Thursday, May 01, 2008

May "Take it Further" Challenge

This month Sharon has asked us a curly question. "What do you call yourself and why?"
Since 1996 when I first started working in the theatrical costume world I have thought of myself as a costumer. Before that I guess you would have called me a dressmaker or seamstress, as that was my main source of "income" (if you don't count the DH's salary, VBG) These days I introduce myself as a freelance costume maker. That causes some confusion, as lots of people think I mean I design and make swimsuits !

I'm technically unemployed and any money I do earn is as a result of my "hobby" of making theatrical and historical costumes. By the time I deduct fabric and trimming costs, power and light, depreciation of equipment etc. I actually make a pittance, but that's not why I do it. I get a thrill seeing my clothing in performance, whether in a major stage production like Sound of Music, Annie or the Producers, or in the dancing studio shows, or on stage in a major Club show. Of course it would be lovely to receive a fair payment for my work, but they couldn't afford me, LOL, and neither could the historical house I sometimes sew for. Now that's not to say that I work for nothing, but I have a fee scale dependent on the type of work. Most seamstresses work this way, and the fee will vary with deadlines and difficulty of the work, as with any other "business". That's the part I hate, quoting on a job.

I've never considered myself as a textile artist, but I'll answer to an embroiderer, miniature enthusiast or lace making enthusiast. I'm certainly a collector of an eclectic mix of items. I have antique and vintage underwear, babies clothing, and enough theatrical costume pieces to run an ad hoc costume shop for my friends and relatives!

Now, how to translate some of that into a textile piece by the end of the month?
Some more thought is definitely required. Or is it time for a piece using the colour palette for this month, above? It's right up my alley with a purple shade included!


Deb said...

I appreciate your thoughts and comments on this topic. I think it's an important one for all of us who work in any sphere of textile arts.

I hope you'll use the theme, even though I know how tempting it is just to use the palette.

Looking forward to seeing what you do with it.

Pat said...

Christine, It's so nice to read about you and what you do.....I'll look forward to seeing more. Thanks for the visit to my blog today....and sharing hearts and cats!! Pat at birdnestontheground

Tyanne said...

I like your use of the word enthusiast. That was one I hadn't thought of.

Anonymous said...

I'm looking forward to see what you make, cos this is something that I've discussed with friends who do and who don't sew/stitch.

fiona d said...

your textile "hobby" sounds so interesting, and I like the word enthusiast too - looking forward to whatever you come up with.