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Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
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The Bonnie Lass Ensemble
Submitted By margery on 10/10/04
A Maiden's Musings, margery, Documents, Historical Costume Inspiration Festival, Fashion, Scotland, Bonnie Lassies, Plaid, Photography, Horses, Brownie 
This Document originally posted in the "A Maiden's Musings" Group

I'm so very excited to finally post my first entry for the fabulous Historical Costume Inspiration Festival!
Without further adieu, I am pleased to submit for your perusal. . . 
The Introduction
Firstly, gentle reader, I must apologize for feeling the necessity of giving an introduction.  It cannot be helped, however, so I pray you to bear with me for the interval of elaboration on a subject dear to my heart.  
I must confess something about myself which may help you understand how very special this costume is to me.
I am infatuated with Scotland.
The Inspiration
The music , the ballads, the culture, the foods, the accent, the heros and heroines, the histories, the landscape, the mist, the plaids, even the very heather on the hillside served as an inspiration to me for this costume.    
My paternal great-grandmother's maiden name was Kitty Stuart, of the little Scottish hamlet of Pitlochry. 
I have a picture of Kitty, c. 1920, dressed in the full highland regialia of pleated tartan plaid, grouse-foot pin, and tam, dancing the fling.  You can only imagine my rapture at finding such a picture!  I regret exceedingly that it is at present unavailable.
It is one of my dearest dreams to someday make a pilgrimage over the water, to meet the people of my clan name, and to see with my own eyes that romantic, mist-laden little island of which I am so justly proud.
Other inspiration for this project includes the timeless, romantic scenes in the pages of Sir Walter Scott's Rob Roy and The Lady of The Lake, The Scottish Chiefs by Jane Porter, and In Freedom's Cause, by G.A. Henty.  
My dear friend and fellow Scotland enthusiast, Tasha, and I even have Scottish nicknames - mine being Margery Stuart - Margery after the charming, spirited heroine of In Freedom's Cause, and Stuart being my own clan name.

What though no rule of courtly grace To measured mood had trained her pace,-- 
A foot more light, a step more true, Ne'er from the heath-flower dashed the dew;
E'en the slight harebell raised its head, Elastic from her airy tread: 
What though upon her speech there hung 

The accents of the mountain tongue,--- 
Those silver sounds, so soft, so dear,The listener held his breath to hear!
A chieftain's daughter seemed the maid; Her satin snood, her silken plaid, 
Her golden brooch, such birth betrayed. 
And seldom was a snood amid Such wild luxuriant ringlets hid,
Whose glossy black to shame might bring
The plumage of the raven's wing; 
And seldom o'er a breast so fair Mantled a plaid with modest care, 
And never brooch the folds combined Above a heart more good and kind.
Her kindness and her worth to spy, You need but gaze on Ellen's eye;
Not Katrine in her mirror blue Gives back the shaggy banks more true,
Than every free-born glance confessed The guileless movements of her breast; 
Whether joy danced in her dark eye,Or woe or pity claimed a sigh, 
Or filial love was glowing there, Or meek devotion poured a prayer, 
Or tale of injury called forth 

The indignant spirit of the North. 
One only passion unrevealed With maiden pride the maid concealed, 
Yet not less purely felt the flame - O, need I tell that passion's name?

--The lady of the Lake

Sir Walter Scott

~Canto first~

The Costume
The outfit consists of a full, gathered skirt of small burgundy and green check, with matching tam and fringed shawl - also a simple black twill lace-up vest bodice.  I made these about four or five years ago, using the Simplicity "Bonnie Lassies" pattern by Andrea Schewe.  I sewed the white muslin blouse a little over a year ago for a piano recital, using the Armistice Blouse pattern from Folkwear.  I love this blouse!  It fits so cunningly into the neckline of the vest, and I adore the pintucks running down the front.
My outfit is completed by hand-forged celtic inspired buckles worn on each shoulder, which I bought at a local Mountain Man Rendezvous tradeshow.  The shoes are black leather kitten heels, with the most darling little Scottish looking tassels over the toes!
Meet my lovely assistant model, Rosie. . . also my beloved accordion, Remo=)
This is my other lovely assistant model, the wonderful Brownie.  
As good a laddie as ever trod the dust 'o the 'arth. . . 
The front detail of the blouse can also be seen in this shot - also the shoulder buckles.  
On a side note, said buckles are absolutely wicked sharp - Yet I wear them anyway...
I'm quite crazy.  Or is it the Scots stubbornness in me? ;D
Fringe detail - I dyed the lace on the cuffs and collar of the blouse with tea to match the color of the muslin.
Horses, costumes, and a jaunt through the forest. . . bliss
This shot was inspired by the CD cover of Echoes in the Weave, an album by Bonnie Leigh Barnum, harpist
Thank you so much for reading!  Will ye' no come back again?
Vivas Ut Vivas!
--The Lady Margery Stuart

