End Of Trail 2017 Cowboy Action World Championships

The 'town' has filled with more cowboy's and cowgirl's from all around the world, ready to test their skills and compete for their World Championship ranking.

This year there were 17 from Australia, 7 from New Zealand, at least 2 from the Netherlands and Canada, and a few from Germany. My apologies if there were more from other countries.

The match this year 'A Tribute to Clint Eastwood' westerns. The NRA Firearms Museum had a fabulous display of all guns used by Clint Eastwood in films or by others in films he had directed. Such a neat display! EMF Firearms also had some excellent firearms and a beautiful piece fully engraved and gold plated from The Museum of Confederacy Spirit – an edition of 500.

Thursday was a great start to the main match, starting on the late wave with Posse 29. On our posse led by Shamrock Sadie, we had Knot Hardly Dunn, Christian Mortician, Trail Bandit, Randy Saint Eagle, Papa Dave, Reno Mustang, Dodge City Dixie, Wild Horse John, Trigger Happy Ted, Misty Rider, Avery Wade, Tombstone John, Red Johnson, Pancho Sin Lefty, Lucky Boy, Jackaroo and of course me, Kathouse Kelli.

Most of the week but particularly Thursday and Friday were hot! Think the statistics for this year's match was 1800 gallons of water (?) and this one I do remember 97 gallons of Gatorade. A personal thanks to Dusty Garnet and EZ-GZ for your medical aid and driving up and down the range keeping everyone hydrated, to the rest of the waddies for keeping the water containers constantly topped up. Even though we always have some with us, it's never enough and we so appreciate it.

Side match awards were held on Friday night in the main tent and I must say again thanks to Santa Fe Brewing Company for sponsoring SASS, the bar was frequented often. Congratulations to all side match winners. I picked up one for the .22 pistol – thanks Dixie Bell for allowing me to use yours!

It was a great mix of side match winners this year!

Saturday we had the early shift. With an overcast sky and much cooler temperatures it made for a pleasant start of the final shooting day. All wrapped up! What's done, is done now and Sunday would see what the outcome would be.

Saturday evening for the banquet and best dressed costume contests started well. There were some sensational entries this year with myself, Texas Flower, Shotglass and Dixie Bell placing in the Best Dressed Ladies. Jack had entered his first costume contest ever as Thomas Durant (Hell On Wheels, S4, Ep1) but I should have had him in the Silver Screen category. 😦 Never mind, he did a great job, we just need to get the right hat sorted for him and he will enter again. Got Artie from Major Photography to work his magic and subsequently he has this amazing photo now.


After the costume contests were done and the band was on, it was a quick change up and Mary-Lou July made her first solo appearance at EOT. She said she'd been to the Doily Gang Clinic, had her own badge and she had learnt some gun twirling skills from Lightning Buck McGaw (learnt that and practiced in 2 afternoons). Mary-Lou July helped out Sassy Dancer, Shamrock Sadie, Ruby Jewel and Hey You with the announcements of the Top 8 Mens and Ladies Wild Bunch and Top 16 Cowboy's and Cowgirl's for the shootout.


The band played, Mary-Lou danced and danced. People had a great time, Jack was busy trying to sell land plots as his Thomas Durant persona and having a few drinks at every stop I'm guessing. Haa Haa Haa! Got him home, just before midnight and I think he had the best nights sleep he'd had in a long time!


Shootout took place Sunday morning. R C Shot from QLD, Australia made it in the Wild Bunch and I made it into the Cowgirl's. We used a magnetic board this year, with Sadie and Sassy having done most of the work on this one, it was fantastic, everyone had been randomly drawn and paired up the night before when announced. Then as each one dropped out we could re pair them for the next round and everyone could see who was shooting against who.

The winners of the Wild Bunch Shootout were Captain Sam Evans and Texas Tiger. For the Cowboy Shootout it was Matt Black and Texas Tiger (she is the First Lady to have won both shootout's at the one match)


Down to the nitty gritty and it's a huge congratulations to all who placed in their respective categories!

