So, I introduced myself, got rid of the fabric and made a good friend.
Some of you may remember her as the Saucy Wicked Witch at Costume Con 27 in Balitmore!
As Andrea said, my name is Marietta Greene and I first met Andrea about 10 years ago while we were both shopping at Hancock Fabrics. When we first met I admit I was a bit star-struck. I had been using her patterns for personal or professional costuming for years and it was kind of like meeting a Rock Star. At the time I was the Costume Shop Manager for Imagination Stage in Bethesda MD. I also had the opportunity to sew samples for Andrea and be her plus size mannequin every once in awhile.
By the time I was 12, I had created many original Barbie designs (stolen by the mean girl down the street) and for myself.
Since I grew up actively involved in Community Theatre, I had access to the costumes for 2-3 community theatres and 1-2 high schools stored in our basement. As a teenager, if I couldn’t sleep, I would repurpose a costume or two or create something new from scratch to wear to school the next day (to be borrowed and never returned).
I majored in Theatre and German as an undergrad and learned how to properly draft and drape patterns in grad school (before that, I just pretended I knew what Iwas doing). I have worked in larger regional theatre costume shops (Arena Stage, Minneapolis Children’s Theatre) where we would never use commercial patterns and other shops where there just wasn’t the time or staff to always draft from scratch (Imagination Stage, various community theaters).
I do enjoy drafting my own patterns but sometimes you have to “borrow” elements that you know will work and will save you time. Andrea’s patterns have been great for that. I tend to use her Colonial men’s pattern quite often for that purpose. I don’t think it is available anymore – I have had it in my stash for quite awhile.
I created this particular costume by altering the original pattern. I cut and slashed the jacket bodice to accommodate the built-in belly, added a revere collar and added lots of fullness to the legs of the breeches. It was also built all-in-one to accommodate the quick changes in and out of the costume.
historically accurate based on research (primarily Norah Waugh’s THE CUT OF MEN’S
CLOTHES). We tailored it as much as time and staff would allow and fully lined the jacket and sleeves. For the yellow jacket upstage, we had to lengthen the jacket quite a bit as the actor was 6’4”or taller.
I currently like to describe myself as a recovering Costumer (taking a break from the professional life of costuming but will probably go back to where my true heart lies). For now, I sew for my 7-year-old son, mostly shorts and t-shirts for him and Dirndls for me. (I lived and worked in Germany and Austria and always have loved the look of the many types of Trachten - Germanic traditional dress).
elements. You can find these and many other Trachten patterns on the Simplicity
Andrea here again ... Marietta neglected to mention she is a super professional knitter and managed a couple Hancock store for a few years. I would really like her to talk about that experience sometime in the future.
But, now you know a little about her. She will be guest blogging from time to time on a variety of subjects.