As I came downstairs this morning, I realized that I have so many projects in progress that I actually can’t do any of them. It’s covered in projects. If I put anything away, I’ll likely never find it again; if I do, it’s entirely likely that I’ll forget what it was and what steps need to be taken to make it into the thing I was trying to do. Spread out on the table, I can easily tell what each thing is and what needs doing to it, but I can’t actually do any of it because there is no room on the table in which to work.
Why don’t you come up to the lab
and see what’s on the slab.
I see you quiver with antici…
1. Turnshoes: DONE!!!!!
14th century footwear, based on typical finds, found in Stepping Through Time. Todde measured my foot, traced it, and cut the wooden last, then showed me how to do the different types of stitches. He also assisted greatly at some points when my experience and/or manual strength weren’t quite up to the task. What’s left of this project: Fix the gap in the edge of shoe #2. (I think I might have just fixed it?).
Cut an opening for shoe #2. Hopefully it will actually match the opening I cut in shoe #1.
Soak and turn shoe #2.
Dry both shoes.
Affix ties/toggles to openings.
Punch holes for ties to go through. <- can’t do this till I buy the right awl
Dye both shoes. Dry again.
Wax/oil both shoes.
Put on shoes, dance around singing songs of triumph.
2. Pigments: DONE!
Deliver. <– Will deliver to next baronial council meeting that I attend. Paints are made from pigment + binder. Binder can be oil, glair, egg yolk, or probably some other things that I haven’t learned about yet. When I was Scribal Guildmaster for Gyldenholt, the guild were gifted some pigments. We never used them, so I still have them. The pigments aren’t period substances, and many aren’t period colors, but making binder and mixing the pigments into them are both period processes that one can learn by using the modern pigments. Find someone within the barony who wants them.
Deliver. <– Will deliver to next baronial council meeting that I attend.
3. Fibulae: Romans basically invented the safety pin. Doing an Etsy search for “fibula” will land you with several different objects that work on the same principles: one or more metal wires, twisted into a shape that creates spring/tension and that thus can be used to fasten one bit of fabric to another. I’ve bought wire, and I’ve cut it to size for making a couple different types of fibulae. I also bought some bits for my Dremel tool, because arthritis is a thing and I don’t think I should have to make it worse out of slavish devotion to period techniques on objects that I’m going to make, unless making the object in a perfectly period fashion is the goal. Since my persona isn’t Roman, I don’t feel the strongest need to make all of a Roman outfit and its accoutrements/accessories in period fashion. But I also don’t feel the need to pay $20 for one of these suckers. Why pay $20 for a finished object, when you can instead spend $100 in craft supplies and then make nigh-unlimited amounts of the same object? Right. I didn’t think so!
Grind rough-cut tips.
Straighten bent bits.
Grind poky-sticky-ouchie bits.
Bend into shape.
4. Hakim’s dark blue tunica: DONE!
For people who aren’t Roman, we sure do want to wear Roman things once in a while. I’ve made most of a tunica, but then had to put it down for some reason, and forgot all about it. Fold & sew all edge seams.
Hem bottom & sleeves.
5. Mending pile: Oh, this pile. It is huge. It fills up an entire laundry hamper, and that’s with everything folded nicely, not even jumbled up at all. The majority of what’s in this pile are hand-me-down garb that I’m extremely grateful to have because it’s really lovely stuff, but because it doesn’t fit properly, I have to do stuff to make it wearable. I don’t want to do stuff. I just want it to magically fit. So I’m staring at this pile for nearly 6 months now, and it’s staring right back at me and refusing to magic itself. Just looking at it makes me tired.
Take it in; let it out; hem it; fix a hole here; shorten there; finish that seam.
“Make do and mend.”
“Use it up; wear it out; make it do, or do without.”
Stop using WW2 era slogans. (Will never actually happen.)
This one will never actually get done. There will always be something else that needs taking in, letting out, darning, patching, fixing, improving. But it’s on the To-Do list anyway.
Every time I see someone lay out their plan, complete with insecurities and caveats, I am amazed at their audacity.
Thanks? I actually have been hesitating over the ‘publish’ button for about three months now, because I know that the second I tell folks what I’m planning to do, I find myself stymied and incapable of doing that thing. (It’s why I will never again volunteer to run anything or be the head of anything. I like jobs where I can show up, do a thing, and disappear while I recover from human interaction.) Posting this feels like I’m being foolish, actually. But I don’t know, not doing it makes it feel like I’m giving up.
I’ve updated this list, rather than just create a separate list each time I have more to do. I think — or rather, I hope — it’ll keep me honest about the things that I’m doing.
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