Friday, March 23, 2012

Music and Dance Progress

 Habeas Corpus.
We are a  family that loves music. and dancing, so that will definitely be a focus for our learning.  In fact, that is how we first became acquainted with members of our shire.    We've been dancing for some time now, performing with a group that dances at Renaissance Faires and other local festivals.   Most of our dancing has been limited to English Country dances many  of which are so "new" as to be out-of-period for the SCA.   I think they will always be my first love. I do love a well-staged, Jane Austen ball.  For the SCA,  we need to work on learning the older Italian and French dances.




    Gaelic Storm and  Geneviève 
Of course,  due to our real life shenanigans,  we know a bit of Irish dance, too.    Geneviève performs with an Irish dance group here in Iowa City.  She's had a fairly busy month.  Along with the normal St. Patrick's Day madness, they performed with Gaelic Storm,  The Chieftains and Lúnasa.    I am guessing that no matter how out-of-period it is, that isn't go to stop the pirates at the Faires from asking her step up and do a jig again this year.   She picked a French persona, because she wanted to do something different for her SCA persona than real life.  LOL   Now she is thinking that her SCA persona may have to take up a secret life running with the Celts and pirates at Faires.

As far as instruments go, we are fairly new to playing.  Last fall, I pulled the old recorder out of the attic (actually, it was still in my mother's attic, if that gives you any clue how long it has been around) and was determined to pick it up again.   I played the oboe when I was in school, so I was thinking it wouldn't take long.   I play the tin whistle, but that is certainly not period.    Let's just say that practice time is a rare commodity around here, and it is not progressing as quickly as I would like.

Morcant plays the piano and the upright bass.    Neither of which travels very well.  So he is borrowing our son's mandolin and working up some songs on that.  I am jealous of how quickly this is going for him.    Once we are able to play some selections,  Geneviève wants to work on learning the lyrics to some of the songs so that she can sing.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Dress by Melinda at Camelot's Closet

I  ordered this dress for Geneviève, today.    It  is likely a bit fancy for the tourney events,  but it will work well when we dance at the Faires and go to indoor events.   I am usually a make-it-myself kind of person.  That is part of the fun for me.  But she was poking around on Etsy, found this and really, really wanted it.  The surcote is made  of 100% silk, excepting the trim and the under dress is embroidered cotton.  

One of the realities of living in Iowa, is that fabric selection is awful and it is not cheap. At my local Joann's store,  an 8 x 8 swatch of silk is $3, so you can imagine what the three or four yards I would need   for this surcote would run. It was a good deal, too.  Honestly for what it cost,  I don't think I could have purchased the material,  not to mention the time it saved me.  I want to find a dark brown wool to make a cloak for her to wear over it,  in the winter.   She has a plain chemise and a rough peasant skirt for camping.  She has to think on what else to make but we have plenty of time.

I haven't really thought about my own garb, yet.  I have some  from performing with the dance troup, but I am not too keen on using it.  The second dress is definitely English and my first attempt was rough to say the least.  I will keep them as a back up, or try to repurpose them,  I suppose.  The chemise and the underskirt would make for a good camping clothes.    I may end up ordering a fancy Faire overdress and making our "everyday" outfits.   I can whip out a chemise in a few hours.

One of the quirky things I have to deal with is keeping my garb appropriate to my venue.  My persona will have to be a bit of a time traveler at times, I am afraid.   The dresses I would wear as even as an early period noble are not suitable for dancing at the Faires, so when you see me there I will likely still be wearing something Celtic, but it will definitely have to be brought a few centuries forward.     

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Dusting off the Feast Gear for Spring

As you can tell by the lack of posting, we were hibernating.  Honestly,  we had a couple of mundane things pop up that took up far too much of our time. We decided to cut a few obligations in order to make time for the ones that  are more important to our family.  To the confusion of many who know us, the SCA made the cut.   It something that all of us enjoy and my thinking is that if you can get your teen to hang out with you,  you work the angle.

So as the plan is actually to make it to some events in the upcoming months,   I am trying to take things out and make an inventory of what we have and what we still need.   I had dug out the feast gear and was tallying it all on a spreadsheet ( welcome to my own special form of OCD)  when the boys and I decided it would be fun to have a Spring Feast, this evening.

Feast gear is one thing I have a lot of as I've been working on putting together our collection for a few years now, due to dancing at Renaissance Faires.   It can be done quite inexpensively.   Most of our items were picked up at local thrift shops, excepting the stoneware pottery which I bought from an acquaintance who is a merchant at  faires we frequent.   This isn't all we have, but this is what we needed for dinner.  I am sure that I will probably pick up more pieces but I think this looks good enough to be presentable.    Eventually Geneviève wants to have a go at carving some bowls and we might try wood burning some designs on the wood chargers.

I wish I were as prepared in other areas....


I am trying to remember to stay away
from clear glass as it was not likely
to be period  for us. 


Isn't this the cutest little salt pot?