When I was about 17 I came across a company called Gibbous. Gibbous makes really pretty dresses, using scraps of old materials to create something that is more made of scraps than it is anything else. Their style is beautiful, and I completely fell in love with it. In fact, Gibbous were instrumental in me starting to sew more in the first place: I wanted to make something like THAT. to wear something that felt more like it was a dream than reality.
A long time after that, someone recommended Neil Gaiman’s book Neverwhere to me. I loved it – it was in my mind based in the same universe as the Gibbous dresses; a world somewhere between sleep and awake.
Fast forward to this week: a very kind friend sent me a book that they had previously recommended to me. I finished it in days, in spite of it being really quite long and a very busy week! The book was The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern. One of the characters wears a dress made of scraps of white materials, which in my mind sounds exactly like it was created by Gibbous – it probably was, in honesty. I’d be surprised if it wasn’t the inspiration for the idea of Poppet’s dress. This book also slotted a few things into place about an artist I’ve been listening to for a few years – Alice’s Night Circus. Her music is ethereal, and there’s almost definitely a bit of influence from the book. Anyhow, I’d recommend the book AND the artist to anyone and everyone!
Anyhow, I’ve spent a bit of time getting to know Alice the sewing machine, particularly playing about with the ruffler and learning it properly. It’s been fun, but it left me with a multitude of ruffles all cascading off my table. As a result I decided to put together something I have wanted to do for a while: a short, ruffled petticoat. I began with all of hte ruffles I’d made with the ruffler, then decided that actually, I kind of needed to add a few bits of lace and suchlike. Gradually, it kind of took on a life of its own.
It isn’t exactly finished yet; i intend to cover that whole top portion in scraps of lace and suchlike as well, but it’ll do as a petticoat to wear for the event I’m going to at easter. It’s likely to be a work in progress over a long period of time as well, with extra patches of lace and white fabric being added into it as and when stuff appears in my stash. It’s almost a living piece of clothing: some of the pieces of lace on this were pinched off of my clothes from hwen I was very, very small. Others were my grandmother”s (both grandmothers’ actually)
Hardly anything on it has been hemmed: that’s deliberate. those frills are supposed to fray and there are meant to be threads everywhere.
It’s going to be murder to clean though.