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Costume College 2018 - The Royals

Starting at the finish of last year's Costume College 2017, I began to plan, prepare and gather materials. Time, life and work combine and the days, weeks and months fly by. Flash forward to the end of May 2018, as I prepare to get married...and I'm still not ready for Costume College 2018.

June passes, my wedding is wonderful. I was prepared enough and I finished sewing in time before leaving for the wedding weekend, to be able to fully enjoy every minute of it! July hits and in a mode of panic, I sew for CoCo with every spare moment I get, and procrastinate a lot in between. Knowing that I won't get anywhere close to completing the five costumes I'd designed and prepared for, I narrow it down to two that I can complete in time and are the most important to what I hope to share with the costuming community that gathers at this event.

A couple weeks go by with some progress, but not enough and still my work load is full and my personal life is full and the costumes sit half in piles and half draped on my mannequin, taunting me with every passing day. Costume College swiftly approaches and I'm not ready!!!

It's now Thursday morning and I'm madly sewing....but on client work, not on CoCo costumes. I've a deadline for my client with a 1pm delivery. I'll finish just in time to still have an hour to pack. That's right folks...I wasn't even packed and it was the first day of the event already. I have a client delivery, a three hour drive and the event registration to get to in time to not be late for the Pool Party in the evening.

I finish my client work at 11:30am and the tornado of packing ensues. The garment bag lies on the floor in my studio and I'm throwing in every single costume from my closet that I think might fit the theme, be somewhat easy to wear during the day and the half finished new costumes that I will have to finish sewing in my hotel room in order to debut at the events throughout the weekend! I pack up my sewing machine, all the accessories that are remotely relevant, all my supplies, materials, etc that I might possibly need. Oh, yeah, and regular clothes....I almost forget those. I do forget half of the food I'd prepared earlier in the week to bring and ALL of my business cards. I didn't bring a single one. I'm a hot mess!!!!!

Client costumes delivered and I'm on the road. Now I have three hours to think about and mull over how horribly I must have planned, what I could have done differently to prepare and all of the things still left to do. I'm also fixated on the fact that I won't arrive until exactly the moment that registration/check-in opens. The stress is overwhelming and I think, why do I do this!?!

Arriving, parking, checking in at registration all go smoothly despite my stress. I get everything unloaded into the hotel room and I start trying to decide what to wear for the Pool Party. I tried on three different costumes and couldn't get into a single one on on my own, or they didn't fit me anymore...."why don't they fit? Oh, I guess maybe I've changed shape since I last wore this, that's lovely!" This is going great and this is what the hotel room looks like when I finally decide to go in mundane muggle clothing to the first event at my favorite event of the year.

As I walked down to the poolside area where all are gathered, I started to enjoy myself. I sank slowly into a calm as I ran into and caught up with old friends at the Pool Party. I admired all of the creative "Realm of the Goblin King" inspired costumes. "This is why I do this!" I come to Costume College every year to be inspired, to enjoy friends I don't see often enough, to learn and to meet new people.

The next day I'm relaxed and fully enjoying myself. I get into costume easily and head down to the first class of the weekend.

This class is well taught and will help immensely with grading out patterns to a larger or smaller size or for developing my own patterns, if I decide to do that in the future.

Class number two was a question and answer session on how to go about publishing a book. It was inspiring and very informative. There may be some book writing taking place someday and if that happens, I'll have a good idea of how to go about publishing it.

I snap some photos for posterity of the day's costume and head off to sew for the evening event.

I finish my Friday night costume just enough to get into it & to look decent. Thank God, too, because I was to be part of a group costume. Commitments are important to keep and this one required me to be sewn in, literally, to be fully dressed to meet up with the others in my group.

The group decided to dress in Titanic era costumes and a lot of them reproductions from the movie. Everyone looked amazing and I'm so glad I made it in time to join them. It was an absolutely wonderful time having our photos taken as an extremely large group costume and jollying around taking our own photos after we were done in the portrait studio.

For this group costume, I was "the iceberg" and it was marvelous!!! "Iceberg dead ahead!"

Friday night's social is actually my favorite of the weekend's themed events and there were so many amazing costumes!

Saturday rolled around, more classes, including my favorite of the weekend, Integrating Lights & Electronics into Costumes. My mind was blown away with all of the possibilities for costuming and for my clients' future projects. This Gibson Girl made LED lighting for her Sunday morning costume while learning how to actually do that!

Took this photo in the portrait studio and was glad for this easy costume to wear for the day.

The red carpet & gala events were lovely! I enjoyed walking down the red carpet in my wedding dress. Yup, that's right, I was able to wear my wedding dress again. Most ladies never get a chance to.

Dinner out with my Mom and some friends was lovely. The gathering in a restaurant of so many Costume College attendees was quite wonderful, especially for the reactions from the regular restaurant diners.

Mom looked great in her Crown Royal dress!! So proud of her for all of her hard work to create and wear this beauty.

Sunday morning brought with it the next of the two new costumes and yes, I was up most of the night finishing it. Well, I did get four hours of sleep. But, how fitting it was, as the theme for the group costume for the following morning was The Disney Princess Walk of Shame.

NAILED IT! I might not have looked all that disheveled, but I was certainly up all night and felt the shame of not finishing before the event. Everyone else was perfectly not perfect!!

I spent the rest of my Sunday enjoying the last bits of the Costume College weekend, volunteering in the costume exhibit hall, taking my last class and purchasing some bobbles and bits from the marketplace.

Thanks for joining me throughout this very long recap of my favorite event of the year. There's so much more that could have gone into this, like all of the crazy amazing costumes, but I've taken up enough of your time already. I hope you enjoyed this jaunt through Costume College 2018. Until next time, happy sewing!

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