Thursday Gratitude

Having a rough morning, so I guess it’s good I’m actually in front of a computer on a Thursday and can do my Gratitude post. Also grateful for lack of meetings on today’s schedule.

Today I am grateful for:

  • My wonderful husband went and bought party hats for our cats; it was their official birthday yesterday per the Humane Society paperwork and we tortured them with celebration. Hee, very cute!
  • Our healthy kitties, one year old!
  • Coffee, through which all things become possible
  • Wednesdays have been particularly good for commute radio; Genevieve’s Exploding Plastic Inevitable show on my way in and Darewaves on the way home on WRUW has been a reason to enjoy my Wednesday commute.
  • The commute is actually slightly shorter than before thanks to freeway-adjacency of the new parking lot. Also more fuel efficient. My Prius Priya has been averaging 56 mpg.
  • Did I mention kittens in party hats? Seriously, best thing going on in my life right now.
  • The Pennsic A&S Champion team; I was reluctant but I’m glad I’m doing it. It’s been a great challenge and a motivation to do a fun project. I hope I do well in the judging!
  • My husband is coming to Boston with me; I’m going for a work conference but he’s joining me for the weekend before it starts so we can see Boston. πŸ™‚
Art · Laurel · SCA

Project Update – Pennsic A&S Champions

So I’ve been reluctant to blog about this project because it’s a big competition and I don’t know what I’m allowed to share and blah blah blah. I’m probably being unnecessarily cautious, after all only about five people actually read this blog!

But… it is going well, which pleases me.

I made 7 paintbrushes which all work (some better than others), I learned how to make cheese glue and starch paste and made my own pasteboard. I now have 7 portrait miniatures completed which is the bare minimum I wanted for the series so I’m now in the comfortable “how many more can I finish” space of putting icing on the cake.

Wonderful husband found a perfect photo frame for me to use to display them too.

He now wants me to do portrait miniatures of our cats… I said AFTER the competition, eh? I have seen no 16th century portrait miniatures of cats so not good for the competition (though if he finds one, hee, I will totally do it!)

Very pleased with the one I finished last night… after Pennsic I will share photos. πŸ™‚ It’s become a stress relief now that I’m far in rather than an added stressor, which is excellent.Β  Actually resenting business trip to Boston which is totally eating into my painting time.

Art · SCA

Weekend Update

I feel bad that I’ve been missing Thursday Gratitude a lot; mostly it’s for the very good reason of taking Thursdays off at work and not being at a computer on the day, so… there you go. This Thursday is July 4th so probably going to continue that trend, heh.

This weekend hubby and I got pizza with Zuriel on Friday, had lunch with Mary-Beth and tea with Serena on Saturday, so good socializing time. Mmmm, pizza. I also got a lot of work done on the Great Pennsic Project!

I tried my paintbrushes, they work! yay! The feather brush was surprisingly good… forgive me for doubting you, feather! And I got two bundles of squirrel tail together to hopefully make two more paintbrushes tonight. Risky part is getting handles shaved down in time before folks arrive for Scribe’s guild.

I ground up some azurite which took forever and ever. It’s a grainy pigment, remember why I prefer lapis! Did some sketching and worked on documentation and was generally a good kid.

Costuming · Life

Weekend Update – Pietro and Aurellia’s wedding

Saturday the husband and I ran out and bought mulch and did some errands in the morning before meeting the parental unit at Squire’s castle for a belated father’s day. We took him to Manhattan Deli for a late lunch, early dinner after. Was nice. I was downright knackered after that and fell asleep in the easy chair with a cat on me, which was bad because I had Sewing To Do!

I did manage to finish up my Edwardian outfit for Sunday’s wedding… mostly. Was not confident in the hooks and eyes actually holding things closed so packed safety pins.

Had trouble sleeping… anxiety about the wedding, you’d think I was the one getting married! ha!

Hubby and I headed to the Wildwood Cultural Center bright and early… and we were the first to arrive. I owe him for rushing out the door. (I thought ‘between 9:30 and 10’ meant 9:30, sue me!) We helped put out decorations, unload cars and set up chairs. (Funny moment when the macho men tried to carry a stack of 35 chairs… glad Orsina had her phone handy to capture a photo of the machismo in action!)

Quite proud with our decorating prowess. πŸ™‚

Then there was the rehearsal and then off to dress! Getting dressed took less time than I thought, of course, but I was nervous about it! In hindsight I should’ve gone to the bathroom BEFORE getting my corset laced.

We ended up having time to wait as guests were slow arriving, they delayed starting the ceremony for 15 minutes and it was nice to lounge in the dressing room and chat. It was great how many people dressed in the theme!

The ceremony was beautiful, I got all sniffly, and I did not trip on my hem or anything. Then there were photos, then finally food.

