A couple of different bloggers have posted some great ideas for holiday gifts for the costumer, and I thought I’d join in. Here are some ideas of things to get for fellow costumers, or to add to your own wishlist!
Reproduction Civil War Bonnets & Jewelry
My friends Bridget and Lana are very talented costumers who are way into the Civil War era. Their shop, North & South Emporium, is an Etsy shop that features gorgeous, historically accurate bonnets and jewelry. All of their stuff would be perfect for Dickens era as well!
High Quality Fabrics for Historical Costuming
These days, it can be hard to find high quality fabrics for historical costuming. My friend Diana runs Renaissance Fabrics, which carries really nice silks, wools, cottons, trims, and more. None of those lightweight “taffetas” which really are more crepe de chine — if Diana sells it, it’s a good quality item.
Right now, she’s running a promotion: enter “holiday2012″ to receive 10% off any order you place between now and December 31st.
She’s even started having some fabric custom woven. Two of these that I love:
Smithsonian Museum Reproduction Jewelry
QVC and Smithsonian have partnered to recreate some of the jewelry in the Smithsonian’s collections. They’ve made a reproduction of a pair of Marie Antoinette’s earrings — I own them and they are STUNNING — and although sadly they are now no longer available, you can get the same piece as a necklace:
It’s not a costume wishlist without books! Sadly there’s no big whopper costume museum books that you haven’t already heard about a million times, so I thought I’d recommend some slightly less obvious options:
Sometimes we forget that the cultural history of fashion is as important and fascinating as the clothing that we make! Two books I’d like to recommend to costumers who are interested in the eighteenth century are The Politics of Fashion in Eighteenth-Century America and Fabricating Women: The Seamstresses of Old Regime France, 1675–1791. In particular, Fabricating Women has an amazing amount of information on who made clothing in 18th c. France, and how it was made.
Nancy Nehring has put out some really great books on trims and details. One in particular, 50 Heirloom Buttons to Make, is really helpful in showing you how to make historical buttons, such as death’s head buttons. It’s been out of print for a while and because it’s highly sought after, it’s pretty expensive, but an inexpensive Kindle version has just come out!
While there aren’t too many museum books that are new and exciting, the V&A has recently put out Muslin, which covers the history of the fabric and draws on many items from their collection.
DVD on Carnevale in Venice
Who doesn’t want to go to Venetian carnevale? Well, me for a long time, since I pictured hordes and hordes of crowds in chintzy costumes. Seeing T&T’s Real Travels DVD of carnevale has totally changed my mind! One-half of T&T is fellow costumer Trystan, and she and her husband filmed their trip a few years back to Venice during carnevale. Contrary to what I expected, it looks totally amazing — they captured many many gorgeous costumes, trolled through one of the best costume shops in Venice, and documented the creme de la creme of costume events, the Ballo del Doge. You can really get an idea of what it would be like to take a costumer trip to Venice during carnevale, and even if you can’t go yourself, it’s pretty lovely armchair travel.
Random stuff from Me!
Of course, I can’t help but plug my own Etsy shop, in which I sell vintage patterns and bits and bobs that I’ve realized I’m never going to use. Here’s a few interesting and cheap items that might interest someone: