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Ok - so it's not all dashikis.  I'm sewing costumes from around the world.  Middle Eastern, Latin American, African, Asian... about the only thing I'm not trying is Native American.

My office is tasked to put on the Multi-Cultural Day - with food, exhibitions, and entertainment for a crowd of over a thousand.  (We had a thousand last year and ran out of food)  I'm running the event this year and have an adequate budget, which is very good.

And amongst all the running around and minor details and ridiculous requests, there's the issue of clothing. 

They want to clothe the volunteers with tradiional garments from around the world.  And do wall displays of folk costumes. 

We had mannequins given to us from a department store, which is very helpful.  But when it comes to the clothing itself, there are two options - either I buy Halloween costumes that look like crap, or I buy real folk costumes which start around $200 depending on the country of origin and go way up from there.  My 'helpful' boss sent me to a website where he liked the clothing ... they were asking for a $600 down payment and the final cost would be decided upon when the beadwork was completed - ah, no.  My budget isn't that grand.

There doesn't seem to be any middle ground. 

And mind you, the even is next week.

I was at an ethnic clothing website and my boss pipes up over my shoulder, "We could buy that one."  And I point out it's $180.  And he shrugs.  Shrugs!!!  So, like an idiot I point out why it's not worth $180.  It's a T-tunic.  That's three seams and a hem!  I could make that on my machine in like a couple of minutes.  An hour if I was doing it right with French seams for like $25 worth of material!


So, now I'm sewing for the event.


But, on the bright side, I did get to go to a fabric store with a credit card that wasn't mine and got to shop like a demon.  Doesn't do me much good, but it was fun. 

I've knocked out the first garment, an oversized tunic with side slits and inset bell sleeves in block printed linen.

One down, twenty to go.


Date: 1 July 2009 03:29 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] liagiba84.livejournal.com
The new chapter is amazing and lovely and perfect as always. I hold a special place in my heart for this story of yours :)

Date: 1 July 2009 11:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apollinav.livejournal.com
Thank you love. I appreciate that.

Date: 1 July 2009 07:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] junewilliams7.livejournal.com
might be too late to ask now, but aren't there some foreign students at local colleges (and owners of local ethnic restaurants) who would lend their outfits? or local clubs of various nationalities? the volunteers may also have ethnic friends, or friends who have traveled to other countries and have outfits. just thinking out loud here...

Date: 1 July 2009 11:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apollinav.livejournal.com
We're having costumes brought in by a local museum for display only. And several of the committees already have national dress. But we can't wear them. They want stuff that looks good, but we don't have to worry about getting messy.

Thanks though, it's a lovely thought.

Date: 1 July 2009 12:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pittwitch.livejournal.com
YIKES! I'm flipping out over a wedding quilt that is supposed to be done by 9/1. And it's already cut!

I'm not good at garment construction, but for future reference, I can do native American beadwork. :D

I sew hope you have fun with all those costumes.

My fingers hurt for you.

Date: 1 July 2009 11:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apollinav.livejournal.com
I like to sew, so it's not a huge deal. Mind you my time is limited, and I'm only committing myself to what I can make.

Which is why I won't do Native American stuff. It's very involved and I haven't the foggiest what I'm doing or it's significance. I'm envious of your talent with beadwork. I wish I knew how to do something like that, but alas, no.

Date: 1 July 2009 04:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dressagegrrrl.livejournal.com
Twenty in a WEEK? Is that POSSIBLE? O_O

Date: 1 July 2009 11:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apollinav.livejournal.com
Yep. Unfortunately.

Two down.

I made those last night and finished hand hemming the necklines today at lunch. You can do it. If you don't sleep.

The event is 10 July. And I have a 4 day weekend to work on it. Not that I should enjoy my time off or anything...

But whatever.

Date: 8 July 2009 04:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] clairvoyant12.livejournal.com
Your devotion to work goes above and beyond the call of duty. French seams? LOL I haven't thought about those in twenty years. During high school, I sewed most of my wardrobe. I even dragged my sewing machine to Spanish class for a demonstration of how to sew a French seam, all described in Spanish, of course.

I stopped sewing garments (except for Halloween costumes) when I became gainfully employed and short on free time. Now I sew the occasional quilted wall hanging and mending, of course. My husband rather donate a shirt to goodwill than sew on a button. OY!!! I told him I'll get around to it eventually and will show my nine-year-old son how to sew, too.

Twenty costumes in ten days? I guess we won't see an update of "The Gilded Cage" anytime soon. I would have loved to help you with the sewing, but there are several states between us. Good luck with your project.

Date: 10 July 2009 03:40 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] apollinav.livejournal.com
I ended up running out of fabric before finishing the goal, and I was ok with that. The final count wasn't nearly as impressive as 20. I made 8. But they were well made and generously sized.

I've not had a moment to myself to write this week. Each night I've come home between 6-8pm to crash or work on finalizing projects for this.

But we did setup today and it looks FAB!!! It looks like we spent $8,000. And we did spend $8,000. Imagine that.

I'm ready for the weekend. Even if most of it will be spent returning rentals. Monday I have a day long Mediation. Wednesday I leave for Toronto.


Sunday I shall write TGC.

After all, it is my birthday.


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