Let's start with the Aussie's:

  • Clean Match – Sam Balin, Chuck, Ex Sighted, The Trapper from Oz.
  • Posse Spirit of the Game Award – Chuck, Deadwood Gunslinger.
  • Category Placings – KT, 4th Place Junior Girls. Sam Balin, 3rd Place Silver Senior Duelist. RC Shot, 6th Place Wrangler. Kathouse Kelli, 1st Place World Champion Lady Wrangler. Ex Sighted, 6th Place Lady Wrangler. Sister Sarah Carnegie, 2nd Place Lady Gunfighter. Pearl Starr, 7th Place Lady 49ers. Chuck, 7th Place 49ers. Jackaroo, 5th Place Silver Senior.


This is where we cross over into the Oklahoman's – The Territorial Marshal's faired well and we will include Deadeye Dillard as well 😉

  • Clean Match – Bashful Kate, Greenhill Bart, Highland Scottie (and forgive me if I didn't take note of anyone)
  • Posse Spirit of the Game Award – Grady County Kid
  • Category Placings – Grady County Kid, 4th Place Buckaroo. Roadrunner, 4th Place Frontier Cartridge Duelist. Lady Roadrunner, 10th Place Lady 49ers. Greenhill Bart, 4th Place B-Western. Deadeye Dillard, 3rd Place Cowboy. Jackaroo, 5th Place Silver Senior. Three, yes three World Champions – Kathouse Kelli, 1st Lady Wrangler. Missouri Mae, 1st Lady 49er. Roy's Creek Dan, 1st Senior.


Congratulations to the 2017 World Champion overall winners – Matt Black and SASSkicker!


Thanks must surely go to Lassiter and Deuce Stevens for a great match, to SASS, the Wild Bunch, Misty, the girls and just everyone who helps 'git er done!' Sensational work as always.


That's it…..goodbyes are said, tears are shed, friends will be missed. Safe travels to each and everyone know matter how far you came.


Kat xo



Threads from Aus

Unraveling the fabrics, lace and trims, patterns etc from the suitcase's meant jumping into a whole heap of new projects this past few months.

SKIRTS: There were a few basic shooting skirts to try and what a neat one this cowboy skeletons was to do for Belle Vaquera.


Mustang Toni's cute little layered skirt in cowboy paper dolls print kept me amused and her corset – to be done – has been cut out and pattern matched of course!


SUITS: Crossdraw Jac got his sack suit which I was over the moon with how it turned out!


This pattern was a 'size the pattern from 32″ chest 28″ waist and little instruction' type of gig. (Jack's getting one, it's 2/3rds done) I managed to work it out upsizing to a 44″ chest and was extremely pleased during the process.

Being a plaid wool, I got pattern to match! I did more research and have made the best welt pockets yet. Called on my costume resource Aspen Filly (thank you so much) and asked about pockets in trousers for the era *sigh, so they both got pockets in their dacks!

More research was done to find out about trouser lining – to the knee or long? Went with the 'to the knee' option.

In the meantime I found a snippet of information regarding the weird little pocket that was shown on the black and white drawing. It sits just above the usual coat flap pocket on the right hand side. Some would jump in and say “is it for your pocket watch?” Well, no, that usually is situated on the inside attached to the vest. It is in fact a pocket for your train ticket. This fascinated me and therefore now had to be included in the construction of the coat.

Of course with my eye for detail, how could I possibly give over this suit without getting a train ticket to go with?! Thanks to Duke Canon I asked if he could print me off a couple of 1890's tickets I'd found and Ta-dah! we now have train tickets!

QUILT: Might as well throw something totally different in the mix with a quilt to head to a friends grandson Thomas.


FROCK COAT: Getting back to another 'Thomas', as in Hell On Wheels' Thomas Durant, this coat was asked for by Jack. It was about time he got something new and I'm pleased he is looking at something different, and of a particular character. So that's what he got!

More watching of the series to get it right plus we had seen it in the exhibition at the Cowboy Museum where I had taken many photos. Patch pockets and even welted button holes. Although I'm none too keen to do those again any time soon.


Now he has the shirt to match and I have the vest cut out for him. Pants to go and I already know where he needs to go for the right hat. (I'll be in touch Linda – I know Workin' Ranch have one that is perfect for it!)

What's next?!

STEAMPUNK: Oh yeah! A fun fabric given to me from Singin' Sue probably 2 years ago now. Coloured cotton reels and thread print was just begging for me to attempt a steampunk styled outfit. It sort of just morphed as I was making it.

