To my left, the lovely Fu-ren Wu Xi Lian, whose stencil-fu is fully equal to mine, or will be, now that I have revealed to her the Cuticle Scissor Secret Of Cutting Curves. I didn't bother with the over skirt this time around - I figured it would be warm enough without. My sleeves could stand to be longer, but I had a feeling they'd drive me insane. My scarf could also stand to be longer (yeah, I dip dyed it), however Wu says she usually skips one because IT is a pain in the patoot.
The collar of the haishi is supposed to be cut on the bias, based on extant examples, however, we all know what Asian Brocades are like to work with, so I just cut it on the grain.
The obi is one I've had for ages. It seemed to work well with this look and was the right width.
My hair ornaments consist of three glass headed hatpins from The Treasury, a couple of brass findings I picked up at a bead store and one of my Laurel pendants. They all stayed put, even through a fair bit of formal bowing, to my profound relief. I could not manage to get my hair to cooperate for side-locks, however. I do like the new bun pins I tried this time out. They hold well and don't have to be gouged into one's skull.
The shoes were comfortable, however, I need to reglue the fabric in a number of spots as the flexion from walking made it try to pull away from where I'd stretched it.
I don't take pictures at events and I don't have any of Li's knighting because I was part of the ceremony, but someone surely got some and I will share when I see them.
More in a separate post, must go rotate a laundry load.
Anyway, I got up this morning and started cutting them out, only to discover that shrinkage in the wash meant an emergency run to the Walmart where I bought the duck in the first place. Fortunately they still had plenty on the bolt and I was able to get home and get the extra bit washed and dried while I worked on the part I could cut out. A few hours later, I just have to pleat the tops into the waistband and pleat the legs into the kyahan.
I have NARA SHOES!!!!
I had to think a bit about size and shape. I was waiting for my nabe-udon leftovers to reheat and found myself staring at a wooden kitchen spoon in the utensil bucket and it was just the right shape and size.... I know. My mind is a weird place.
The toe ornaments are sewn and glued onto the shoes. I discovered after I started sewing the first one onto the toe of the shoe, it was causing the fabric to lift off from where it had been glued. So I finished stitching along the front edge of the sole, reglued that edge down. Then I put some glue onto the point of the toe, pressed the "flower" back into it until the glue had hardened and ran another line of glue along the top of the shoe where it met the back of the shoe. After that was dry, I added a few stitches along that upper line as well. We'll see how they hold up.
I participated in some armor geekage with Raj while he was turning pork chops on the grill. Good pork chops too!
(Which is why dinner was ramen.)
Uwaginu is cut out, partially assembled and in the process of being stenciled with laurel wreaths, which aren't particularly Japanese OR Chinese and most of 'em will be hidden under the haishi, but I wanted 'em, especially as I'm going to be doing the whole Laurel spokesperson thing for Li's knighting. (Typing this while waiting for paint to dry enough to move it on the table.)
The silk on the $3 Chinese paddle fan has received two coats of white textile paint to cover the printed lady on it and now has a third coat that was mixed with some orange acrylic paint, which is the color of the miniature fan from one of the Astana tombs. It's decorated with plants and birds. If it dries too bright, I'm putting another thin coat of white over it. I also need to put a longer handle on the thing, but I'm mulling how to best do that. For some reason, Tang dynastyNara period fans have long-ass handles on them. http://www.xabusiness.com/china-
I still need to figure out the toe ornaments for the shoes. The Chinese ones in some of these paintings are even more exaggerated than the ones in the Shosoin slippers.
Anyway, I'm well on track to being able to field test this look at March Crown.
EDIT: After an emergency store run when I discovered I was 1/4 cup shy of how much flour I needed, I just threw a pan of kasutera in the oven at 350 with the timer set to 15 minutes. I plan to check it periodically until it's done and note the baking time as it didn't appear in the period source.
That's right, sports fans. This is my first attempt at baking from a historical source.
"Knead together 10 eggs, 160 momme (600 grams or 2.5 cups*) of sugar and 160 momme of wheat flour. Spread paper in a pot and sprinkle it with flour. Place the dough on top of this. Place a heat source above and below to cook. There are oral instructions." Eric Rath, Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan, quoting the Nanban Ryorisho or Southern Barbarian's Cookbook, which dates from 1641.
