Monday, March 28, 2005

Ren Faire Part II ---10 Reasons I Will Do It Again

Well, there were suppose to be pictures. For the second time we got dressed, took pictures, group and individual, sit down to pull them off the camera and NOTHING!.......Could it be, like vampires, if you are in Elizabethan garb, your picture can't be made? So I will try again next weekend when the runs again.

I must say for someone who really doesn't sew, they didn't fall apart, no one laughed. But I am eyeing those vendors that sell ready-made items for the second weekend of the fair. Yes, I do have a whole year to make myself another bodice, but.......

So in their place, here is a picture of the hose that I am knitting as part of the display.

Top of hose....these are thigh high!

My 10 Reasons for Doing It Again.....

1. Trumpet Princess and Goth Daughter can actually get along and not fight while at the fair.
Which is different from today as we are attempting to get the house back to rights and they
are yelling at each other about how to clean each other's areas. I'm hiding in my room!

2. Since it is during daylight hours only and very well patrolled and there are some safeguards
the girls are aware of, I can "turn them loose" and say meet up here at XX o'clock and they
do it and I can let them out of my sight with little pain.

3. They enjoy it and have fun and I enjoyed by time spent on a porch knitting and getting paid
for it (not actually paid, paid, but since we were volunteers we got in free and admission
for 1 day is $12 for an adult, it was like getting paid!)

4. Can "escape" the mundane world for a period of time and pretend to be someone/
somewhere else.

5. My eldest has said that if I want to be a 60 year old "fairy" with a glittery dragon tattooed
on my wrinkled cleavage and it makes me happy, I can be a 60 year old fairy with a dragon
tattoed on my cleavage. Not that I'm 60 yet, or have a dragon tattoo (the wrinkled cleavage,
I'm not admitting to!) I'm raising such tolerant daughters! (This Ren Faire has a fantasy

6. I can walk around with no cell phone and not be scorned. (Do have a pre-paid cell phone
finally just for emergency use.) In fact, if my cell phone is showing at the Faire, I can be in
big trouble. Cleavage no problem, cell phone, problem.

7. All the people who volunteer, although I really don't know but a couple personally yet,
are the nicest people. They have made us "newbies" really welcome.

8. Plump is not bad at Ren Faires! Regardless of your weight, those costumes really level
ye olde playing field!

9. Got out and did something "different" for awhile. Not just as a spectator, but participated,
got involved, got up off my butt/couch.

10. ANY MAN IN REN GARB LOOKS DAMN FINE! I don't know what it is about some guy, who you wouldn't look twice at in "real" life, looks good all dressed up in Elizabethan garb. Or semi-Elizabethan garb. Or kilts! Yes, kilts are great! And capes....long black ones! Hair! Did I tell you I have discovered I like long hair on a man, even if it is gray? Beards and moustaches! Those work also. Did I mention kilts and bare knees?

Ok, (fan, pant, fan) I'm not going to stop traffic myself by any means, but some guy walking by, giving you a little bow and "Good day, m'lady" and I'm that little puddle on the ground. And if you should be somewhere and they stop and talk, you are showered with the most flowerly BS you have ever heard, but it sure is fun!

Oh, almost forgot, so, I have 11 reasons it seems......

11. The entertainment is great! They do have some "imported" entertainment, like "Mooney,
the Magnificient" and "Renaissance Man" (love that Mooney's show!) and some of it is put
on by the local guilds, but you can go from show to show and be entertained.

No, make that 12.....

12. Even the youngest of kids have a ball. And let a youngster buy a wooden/pretend
sword! Take them to watch the jousting! They can't see things fast enough between the
shows (which many are geared toward the kids) and people walking around in costume.

Now that I have done my bit to plug Ren Faires, if you have the luxury of having one near you and have never gone, go at least 1 time. Take the family/friends. It is a great way to spend a day.

13 reasons.....

13. Where else can you see Queen Elizabeth? So it's Elizabeth I, but whose counting?

14. And the greyhounds! They had a tent set up for the "Queen's Coursing Hounds". So
not only did you get to see them run, but they get to lay round on satin and brocade
cushions with fine covers on (because of the chill) and you can pet them and want one
of you own.

Was that a man in a kilt walking by................

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Sunday, Part II, The Spinning Bug!

Since it is a few hours until we have to dress up again, I'm moving very, very slowly today and plan on a late morning nap before going back to Ren Faire, and I haven't posted in awhile, here are a couple of random thoughts.....

Spring is here and those "birds" are back!

This is my desk, semi-cleaned off , with the ball of Fiesta I made my shawl out of. Ok, so you got the "after" before the "before picture! Bug off! Despite the up and down temps, spring is striking North Carolina!

SPINNING..... I have been infected by the spinning bug. Symptoms include...

1. Desire for wooden things which "drop".
2. Desire for "fuzzy" stuff called roving, both in "natural" and "colored" forms.
3. Knowledge that drafting isn't something just done in Nascar races.
4. Want koolaid, but not to drink!

