Ever since I can remember I have loved fashion but I have always been out of date! Not for me the fashions of today... not when I could have a gown with yards and yards of fabric, and lace and ruffles and bows. I can remember how, even as a small child, I loved pretty dresses and I never wanted to take off my party frocks. And not much has changed since then! Given only the slightest excuse, I can usually be found decked out in my finery, preferably with frothy petticoats and all the accessories.
For everyday wear, I tend to inhabit the mid-20th century and I love to wear clothes inspired by the 1940s and 50s. Most of my wardrobe is homesewn from original patterns by my very own seamstress (a.k.a. my mother) or myself. Indeed it was my love of vintage style that really started my passion for dressmaking. Coming from a sewing family (My great-grandfather was a tailor, my grandfather taught himself to sew dance dresses for my grandma, and as a teenager and young woman my mother sewed most of her own clothes) I learnt to use a needle and thread at a very young age and have always enjoyed needlecrafts. It wasn't until I left school though that I really began to become interested in vintage fashion and, after a couple of years watching my mum sewing my suits and dresses, to start learning to dressmake properly myself.
However, this venture did not turn out quite as originally intended...
Instead of taking over the production of my everyday clothes (as Mummy was no doubt hoping!) I found a rather different use for my skills.
I have always loved historical costume and one day, playing on the internet, I discovered Katherine's Dress Site (http://koshka-the-cat.com) and I dreamed of one day being able to make my own historical costumes and recreate the elegance of bygone times. Since then, I have discovered other wonderful blogs that have inspired me and last August I finally found the excuse I needed to design and sew my very own crinoline and gown to attend the Llandrindod Wells Victorian Festival. And from the very first moment that I stepped out in costume I knew I was hooked! And that was even before I danced all night at my very first Victorian ball in the presence of Queen Victoria herself!
So my poor mum still has a list of commissions as long as her arm because almost every minute of my sewing time (which is unfortunately very limited at present) is spent adding to my beloved Victorian wardrobe. And since I have been so inspired and learnt so much from other costumers through their blogs, I have decided to share my sewing and costume adventures too as I attempt to recreate history stitch by stitch... I hope you enjoy them.