This month, our interviewee tells us all about her work as a designer and maker of fine historical costumes.
Laurie Tavan's obsession with costuming comes as something of a surprise to many people, including herself. She trained in the life sciences at Cornell University, diving into study of ornithology and marine ecology with great enthusiasm.
Nobody would have expected that just a few years after leaving school for the "real world," she would be on another track entirely, having fallen completely in love with historical costuming. She approached it with her signature single-minded zeal, personifying the concept that "anything worth doing is worth overdoing."
She brings to costuming a potent blend of rigorous historical research and free-spirited artistic drive.
Katherine Caron-Greig is the epitome of the obsessed amateur costumer. A teacher by trade, she spends her free time collecting and recreating historical costumes for her own amusement. Despite her taxing profession, she seems to retain boundless energy for her sewing and now boasts a historic wardrobe of dizzying proportions!
With experience of almost every historical period of clothing, Katherine has a special understanding of the pitfalls and opportunities that await the passionate hobbyist. After being our interviewee last month, Katherine kindly agreed to get comfortable in our hot seat for this month's Ask the Experts!
Research – just the word alone can make some costumers’ hearts flutter, while others’ sink. For some, it represents an irritating waste of time, blocking the creation process, while others find creative inspiration and satisfaction in getting it “just right.”
This series of articles will set out to achieve a few different things. First, for those who are new to historical research, or can’t stand it, we’ll discuss why you should consider doing research, and some resources and techniques that will hopefully make the process more efficient (and therefore, a bit less painful). For those who love it, we’ll get into many advanced resources and techniques that will bump your research knowledge and skills up to the next level.
YWU attracts costumers and seamstresses from all parts of the world and all walks of life, but also from a wide variety of age groups.
This month our Reader Profile features one of our youngest readers. Shari's learning as fast as she can about the costume she loves and how to make it into a rewarding career...
Costuming projects tend to fall, more or less, into one of two categories: there are those projects in which we strive for historical accuracy and detailed facts, and there are those in which we depart on a tangent, using our own ideas to create a personal but fictional vision.
Neither is a less worthy pursuit than the other, but the fictional is often dismissed as sloppy or simply wrong. Extraordinary Belgian artist Viona Ielegems is here to show us otherwise. Her work demonstrates the enormous value in playing with fact to create a compelling and beautiful fiction...
Welcome to the “Looking Glass”. If you find the fine work of the experienced seamstresses and corsetieres a little daunting, then you are in good company.
I started making my first corset last year. I am lucky enough to have found a tutor to work it through with me. I would never have taken the first few steps on my own otherwise. It is an interesting journey.