A few days ago, Lauren from Wearing History issued a challenge for costume bloggers that, in my opinion, was an excellent one! It challenges bloggers to....you know what!! Instead of me writing about what she has challenged, I'll pass along the link!
I try on this blog to be very transparent about my reality (my failures, my frustration, my irritations, my triumphs, my joy) so that when my readers read the struggles I have gone through, it will encourage them to keep going. My theory is this...If I can do this, anyone can do this!!!
I am a stay-at-home wife of a fabulous husband who is a self-employed contractor. I am the mother of two boys who are incredible! I home-school them and love it! As the youngest is getting older and his school is getting harder, I am finding I have less and less time to devote to my sewing. Recently, there has been some family drama and issues that I have been drawn into, that is causing quite a bit of anxiety. Always, I struggle with "my house is a disaster, but all I want to do is work on my dress." I struggle with using a gift that God gave me for His glory. I struggle with, I am not perfect, so why am I having such a hard time with the fact that what I am working on right now isn't looking like the inspiration???? For corn sake!! My sewing skills are very limited! I am a self taught seamstress, who has no formal tailoring training! If I don't know how to do something, I turn to google for tutorials or to friends who know how to do it.
All this to say, that I am not perfect. I am not always joyful and happy. Sometimes when I ask one of my sons to take a picture of me, there is great wailing and gnashing of teeth. When I load up the car for a fashion show, I am so exhausted from all the hours of prep work that went into it, that I don't even want to do the show.
I am content and I love to dabble in my craft!!
Let's begin shall we?
I hated the way this dress fit me. My hips were too big for the dress, or perhaps my dress was too small for my hips. My hair was too long for the fun finger-wave bobs of the 20s but too short to do a faux bob. The day before this event, I got lost in my own neighborhood. Like I do not recognize one thing. I was driving home from the grocery store to begin the prep work on the menu for the event and all of a sudden I didn't know where I was. I have never been so scared in my life. I sat in my car at the side of the road for a full 5 minutes crying because I was lost. I finally recognized a boat in a drive way and it quite literally all came rushing back to me.
I was beyond exhausted, nervous, I was overwhelmed and my feet were killing me.
This was at my first Costume College last year and I was just so tired, my eyes were burning, I had a colossal head ache and my feet were threatening to disengage themselves from my legs and walk off. I was uncomfortable where we were taking the pictures, because I was wondering if the people in the restaurant just off to the side were thinking, "Ugh...there she is again, getting her picture taken. Who does she think she is?" Yes, that thought goes through my mind a lot. The reason I take so many pictures of me and my dresses is because I can take about 25 pictures and get 1 that works. Also, as my friend Josie says, if you are going to put that many hours into a dress, you need to have it documented. I promise you, the amount of pictures I take has nothing to do with vanity.
For this photo shoot, I had drug my mom to the Rose Garden and I was feeling guilty for once again asking her to take my picture. It was also incredibly hot and I was sweating like a pig. For some reason, the stares of other people really got to me on this day. I kept getting glaring stares from some ladies setting up for a wedding that would be held later that day. Most of the time when I do a photo shoot, I feel super confident and have a great time. This day, I just felt really off.
This whole photo shoot, while I loved the way the photos turned out, made me seriously uncomfortable. My mom and I had gone to Spokane to visit my brother and his family and I knew the garden there would be a perfect back drop for my Demeter dress. But the whole time I was getting ready all the way until I stripped off my costume in the back of my mom's Escape, I felt guilty and uncomfortable. You see, I don't want to ever impose on people in the course of my costuming whims. My mom did a fabulous job photographing me, my sister-in-law said she had fun watching the process, and my niece got in on a few of the pictures, but that feeling of guilt robbed me of the joy I had envisioned for the day.
This evil, vile dress provoked me to so much anger during its construction!!! It has been named the "Sailor Suit of Swear". I have never had so much trouble with a costume in my sewing career and it almost wound up in the trash.
This photo was taken in front of the restaurant where we were going out to dinner with Jennifer Rosbrugh of Historical Sewing, and it was super hot. I had gained a little bit of weight, my corset was too tight, I was seating like crazy again and I just really felt uncomfortable!! Plus I hated my hair.
Before this trip to The Steampunk World's Fair, I had had bronchitis. I was sick as a dog and was still hacking up a lung during the trip. I felt so bad for my room mates and was taking copious quantities of cough syrup so as not to keep them up at night. It was back east, so the humidity just about killed me, and I just felt miserable. I did have a grand time with my friends, but the betrayal of my body, was most irksome!!
This photo shoot in the back yard of the B&B we stayed at for The Victorian Festival in Port Townsend was anything but fun. Oh, mom and I had a lot of laughs, but what you don't see is the millions of goose bumps on my arms because it was freezing! It had just rained and the grass was not just damp, but wet. Water was wicking up the pleats on my dress and we had only a few minutes before we had to be at the ball. This weekend was also a get away from the stuff that was going on back home. On the way back, we were told that what we thought couldn't get worse, had gotten worse. Mom and I were like in a haze of "Let's just not think about it" the whole weekend, so even though we were having a wonderful time, we knew that reality waited for us when we got home.
While I am perfectly content in the life I have chosen, I do have my down days, my fight days, my frustrated days, and my "Oh dress...I am so done with you, you suck!" days. I still struggle with hoping everyone in my costuming group is having a good time at the events I plan, even though I know I am not responsible for their happiness. I struggle with guilt a lot...still. One day I will over come that! I struggle with hoping that people don't think I feel I'm all that and a bag of chips. I struggle with hoping that I raise my boys in the knowledge that I love them with all of my being! I struggle with the fear that some how the words I say or the actions I do will harm someone in some way. I struggle with the money I spend on fabric and accessories because I am not the one earning the money for our family.
So many struggles in my psyche that I alone get to deal with. But, I can say this. I LOVE this art of costuming and I so enjoy the community of costumers!
I pray for you all a most blessed day!!!