The Beginning of the Greatest Love Story Since Arthur and Molly Weasley

Let me begin this heartwarming tale on an evening much like the last, ten years ago.  I was getting all tucked into bed, when I reminded my father that it was time for a story.  While I suggested some of my favourites, like the Magic Treehouse series, my dad had something different in mind.  “Be right back”, he said, as he raced out of the room.  He came back with a book far bigger than I was used to, with a young boy on the front.  I was soon to learn that this young boy’s name was Harry Potter.

I was hooked.  Every night I would beg and plead for just one more chapter, and then another, and another.  Meanwhile my father’s eyes had already shut.  I reached for the book, and began to read it myself.  Very slowly at first, but after awhile I began to read to my father!  I fancied myself a part of this fantastical place, of witches and wizards, of spell books and quills; every chapter brought me into a new adventure.  When the adventures ended, and Harry went back to the Dursleys for the first time, I was devastated.  The next day however, I found six other books about my wonderful new friends!  I’ve been in love with those 7 books ever since.

I have grown up knowing some of the greatest characters in the world.  These characters were dreamt up by none other than JK Rowling.  I have chosen her as my notable person, as I have heard countless tales of her stories reaching so many others like they did me.  I never felt alone as long as I had her books.  Through all of her struggles to her triumphs, she has never stopped inspiring a love of reading in young kids growing up in the age of technology.

I look forward to getting to know her more personally during this project, though I worry that I won’t be able to honour the brave, graceful woman I have looked up to for so long.  I hope that I can find how she was inspired to write this amazing series, and how her books have stood the test of time.

I believe that the biggest barrier between JK Rowling and myself is that she is a successful writer, and I have never written a decent piece in my life.  I hope I can channel her amazing writing skills into writing my speech!

China Doll

When I was a little girl, I had a China doll. She was a delicate, beautiful thing, and I longed to play with her like I did my other dolls, but my mother was worried I would break her. So there she sat, high up on her shelf, smiling down at me.

One day, I had all my friends from class come over to play. I was so ecstatic! We played with my Barbie dolls and my baby dolls for a while, but then they got bored. I didn’t want them to leave, so I showed them my China doll. They said they couldn’t see her well enough, and told me to get her down. I begged and pleaded, I did my best to keep my beloved doll on her perch, but they didn’t care about what I wanted. I didn’t want them to leave though! So I took her down. I told them to be careful, I told them they mustn’t be rough with her. Then my mother called from downstairs. I had only been gone for a second, when I heard the sickening sound of my doll shattering on the floor. I was devastated. My favourite doll in pieces all over the floor! I raced back up the stairs, only to find that it wasn’t an accident. They who I believed to be my friends, were laughing. Their laughter swarmed around me like bees with their stingers primed. The tears streamed down my face, and that only made the laughter worse. I felt just as broken as my beloved doll.

It happened again. I was a teen now, heart full of anger and frustration, just trying to break from what was expected, when I met a boy. His eyes were the colour of summers at the beach, and his hair was black as the night. When our eyes met across the hall, my heart fluttered, and I fancied myself in love. On Valentine’s Day, I took a chance. A big chance. I wrote him a note telling him how I felt. I tucked it into his locker, and ran across the hall, pretending to look for something in my own. He came sauntering over with his friends and found my note. They began to read it. When he stopped, he looked up at his friends. I mistook the incredulousness in his eyes for joy. I started to walk over, then we met eyes again. Then came the laughter. The same ruthless laughter of my childhood. He snatched the note back from his friend, looked me dead in the eyes, dropped it on the floor, and crushed the note-and my dreams-with a single twist of his heel. Him and his friends walked away, and I ran back to retrieve the note. The perfect little heart shaped note had been mangled beyond recognition. Inside, I felt my own heart taking the same shape.

This has happened over and over throughout my life, and I realize now that these moments and these memories tell me something. I’ve learned through the breaking of these seemingly mundane objects that meant so much, that there are other things that those people were breaking. I mean, obviously heartbreak is purely metaphorical, but the other thing I have had broken again and again, is my trust. I’ve entrusted my heart with people over and over again, and in breaking my heart like this they have broken my trust. You’d think that at some point, I’d learn, that I’d know better! I just can’t seem to give up hoping that someday, I will give someone my heart, and they will treat it as their own.

SHOWTIME! Is coming soon…to a theatre near you…

I’m sure you’ve all been on the edge of your seats waiting for this very moment, cause I sure have!

TICKETS FOR GLENEAGLE’S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST ARE ON SALE NOW!

You may be wondering what on earth this has to do with my In-Depth project…  Well it has to do with the fact that part of the work I’ve put into learning how to make costumes will be on showcase!  That’s right, yours truly put together all the Silly Girl aprons and breathed new life into Lumiere’s “trademark” sequined jacket (well I’m not quite done yet but it’ll be finished for Monday ;).

As well as feverishly slaving over my sewing machine for that production, I’ve been working on the lining of my very own bustier as part of the MCR inspired dress sketches I had posted on my Tumblr (HEM HEM)¹ I hope to be able to wear this dress on In-Depth night as well as provide photos of my show costumes and access to both my blogs to really encapsulate the work I put into these projects.

