Sunday, April 7, 2013

Early 1860s Leghorn Hat and a Day at Government House

I have been very busy of late working hard on my Honours Literature Review at University. The amount of time and effort required for my studies this semester has left very little time for sewing projects. I have continued with both of my sewing groups, however, one is only two hours a week and the other is an afternoon twice a month. Other than those few hours, I have found little time to sew.

I have also been making a few changes to this blog. After a long discussion with my husband we decided that we not longer liked the name of the blog. We felt that it was simplistic and failed to express our interests and passions in living history. Yes, I used the "L" word. While we are not yet at the standard that we would like to be we do feel that we are no longer just 'costumers'. We live in an 1850s cottage, cook at times on fire (not as much as we would like), we experiment with daily living tasks of the Victorian era and we have a tendency to live in our period clothes. Thankfully, we have very understanding neighbours, who have recently also started bring guests to visit us. Apparently our home looks like a museum. I must say it is strange having people take photos of us in our home. I also hope to add more stories of our experiences and our treasures in this blog.

Anyways, back to sewing. Today we had an event at Government House in Adelaide. As members of the Victoriana Society of SA we are invited to be present at their open days twice a year. It is a nice opportunity to meet and greet both locals and interstate guest. We always have a wonderful, if somewhat tiring day. I had decided to wear my wedding dress, as it was feeling neglected and needed a good airing. Considering how fancy it is, there are not many appropriate events in which to wear it. I wanted to change up the look at little so I decided that I would finally decorate a felt leghorn hat that my husband had purchased for me a while ago. I was delighted to find that I had some wonderful trimmings in my stash that went perfectly with the dress.

 Me wearing it at Government House

As for the event, we decided to have a picnic lunch in style. We took a few of our folding chairs and a folding table to sit under a tree and eat sandwiches and a special cherry pie. It was entertaining having visitors taking photos of us while we enjoyed our repast.

Myself, Lady Dylis Mort, Mrs Ann Lawson and Mrs Sandy DiSessa

 Inside the ballroom

The Challenge 7# Accessorise
Fabric: 100% Wool Felt Hat
Pattern: None - I referred to fashion plates for the trimmings
Year: ca. early 1860s
Notions: pink velvet ribbon, pink flowers, pink silk ribbon, white fabric flowers, wax buds, natural/un-dyed ostrich feather and silk thread to attach the trimmings
How historically accurate is it? About 80%, the velvet ribbon is synthetic and the pink flowers had plastic bases unfortunately
Hours to complete: about 2 hours
First worn: I first wore it today as we were volunteering at the Government House open day, as guests of the Governor.
Total cost: None as the hat was a gift from my loving husband and the notions all came from my stash boxes.

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