Sunday, May 15, 2016

Outlander "The Gathering" gown

Claire's gown from the Outlander episode "The Gathering" was one of my favorite looks from Season 1.   I really wanted to make it,  but where to find the fabrics? Because the fabrics are what make the gown so unusual.

I had thought maybe Spoonflower?  But then my friend Natasha spotted a very very close, if not exact tartan. And she did find the exact flowered brocade.

Prepare for some sticker shock.

The final result:



Much much more below the cut:


Saturday, May 7, 2016

Georgian Silver Brooch

I got this on Etsy - it wasn't super super expensive and I put it on a short layaway.

Georgian Silver Brooch Depicting Cherub And Dove, Set With Marcasite

Described as follows:

Lovely sterling silver brooch designed as a filigree pattern of scrolls and bow motif, and finely set with marcasite. A central oval panel is set with crystal and has a rose gold bevel patterned with a zig-zag design.
The panel is painted with a watercolour of a cherub holding a dove. At his feet in gold is a Roman Temple or a Roman Urn.
The back houses a brooch clip typical of the period, and a safety chain.


Marcasite stones are actually made from iron pyrite, a natural mineral which is a hard stable material with a bright metallic lustre that can't be scratched easily. Confusingly there is a mineral called marcasite, but this has a softer structure that cracks and crumbles easily when worked. Perhaps it is this because of this confusion marcasite jewellery is a bit of a mystery to some and finds itself sandwiched uncomfortably between costume jewellery and precious
jewellery.

Marcasites have been used for jewellery since the time of the ancient Greeks but gained a more common use in the Georgian period of the 18th century when cut steel and marcasite were used as a diamond substitutes. Marcasite was a much better alternative as it had a brighter lustre and didn't rust like cut steel and like diamonds twinkled beautifully in the soft glow of candlelight. 


The clasp looks original or near original - the safety chain I suspect is a later addition, maybe Victorian? Adding one doesn't really alter anything, and makes it safer to wear, so hey! 


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And the seller's pics:






Francaise dinner 2016

I'm very belated posting about this, but better late than never. This March was the Francaise dinner! Stephanie, Gloria, and I hosted again, and we also again had it at Gadsby's Tavern in Alexandria. Next year the torch will be passed to someone else, and we look forward to seeing what the next one looks like!

And now, photos!

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Not a great pic, but Angela gave me this lovely cherry brooch, which matched my dress. Which you will note is not a francaise. I have 4 of them, believe it not, but I've gotten multiple wears out of 3 of them (2 of them at past francaise dinners), and I didn't want to rewear the same thing as last year. And I didn't have time to sew a new one this year. And I have a lot of 18th century gowns that don't get much wear because we do a lot of regency. So I decided to rewear my "Scalamandre" spoonflower print strawberry gown that is my replica of a gown from the Marie Antoinette movie.

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It was awesome that Beth was able to come out from Dallas to join us this year - I hosted her and it was awesome getting one on one time with her and getting to know her better! Mike and Gloria were nice enough to let us all change at their hotel suite, so we were able to get ready near in Alexandria. Beth brought little patches, which were fun.

I wore my replica Smithsonian Marie Antoinette earrings (the diamonds on the real ones were hers, the earrings a later setting for them), and an ebay necklace which is pretty but was scratchy.

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Our raffle prizes for this year: IMG_7327

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Beth's photo - BWPW Photography:

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