femkes_follies: (Default)
Things we did right:

Good Team
Excellent fitting of the pattern
Plenty of food and bottled water
Great choice of ensemble
Perfect fabric choices
Good split between period techniques and using the sewing machine to good effect
Well made all around

Things I would change:

More creature comforts. My van was fairly full as it was, but if we do this again, we'll put more effort into trying to make sure we have comfy seating. I should also bring along my cutting board next time. And we might (having done this again and refreshed my memory) also contemplate most effective layout of our workspace.

A Documentation Binder. Next time, we will tell the story, element by element. And likely thereby spend less time distracted by Questing Judges, as a by-product. Maybe even with cute little tabbies for the accessories so that everything gets its own section.

Accessories. Making a list of what would be appropriate, and then making some realistic decisions regarding what we can do in the time involved without sacrificing the tailoring aspect. Really, I ought to have given more thought to and better planned the stockings and garters, as well as made the wulst and steuchlein on site. Plus an appropriate belt, pouch, and paternoster. I have no idea where my brain went.

A timeline. I DID one this year, and then we lost a member suddenly and I never got around to an update timeline. Yes, they go out the window. But they do help with "what do I do next?" and make you aware when you're behind, and how much.

A Good Plan. We had a good plan, it went well. I want to make sure we pick an equally appropriate target next time. And work at utilizing each member for their best abilities. I'm an insane embroiderer/handwork/finish guru. Alesone rocks the construction and any sort of fabric-based color changes/applique, etc. Sarafina is the Queen'O'Fitting. Kat, I have yet to plumb the depths of talents on - so I'm not sure what she does best other than anything you ask her to do. ;-)

Codpiece-shaped pincushions for the whole team. I need a reason?
femkes_follies: (Because)
Wherein I begin my annual deconstruct of the Golden Seamstress Experience, in this instance in view not just of participating but in gunning to bring home a prize.

In this issue:

A brief discussion of the stated objective vs. the objective as experienced.

Disclaimer - this is not a complaint, this is a perception, compiled over 4 competitions over a 7? year span.

The event entitled Quest For the Golden Seamstress comes with it the implication of a sewing competition. So it began, and so it remains on the surface. However, I submit that time and subtle morphing has altered the event into something that is more "Quest for the Golden Anachronist."

Which is not to say that sewing is not an important element. Indeed, fit and construction are still the topmost elements. But over the years something subtle has happened, almost organically. Well, a couple of somethings.

First, documentation. It's always been stated at the outset that extensive documentation is not "required" = and it isn't. But that doesn't mean that it isn't expected. In order to score well, you really NEED to have fairly thorough documentation of each decision you made in the planning and construction of the outfit you're working on. Sometimes of things you had considered so obvious that it didn't occur to you to attempt to provide that documentation. There are certain judges who are notorious for not just asking you what you're working on, but returning repeatedly for interrogation on specific elements. You'd better have it backed up, or you shall receive The Stare (TM). (My bad on that, guys) This is in part because certain groups strive to bring ridiculous amounts of information and because past judges have rewarded that - which leads to an increasing spiral of effect.

Interestingly - the ability to document the snot out of a G.S. entry seems to have no effect at all on the reputation nor rank of individuals outside the competition. Odd, but there it is.

Second, accessories. Here's the real runaway train. Accessories are a fairly minor part of the score. And, to be frank, I'd let them slip my mind more or less altogether, which was again - My Fial. However, each year someone has chosen to do something unusual onsite. And the judges tend to "make" over it quite a bit. Well, more accurately, the other non-judging luminaries tend to "make" over it. So the next year, other people bring even more esoteric elements to perform onsite. It started with the more-or-less innocuous making of shoes and has since blossomed into weaving, armor-making, lamp-work, cosmetics, basket weaving - and on, and on. None of which is really relevant to the stated objective of selecting the Golden Seamstress. And most of which is not worth the opportunity cost of giving up time spent sewing to make said accessories (and I speak only of those instances in which the accessories consumed so much time the sewing didn't get done), especially for such a proportionately small number of points. And I've been on teams guilty of this in the past, as well.

I'm not sure it's a "problem" per se. It's just a disconnect between what the stated mission is, and what the reality becomes. Frankly, I'd been out of the loop long enough that I'd forgotten about those two things, and it bit me in the a**.

Wisdom comes slowly to these slopes. :-)
femkes_follies: (Default)
Back from Golden Seamstress. We did pretty well, garnering both 2nd place in the Advanced Division as well as the Baronesses' Choice Award.

I'll provide pics and a complete deconstruct a little later when I'm less sleep-deprived. ;-)

Per usual, everything didn't get DONE done, so I have some finish work to do. But it'll keep me out of trouble for a while. Many more beads and spangles to go on the sleeve, then the sleeves go back on, and fix the closure.

Still and all, not a bad event.
femkes_follies: (Default)
that we shall indeed be a team (even if it's a 3-man team - ;-)

I'm going to register us.

So - Team Name?
The Devil's Pearls
Something vaguely german...
"Bless yer hearts" - in some translation
Other suggestion of better quality than these...
(I discard The Ziggalo Patrol for obvious reasons...)

And Period/style?

I can just set it for "15th (or 16th?) Century German" for now.
femkes_follies: (Default)
Or "I should behave better than Lydia if I should go to Brighton"

Sooooo... Another Golden Seamstress shot to hell, to paraphrase my Grandfather. We had ourselves a good time, nearly finished an outfit for Antonia, and learned a few new things. Just so nobody thinks I'm being whiny. There is a good deal of fun to be had spending the weekend with friends, knocking out a style we've never tried before. We enjoy it.

Now the snark: For reasons unknown to us, we seem to be permanently on the wrong side of the judges. Ever since we cut up a sari for a Venetian ensemble two years ago, we seem to have occupied a place just south of Satan. Which is OK. But the A&S arena politics can get to be a bit much.

For those of you unfamiliar, I speak of the Quest for the Golden Seamstress - in which teams of up to 6 people have 20 hours to complete an outfit from the skin out, no patterns.

Click for detailed whining )

May 2014

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