Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Jane Austen's birthday celebration

I am terribly late at writing up my most recent costumed event, life has just been getting the better of me recently.  I was also hoping to get the time to take pictures of each layer, but that has not happened yet.  However, I did want to share some photos and talk at least a bit about my accessories. 

The local JASNA group held a birthday celebration for Jane Austen in a lovely venue.  We started with a short lecture about houses Jane herself would have known and how they might relate to her novels.  After the lecture, we had a lovely lunch and then retired to the library for dessert and tea.  During the tea time, the lovely lady pictured with me below held her raffle for a regency dress made by her.  It was her generosity in hosting this raffle with ticket purchases throughout the past year that allowed the JASNA group to use this lovely site.

Here is a picture of just me that shows the bottom edge of the my new sheer dress and shoes.  I am wearing a regency chemise, my new regency stays (which I love!), a bodiced petticoat, the sheer white dress and my green open robe.  The white sheer dress has pale blue and yellow embroidery up the front, which did not show in the pictures but matches the shoes.  The long sleeves and the gold fringe at the bottom is inspired by the portrait of Marie Pauline Bonaparte by Robert Lefevre
 shown here.  I just loved the look of the long sleeves under a short sleeved dress.  I do plan on making the over dress but the sheer dress gave me such fits I had to pull something else out of my closet to wear over the sheer dress.  So the green open robe is a "this old thing" addition.
I do plan to do a write up of my new regency stays and of the sheer dress, but at present I don't have good enough photos.  However, one of the lovely ladies, Nancy Haseman, who is actually very good at photos took some lovely images of me at the event.  I have her permission to share the images below.  She also has some amazing images of the event and of the other ladies in regency dress on her website Captured Memories NM if you scroll down to the 2014 JASNA birthday for Jane. 

First off an image of me sitting.  This image is why I love my regency stays, they help me keep the correct posture no matter what I am doing!

Here is a good image of my shoes and stockings.  These shoes are the Highbury regency slippers from American Duchess.  They are dyeable satin slippers and they have hidden ribbon loops so you can add lacing ribbons to your shoes.  On their instructions for dying these shoes they state to use a dye several shades darker but I thought it would be good to see how much darker.  I used dye number 2011 (also from American Duchess) which should have been royal blue.  They came out much much lighter.  However, they match the embroidery on the sheer dress and my jewelry almost perfectly so I was happy.  I just though others who were looking for a specific color might want to know how different the colors came out. 
My hairstyle was inspired by the lovely tutorial by Taylor at Dames a la Mode.  Taylor did an amazing job, she looks just like the portrait in my opinion! However my hair has less texture than Taylor's and the extra wraps around the bun were sliding like mad.  So I added a second braid and placed this around the whole bun to give me something to pin the heck out of.  Surprisingly, this all worked and my hair stayed in place all day.  Here is an image of the back of my hair and green dress.  You can see that the green dress used to close in the back before I turned it into an open robe! 

Finally, here is an image of my hair from the side and a good shot of the jewelry.  The necklace and earring were made by Taylor of Dames a la Mode.  Taylor runs an etsy shop with the same name damesalamode.  She is amazing to work with!  This set was a custom order with a deadline and Taylor communicated clearly with me every step of the way.  I love my jewelry and loved working with Taylor!