I have been toying with the thought for several weeks now and have gone so far as to purchase Spin It by Lee Raven. I do admit however, that making my own drop spindle from old CD's does not hold much attraction. At the Ren Faire, one of the girls was spinning on a wheel and she and I got to talk for awhile. Just watching her makes me see why people find it relaxing. She did show my how to spin with the drop spindle, but unfortunately, we didn't have a chance for me to try my hand at it. But there are a couple of stores in the area which I can take lessons from. One will do it one-on-one with me. Let's see, Mother's Day is coming up.....hey, girls, Mom wants spindles for Mother's Day!

Huzzah! No Pictures!!?!?!?!

Okay, there are suppose to be pictures of "maids" in Ren Faire outfits, along with this "Good Mother", however, guess our roles overcame the camera and when I went to download pics this am to show what I have been doing......NO PICTURES!

Two weeks of sewing my little fingers off....okay, really, only one week since I have been on vacation. But the last couple of days were chaotic as they needed more volunteers to hand out flyers on Easter Sunday at the gate and Trumpet Princess (already feeling left out) and Goth Daughter's friend were more than willing to help out. So with a package of Rit Dye (green) to dye left over muslin and a couple of old sheets (Anyone want to give me new sheets? Double Bed!) scarves and they became "Gypsies of Fantasy" and participated.

But we will be doning said costumes again today, so I will try yet again to take pictures. You will notice in my picture (when finally posted) why Weight Watchers I have now joined. 2.8 pounds last (and first) week I'll have you know. However, with the past few days I have not been doing as I should have. My only consolation is that I really haven't been eating correctly and I walked from about 10:30am yesterday until about 8pm. There was a period of sitting where I knitted......yes, I knitted at the Ren Faire......the start of a pair of hose!

On the home front, my kitchen/living/sewing room looks like a bomb went off in it. Monday (still off from work) will be spent at least reordering my house and getting my bedroom floor cleared off so I can walk into it without feelings of dread and doom.

I did manage to get this little shawl done with some Fiesta I had purchased last year. It looked so bright and cheery and it's been so back and forth weatherwise here, I thought I would knit my own spring.

Spring Shawl out of Fiesta

Close up of shawl. Doesn't it look like pansy colors?

The only downside to the Ren Faire is that there is suppose to be rain at the time we are handing out program guides. Like I froze my butt off yesterday and am hopeing the sniffles I have this morning are sinus/allergies and not COLD! Yes, we experienced Elizabethan weather yesterday......overcast, cool (low 50's) and light wind.

Hopefully tomorrow I can be back at posting regularly and knitting regularly and walked through my room! With no COLD!

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Little knitting, not enough sewing

Although my "Faire Speak" class isn't until next Saturday, I have figured out that chemise is Elizabethan English for "you, the kids and a couple of tent poles". I will publicly admit that I am between a size *& and @% and that I went with the @% as I wanted it to be "loose". Don't have to worry about shrinkage with this muslin. In fact, praying for it. But this is my life recently....chemise, bodices, skirts, capes.....little knitting. Reading up on Elizabethan life, watching Elizabeth and Shakespeare in Love while at the sewing machine. Luckily, Spring Break is the week before everything has to be finished, so it will get done....hopefully....maybe....sure it will!


But my little sister sent me a box of "goodies" last week. She works in the administrative offices for a large craft store (cough, cough) and went to one of their sample sales and picked this up for me.

Stash enhancement via little sister.

The blue and white "plushy" Polarspun in the center has already been tagged by Trumpet Princess for her own. The Woolease in denim and navy in the front is suppose to go toward some of the knitted flowers. The rest are all mine! But since I have Ren Faire costumes to make and the acceptance for band camp came in the mail yesterday, this is as close to stash enhancement I will be getting for a llloooonnnnggggg time.

But I am really on the look-out for a sleevess, mock turtleneck sweater I can knit in cotton (or something similar) for the summer. That is my one thing I'll still "put out for" in the next couple of months.

So, off to finish putting in the sleeves in Goth Daughter's Faire outfit and then onto skirts!

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Renaissance .... or no time for knitting

Yes, I have put aside the needles for a few days (or weeks). Of course, since everything I was knitting was going to the dogs and I have 2 things now I have to frog or tink, it is probably a good thing.

But Goth Daughter has been wanting to go Elizabethan and taking good old Mom along for the ride. So it's 2 costumes for the Ren Faire at the end of March (thank goodness for Spring Break and vacation the week before) and the first weekend of April. Not only am I in charge of family costumes (ie Mom sews), but I am also going to be volunteering at the Faire and will be dragging out some blackwork. Hopefully, I will have an extra "chemise" done so that I can embroider around the edges. Or at least a kerchief or two.

Finished up the first chemise this evening. Will post pics as soon as the daughters are back to assit. Do you know how much muslin it takes for a floor length chemise? Let's say I could sail the cast of "Lost" off the island with it! Thank goodness for Joann Fabrics $$$ off coupons. But it's two chemise (or is it chemouse?), 2 skirts, 2 bodices and maybe a couple of capes if the weather is cool. Goth Daughter tried to take the hurt off the project by reflecting on the positive----she will have a Halloween costume already. What's going to scare people is tomorrow when I lug in my chemise to do the hem around the bottom. They'll start looking for tent poles!