Vladimir Propp

I bought this book decades ago. A 1975 secondhand version for about a £1.

It’s served me well :o)

A first reading when right over my head, even though I knew about Grave’s White Goddess and Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey.

It’s worth all the brain-ache …in my humble opinion. Especially if you are a writer studying your art and your craft.

Bons Pantalons!

I’ve just made my first pair of trousers and only lost my temper about a dozen times. Yay!

D’y’all know how difficult trousers are to make?

Anyway. They are really culottes. Or wide legged trousers that look like a skirt when you stand still.

We used to wear mini culottes to play sports at school. Totally not needed piece of info there :o)

Mine are ankle length…a glimpse of stocking, shocking and all that.

They even have hidden hip pockets. OMG – the girl is getting all hoity toity here.


Mennonite History Bounding

I was asked the other day why only mad women do these Historical Clothing videos and I answered….Urm!

Also : Well – Men are actually some of the best tailors. I’ll look to see if I can find one.


Edwardian Tailor.

I’ve heard of Mennonites before but know very little about them. So I did some research and wow! No wonder I felt good about this video. Their clothes are based on traditional Swiss/German Peasant Wear. Natural materials with simple lines. Not dissimilar to what I’m doing right now.

Every step is an education :o)

From the Clothes to the Moomins : Tove Jansson

It all started with a collection of stunning sewing patterns by a Japanese woman who based them on Tove’s clothes. I fell in love and had to dive deep into the woman who’d inspired these amazing garments.

Tove Jansson.

Who? said I

First stop was The Moomins. Aaaah. We all know The Moomins. A sweet children’s cartoon series. But Tove Who? When? How?

Wow! I N T E R E S T I N G.

I’ve just come over all Artisical …..LOL :o)

Woven Air : The Ancient Fabric That No One Knows How To Make

As a young teenager, my favourite piece of clothing was a cheesecloth shirt. I wore it to death!

I have a few metres of striped cheesecloth now for shirt, dressmaking. Sigh.

I love cheesecloth. So 1970’s.

It’s also called Muslin and was once so finely woven that it was known as Garment of the Wind.

Dhaka Muslin.

Though Dhaka muslin vanished more than a century ago, there are still intact saris, tunics, scarves and dresses in museums today. Occasionally one will resurface at a high-end auction house such as Christie’s and Bonhams, and sell for thousands of pounds.

How about a revisit to the Emperor With No Clothes?

Faith in One’s Own Abilities ?

Above is the dishrag that I was gonna “burn the heart” out of yesterday.

It’s not finished but – on reflection – I might’ve been a bit more able than I thought.

The top is pure cotton. The bottom is deep brown cotton cambric…very light and airy and floaty. And see through.

This was made as an over garment. To worn over a tee-shirt and a pair of linen trousers/long, swooshy skirt.

M’eh. ‘S’OK. I guess. It’s utterly original anyway.

I’ll carry on, carrying on :o)

High Arches/Torture/Doing Your Own Thang

I was born with high arched feet. Google that and you’ll be told that you have a medical PROBLEM.

Not so, mes braves.

The picture above is of the Bovver Boots I was gifted for Xmas. They hurt my feet but I love them so much that I’ll endure the pain until the boots obey my feet :o)

As a teenager I’d wear boots like this with long floaty skirts…much to the horror of the parentals.

The three women below make a LOT of sense to me. Life IS short and we are here to be our AUTHENTIC selves. We are not all cut from the same cloth.

Eccentric is a wonderful word that means NON-CONFORMIST/Individual/Unique.

I Have A SECRET Love…Again!

Rachel is so like me in so many ways.

I’ve spent the whole of last week watching her complete madness on yt. She makes me feel soooooo NOT ALONE anymore :o)

Yep. She buys into the WWW stupids going on. But I can forgive her everything when I watch.

And she’s teaching me to be much less of a Perfect Penelope when it comes to sewing.

Even HIMSELF fell in love with her this morning.

OMG. Schwoon.

It’s the red hair.

ALWAYS the red hair!

Alum as a Mordant

Anyone who has ever tried natural dyeing knows that we need a mordant to fix the colour.

Alum is very good and natural. Some use vinegar or iron or gall or other such.

I may be the only person in the world who can sit and watch this all the way through in awe.

I saw much the same in Karachi – from a car. The colours are amaze-balls :o)

P.S. I’m not 100% certain but the white powder he throws in could be alum.

Bizarre Theory Afoot!

I’m teaching my self Eco-Printing on paper. The results are amazing and beautiful so – thought I – as I have some spare calico cotton left, how about seeing if it can be done on fabric.

Yes. It can.


But I also saw something else here. Too bizarre NOT to share.

All the materials used have to be natural. Plants, paper, alum, fibres. And part of the process is the boiling in water for a while.

You then end up with a negative image on the cloth………..

Look. In my simple mind, this makes sense. Fact!

A Morning with Bernadette

I’ve had a lovely couple of hours (apart from the snarky side chat about mad women on yt!) with Bernadette.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve watched her. I hadn’t realised that she’d moved from NYC to London.

Having been supremely organised (or maybe feeling lazy) I’m getting reacquainted with Historical Costumes and their construction.

Once upon a time, I made two 1920’s Opera Coats from silk – all hand-stitched – that were used in a local AmDram production of Thoroughly Modern Millie. True as…!

I’m just a self-taught amateur enthusiast. Ms. Banner is an expert.

I’m loving her new London home :o)