This is a photo diary of my costuming "travels"; where I've learned and struggled to make historical costumes for myself. They're not always pretty, but always fun. most of the time. And I want to share with others what I learn along the way. **You can find me on Facebook, or have my posts delivered to your email by signing up at the lower part of the right column.**

About Me

My photo
HI, my name is Val. I'm a member of Costumer's Guild West in Los Angeles, Dean Emeritus of 2018 Costume College; member & Past President of the San Diego Costume Guild, member of Orange County Costume Guild, a representative of the San Diego History Center, & an honorary member of SITU (Someplace in Time, Unlimited) in Seattle. I make my own historical costumes but don't sell any unless I get tired of one.The eras I've made so far are 1770 up to 1918. My favorite is the 1880s bustle.


Monday, August 17, 2015

I Gratefully Accept This Blogger Award

Jeanette from The Perfect Touch has awarded me the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award. I know I have an award someone else gave me but never got around to doing anything because everyone I wanted to award had already been awarded, and I still for the life of me can't find any space open on my site that will let me add another picture.
But I owe Jeanette a response to her questions, and those are fun anyhow. In the meantime I'll see if I can dig up a blogger or two that I can award.

The Official Award Rules are:
1.  Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site.

2.  Put the Award logo on your blog.

3.  Answer the ten questions sent to you.

4.  Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer.

5.  Nominate ten blogs.

These are the questions Jeanette asked of me:
1.  What is your favorite fabric?
      Hands down, cotton. Besides it being the best fabric for our SoCal heat, it can be washed, and comes in SOOOOO many colors and design patterns. And with the lower price, you can make ALLLL the dresses! They don't call me Squirrel for nothing! 

2.  What era would you most like to visit?
      Edwardian because I'd love to see the women get dressed and see how all that works. I've figured out a lot of how the Victorian clothes are constructed but even those have some odd layers to them. The Edwardians did a lot of sleeve and bodice layering that look like a puzzle. 

3.  Does anyone else in your family share your hobby/hobbies?
      No, but he's very supportive of my crazyness and sends me on my way. One time when I was wailing about what a mess my room was in the midst of sewing, he said, yes, but in the end you will create something beautiful. It made my heart sing.

4.  What part of the world have you not seen and would love to visit?
      I've only seen a small part of England and want to see it all. I probably should try to go to Norway and find my roots there. Apparently I have second cousins there.

5.  Dark chocolate or milk chocolate?  Or neither?
     Dark chocolate, especially Belgium. They know how to make good rich but not sweet chocolate. And I'll take it in any form. 

6.  Have you ever ridden a horse?
     Yes, often as a teenager, and went through a period all teenage girls do and wanted a horse. I had statues and drawings I did of them around my room too. 

7.  Do you have your blog printed?
      I do! It makes me feel like a real writer/author. There's something amazing to have your word and photos IN a book that you can hand to someone. My Mom loves to read them too. My first couple years got put all into one book when I first discovered But I've become such a prolific writer that I now do it once a year on January 1st of everything I've written in the previous year. I think if I waited too long, the book would be too thick and cost too much. I also wait for the 20% off sale they offer regularly. 

8.  Are you a morning person?
     6:30am and I'm awake. Much better than 4:30am when I was working. Ah, the retired life. My preference for night is jumping into bed at 9:30pm so I can read for a half hour. I used to spend hours reading every day after work to relax. The computer and my Kindle has replaced that now. 

9.  Have you invented something?
     If you can call a DYI Pattern Organizer an invention, then yes. It's a small notebook which is quite large now, that I put small pictures of all my patterns in, along with yardage, to carry with me when I'm fabric shopping. I wrote a whole blog about it, and try to remember to share it with new attendees at Costume College each year before they go to the Garment District to shop for fabric.
 10.  Do you use Pinterest?  If so, how many pins do you have?
       I do! I like it mostly because I can keep all the photos I want w/o it choking my computer memory, or losing them if it crashes. Yes, happened twice. But it's also great because I can reference ones very quickly if I'm looking for a certain year or style.  I also like that its easier to keep track of everything by "files". How many? Looks like 2,900 and growing. I also like that its on my phone and whenever I have to waste some time, I can sit and look at what others are pinning, and save more from there. It's like a drug, I tell you!

Here are my 10 questions for the blogs I nominate for this award:

1. What started you to want to blog? 
2. What do you read in other people's blogs that make you want to follow them, or read them? 
3. Do you have a "Sewing Cat"?
4. How do you come out of a slump when you can't come up with anything new to make?
5. Is there anything you loose regularly in your sewing room?
6. What is your favorite sewing tool?
7. Do you prefer sewing by machine or by hand? 
8. Do you plan and make dresses way ahead of time, or are you a last minute sewer/seamtress? 
9. What era dress did you say you hated in the past but have now made dresses for it? 
10. What era have you made, and now don't like anymore, or lost interest? 

I nominate:
1. Isis at Isis Wardrobe
2. Mennonite Girls Can Cook Mennonite Girls Can Cook Not costuming but oh what great recipes! 
3. Isabella at All the Pretty Dresses
4. Miss Brilliantine at B*tch, Pelisse!
5. Mary at An Historical Lady

PS, I have NO IDEA why some of the text here is in white blocks. 


  1. 1. I started my blog as a way to document my outfits and discovery of vintage fashion.
    2. I love seeing people make and wear pretty things.
    3. I do not have a sewing cat but I do have three birds who try to help especially with ironing.
    4. Sometimes a quick easy project is all I need to get out of a slump. Sometimes I need something more drastic like a long break. Generally, someone will make something that will remind me that I love to sew and I'll be at it again.
    5. I loose all the things in my sewing room but most often my scissors.
    6. Do books count as a sewing tool? I adore my books the most.
    7. Mostly, I do sew with my machine but I do also enjoy handsewing when I have the time for it. It's very relaxing to do in front of the tv.
    8. I'm definitely a planner but I don't go to many events so I have lots of time in between to get stuff done.
    9. Most recently, I conquered my fear of the 1920s and made a dress.
    10. Elizabethan nobility was my very first costuming adventure. Now, I much prefer the lower class to the nobility because even though they have all the pretty things, it's way more comfortable in commoner garb. Plus I've gained an appreciation for a well put together everyday person's look.

  2. Wonderful, Val! Really enjoyed your answers and I always enjoy your blog! I'll answer #7 - I love sewing by hand. It is such a tangible success to see the creation using just your hands. But with the things I want to make and the time I have it's usually by machine.


I would love to hear if this was any help to you. Pretty please!