>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/04 - 20:53 GMT
(In Reply to Item)
Simply splendid photo shoot, dear!  You're so good at natural looking poses - I can never think of what to do with myself.  Ah well, some have it, and some don't;)  I do have one more photo shoot to do, so maybe I can experiment=)
Yes, someday we both need to make a pilgrimage to Scotland...
Your loving friend,
~Edith MacAlpine~
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/06 - 1:14 GMT << In Reply to
Thanks, dear=)
I don't know about that. . . I think your posing is quite perfect.  You're much too modest;)
Aye, indeed.  Someday!
Your loving,
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/06 - 1:20 GMT << In Reply to
Well, okay...after today, I'm feeling much better about my modeling abilities;)  I just needed to use my imagination a bit more.
Lovingly yours,
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/04 - 21:18 GMT
(In Reply to Item)
This is an adorable outfit! I love the jaunty tam and the flowing skirt!
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/06 - 1:17 GMT << In Reply to
Thanks so much, Atlanta!  It's quite fun to wear=)
I'm so happy you are hosting this lovely event - It's been such a delight to participate!
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/05 - 16:00 GMT
(In Reply to Item)
Lovely dress! The photos are wonderful as well. 
It's great to see another accordionist. I just love white accordions -- as every main accordion I've ever played is white. 
Great job!
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/06 - 1:25 GMT << In Reply to
Thank you!  I just love photo shoots=)
It's good to hear of a fellow accordion enthusiast!  Yes, I love my white accordions.  I have three, actually - a 120 button (Remo), an 80 button(Frontalini), and a little old 12 button (Honer).  They were all given to me, and I was so surprised that they were all white, as they seem to be rather rare.
Thanks for stopping by!
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/07 - 16:47 GMT << In Reply to
I know. . . white accordions do seem rather rare.  
I have a white 120 bass Pancordion Crucianellik, a white 120 bass (but smaller) accordion (I can never remember the brand!). . . I also have a blue handcrafted 48 bass accordion that was given to me and a red Hohner diatonic that I have to figure out how to play.  So I actually have a patriotic accordion collection. :D All unplanned.  
It's so neat that all yours are white.  I know the majority of accordions are black.  I played for a time with the Spokane Accordion Ensemble, and was the only accordion that wasn't black.  
How long have you been playing?  It's just so neat to find another accordionist. :D  (Especially one that loves costuming and Scotland.)  
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/07 - 17:53 GMT << In Reply to
Oh. My. Word.  Did you actually say that you played with the Spokane Accordion Ensemble?  =D
Do you live in the Spokane area now?  I am close enough to Spokane to make a trip there every few months.  I've been longing to meet someone who played the accordion (In other words, someone who knew what they were doing, unlike me;) - I've never met with success, as of yet.  I've been playing for about two years, but am entirely self-taught.  It is one of my dearest wishes to get together with a fellow accordionist and, at the least, watch them at work.
Your collection sounds lovely!  I'm so glad you commented here!
It is wonderful to find folks with the same interests and likes over the blogosphere=)  How many people are out there, all infatuated with accordions, costuming, and Scotland?  
I suppose one will never know until they meet=) 
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/07 - 18:37 GMT << In Reply to
You're kidding!  I'd love to meet you.  That would be so cool. I never dreamed you were anywhere near.  I'm north of Spokane.   Don't think less of being self-taught -- I did that for fiveish years.  You learn a lot that way.  I'd be more than happy to share some of my sheet music collection as well.   Have you ever heard the Spokane Accordion Ensemble play?  They're great. :D  I think they'll be having another concert this winter, before Christmas. 
My email is cowgirl_creations (at) hotmail.com.  Let me know if you want to get together.  That would be fun. :D
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/08 - 5:12 GMT << In Reply to
This is what I call providential! =D  That is too exciting for words.  I will definitely send you an e-mail as soon as I am able.  I would be so glad to meet you!
I've not yet had the pleasure to hear the Spokane Accordion Ensemble play - though I saw a poster in the post office awhile back advertising a "movie score" concert.  Our neighbor, Kathleen Falco, who plays with them, put it there.  I wanted to go so much, but it didn't work out.  
Someday. . . :)

>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/08 - 17:19 GMT << In Reply to
You're kidding! Kathleen is your neighbor! That's crazy!  Ok, this is a small world.  Forgive the cliche.  I roomed with Kathleen last year at the Kimberly Accordion Competitions. :D   
Yes, unfortunately I missed seeing that particular concert -- though it would have been loads of fun.  They were planning on having the MC dress up in different outfits to reflect each of the movies. 
-- Corrie
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/13 - 20:32 GMT << In Reply to
That is too amazing, Corrie!  I've only met Kathleen once, and that for about five minutes, at a neighborhood garden tour last year=)  However, she said she would love to get together with me sometime, but I've not heard from her since:(  It is a small world!
I'll try to contact you sometime this week - life is just too busy at times, but I'm hoping it will slow down a wee bit with colder weather coming;)
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/25 - 15:35 GMT << In Reply to
I totally understand the life being too busy. . . There is always so much to do!  Anyway, no worries.  Would love to chat with you sometime. :D
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/26 - 2:07 GMT << In Reply to
Thanks=)  I have been thinking about you - Lord willin' and the crick don't rise, we'll be able to get together yet!
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/26 - 16:39 GMT << In Reply to
I love that saying!  Yep, hopefully we could do that. I would really like that.
I guess the Spokane Accordion Ensemble has another concert coming up in December. 
By the way. . . for fun. . . I tagged you over at my blog.  
>> Reply
Array Re: Historical Costume Inspiration Festival
2010/10/27 - 21:36 GMT << In Reply to
I would love to go see the Accordion Ensemble live!!  We'll see. . . 
Thanks for the tag!  I'll be looking forward to doing it when I get a chance.  Also - in return - you might enjoy the Book Lover's Quiz that I have made perpetually active... ;)

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