Around 4:30 we started taking down decorations and stacking chairs, the guests had left… and then we did too! So tired! Still tired today, but happy. Maybe my last stint ever as a bridesmaid, not too shabby a note to end on!

There was an after party but I didn’t trust myself to find the place and we were both too tired to drive far!

Art · Costuming

Weekend Update

Saturday was the Origins Gaming Convention Demo; it was an invitation-only demo organized by the Kingdom and a bit last minute. I was honored to be included, though on the morning of I felt less honored loading up the car, heh.

We had a little trouble getting to the place thanks to the Pride Parade… we got off the freeway on the wrong side of it and had a heck of a time figuring out how to get around it! (Though, go Columbus, way to show Pride! Love all you happy rainbow people despite traffic panic. Well, maybe I don’t love the idiot who was trying to park in front of me but everyone else.)Β  But we made it, everyone else was set up by the time we got there. Demo went well, I think and everyone was a lot more cheery after than before! We got a quickie Wendy’s dinner and headed into the sunset to go home and sleep the sleep of the just.

Sunday and Monday I got a lot done (I took Monday off of work; I have extra vacation time I need to use or lose by June 30th so I took a few random days this month, was so nice!)

Edwardian Update: I did it, I cut out the top! (I was waffling on if there was enough time to do it!)Β  But managed to get the front assembled and the back attached, two sleeves cut out and one pinned in. Just have to attach the two sleeves, cut out the cuffs and attach the cuffs, finish the neckline and figure out how I’m closing it in the center back (worse comes to worse I can always have someone pin me into it on the day of, eh?) I do want to use a swath of my extra fabric to dress up the hat, shouldn’t take long to do that. Feeling… confident. I also wanted to make a shift to wear under it since I didn’t line the garment and it’s lightweight.

Paintbrush Update: My squirrel pelt arrived and lo, I made three paintbrushes from its bushy little tail. I feel bad for the little guy, gave his life for art. I still need to test the brushes, hope they work as well as they look! Also think I’m getting good at making cheese glue, heh.

Miniature Update: I also made starch paste and glued bits of parchment to playing cards, hee. πŸ™‚ I also cut up one of my few sheets of lovely period-style laid paper and glued it together to make a period cardstock (pasteboard, 6 layers of paper glued together.) Per an article analyzing a 15th century deck of cards.Β  Can’t afford to do much of that, as I don’t have much of that paper.Β  Husband quipped I’ve done more materials and tool prep than art, and he’s right!

Hair Update: I had my husband measure my hair to see how my efforts are going and I am pleased to report my hair was 12 inches from the floor. Two inches longer than last measurement back in January! Woot! So the hair care regime seems to be working. *knock on wood* This pleases me greatly!


Costuming · Laurel · SCA

Weekend Update

It was a packed-full weekend at home this weekend.

Costuming Update: Edwardian:

husband marked the hem for me and where to put the hooks and eyes for the back closure… what’s funny isΒ  now the skirt overlapps in the back. I think the big difference is that my husband pulled the corset lacings tight and thus decreased my circumpherence. Problem though; two side panels are too short, like two to three inches higher than the rest of the skirt. Solution: Cutting out two pieces of contrasting fabric for a decorative cover-up πŸ™‚

Paintbrush Update:

I made cheese glue! (Scary!) and assembled two paint brushes. One using an old watercolor paintbrush tip I salvaged the other using a feather. (There was this Youtube video from a tv show called Tudor Monestary Farm which showed making a paintbrush from a feather. Not sure where they got that from, I’m looking… if anyone knows of a source to back that up, let me know!) They look like paintbrushes, woot! Next up: painting with them! I’m still intending to make a brush from squirrel hair I get from Lubeck and another from my cat’s hair. (That’s going to be hard to harvest, I need hair, not fur. She does shed it regularly, but hard to collect individual hairs!)Β  I did whittle down a third paintbrush stick. Need to find another good twig for the fourth paint brush.

Research Update:

Did much research this weekend on Portrait Miniatures. My documentation is now not terrible. Woot. Far to go though!


Art · Costuming · SCA

Project updates

Costuming Update: Edwardian

Reasie came over last night and I had less done than I thought. Her skirt is looking faboo. I got the last three pleats sewn down on mine and added a small section to the center back waistband to make it fit better. Cut out a strip of my contrasting linen which I’ll attach to the waistband. Have an odd, asymetrical thing happening in the center front, not sure why… or how to fix. May just call it good enough and get on with it! 16 days to wedding. eek!

Pennsic A&S Champions Team

Sooooooo… other projects mostly put on hold because I’ve been selected to represent the Middle Kingdom at the Pennsic A&S War Point. Have to do a deep dive on my docs. Got some tips and help from Master Aiden and Master Randthulfr so feeling more confident than I did a week ago, heh. Can’t wait to get through the prep stages and start the actual piece!


The “Lily of the Valley” scarf continues apace; it’s about 18 inches long now, woot. Due in October.