool army blanket) and purchased wool insoles cut to size. She purchased the insoles at a local surplus store, but they seem to be available at outdoor supply stores. I would probably felt my own if I were to do another pair, just because I have a closet full of alpaca fiber, but purchasing them made it a fast project.

Well, it would have been a fast project. I decided to embroider the toes of the upper, so I spent most of my evening doing chainstitch. But my pair are almost done. I just need to sit down and finish them. I should do that some time today-- before I lose something.

Photo by Jeri Foster

The green polkadot wrapping paper was for patterning.  We measured our foot across the toes, at the instep, and at the highest part of the arch, traced the foot and then added the required inches around, then drew a keyhole in the center for the foot to fit in to make a simple pattern. With the wrapping paper, you can try it on a bit and fuss with it until you get the desired fit. I haven't done this style before. It has a seam at the back of the heel and I'm not sure I like that, but it certainly is simple to pattern. Then some people drew pointy toes or other shapes for custom features on their patterns.

I'll have to take some pictures of both this style of pattern piece, and my preferred two piece style that I use for basic slippers and post them tomorrow. There are also quite a few tutorials floating around for basic turnshoes with a side seam if you do a quick search.