A New Friend Thursday, May 28 2009 

A New Friend

23 May 2009

(edited on 29 May) 🙂

I actually know people who believe that one can have too many friends. I don’t.

Granted, the word “friend” is used far too loosely. Most of the people that most of us call “friends” probably would be better described as “acquaintances.” Social network sites like MySpace and Facebook do much to muddy those waters. I, for one, am very picky about who I add as a “friend” on such sites. And, I don’t know many of even those people, as well as I’d like. But, to really have “too many friends?” I don’t think it’s possible!

On that note, Kyle and I have a brand new friend, effective today! She made my day, and so I introduced her to Kyle and snapped their photo. Her name is Terry . . . although, I realize now that I didn’t find out the correct spelling of her name, so I may have it wrong.  (addendum: just found out it should be “Teri.”) She is charming and effervescent, witty and engaging. She is a playtron at the faire, and a talented seamstress (she showed me her husband’s doublet that she’d recently made!) and obviously we have much in common! 😉

The story of our meeting, is what is so special to me . . . I was sitting at the table in our Pendragon Costumes shoppe, finishing up a discussion with a special order customer. As I was bidding those folks farewell, I heard one of my girls telling someone, “she’s right over here . . .” and I knew I was about to be asked a question of some kind. As my worker spoke to introduce the scenario: “MaritaBeth . . . ” the customer interrupted: “You’re MaritaBeth! Hi!”

I didn’t recognize the face, so I cheerfully but curiously replied with “Hi. Do we know each other?” She immediately, but only briefly got rather shy, and quietly said, “Um, no. I follow your blog.”

That was my introduction to Teri. I was, of course, rather floored, and incredibly flattered. How? Why? I wanted to know. Her interests in faire and in costuming and sewing are the logical connection. We chatted for quite a while, and before she left Kyle came in and more conversation ensued, and photos happened.   She told us she had followed intently, our travels in the UK this winter!  And, she said even on the regular days we are entertaining to her.  I was so surprised to think that somebody we had never met was following the KRuMB. We know that we have friends (and acquaintances) who read the KRuMB and rarely, if ever, make a comment, and thereby stay pretty much under our radar. But, I hadn’t really stopped to consider that there might be people out there following our daily adventures, that we hadn’t even met, yet! It still actually rather boggles my mind.

Well, now we know one more reader! And I’m glad to call her a friend. (Now, I just hope she’ll write us a comment and tell me how to spell her name!) 😉


(tee hee: she linked to me on Flickr! I guess she doesn’t have to give up her stalker status here on the KRuMB! Hi, Teri! :-P)

Alex’s New Duds Tuesday, May 19 2009 

Proud Papa

17 May 2009

An absolutely beautiful, perfect-weather day at faire! And the crowds reflected that. Unfortunately, my sales did not—although East Wind Games seemed to rock and roll all day. I’m not sure what the deal was at our shoppe, but the majority of the people who walked into Pendragon today were not our typical ideal customers.

The brightest spot in the day for me, came when Starr and Joe and their boys showed up to faire. Kelly had sent a box for Starr to my house, and its contents were still a mystery. I could hardly wait for Starr to open the package and see what it contained. And what it contained was well worth the excitement.

Kelly had made for Alex, the cutest little scaled-down replica of Joe’s outfit, you’d ever want to see! We were all so totally charmed, and squealed with delight. Starr immediately put the little doublet on Alex and I snapped some photos—this is one of those. Does Joe look happy, or what?!

Now, I’m gonna both brag . . .and rag . . . on Kelly for a minute. This is the girl who has always said she didn’t sew for kids. Nope . . . didn’t want to . . . it’s a pain in the neck (or other body part) . . . it’s not worth the time . . . they’re gonna outgrow it, anyway . . . She gave me all sorts of crap for spending so much time on the outfit I made for my niece, McKenna last summer.

Uh-huh! Just before Scarborough, Starr let it slip that she wished she had a nicer shirt for Alex to wear.  Who took the bait?  My Kelly.  She made an amazing little shirt, complete with ruffles and hand-made strings to tie.  And, now, this! This adorable little outfit— a miniature version of the ensemble I made Joe last spring—is the cat’s meow!  She did a great job.  And all from measurements taken by big brother Troy, in pseudo-secret! Kudos to my Kelly—she made our day!  And, I know she made the Cooksey/Capps family very, very happy!

The after-hours event that we’ve come to call “The Alex Show” was more photogenic than usual, too!


