I was very inspired to do a doubletake on the theme: I used mostly upcycled materials (renewing them) but I also wanted my outfit to have a literal renewal process, and on top of that I wanted the renewed outfit to display the duality often found in the myths of renewal (as phoenix).
So I wanted to do many things, but in between my new jobs I had to cling to a sentence that pains me and fuels me at the same time: kill your darlings!
So I gathered the materials I had from my thrifting adventures and tried to figure out what was actually possible for me. I found a lot of gray nuances and thought it tied well with the white rescued bridal lace I had prepped and washed just a few months before.
The gray tone had me thinking weeping angels and the song of Agathe and the silver lily. “Agathe i sit jomfrubur” loosly translates to “Agathe in her virgin-cage” and is a tale of a virgin in a tower awaiting her knight, but every time they come to save her they disregard the silver lily that will drown them in the fog and the witch will eat them. In the end Agathe will jump from her tower to her death effectively making the witch starve as no more knights will come.
Before transformation is Agathe and after is the relationship between the tower and the silver lily, with the tulle being the drowning fog.
I wanted to find my own way to quick-change as the ones I’ve found either looks very bulky in the before outfit or they are getting help with assistants pulling off the clothing attached with velcro or so.
I wanted a more elegant solution and I am stolked that my idea accually worked more or less as intended.
Once again this year I’ve crammed as many firsts as I dared with the very limited time I had to spare. The quick change was a BIG first for me. External boning channels were also a first and a pain in the tush on the gray side as the gray fabric is not happy with the iron, making me have to baste each channel by hand before applying it to the corset. In the end I am happy I did it though.
I’ve never sewn a jacket before either--only for roleplay with little attention to detail. This one was with a collar and poofy sleeves and I love it to bits.
The snap-on skirt was also a first for me, and I was inspired by Barbara's tulle train.
I’ve gained a lot of weight since last using standard patterns, so I had to redesign the skirt with a lace-up back since I did not have enough fabric to re-cut. It opens in the back with snaps and the skirt is attached to the hem of the corset with snaps as well so that it won’t show through the corsetry mesh.
New/stash materials: corsetry mesh, nude coutil, boning, caps, eyelets, jacket lace, glass beads from last year's entry.
Upcycled/thrifted materials: silver fabric found in two seperate thrift shops, rescued lace from an old wedding gown, soft gray tulle, nude wool, brooch and double boning for pulling, snapbottoms, ribbon, biastape.
What was it like to compete this year? What would you say to someone who is on the fence about entering next year?
It was amazing pushing myself to do some of the things I've postponed doing because I was scared of firsts. That is what this competition is about for me: being brave and willing to mess up to learn.
I pushed three people to at least start their entry and I know that at least one has taken the step and entered for the first time.
Even if you never considered it, you really should because this is not as much about competing as much as it is about growth and personal development.
It is such a unique competition space where support is an essential part, and you are driven by more than the prizes.
But I do love that the prizes are there as well; it helps ignite the passion and drive. <3 Do it, you will not regret it.