Days Have Flown

It doesn't take long for days to pass and from last I wrote we have been to Newcastle to the girl grandbabies and caught up with them and all girly things.

A dip at the beach, a catch up with Jack's daughter as well, lunch with them all, a BBQ on Sunday and in between its dolls, puzzles, scooters and playing.

 

We dropped off Jackrabbit Johnny's sombrero and vaquero coat and had a great catch up with him and Ruth on the Sunday night.

Yes his jacket does fit him and he was over the moon. I look forward to seeing it with his whole outfit together.

 

Monday it's on to Sydney to catch a quick flight to Adelaide to see the boy grandbabies. Cars, planes, swimming, beach, bubbles in the backyard. You can fit a lot in in a couple of nights and a full day but still wasn't long enough. They have grown so much but I did get to see Archer go to Kindy this morning and Jack went with Charlie to day care before our flight back to Sydney.

 

Had a good morning with Dad and Mum checking out their new house, breakfast and coffee with Aunty Lynn as well before heading back to Grafton to house/dog sit for a few days.

Side note: this now includes a tyre change before we can go anywhere North.

It's humid here in Taree and warming up fast for the day, once the tyre is fixed we can get on the road to Grafton.

Make each day count, hope yours is a good one.

Kat xo

 

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Weddings, Parties, Anything!

With the recent wedding of Ace McKenzie to Scarlet Assasin, I can now reveal her gorgeous gown, Ace's vest and Dallas Roarke's corset gown that I created for the wedding party.

Measurements were obtained 12months ago, sourcing of fabric and lace from various parts of the globe took place and then it was time for getting it together.

I tried a new corset construction, or boned corset bodice I prefer to term it, much more suitable for a wedding gown. Mock up corsets were sent over for fittings, with progress moving on from there.

Scarlet was to have a recreation of a gown she had seen with a couple slight alterations from the original picture. Suffice to say I was happy with how everything turned out but was still waiting for it to arrive safely in Australia to her and know that everything fitted perfectly.

A couple conversations with Aspen Filly confirmed what I was to do with the skirt and a tip on the horsehair use with the satin frill to get just the right amount of bounce and wave was greatly appreciated. New technique learnt! 😉

Satin taffeta underskirt and overskirt with satin and crystal organza frills on one yoke to create less bulk beneath the bodice.

 

Corset bodice of satin taffeta and full pearl bead, sequinned lace, piped edge finish, rigilene and steel boning.

 

The finished product in full – spectacular!

 

Ace's requirements were for a vest. Simple enough, just needed the Ace cards embroidered on the front and in a red shot black taffeta. Some playing around with embroidery designs and figuring out placement, I nailed it first go with the hoop change in the middle. Happy day's!

 

Dallas wanted the Ace cards down the front of the corset on the same red taffeta coordinated with gorgeous lace skirt overlay. I did however, have to do her front section twice over to get the cards lined up. Slightly frustrating but I got there.

The red and black is always a sensational pairing.

 

Then came the 'how are we going to get this back there?' To which came a number of expensive options finally arriving at a more reasonable one. I found and used Luggage Free, sending my luggage ahead with the said wedding items inside. What a fantastic service and was there in plenty of time to steam and let set as needed.

I've been waiting until the 10th February for this reveal and so glad their wedding turned out to be a sensational day with family and friends and that I was there in spirit and thread! 🙂

Ace sent through some photos taken by The Boneyard Wrangler so now can share the beauty of the final production.

 

Congratulations once again Ace and Scarlet!

Kat xo

 

Vaquero

I've been procrastinating a little on this one but finally worked out what I was going to do and got it done.

The order was for a vaquero jacket but 'I don't want it shiny! I want it to look worn in' was the request. Okay……so I had to start thinking dyeing and distressing, shouldn't be a problem.

Eventually I found the right colour fabric we were after in a sturdy medium.

I sourced a braid that goes really well with it and different to other soutache braids I had been working with previously. This worked extremely well with the curves I needed. It's a little coarser than the usual soutache but worked well for this project.

I wanted to include some sort of studs or riveting this time but thinking of the 'non shiny' scenario, it was back to the Internet to look at techniques for distressing nickel.

One hundred, shiny nickel rivets spent a good 2 hours soaking in some vinegar, then tipped that off, didn't seem to do anything.

 

Next step, hydrogen peroxide and salt! Holy cow, don't want to leave it in that too long unless you want stuff completely rusted! I think I did that for a bout 15mins maximum getting the desired result.

 

In the meantime, it was time to put the pieces together. Chalk pouncing (well baby powder in this case) and drawing up the designs with chalk. I could now get on with pinning and stitching the braid in place.

 

Next came the lining and something didn't look right. Well actually it wasn't looking right before that and I had kept going back to the pattern trying to work out where I'd gone wrong. Finally the light bulb goes off! Thankfully nothing major and nothing that a quick unpick/seam ripper, a pair of scissors, a different pattern piece couldn't fix! AND it didn't involve redoing the braid. Phew!

