I like to have a selection of things to wake up and panic about at 4:00 AM, don’t you? If it isn’t sewing, it’s some weird noise I think the car is making, whether the post office has lost a package, or if that noise is not the cat but instead a pending disaster. My brain generously provides me with a Whitman’s Sampler of anxieties.
To start with, that ball. For one thing, Mr S will probably have to wear his Saratoga coat, which means anything nice that I have won’t match him, temporally. For another, anything nice I think I could make in time is French and not American. So I have temporal and geographic anxiety disorder about something that is supposed to be fun. But there is this jacket I think I could make (and want to make), so I started playing with the pattern in my “sketching in muslin” method.
I know this is not party wear. I know KCI says jackets like this were worn with white muslin petticoats. But I note that this woman in a Pierrot is not wearing a white muslin petticoat, and I carry on. My other option is my brown wool gown, and perhaps I will wear that.
Mr S still needs a frock coat, so that has to be patterned and fitted; his breeches are still being sewn. He’ll need a wool coat no matter what, but whether it will be done by February is up for grabs.
The last two parts of my current crazy are a program in Newport on early March, with an early date of 1813, and programs in late March in Providence, which I have yet to develop. At least in Newport I don’t have to create the program, just dress and deliver.
1813 is a fun place to start, and I have been looking at images for inspiration.
At right, Mrs Coffin is a nice example of a New England woman in 1815, wearing the kind-of cross-over, v-neck, apron-front gown I’m thinking of making. I have some fabric reminiscent of a gown at the V&A, and I have some purple sheer cotton, as well as some green silk, so there’s a whole set of what-ifs? to enjoy.
Because that’s the rub: I enjoy all this planning and fretting and picking over details. I just wish it let me sleep a little longer some days.