Saturday, July 15, 2017

Tumbling, tumbling, tumbling down...

This was me last night, only more sack of spuds faceplanting than graceful swoon. Plus our stairs are not so grand.
The culprit is this dress:

It was long back then when I made it and it is even longer now, making it a trip hazard. I was wearing suede boots and I think the knit fabric gripped my boot and the combo tripped me up.
I am very sore but very lucky- my left leg and left ribs fared the worst of all of me, but nothing is cracked or broken and I will survive!
My first sewing job when I can sit at the machine again will be lopping four inches off the hem of this dress. It is super duper warm being made of merino sweatshirt fabric so I've been wearing it all the time, pretty much taking it off to wash and dry then putting it on again!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

When my E string broke!

Hello my darlings! Clever Hansel and I entertained the crowd at the Duos DIY Burleskiwi with the Foodtard Song. Things got a bit complicated when the evil $20 op shop guitar busted a string and we abandoned it. Here's the video:


On the subject of the Evil Guitar, I had so much stuff to take home I left it at the Fringe Bar overnight, and it disappeared. Now why anyone would nick it when there were other guitars there is beyond me. My theory is that it absorbed into the stage area overnight, as the following night, so many things went wrong!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Do It Yourself!

It's nearly 5am, my nose is stuffed up again - my second go-round of cold in three weeks. It's not surprising though after a big weekend with three gigs in three days.
Friday and Saturday were a culmination of nearly a year's work by Debbie and I - we are The Pinot Sisters, Gris and Noir, and The Great DIY Burleskiwi is the annual event we produce, along with the bi-monthly Time Travel Cabaret.
Friday night was the Duos show - I love the dynamics of two performers on stage together! Saturday night was the Solos show.
Contestants are allowed a very small budget - $100 for solos and $175 for Duos. They can borrow one item, use one existing item, but otherwise from the skin out, that's it! It has to include shoes, underwear, overwear, head pieces, the works! The winner gets a sash in great DIY kiwi fashion, this time it was made from a Swan-dri, and a crown made from #8 fencing wire. It is such a clever idea and I was chuffed that Debbie asked me to co-produce it this year, as well as Emcee.
Debbie and I with Solos winner, Pixie Twist from Glamilton. Pixie and her partner Mr B Frank won the Duos as well, as Frank N Twist. They are a fantastic stage act!

Nonsense to What's New Pussycat

I love this photo - I look like some kind of crested pink poultry! 
On Sunday afternoon I sang at a fundraiser for Outerspaces, an organisation devoted to supporting LGBTQI+ youth, held in honour of V Burns, a much loved and missed lady who devoted her life to supporting the community, and who passed away later that same day. It was a beautiful event, hundreds of people come together to celebrate life, cry, laugh, and remember her indomitable spirit. RIP you beautiful diamond.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Women in my Living Room

I love collecting pieces of Art that represent and celebrate women in all their diversity. In my home I get to filter out all the depressing cookie cutter imagery we are usually bombarded with -curating for women that inspire me, and that I get to relate to. And I will keep building my collection too.
Here are some examples from my living room.

This is  Christmas card my darling friend Adele sent me a couple of years ago. I had it framed. It says everything about us both that we love! (we both adore fruitcake too)

I've owned this limited edition casting for nearly 20 years. I love that she is an angel, she is shapely but powerful and has SO much attitude!
I have such a soft spot for Our Lady. I deliberately ignore all the tosh that is talked about her. I see her as an enduring image of the female aspect of God. And I love the art that is made of her, especially in Mexico. This lamp delights me and lights me. And I did make it. It's not wonky, it's just the photo.
This painting is really big - about 55x65cm. I bought it off the wall at a cafe in Christchurch - the artist's work didn't really light me up but this painting was different. I adore the richness of colour, the light, her voluptuousness. The frame really set it off.
I found out soon after that it was a copy of this painting by Tamara de Lempicka, of her lover - the Beautiful Rafaela. I actually love my version better, for its deep colours and more accentuated voluptuousness.
   
There are no idealised beauties in my home that I cannot relate to!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

An Amazing Royal Find

Who remembers Prince Charles and Lady Diana's wedding on 29 July 1981? Who was alive then! I was a teenager at High School and remember vividly watching the Royal Wedding. I really disliked Di's dress - not in style but in the way it was made and its proportions. So I immediately made a replica for my biggest doll, that went on display in a local craft shop.
We (the shop) were given a bag of old knitting patterns recently, and when Karyn dived in to raid it, she found this magazine:
It has a knitting pattern for a Sindy wedding dress in it, of course at this stage the dress was still under wraps - so the cover art was quite impressive in its likeness to the actual neckline.
It's in fantastic condition, and I wonder if it has any value?
So far the best value has come from me posting it on Made Marion's Facebook page, and the stories  that have come out - my favourite being of the crowds stuck in London that night as the Tube closed early, who stayed the night in the foyers of the various stations. It must have been really annoying at the time and even scary, but a great yarn!

Monday, May 22, 2017

47 pairs of warm Pyjamas!

Sung to the tune of 47 Ginger Headed Sailors! Which is a very silly song Bertie Wooster sings in the famous TV series. Video clip below.
ANYWAY, local charity Foster Hope put a call out for winter pyjamas for children being placed in foster care. Any excuse for some selfless sewing, the Wellington Sewing Bloggers Network members jump to it!
Laura and I staged a flannel raid at the local Voldemart, which was the cheapest option for good quality flannel, and bought as much as we could on our budget of donated coupons and cash. I reckoned we were going to get 25 pairs out which seemed pretty impressive!
These are all but one of the fabrics we bought. It was tricky as we wanted to get gender neutral options, but they were few and far between, whereas some of the girlier ones were on super special, so we probably ended up with more pretty ones than plain. Oh well. (the plain flannel was rubbish quality compared with the prints - what is that all about?) We (Made Marion Craft) contributed the only two flannels I had in stock - the grey with pink butterflies and the second from right top row.
On Thursday I put three loads of flannel through the wash, and dried it and pressed them dry over the next couple of nights. All 40+m of it.
I actually thought I had killed my iron at one point, and bought a new one, but it was the plug. BUT I love my new Tefal iron so all good!
ANYWAY, on Sunday a group of us gathered together to cut out, eat scones and laugh.
Left to right, Laura, Kirsten and Me. Gemma was taking the pic. Aly had been and gone with a stack to sew. I swear I did more than just eat scones ;-)

And I guess I've given the game away - we managed to get 47 pairs of pyjama bottoms out of our haul! Now we have to solve the tops problem. Knit tops, warm enough for winter with good coverage. Sourcing enough knit fabric of the right type and weight is going to be interesting!
Happy Days!



Monday, May 8, 2017

Hi-de-hi-de-hi-de-hi!

Now folks here's the story of Constance the Moocher!
We did our show and it was fun! I found just the right jacket at City Chic, because tailoring jackets is not my bag for a costume. I made the trousers and the corset I embellished. The rad pink sequin trim that looks a bit like film was $1m. Cheapest costume I ever made!
 Three rows of the trim on the lapels.
 I trimmed the already pink corset with rows of the sequin
 Side trim for trousers, which are super wide, in keeping with the era but also my shape! I am not made for fitting trousers!
 The back wall of the stage area we decorated with clocks of all sizes.
It was strange using a hand held microphone, I usually have a head mike but it was feeding back everywhere so we ditched it. I felt very off not being able to wave both my arms around all the time!