A piece a Week – The Renaissance Fair experience

This was the first year we ventured out to the Renaissance Fair and it was a last minute decision to go so my outfit was not as fun as I would have liked it to be. The theme for last weekend was Fantasy so there were lots of elves and butterfly costumes around – which we all love! When we arrived we encountered ladies dressed up in costume with fine feathered friends with them. The highlight of the birds was a friend from Australia who did make his laughing sound when you rolled your tongue – it was a Kookaburra who grew up in Sacramento. How the heck a Kookaburra got to the United States in the first place is a bit nuts but there are many an Australian creature I see on my travels even just in my neighborhood – one day a guy had a teeny tiny sugar glider in his pocket as his pet, now that was strange! 
I had no idea what to expect at the Renaissance Fair – I knew lots of costumes but they were way more elaborate than I expected and what fabric, the place was full of inspiration! I loved how everyone was in character even the vendors and the ongoing entertainment everywhere you went was so much fun – the kids are even looking forward to next year now! 
A Great Horned Owl

An American Kestrel – what beautiful feathers!

My old mate the Kookaburra – so good to see a familiar face!

A falcon looking for its next meal

There were many costumes were for sale at the event and this is a coat that looked beautiful – this lovely lady spun around showing us the fabric in action.

Spinnng around!

Getting ready for a huge costume next Renaissance Fair!!

As part of my collection for the FabMo Textile Art Boutique I created these circle skirts with the fabric I found at FabMo – I did an applique using fabric samples and used bias binding (inspired by the Renaissance Fair big skirts) on the hem. I love how these skirts came out.

One of a kind circle skirt
Silliness at the Renaissance Fair

And for a link to a video of my work for the boutique here it is – it has been fun, though somewhat a time crunch!

A piece a week – Experimenting with felt and silk, inspired by Anthropologie

This week as I have been going through my stash of fabrics and I discovered a felted wool top and thought mmmm I remember a Anthropologie vest made with an animal on the side and it looked super cute. I think the vest was from a few years ago but still it made it to my visual diary of things that I like – the days before Pinterest and you had to cut out pictures and paste away. Pinterest makes my creative life so easy with boards to pin the many beautiful things I find. 
As it turned out this top was given to me when my friend moved out of town and I ran it through a hot cycle and felted it. After felting it had a problem and it was super tight and the style did not look too good strangling my bust. So I decided to cut it up through the center – something that a knitter told me to do at Stitches West last weekend. We were discussing a technique called steeking where you knit in the round and then go get your scissors and cut up the center!! Well I did it with this garment and the fact that it was felted really helped as it is hard to fray felt. I cut the sleeves off and added them to the front for a bit of an asymetrical feel then made the armholes deeper. My daughter didn’t like the look too much but I did enjoy wearing it with just a long sleeve underneath – maybe from the side you can look a bit pregnant but hey the whole drapey, hippy look seems to be the thang right?? Maybe it is my inner hippy boho coming out in my clothing design, still it is a very fun top to wear with the appliquéd silk found at FabMo as a remnant of samples. I don’t know where the triangle inspiration came from – maybe it was the sandwiches I was making the other day?!? Creativity is in everything 🙂 
The felted vest on and looking good

Pinned in a different way and left to hang on my model ‘lady’

A side view for the pregnant ladies – with a patch at the back to hide a hole!

This kind of looks a bit tribal with the pin vertical and the bust open, don’t know if it is practical though??