Slash and Poof and Trim Sunday, Mar 22 2009 

Joe's Red Doublet Stomacher

21 March 2009

This is another of my current projects . . . Joe and Cindy ordered Tudor ensembles. Her outfit is primarily red with gold accents. His is a lovely black and tan brocade (always makes me think beer thoughts!) with red and gold accents. This photo shows the front of his under-doublet, with all its slash and poof and trim. And here’s a detail shot. I think it came out very well. I’ll assemble the doublet on Sunday.


Another Skirted Doublet Saturday, Mar 21 2009 

Another Skirted Doublet

18 March 2009

Another work day.  Another skirted doublet.  This one is for a friend named Joe.  We have lots of friends named Joe, it turns out.  But this Joe is getting a Tudor outfit this year, as is his wife Cindy.  And it should be noted that Joe does his own beading!  I gave him the gold diamond brocade last fall, and his photo shows how it looks as the trim on the bottom of the skirt of his doublet.


My cutting table on a typical evening in March Wednesday, Mar 11 2009 

My cutting table on a typical late evening in March

10 March 2009

This amuses me.  I’m on a kick right now, where I look at things and see all that they represent . . . like the kitchen window a few days ago.  Tonight, it was the cutting table in my workshop.  As I thought about calling it a night and heading for the shower and the bed, I looked at my table.  There was so much to take in that a glance didn’t do it.  I decided it was somehow photo-worthy—probably because I’m tired and lacking in good judgement! 😉

On the center of the table is the current project—the stomacher of the underdoublet that Lionel will wear in his wedding ceremony.    I am delighted with the way it is looking—I embellished tonight with diagonal rows of trim and with fleur de lis studs at the intersections.  Tomorrow, I’ll add a whole bunch of beads to each fleur de lis and assemble the garment.  You can see in a little pile just above the doublet front, the little gem sets I’m going to use as the focal bead for each fleur.  My remote control for the television that keeps me company is right there where I last laid it down.  On the far left is a stack of button boxes I had out to look through and choose the buttons that I’ll use on this order.  Behind those is the stack of Lionel’s fabrics and the bolt of the trim I’m using.  There’s a cardboard box which contains a skirt set I need to finish altering for a Pendragon customer.  The New Home sewing machine visible at the top of the photo is the very first sewing machine I ever owned—a gift from my mama and daddy my first Christmas in college.  Twenty-eight years later, I still use it on almost every project . . . it’s the best machine I have for zig zag stitching!  And of course, there are the usual tools of the trade scattered about:  magnetic pin cushion, rotary cutting wheel, scissors, spools of thread and the water bottle in the foreground isn’t for drinking, it’s the water for my iron.  The drinking happens out of that amber-coloured glass bottle in the middle of the table!


Finished for Ryan Thursday, Feb 26 2009 

Finished for Ryan

25 February 2009

After working ’til five o’clock in the morning, all that remains for my tired self to do today for Ryan, is to finish his breeches and codpiece. I will meet with him tonight for a quick fitting to verify all is well, and then I’ll set the grommets and hand sew the lining in at the waist of the outer doublet. I am very pleased with the way it all looks . . . hopefully, it will fit perfectly, and he’ll like it, too.  He is portraying George Boleyn at Scarborough Renaissance Festival this season.  It’s been a number of years since we had a “George” and I think Ryan will do a great job.  It’ll be fun for the queen to have “her brother” to play off of to entertain us!

My photo (although I realize this morning, it’s a tiny bit blurry—-what can I say, I was tired) shows fairly well, the stomacher portion of the ensemble . . . specifically that fun fabric manipulation I was working on the other day . . . I never did find my reference illustration, but, my memory seems to have served me well enough.  Amazing, that!

So, today, the morning after, my big challenge is just to stay awake long enough to get the coffee to kick in!


Woman in Blue Wednesday, Dec 3 2008 

29 November 2008
MB in Blue
I write about my wife a lot saying "MB did this," or "my wife and I did that" or similar. But, there aren’t that many photos of her here. Mostly, I think, because she’s critical of her own appearance (aren’t most women?) and likely wouldn’t approve of most photos. However, this is the smiling face I go to sleep with every night and wake up to every morning. The woman of my dreams.

