Working out reconstructions

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BBC – A Stitch In Time

(iPlayer link)

“Fusing biography, art and the history of fashion, Amber Butchart explores the lives of historical figures through their clothes.”

In last week’s programme the suit of clothes worn by Charles II in what I think is often called the Pineapple portrait was investigated, and this week it was the turn of the Arnolfinis.

I have a particular liking for this painting and used it as the forma as it were for one of the bedrooms in Hogepotche Hall, bringing it a little further forward and into the early 1600s while keeping as many of the furnishings and as much of the colour scheme as I could.  It became a full room with four-poster bed, fireplace etc but I made the main viewing angle/opening only as wide as the view you get in the original painting.  There is a second angle to view from in Hogepotche as you can go round the corner and look in and across the room through the window shown in the painting.  Then, taking further liberties with the room, I added a second window opposite the foot of the bed.

If you’re interested in more detail of my imagined version of the painting see From Mirror to Room and the subsequent pages cover the figures too.

Back to “A Stitch In Time”

In the programmes we find out about the history of a particular painting and get to visit a gloriously fascinating workshop, in this case to see the making of a reconstruction of the Arnolfini green dress, the fabrics used, methods of construction, the version of the dress achieved and the opportunity to view it in motion on the human figure.

If you are at all interested in history, or the history of art and/or costume these short programmes are a treat.

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Drifting along

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I’ve always had this ‘thing’ going with driftwood, for instance the ship’s name board that we collected in a cove at the base of the cliff close by our first home up here.  Very uninteresting you may think but that got used as a false floor in my first car so that I could reach the pedals and have my heels on the new floor.  Try driving for more than five minutes with your legs permanently waving in the air and you’ll know how much I appreciated that piece of drift wood.  More often than not the examples I collect are the small twisted pieces that I find irresistible as they are so full of movement and life,asking to be used in some way or another.

You can imagine my pleasure when I came across the work of James Doran-Webb today as he builds the most exquisite sculptures with driftwood of varying sizes, some twisted some less so.

He says that he goes to

“extraordinary lengths to get my sculptures out into the wild to orchestrate a perfect, natural shot.  …”

even though the sculpture(s) may weigh 500 kg

I hesitate to copy over any images from his website but would like to recommend you have a look.

The covers of his exhibition catalogues are very beautiful and full of the life and energy of his design. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do 🙂

 

Quick dash – interim report

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Something like this?

Well, not quite like this first photo.

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Her embarrassment was so great I just had to do that skirt, well, and then the sleeves, belt and earings too. Here, posing, her skirt is ballooned out as she has been sitting for some time.

More like this

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She’s come for a nice chat over a cup of tea

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but if she doesn’t take care she’ll have poured it all over the place

Handbag to be made and everything to be fixed down with the missing milk and knife added too.  Still waiting on the odd bit for the bureau and must do the photos for the bookshelves.  Oh, and find the charcoal for the coal bucket.

Must dash – have a good weekend 😉

Said I wouldn’t

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but I have

There were to be no human figures in this house, just animals and toys.  Then one day at home we had a conversation that wandered down memory lane and ended up for some reason talking about floral wrap-around aprons and head scarves and I just could not resist the temptation.  Somewhere along the line, when I come to do the fences and what passes for a garden, I’ve taken a fancy to having a go at a woman standing at the side fence looking over – possibly chatting, possibly just being nosey.  We’ll see.

In the meantime, having let figures creep into my mind, I’ve plumped for one in the sitting room, sharing afternoon tea with the dog on the sofa.  I’ve used a kit doll (head and upper chest, legs and arms) from World of My Own.  I like the ones with heads on elastic so that you can get a little movement.  I think she’s the same model as in The Gossips in Hogepotche Hall.

Shirtwaister, hat, clutch handbag
and Great Aunt Agatha

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She is still awaiting sleeves and skirt and even a brooch, but, to save the embarrassment, I’ve draped a piece of cloth over her pink satin bloomers. She’s also in need of a hair trim but that will keep until she is fully dressed.

About making this dress:  well, put it this way, I can’t see me having a go again at this style of clothing anytime in the near future.  Not just the usual fiddling around disentangling arms, legs and head from the sewing thread, that’s par for the course, but the collar was such a pain!  I’ve used a close woven shirt material which is fine until you get across the weave when it runs away at the first whiff of a needle.  Anyway, the bodice, hair and hat are on, with the three-quarter sleeves, skirt and belt plus the handbag still to come.  Then she can have her cup of tea in peace.  Poor woman may have to wait a little, sitting there in her underwear and top, as am tied up a little over the rest of the week.

Things beginning to arrive for the sitting room

A battery-powered standard lamp which came with a very, very white shade and bulb and a gold stem.

That cup of tea

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This I’ve had for a wee while. The cup of tea being poured and cake to come. Must get a milk jug and knife sorted out.

Fire-irons and coal bucket

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Fire-irons in the hearth and coal bucket to the side on the right – must put some coal in it. Magic cup of tea all set out and the standard lamp needs pushing back into the corner again along the chair and table too