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Happy New Year!

01 Jan

CATHERINE:  As promised, below are more photos of Darq and the Erte-inspired “Great Gatsby” New Year’s Eve Party costume (also see blog entry of December 31).  For those unfamiliar with Erte, he is considered the Father of Art Deco, an artist who designed costumes for theater and movies as well as fashion. Scroll down to my end note for more details of the outfit’s creation.  Comments are welcomed–so let me know which view wows you.

Unwrapping the Erte-inspired stole @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Unwrapping the Erte-inspired cape-stole @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Back view of the Erte-inspired cape-stole. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Back view of the Erte-inspired cape-stole. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

The stole ends are very, very long. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

The stole ends are very, very long. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Erte-inspired head piece. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Erte-inspired head piece. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq wears her Erte-inspired gown. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq wears her Erte-inspired gown. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq in Erte-inspired dress, note shoes peeking out. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Side view of Darq in her Erte-inspired dress, note shoes peeking out. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq wears her  Erte-inspired shoes. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq wears her Erte-inspired shoes–with “bling”–gotta have bling! @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

 

 

DARQ: Libations- that green fruity-thing looks interesting. @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean

DARQ: That green fruity-thing looks interesting. I wonder what kind of liquor is in it. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean

Darq: this is a really good drink!  @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq: This is a really good drink! I’ll have seconds and thirds. @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

AND NOW THE MIDNIGHT HOUR AND IT IS OFFICIALLY 2014–BRING ON THE CONFETTI AND “Auld Lang Syne” —

DARQ: Happy New Year! But there's confetti all over me and my gown! @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

DARQ: Happy New Year! But there’s confetti all over me and my gown! @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

DARQ:  "Stop!  Stop throwing confetti on me!" @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

DARQ: “Stop! Stop throwing confetti on me!” @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

Darq's Erte-inspired stole and dress made by Catherine E. McLean @ 2013

Darq’s Erte-inspired stole and dress made by Catherine E. McLean. The pose is as near to the drawing as possible. @ 2013

The Erte designs that inspired Catherine to create Darq's "2013 Great Gatsby New Year's Eve Party Attire." @ 2013 www.CatherineEmclean.com

The Erte designs that inspired Catherine to create Darq’s “2013 Great Gatsby New Year’s Eve Party Attire.” @ 2013 http://www.CatherineEmclean.com

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL !

CATHERINE:  One of the reasons I like Erte’s designs is the simplicity of the styles he created, and yet that simplicity is often deceptively intricate–for example, those are box pleats at the waistline on the front of the dress. A second reason I love Erte’s designs is the flow of the design, which translates to the soft flow of fabrics. The dress is a dove-grey, silk-polyester crepe with a wonderful drape factor.

I only had a paper doll book and an old Erte calendar for inspiration to create Darq’s “Great Gatsby” headdress, gown, shoes, and cape-stole. Even an online search netted the same illustrations. Of course, I’m pretty sure the cape-stole would have been made with real fur and something like brocade or a tapestry-like fabric for the insets, but my version is simpler: felt and glittery silver trims.  All in all, the outfit turned out exceedingly well, don’t you think?

NOTE TO SEWERS:  From the center back hem of the cape-stole to the tip of the front wraps is 1.5 yards.  Excessively long, you think?  Well, not really because those ends were meant to be wrapped around a body. There are 24 yards of rope trim outlining all those little silver-squares.  All that silver-work, trim, and the lace appliques took me more than 45 hours of hand sewing. 

NOTE TO AMATEUR PHOTOGRAPHERS LIKE MYSELF: The photo shoots were done with a “mansion setting” but also a “stage” (with different fabric backdrops) that I improvised.  Again, I am grateful to my friend Jamie for all the “props” she gave me to use for Darq’s pictures.  I fussed a lot, trying different poses, and so I spent roughly seven hours taking more than 200 photos, but I only kept a 39.

*****STOP BACK VALENTINE’S DAY when Darq will wear a new outfit–possibly an Erte-inspired one, but one that’s a heck of a lot less complicated and time-consuming to make!  LOL

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12 Comments

Posted by on January 1, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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12 responses to “Happy New Year!

  1. amybovai

    January 1, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    Extremely impressive, Catherine! Happy New Year to Darq and to her creator, YOU!

     
    • Colleen Leftheris

      January 2, 2014 at 3:17 PM

      Wow! Beautiful workmanship. You are so talented Catherine. Happy New Year to you and to Darq.

       
      • Catherine McLean

        January 3, 2014 at 1:37 PM

        DARQ: Many thanks for the New Year wishes, Colleen. Yes, Catherine can sew, but my arms about fell off holding what Catherine called the “Erte paper doll pose” during those hours-long photo sessions. You have a great new year, too.

        CATHERINE: Many thanks, Colleen, and have a good year ahead.

         
  2. Catherine McLean

    January 1, 2014 at 2:24 PM

    Thanks, Amy, and a very Happy New Year to you.

     
  3. Jamie L. Saloff

    January 2, 2014 at 8:55 AM

    I’m an Erte fan (always loved the “L” with the Leopard). That’s some headdress, but I imagine it’s no heavier than her helmet. ha ha ha. Got my own little project over the holidays, a “build a monster” from the Monster High dolls. Took the face paint off of the Medusa, and am going to try my hand at a repaint. Wish me luck.

     
    • Catherine McLean

      January 2, 2014 at 10:01 AM

      Yes, the headdress is lightweight, very lightweight, just breath on it and it slips off or shifts. Your build-a-monster project sounds interesting. Let me see the results! 🙂

       
  4. Kathy Otten

    January 2, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    Absolutely amazing. So intricate and beautiful. I can’t sew. My bobbin thread always looks like Charlie Brown’s kite string.

     
    • Catherine McLean

      January 3, 2014 at 1:40 PM

      My mom would always say “can’t is in the cornfield”– the translation of which still baffles me to this day but in essence my mother meant “never say can’t”. LOL As to your bobbin thread tangling–when that happens it’s because you didn’t get the upper thread through the tension wheel/gadget right. Not only do I know that for a fact from my years of sewing, but at one point in my life, I worked for Singer, the sewing machine company. All kidding aside, thanks so much for your comment on the Erte costume. It brightened my day!

       
  5. Christie Maurer

    January 2, 2014 at 5:03 PM

    What a gorgeous costume! I love Darq, and she looks absolutely splendid in it. Your creativity and imagination are wonderful.

     
    • Catherine McLean

      January 3, 2014 at 1:44 PM

      Hi, Christie, and many thanks for stopping buy and commenting. I’m so happy to know others like Darq and this special costume. 🙂

       
  6. Catherine McLean

    January 5, 2014 at 10:00 PM

    I got a private e-mail from Andrea in Germany asking what the headdress was made of. It’s made from the last foot of that 1/2″ silver-black trim that separates the two areas of silver squares. I sewed two pieces together. Then I searched through my “jewelry junk jar” (a collection of one earring or a piece of broken necklace, or other jewelry parts that might come in handy for some craft project). In the jar was on earring missing its cabochon. I removed the clip from the back, put sparkling silver glue in the cabochon area, added a filigree jewelry disk, and glued on a “gemstone” stick-on. Then I carefully beaded smaller filigree jewelry disks for the ear pieces. And, yes, it was time consuming hand work. But the result was worth it, wasn’t it? 🙂

     

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