Wednesday, January 4, 2017
Sprucing up Mrs. Claus
I had seen the fall at Celtic Christmas at the Texas Renaissance Festival in 2015. At the time I couldn't afford to purchase it but I liked it. This year when we visited I picked it up. The only issue we found with it was that it was slightly darker than my natural hair. I looked great with it and loved it but I got a couple comments that the slight difference was just enough to say "fake" to them. That isn't a bad thing, but I wanted it at least in the ballpark of 'natural'. That left me with two options. A) I take the fall to a beautician who knew what they were doing and had them color the fall so it matched my hair. That would have been very expensive. OR B) I make a hat or hair ornament to bridge the gap so that the difference wasn't obvious. I went with option B.
I had a late victorian era hat/hair ornament pattern made by Butterick. I used it as guidance but only used the pattern piece to make the hat base shape correctly. Historically you would use buckram, I tend to use plastic canvas when I make hats that we need to take abuse. This recommendation came from the head of the millinery department of the National Ballet of New Zealand. I think his recommendations on hat structure are sound. I covered the base with the same red cotton as my dress. I hand tacked with thread a holy floral arrangement along the front. As it was the holiday season there were clearance floral decorating items everywhere. I had intended to put a poofy red bow in the back instead I looked at the dress and tried to make the hat seem like an extension of the dress. I added a white frill in the back, and white and gold cord for decoration, and then a ribbon drape down the back. All of the decorative items I had in my stash as small scraps left over from other projects. I still feel I need more but not sure what.
I hope to add more upgrades to Mrs. Claus this year namely a new corset (be it made by me or my friend CC) and new ball gown bodice. If I have time I might even have time to make a new chamiselet to go with it as well. Let's see what this new year holds.