From a polonaise pattern as it hung on the mannequin, the front bodice lay open revealing the cheeky red flat lining. Hmmm my mind went into overdrive and I said to my daughter, “I think I shall have lapels and leave it to reveal the corset underneath”. Then I thought, “I don't need sleeves, how's about some cap sleeves?” She still needs some work and accoutrements but here is 'Steampunk Seamstress'.


1890's FASHION: Ahhhh the beautiful 1890's gown for Tacky Jackie. Previous feats for finding the perfect colours were achieved. It all started with a trip to a little town called Custer, South Dakota, at the foot of the Black Hills. Jackie came back with a gown she had seen in the Museum there. It just so happened that that Summer, Jack and I were headed for the same territory. One photo was not enough, I needed more and before our time in the Black Hills came to an end I was determined to find the right museum and this gown.

The last day came and we found it – mind you we had driven past it twice in the previous day's. Never mind, got in their on opening and managed to grab some more photos.

Skip forward and now it's time to reproduce this beauty, simple yet elegant in its design.

Basic skirt and bodice pattern, make scalloped caps, work out and set in silk – okay, ready for bead work.

I drew up the bead design according to the pictures, acquired the beads (even though the lady wanted to sell me pre-made trim) and set about to recreate. I had envisaged making the trim before attaching and had Dad make me up a 'rough loom' for how I thought I would do it. After attempting to do that for about half an hour I ditched that idea and went for working the beads straight onto the bodice.

Some 35 and 1/4 hours later, I got it looking like the real deal. If you look really closely there are a couple of differences but as Mum says, “a blind man on a galloping horse wouldn't notice!”


Think I can safely say Tacky Jackie is going to love it.


SALOON GIRLS: A quick little purple and gold number for me needs a little more lace that's waiting in OK. Tried out a new corset pattern – gores and me don't exactly fit. We will see how that goes when I get to finish it with steel etc.


However, the rich red satin and cotton lace number is out of this world!

No lace I could find was the right colour or the right feel so I decided that I would embark on a journey into the world of dyeing. Crazy? You bet ya! Others have done it with success, might as well have a crack at it myself.

So with Miss Curstin at my side we tried 4 different methods on some samples, making notes as we went. Thank goodness that child helped me sort through that and we had fun doing it. Another few days and I do the bulk lot, still slightly freaking out as to whether I would achieve the perfect colour. Finally washed out, set and dried I was happy with the result.


Made up the French drawers – divine!


Then it was onto the ultimate corset construction (to date)! Another new pattern to trial AND throw in power mesh that I've never used before. Of course it worked, why I doubted I could do it, I am so excited at the result.

Hand stitching the gorgeous liquorice black scallop trim and appliqués to complete this corset had taken 23hrs. It is totally divine and will be loved by her new owner.



Of course the trip wouldn't be finished without a couple more Ad Ita skirts and tops. 'Mint Slice' I called it, for Emerald and a gorgeous turquoise pallet for Trixie.


That's it! Did a few catch ups with OK Carrol and got her started again, Joyce (the mannequin) went back with her and things were getting packed up.

From the sewing desk

Kat xo

P.S. If you didn't get it, this is a catch up, sewing done while in Aus! I'm getting there! I'm getting here. Couple other tops and bloomers thrown in at the last minute just for good measure!!


Diary of Desire Part 8

After many hours of trimming, beading (1,216 to be precise) and hand stitching embroidery I finally finished 'the' gown, culminating in the most exquisite piece I have yet produced.

For one very happy client, Texas Flower is in love with her gown to which I am extremely pleased.

The McDowell Drafting Machine and its book of instructions were indeed true. It states that, if correct measure is taken then a gown should be produced and ready to ship to your client without inconveniencing the wearer with numerous fittings.

Despite my misgivings, I now believe every written word in that book! Having made the gown in Australia and finishing it here, Flower had not once tried the gown on until we met in Moriarty last Tuesday. It fit perfectly!

I had a minor conniption when I realised I had not bought any boning with me to add stays to the bodice but am happy to say it did not require it.

This makes it even more like the original really where it was noted (in an article by Peaches O'Day and Miss Tabitha, SASS Chronicle 2012) unusually, did not have any.