~KR (Written on 3 December 2008 )

Listening to:
Betty Lou’s Gettin’ Out Tonight by Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
from Nine Tonight

Camera: Nikon D70
Exposure: 0.008 sec (1/125)
Aperture: f/5.6
Focal Length: 135 mm
Exposure Bias: 0/6 EV
Software: Adobe Photoshop CS Windows

Amber in Blue Tuesday, Nov 18 2008 

Amber in Blue

15 November 2008

Every weekend at TRF, there is a wonderful element of “homecoming” and “reuniting” with people we don’t get to see very often.  Sometimes it’s a much-anticipated, long-planned event such as a visit from Larry and Denise or George and Delaenya.  (This week it was Lance and Kimber!  Next week it’s Rick and Frank!)  Other times, it’s a total-out-of-the-blue visit from someone we weren’t expecting at all.  And often, it’s just a fun surprise that we knew was a possibility, but didn’t dare to count on happening—such was the visit this weekend by many of our friends who came to TRF to see the “Antique Rogues Show!”  Amber and Steve and Bobby and Paige and Erin, were just such a visit.  And not only did we get to see all of them, but Amber has spent heaven knows how many hours adding glitter and bling to her beautiful Courtesan costume.  She has done such an amazing job of taking this outfit to the next level, that I just had to take her picture.    Of course, it doesn’t hurt that she’s easily one of the most beautiful women I’m lucky enough to call a friend!  I took a shot of her with Steve in the booth, but that wasn’t enough.  I wanted her in the sunshine.  So, here she is, looking like a professional model!

And those shoes!


Bodice-making Bits Wednesday, Nov 12 2008 

Bodice-making Bits

12 November 2008

After a very long bodice-making day, I let it go home with Brittney without taking a photo.  Arrrgh!

So, here on my table, are the remnants of the day—her brown cotton brocade, her golden wool, some ribbon, pins on a magnetic pin cushion, and the remote control for my TV.  Tomorrow I hope to fit in some dog-walking and house-cleaning between the sewing projects.


Fairy-licious! Tuesday, Nov 11 2008 


9 November 2008

I stalked a fairy today.

And I caught her.  Or perhaps I should say that she caught me.  She certainly captured my attention.
I was in the ladies restroom washing my hands, when this creature came in.  I was duely impressed, and I think I may have told her so, as I watched her disappear into the largest stall. (Wings are a handicap, you know!  Not unlike hoop skirts!) As I walked back across the lane, I realized I’d really like to have her picture.  So, kept an eye over my shoulder for her to come out of the building, and I asked Donny if I could borrow his camera, since I am woefully without one right now.  He quickly obliged, and I tripped back across the lane to wait for her to reappear.  And waited. 
Finally, I began to feel a bit silly about stalking a fairy, and started to back away from the restrooms, back toward my booth, all the while watching for my fairy.  I was all the way back to the shoppe, still looking longingly across the lane when our friend Pam asked me what I was doing.  I told her my story, and her immediate response was, “I know her!”
“Of course you do,” I said, and in fact, further conversation verified that her friend and my fairy were one and the same.  Finally, as we talked, the fairy emerged from the restrooms and Pam bounded across the lane after her.  Moments later, my fairy was shaking my hand and accepting my compliments on her charming and creative recreation of what I guessed must be an Amy Brown painting.  Amy Brown’s fairies all have a “style” and this was it.  She told me her truest inspiration was actually Renae Taylor–another very talented artist, from Kansas City, who actually does renfaires.  In fact, I own some of her work, and these black and white fairy’s wings were made by her.  Either way, I told her, she was a breath of fresh air and a delight.  I told her I’d been waiting, and waiting for her, and feeling like a stalker, and she related just how complicated it is to use a bathroom when dressed as she was!  We giggled about that, and she willingly posed for my picture (and for a couple of others as well!) 
We see a lot of fairies at the Renaissance Festival.  Who really knows why?  The fantasy element is undeniable at a renfaire, and certainly the costuming is less restrictive of movement and perhaps more comfortable . . . except for the wingspan, of course.  Some faires have even embraced the fantasy and included it in their performing company—Bristol Renaissance Faire does an extremely noteable job of this, with their “Fantasticals” and the way their other historical characters play with them.  I’ve seen a woman in noble garb react to being tapped on the shoulder by a fairy, by “seeing nothing” and talking to the patrons around her about how if she didn’t know better she might be drawn back into the days of her youth when she still believed in fairies.  Fun bit.
My fairy is a patron at the Texas Renaissance Festival.  She is dressing up not to fulfill a contract, but because she loves the smiles she brings to other people’s faces.  Like mine.  Oh, and she calls herself, “Nyte.”
Thanks, Donny, for the use of the camera!

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