gurdymonkey: (Default)
I think it took me almost two hours between exiting my truck and actually paying my site fee at Twelfth Night because I kept getting waylaid by people. This event is not about being medieval. It's about shmoozing. If it were not about shmoozing, there would be no need for it to require three days in a hotel.

I wore the kariginu ensemble most of the day. Go here for a better look. The eboshi is a scootch too snug with my hair up. I need to ease the band a bit. However, it maintained its starchy structural integrity, making me almost, but not quite as tall as Ivan Ivanovich Streltsov, which is saying something. Given the size of the hotel and convention center, there's something to be said for being able to cover distances like a man in hakama too. (Said hakama were originally made for my  hitatare kamishimo ensemble.

I attended Last Court and got to see Wilhelm inducted into the Order of the Pelican. He sure as hell earned his bird. I almost cried when he showed me his scroll afterwards. Hobbit had done a series of illuminations showing Wilhelm doing herald duties - in one frame where he was field heralding for two fighters, one was in a black surcote bearing Gaius' shield. (Hobbit is also the artist responsible for the scroll my default icon comes from).

Must envy[info]acanthusleaf - I'd never seen her hair down and hadn't realized just how long and gorgeous it is. Did get a brief hello from callistotoni who was looking genteel and pretty in colors that I can't wear. Managed a nice visit with Jaida for a few minutes, and another with Edward who was fascinated with the construction of The Smackity Fan.

[personal profile] bovil and [personal profile] kproche are made completely of win. You may or may not recall them as the OMGWTFKataginu! Guys from the Mikado Ball back in September. They'd been planning to attend Twelfth Night with the specific aim of hosting a party to promote Costume Con 26. They wanted to do Japanese since it combined well with other current costuming projects of theirs. They wanted me in on it. Girls and boys, I like the West for a great many reasons, but the fact is, you have no idea how NICE it is to have people to play with locally who want to do Japanese things!  Because the play ran late - gee, like that NEVER happens - it meant missing Coronation and First Court, but I'd promised. Ah, giri!

Every year SOMEONE comes up with the Obligatory Monkey Themed Twelfth Night gift. This year it turned out to be [personal profile] marymont and [personal profile] aeddie with a most excellent tee shirt with ninja monkeys on it.  

Anyway, back to The Guys. I am made of fail - I got a picture of Andy, but never remembered to collar Kevin and get one of him. They did a great job on their kataginu ensembles. (Handsome men in wafuku - it just does not get better than this. Sigh!) Go here for a better look.

Even if I hadn't brought a scroll and the brocade futon cover to add to the ambiance, they had the situation, Big Hotel Furniture and decor under control, right up to a gagaku album on the iPod playing at a low volume continuous loop, paper lanterns and tea lights glimmering everywhere, an assortment of sweet and savory Japanese munchies and a nice assortment of very good sake on ice in the sink. I ditched the eboshi and washed off my make-up so I could relax a bit. I got to chat textile porn with their friend Carol - turns out she collects vintage kimono and does the kind of dyeing things I'd love to learn, so we've exchanged contact info.

Theia lured us down the hall to check out some vintage kimono and obi she'd brought to sell. As is usually the case, the motifs and styles were pretty much too modern for SCA period and most of it was too small for me. I didn't have enough cash on me, but she set aside for me a pretty black haori with cobalt blue butterflies and a cute hitoe kimono with a fun windowpane check that is long enough and can be let out and we will settle up at March Crown.

While we never got mobbed, we did get a fairly steady, mellow stream of visitors in the sort of relaxed, low key environment I can actually enjoy. We broke for dinner around six, trooped down to the hotel's sushi bar in our finery. Andy and Kevin insisted on treating me. I ordered some nigiri a la carte and bogarted the occasional bit of roll from the geta. Yummy stuff.

We then took a turn around the convention center, passing out cards and invites to their party, then went back upstairs. Got to chat with [personal profile] sarahbellem and meet some of her friends. There was a noisy jello shot party going on down the hall, but we got some folks passing through from there who were interested in Costume Con, or at least in enjoying some sake or umeshu. Still naively believing I would drive home at some point, I dutifully switched to tea for awhile. Heh. Right. We outlasted the jello shot people.

The guys decided to shut down and go roaming because there were still a couple of parties going on. It was finally agreed - after an appropriately Japanese exchange of polite refusals, insistences, warnings about snoring on my part countered with warnings about snoring on their part - that I would crash with them for the night and we would take the rest of the sake to the other parties and try to make it go away.