Finally, on Friday evening all hand stitching was done and I could hand the gown over to one very excited and happy lady.

The 'Diary of Desire' was worn to the banquet Saturday night and to all our delight Texas Flower was EOT 2016, 1st Place, Best Dressed Lady.

Under the evening lights of the Belle Union Saloon those little Czech glass beadlettes shone bright like stars and the smile on Texas Flower's face!


True satisfaction from a yesteryear seamstress.

Kat xo


She’s ‘Armless

Well she won't be for long I guess we are at Diary of Desire Part 6?

I'm cutting it fine but something take careful thinking and consideration. Some might call it procrastination ……in the quest of getting it right.

This morning I've completed all the hand cutting out of the embroidery and now a day of hand stitching and beading!

Just look at her! She's beautiful. The gold thread changed colour when I washed the soluble backing from it (note to self – ask Mum why) but it is delicate and going to look sensational once beaded.


20 hours just in embroidery and trimming to this point.

Soon she will be ready to hand over for her first reception.

Happy cowgirl seamstress

Kat xo

P.S. I haven't forgotten the sleeves, just want to do the triple/quadruple check again.


Diary of Desire Pt 5 – Putting It All Together

Yes, it appears the 'inner 15 year old child' managed to work it out as per the books instructions. Although one instruction wasn't adhered to and had to correct the error of my ways, thankfully still at the lining stage.

Everything seems to be sitting just perfectly except for one slight alteration needed at the back neck and shoulders. Got to be happy with that!


Here in lies the mishap! See how the front seems high?


Well, refer back to said instructions and previous shown photo of drafting and as I was told to – “add 7″ to the front skirt following dart allowances etc”. As you can see I felt in my, somewhat older than 15 years, that this seemed a little ridiculous (despite having drawn it up as instructed) when the rest of the bodice was only 5″ from waist to edge and so cut it off 2″shorter. The result? A bodice that's too high in the front and doesn't look right.


Right, stitch that bit back on and thankfully almost nothing of the join is to be seen once sides are trimmed to suit and once facings are in place all is concealed. Shhhhh!

Then it was onto the sleeves. Now in one mind I was tempted to use a Truly Victorian sleeve pattern but I had decided this gown was to be done using the drafting machine and this would surely be cheating. The book specifically details how to draft sleeves from measurements using the square rule.

So yes! I did draft the sleeve using the detailed square. Much to my surprise and sheer delight it worked! All I really needed to see was that it looked like I knew it should be!! Bit hard to see in the pink pen.


Next step was to pull apart the lining and cut each piece from the fashion fabric and reconstruct. With this now comes the customising – making it look like the photograph of the original gown.


You will note now the front is a sensible length? Lol! Sides to be trimmed.

Next step. Let's have a look back at the original bodice. Oh yes, tabs across front gold ruched section. Hooks and eyes all down one side for the bodice to be closed, so a small gold panel is put in place.


So far so good me thinks!


Take one gold ruched panel 12″ down to 41/4″ stitched in 4 places. Pin to inside right. Excited much!

Collar appeared to be slightly curved and lined in gold so that's what we now have.


Facings have been stitched in ready for hand finishing and that my friends is where it has been left.

Sleeves to be completed back in Oklahoma and embroidered lace to be created.



Kat xo

P.S. Internet back on and back in Oklahoma. 🙂


McDowell Garment Drafting Machine

Or Diary of Desire Part 4 – Learning never ends and I am finally getting to use the McDowell Drafting Machine that I won at the Victorian Tea two Conventions ago!


Squeals of delight or sheer terror, can't work out which is winning but think the squeals are taking over!


Looks about right. So far so good – measure, set, check measure, check set. Yep so far so good. Yes, the front bodice section is short, up to you to work out the 'skirt' part of it. Crikeys, thought it looked like something was missing. For machines numbered over 7,000 (and mine is 13,742) the skirt rule is 5″ below the waist line.


Check this out too. The patent markings, show various versions I assume, from 1879 – 1886.


Note the book says and I quote “…….It also simplifies the work that a fifteen-year-old child can easily learn to fit garments scientifically.” Haa Haa Haa better get back to it then.

Keep measuring and smiling 🙂

Kat xo