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

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HI, my name is Val. I'm a member of Costumer's Guild West in Los Angeles, Dean Emeritus of 2018 Costume College; Past President of the San Diego Costume Guild, member of Orange County Costume Guild, and a representative of the San Diego History Center. 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.


Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bring on the Flags!

I don’t have any sewing content to write about now, as I just got back from a trip, and all I have on the table is trimming a Regency bonnet I’ll be wearing this Saturday at the USS Midway Museum in San Diego for their 200th Anniversary Salute to the Star Spangled Banner. The museum invited our guild to come in red, white & blue 1814 attire for the celebration, and since I already had a white dress and a red pelisse, a bonnet was all that was needed. I commissioned an all-white bonnet from a friend and then trimmed it myself in royal blue ribbons, and will add a rosette and red feathers. My inspiration photos were these. I liked the white one that just perched on the head (most likely with a hat pin) without ties under the chin.

I used a 1 1/2 inch wide royal blue ribbon and laid strips down the sides over the top, and a separate strip will go around the base. I just poke pins in to hold it while I’m stitching it on. My stitches are just little ticks to hold down the edges as I want to be able to re-use the base later in other colors. I’m going to cover a large button today in the ribbon to go on the center top, and another on the rosette.

This is what I’ve done on it so far. I attempted a rosette to put on the brim last night and will have the feathers under it, but I’m still tweaking that.
I don’t wear Regency very often so I haven’t done much in the way of footwear. At some point I think I’d like to have a small pair of boots but in the meantime I do the fast and cheap version of white flats. Since I have foot problems, the limp little ballet flats don’t like me very much. But I found these flats that have a pretty sturdy sole at Payless Shoes by American Eagle. Yes, they’re eyelet and probably wouldn’t be period correct for Regency but they won’t show much and it will get me by. And because there isn’t much shoe to hold them on my feet when I’m walking, I use these little vinyl “belts” by Capezio. They just slide over the shoe and are soft vinyl with a bit of stretch. I think I bought mine from Amazon but I’m sure they can be bought at Capezio. 

When I came back home from our trip, my kitty Chloe was really sick. The stress of being boarded for 18 days was too much for her and her Feline Herpes virus took over. Fortunately she is boarded at her vet and they took care of her but she still wasn’t doing great. Coming home made her feel better. But we noticed after we brought her home, she couldn’t use her right rear leg and she was in pain. Her red swollen runny eyes were heart breaking. Back to the vet to discover her fever had returned, white blood cell count was up, arthritis in her hip, and on top of that, a UTI (urinary tract infection). All of these were related to her virus and are made worse from stress. The next morning she wouldn’t put weight on her right front leg. She got more antibiotics and we’re waiting now for a really strong anti-viral medicine to be delivered to us. Her runny red swollen eyes have cleared up, and she’s sleeping most of the time but she’s eating and did a quick run to the litter box. It’s good to hear her talk to us when we walk into the room, and she purrs at times.
Please send Chloe your prayers for a quick recovery. I was told it could take up to 10 days for the medicines to work, so I have to be patient. It just breaks my heart to see this once lively Energizer Bunny cat turned into a limp noodle.


  1. Aah, prayers to sweet Chloe for a quick recovery. Also, thanks for the tip about the Capezio shoe straps. There is a retailer that carries Capezio close by, so I will check them out.
    Rochelle, ATAA

  2. Dear Val,
    Yes, prayers for your sweet, pretty kitty. May she be back to her old self very quickly.

    Very best,


  3. Ah, poor kitty! It hurts us almost as much as it does them to see them suffering and being nearly helpless to make it better. Hugs and prayers for Chloe!


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