We stopped briefly at the party where TRM were. They looked very happy and I felt less bad about missing their step-up, but we left after an outbreak of bad singing coming from one corner of the room and decided to check out the wine and cheese party upstairs. Despite the fact that crowds make me twitch and hearing loss in my right ear reduces me pretty quickly to nodding and smiling stupidly, I did visit with Katherine, Valgard and Flidais for a bit. It was probably about 3 AM when we went back down to the room and I was able to put the ninja monkeys to good use as a night shirt.

I helped [personal profile] bovil and [personal profile] kproche pack out and repaid them for their many courtesies by treating them to lunch at a great little Greek place they led me to in Willow Glen.

Oh, and yes, I am going to CostumeCon 26.
gurdymonkey: (Default)
24 hours after being starched and ironed, the eboshi is actually doing what it's supposed to do, i.e., stand up straight on its own. I'm going to hit it again with more spray starch tonight and again in a day or so just to be sure, then stuff it with paper while it dries.
gurdymonkey: (Default)

Eboshi still needs something. Spray starch was not enough to make it stand up, I'll actually need to lacquer it.
gurdymonkey: (Default)
Ran out to Beverly's Overpriced Fabrics and Crap. I don't like Beverly's, but it's closer than anything else. It seems I had a mathematical brain fart when I bought lacing for the kariginu sleeves and I'd underestimated.

Yesterday I spent way too much time attempting to make frogging cord out of the kariginu fabric and didn't like the result. If it was a smooth weave, it probably would work, but this is a jacquard with metallic threads and it just did NOT want to lie nicely. I was hoping for some smooth silk cord, but the only smooth cord they had was either too narrow or in uncongenial colors. I did find a braided purple cord that worked beautifully. I nailed the button knot on the first go, working along with the video.

Sleeves are attached and laced - the nice thing about the pattern on this fabric is that I was able to use the repeats to calculate where I needed to put the loop slits. 

As soon as I have some lunch I shall do battle with the collar.

Edit: Instead of putting paper or boning in to stiffen the collar, I decided to use that previously-frustrating-not-lying-right feature of the fabric to my advantage and cut the collar strip about 5" wide. I basted that to the front edges of the collar hole, tacked the frog to the middle of the width with a couple of stitches and rolled the excess around it and blind-stitched it into place.

I'll try to snap some detail pics tomorrow. (It's starting to get dark here in the garret and I'd rather shoot by natural light than flash if I can.)

gurdymonkey: (Default)
KOn the kariginu front, all the long straight bits are hemmed and the seams are all felled and finished. (Yes, by hand. Of COURSE by hand.)

Sleeves just need to be attached, slit and laced. Sleeve attachment on these is really interesting. The sleeve seam starts and ends in the back of the garment - the sleeve is unattached so as to flash the contrasting fabric of the robe beneath it.

(Why yes, that is a Shinto cleric on the right, blessing a new car. You have a problem with that? Fujimaki used to anoint our Pennsic-bound vehicles with sake so we'd get there safely....)

I am debating whether to do a gradated dye effect on the lacing.

Collar needs to be constructed.

Frog knot and loop need to be constructed and attached. I can either (A) use some gold cord I already have or (B) go completely bonkers and make cord out of the body fabric, which seems to be an authentic approach to construction.

Eboshi needs to be constructed. (I have black linen and a big can of Niagara.)

I'm going to take one of my gold itsutsugini layers and wear that as a hitoe over my white kosode.
I can either
(A) blind everyone like a god in a Noh play by wearing my orange hakama or
(B) sew like a lunatic and make a pair of sashinuki out of some light blue cotton-linen I have in the house and (C) go completely bonkers and do a gradated dye effect on the bottom of said sashinuki with indigo dye.

And somewhere in the middle of all this, I have to take up the hem on my blue velvet formal for Monday.

And do a non-gradated dye job on my hair!
gurdymonkey: (Default)
Sorta for my own reference, but feel free to look:

These are from a site that makes costumes for gagaku performances.

Nice detail of collar construction and frog closure.

Hats! Er, I mean, eboshi.
gurdymonkey: (Default)
I just went down and measured everything and it's going to be the blue bling as a kariginu because the white is simply not wide enough to get a suikan out of.

Re: [profile] kass_rants  objections to cross dressing, I would offer the following episode from the Kamakura period. She may now roll her eyes and sigh, "Kids these days!":

gurdymonkey: (Default)
I have this:

I also have this:

Do I want to make this (with the purple geometric)?

Or this (with the white)?

Or just wear my karaginu mo to Twelfth Night?

EDIT. Bad girl, no citations! Both those pictures come from the Kyoto Costume Museum website at


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