Well, I didn't get dough. What went into the pan was a sweet, yellow batter, which tells me that ten 17th century eggs may not be anywhere near the same volume and wetness as ten modern large Grade As. I used plain granulated white sugar and Gold Medal all purpose flour (sifted), and hand mixed it with a wooden spoon, then into a large rectangular pan lined with parchment paper.
Ah well, we'll see what comes out of the oven in a bit.....
It LOOKS like cornbread. 30 minutes at 350 (preheated) and it didn't stick to a bamboo skewer tested in three spots (it's a big pan). I just sliced off a small piece and the consistency is very cornbread-like as well. It only rose about an inch in the pan. Sweet, cakey (none of the sponge qualities of the modern version we had at Twelfth Night), very mild and unassuming to a modern palate, but to a culture who had never had things made with sugar in it? Or that many eggs? I can absolutely see the appeal. While my giant modern eggs may have gotten in the way of this being an accurate result, it's darn near perfect as a "breakfast bread" for a Sunday morning peerage meeting.
I, of course, would love to have some to go with the Nara outfit I'm working on. However, I'm going to have to wear them outdoors, so my version, of necessity, is going to have to be more costume-y than historic reconstruction.
Step 1. Cannibalize a pair of cheap, rubber soled flats from Target and glue recalcitrant Asian brocade to the upper. Curse frequently while getting hot glue all over fingers and bamboo skewer one while trying to stretch and manipulate fabric into place. Yes, I actually own a glue gun, remembered where it was and even had glue sticks in the same place.
If you look carefully, there's a scrap of this fabric on the ironing board behind the heel of the shoe which is extremely shiny and red when right-side-out. However, the back side is just as pretty, if not more so, and may be less likely to develop snags than the shiny side.
Next up, decorating the toes......
*Yes, I realize a floor covering is not a skirt, however, there is an extant rokechi dyed skirt in the Secrets of the Silk Road exhibition catalogue from about the same period, found in one of the tombs at Turfan, China. The designs and technique are somewhat similar, even though the skirt construction is completely different from the pleated tiers in the Nuikata reconstruction I'm going with.
Image has been scanned and scan has been printed, stencil blanks have been found, scan and blank have been taped to cutting mat. Now where the HELL is my Sharpie?
I'm dying to know what color this Nara period textile fragment in the Met collection is. And the description is not exactly helpful. It looks printed though. I may have to steal that design though. I could totally do something with it.
Here's an equally frustrating one from the Kyoto Costume Museum. It came up in a search for Nara textiles, but there's no description!
Same with this one, although it's at least in color. http://syuweb.kyohaku.go.jp/
I don't think I got that gene, really.
( Read more... )
Ooh, another link on Shoso-in artifacts. Those shoes have to be a reconstruction, I think? (It's in Polish, but the listing of Shoso-in artifacts is in English.)
The Shoso-in has a website! Must explore this further when I have time. http://shosoin.kunaicho.go.jp/
Ooh, found the Textiles section! http://shosoin.kunaicho.go.jp/
EDIT: I find it worked best to have two tabs on my browser open: one in the original Japanese, one through Google Translate. For some reason, the thumbnails on the artifacts will not open from the translated pages.
SHOES! OMG!!! Look at the details:
Recogize this? It's the panel recreated in the dyeing video.
PAYDIRT! I think this is a haishi. Google Translate is rendering the name as "hampi". The reconstruction in the Nuikata book doesn't have the contrasting sleeves, but it may be a later style. There are similarities....
I remembered that Jo Anseeuw has a great gallery of Jidai Matsuri photos on pBase. This one is lovely and gives me a clue about what to do with my hair. Not to mention buying a giant scarf from Dharma and playing with dye.
Photo by Jo Anseeuw.
Another great photo off Flickr, by Jon Rocatis. http://www.flickr.com/photos/rocatis/
by Karia Butler. Love the details on the skirt. http://www.flickr.com/photos/
by "girl from finito: http://www.flickr.com/photos/
by Kobby Dagan, hair detail. http://www.flickr.com/photos/kobbydagan/
by Eric/Lisa Lee, same group as in the Jo Anseeuw photo above, Note the shoes peeping out from under the one girl's skirt!
The matsuri re-enactors don't seem to have layered skirts, from what I've found so far, which would mean less to sew. I admit I could go either way on that.