 

Everything is now together and it's onto the riveting. Yee haw looking fantastic! Hand sewing to the hem done. Frogs made, stitched on and my special silver buttons that I gave up to this project.

 

I love it but it's still too 'shiny' so taking a scrap piece I start playing with bleach to trying get some areas to take on a sun damaged effect. Different strengths appear to not have made a scrap of difference to the overall colour. So this morning I mixed a sprayable mix of white and cream acrylic paint to simulate some sweat marks.

 

I'm going to have to play more with this procedure. Stay tuned!

Kat xo

 

Gunfight In Dixie XV Part 2

A total of 222 cowboy's and cowgirl's turned up for the Gunfight and by yesterday it was all over bar the shouting.

Jack and I both finished with clean matches and no major dramas, so we're very happy. I've got to say that we really enjoyed the stages. The weather held out, still a little on the cool side but was sun shiny magic!

 

After lunch, the shootout was held for the Top 16 men's and Top 8 ladies. A great stage of all rifle knockdowns, the Texas star for pistol and then shotgun to makeup and take out the final decider plate.

 

We visited with many great shooters this weekend and enjoyed catching up with some we hadn't seen for a very long time and making new acquaintances with others! Good times!

The banquet last night was set in the Shriner Club, with stage, dance floor, band and photo corner. Prizes were drawn and awards given. A white steer head pin was given to 36 shooters who shot the match clean!

Congratulations to all shooters who placed in their categories this weekend, won side matches and enjoyed the team match and shootout.

The Regional winners were given a category plaque with the Memphis Gunslingers signature steer head and region map on it. 1st Place winners of each category (within region or not) got a really nice silver and gold accented buckle, with 2nd receiving a white/silver and 3rd on, a bronze coloured/silver buckle.

Jack finished in 2nd Place for Silver Senior Category! (Mistakenly 3rd last night) Congratulations to Fast Eddy 1st Place and SE Regional Champion, 3rd Place Two X Tom, 4th Place Max Payne, 5th Place Three Sheets, 6th Place Badlands Charlie.

 

I finished 1st Place in Lady Wrangler category! Congratulations to Dew R Dye, 2nd Place and SE Regional Champion, 3rd Place Belle Vaquera.

 

The shootout was won by Prestidigitator (Tator) and myself. We thoroughly enjoyed shooting with him over the weekend.

 

Congratulations to Tator for taking top honours! 1st cowboy overall and SE Regional Champ with Dodge City Dixie being the SE Regional Champion cowgirl. I was ecstatic to place 1st lady overall. Lots of awesome shooters and many world champs at this match!

 

Thanks again to the Memphis Gunslingers and everyone who helped put on the shoot.

 

As Elvis would say 'thank you very much!'

Kat xo

 

Above and Beyond

I hope that when I recreate a costume that I have done the original justice and the 'Eva' gown is one of these that I truly hope I have.

Finishing the last on the panels today for the skirt. It has been full on chain stitch embroidery, appliqués, sequins and a little bit of bling to get it looking a little like the Hell On Wheels version.

It's actually a shame now to have to gather these panels to the skirt, but it has to be done.

 

Want to know how much embroidery has gone into this skirt?

This even stunned me yesterday – 296m/321.9yds of embroidery floss!

 

You heard me right and I haven't even started on the bodice yet which thankfully won't be as much work BUT is going to be stunning and I can't wait to see it finished, proper accoutrements gathered and worn by the lovely Belle Vaquera at a costume contest!

Love, love, love it!

Kat xo

 

Chain Stitch

Nothing like a challenge to keep your mind working overtime.

Chain stitch = time consuming

Time consuming = it worked!

It worked = total satisfaction!

Well not quite yet but super excited about achieving an emulation of the detail on Eva's gown!

Vine work is done on the other 2 panels – that's the easy part!

 

Leaves and petals need to be done on those to get to this stage

 

*squeals! Claps hands!* so excited to get past the chain stitch part but it's looking as good as what I was hoping for and then some.

Kat xo

 

Special Treasures

I would safely say I have truly been blessed with meeting so many wonderful people, crossing paths along the way throughout my life during Cowboy Action shooting.

Not only for the commraderie, healthy competition and learning but also being able to assist in passing on my knowledge and skills along the way.

I have been extremely grateful in the past that some have found me worthy of little treasured presents.

This weekend I was given some plaid fabric by Annie Hicock that would make a great 1890's walking dress….so the thinking cap has gone on for that, time for a new dress in my future – in amongst everything else at some point!

 

Idaho Sue from Texas also brought me some fabric she was clearing out of her stash and in amongst it I think is the blue I'm looking for for my next formal gown! Holy cow! Excited much!

 

The jewel in the crown however, was when she came to me at the banquet last night with 3 little 'gems' that just blew me away for the much appreciated gift. She had seen 3 ivory handled button hooks at an antique store and thought I might like them. I don't know how many times I said thank you but it doesn't seem enough.

 

They are in the cabinet with my Fred Harvey 'gems'!

 

Thank you ladies, you made my weekend! Hugs!

Kat xo