Oh 2017,

When I began this blog a year ago, I had zero clues that 2016 held all that it did in store. Re-reading my new year’s post from last January, I had a lot of good intentions – some even paned out! I did make a lot more cheese (aged rounds I’ve lost count of and at least 14 quarts of yogurt cheese between the Rose Tournament, the Pennsic Party, vigil tables, and personal obligations). Some new blog posts made their way to being posted, but unfortunately there are several drafts still sitting abandoned. A lot more 16th century happened, including a dream dress that I had been planning for a while. Some back-logged projects were finished, but not nearly enough. Health wise, I’m 20lbs down from the initial goal of 50, so that’s something. And most excitedly, I learned new things. So, yay.

And now its a new year, with some old goals. Some willing, some now looking forced. ((((((((And here our intrepid blogess hangs her head in shame.))))))))) Confession time, most of my elevation dress was hand sewn. In an effort to keep seams looking tidy, linings supporting the way they should and constructed in a period manner, all while being able to get a closer fit and retaining my sanity with a sewing machine I usually give the side-eye to  –  I chose hand sewing. In addition, 15 of the afore mentioned 20 lbs decided that leaving between Pennsic and Kris Kinder was a good time; this meant I was a tailor’s/seamstress’s worst nightmare. Hence why I chose to make my elevation outfit, because I love my friends and realized that I would have been giving them as much joy in the project as a pair of properly applied thumbscrews. Where am I going with this? Oh yeah, hours and hours of handsewing, with wonky joints, and me being an idiot. That’s where I was going! For about a month after Kris Kinder, I couldn’t pick up a sewing project for more than 5 minutes without having something akin to tennis, hedger’s*, or apparently now stitcher’s elbow… Clearly! you laugh as you read, I would have learned my lesson! Clearly,,, not. I thought it had gotten better. I was progressing to do some super slow embroidery on thank you presents for ~20 min at a time, then a couple of nights of 30 min hand sewing on the yellow Rus dress I wore at Coronation; but, apparently after the last night of 45 min hemming – I’m back at square one. Which means, now, those much needed modifications to my elevation gown aren’t going to happen for Clothiers. So please, take a moment to wipe your eyes from the tears of laughter, there is no rush to continue. However, do take note of the moral of this story which is to take care of yourself.

Back to the goals bit….. Less hand sewing and embroidery, sadly. I had hoped on making a couple of Elizabethan wall hangings this year with embroidered slips and various applied work, that has been moved to the back burner. Even more sadly it means that some of the thank you gifts from my vigil and elevation that I had started, will have to be delayed longer. And more Elizabethan garb on the back burner, and, and, and, I could go on in a very grumpy fashion. Positive things that will happen are more past classes and book reviews *actually* making there way on here. With a fairly strange looking spring in terms of scheduling things, events are sadly looking sparse for the first half of the year (fall is looking good though!). Time spent at home, means more time for projects. I still have way too many unfinished projects laying around, so a goodly amount of energy will be prioritized in finishing those. Possibly, a garden might happen this year, with some exciting 16th century foods – but that will have to be a wait and see.

In terms of more exciting new things, after not touching clay for 10 years, I’m playing with it again – thanks to some not so subtle prompting (I’m looking at you Gwen). That in itself is a really good feeling, especially when you feel other artistic avenues have been temporarily blocked. Honestly, I didn’t realized how much I missed it. I’m not expecting anything miraculous to come from the endeavor, but I am looking forward to having a substantial amount of fun while being stupidly excited to attempt to reproduce some of the late 16th century household ceramic finds.

And now to focus on that class bit, I have a class to finish up for Clothiers this weekend!


*hedger’s elbow: a joke made by Alex in either the January or February episode of Tales from the Green Valley, likening the elbow pain from cutting and forming hedges to that of tennis elbow. Yes, the Ruth Goodman prescribed historical medicine of sage oil was used. No, it didn’t cure it; however, it didn’t hurt it, and it felt nice.



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