I had been hoping to make another dress as well however I hadn’t in my wildest dreams imagined that I’d get so much learning done through costume-making in the theatre department!  As for my mentor… Well…  I do have a mentor, technically I have many, and isn’t it far more rewarding to really make connections and branch out to people I’d never have dreamed of working with?

Well that’s all for now, I hope to be uploading completed pics of Lumiere’s jacket soon enough and I now command you all to come see the show!

¹Okay I hope somebody got that, I mean sewing pun and Harry Potter reference all in one?! BOOYAH!

On the hunt for my mentor… Where are youuuuu?

Alrighty then, I have made more progress and learning since the last post than I have throughout the course of the project!  I kept trying to meet up with my mentor to no avail, so I decided to learn from the people who were available to me.

Over the break I was given a package of fabric and instructions to sew a Silly Girl dress.  When I came back from my vacation, I was all but bed-ridden (with frequent trips to the restroom) so I was very worried about how I was going to get this done.  I read over the instructions until I thought I understood them, and when I was feeling up to it, I opened up the fabric and laid it out on my bed.  I took one look at the fabric before me, and cried.  I was just so overwhelmed and worried I would mess it up for the costume department that I just collapsed in tears.  When I managed to return from my brief hysteria, I decided to take a leap of faith and message Emily van der Velden, who had given me the package.  She was super nice about it, offering to help me through it, but in the end I decided it had been a bit much to start with.  So when I got back to school, she took the package and promised some aprons to be sewn that would be much easier.

Last Thursday I got six aprons to sew.  SIX!  I must admit I was a little anxious, but knowing Emily was just a message away really helped.  I did the first one on Sunday, and with some back and forth clarifications on the instructions, I am proud to say I have completed two since then!  It’s quite the crash course in Costume Making, but it’s perfect for me to learn the basics.  One of my favorite components of making theatre costumes is that because they’re only seen from a distance, your sewing doesn’t have to be nit-picky or perfect at all.  It really boosted my confidence with the machine knowing that as long as it vaguely resembled the shape they were looking for, it would be fine.

I also visited Fabricana to buy the fabric and odds and ends for the bodice of my Black Parade dress.  As always, they blew my mind with all the information they packed in while I was there, but I always learn something.  According to them, the piece I chose to make is a little tricky, and that I’m welcome to come back if I have any further questions.  Can’t wait to get started!

So as my mentor is MIA, I’ll try to complete the questions to the best of my ability.

1. What kinds of learning opportunities does the mentor provide to expose you to new learning?

Well not many for my “official mentor”, but Emily has provided some really great learning opportunities and I see many more in my future.  I really hope to be a part of the sewing process for the cutlery!

2. What kinds of learning opportunities exist to reinforce new learning?

Well using the lingo and the skills I’m learning by making the same piece six times in a row, I can then go back to the pattern for my costumes and decode it.  When it comes time to sew my costume myself, I’ll have some extra confidence with the machine to boot.

3. What kinds of opportunities exist that might accelerate learning?

Well I think reading up on the subject might help, as well as perhaps watching more YouTube videos from theatre production costume design.  I’ve been following Disney costume designers on Instagram just to swoon over their amazing work and to learn from certain techniques they use.

4. When you get together what do you talk about?

Again, I’m sad to say that I haven’t seen my mentor much!  However, I have been speaking with my sewing neighbour about my projects and she thinks I’m absolutely mad…  As well as talking with the people at Fabricana and Emily about specific details of my different projects.

5. What is going particularly well in your mentoring relationship right now?

Well, having met new people who can help me, and trusting them enough to ask questions when I need to has helped strengthen my determination for my entire project!

6. What are you learning about one another?

I think the people I’ve spoken to about my projects have learned I’m crazy determined when I decide on a task, and I’ve learned that most people won’t bite your head off if you need clarification!  I was really scared to message Emily for the first time, but after that you realise that if you don’t ask and you do it wrong, it’s way worse than simply asking a question and doing it right the first time.

Feel free to check out my blog for pictures of my aprons!

Connections… They seam so easy at first…

I’m really happy about I’ve accomplished in the last two weeks!  I finished my preliminary costumes for the Odyssey Qualifiers last Saturday.  We came second! (out of two but oh well we qualified)  The best news is that we came first in style points which included my costumes!  I used the waistcoat as a bit of a reminder of how a sewing machine works, as it’s been awhile.  I also drew up my designs for my (two!) final projects.  A bright spot to my week was when I heard that I’d been “voluntold” to help out with the Musical Theatre costumes! (Thanks Natalie!) Who knew making connections was so easy!  I hope to get some extra mentorship and experience there to help me complete my bigger projects.

On the topic of mentorship… I’ve found that my greatest struggle is getting connected with my mentor.  Our free time has yet to overlap as we are both incredibly busy.  I hate to pester her with email after email, and since we have no regular opportunity to see each other, it is very difficult to hold each other accountable for meeting and such.  This is why I have decided to start meeting with my neighbour, a fabulous seamstress, to get some help choosing fabrics and patterns.  I don’t intend to call her a mentor, as I have not yet given up hope on Mrs. Jamieson, but I am really far too eager to get on with my project to wait until I can get a response from her.  I also hope to get some valuable insight through Musical Theatre.

During Spring Break I look forward to visiting Fabricana many times in preparation for my amazingly fabulous final projects.  I will be meeting with my neighbour in the upcoming week to discuss fabric and pattern, and will write a follow up email to my mentor attempting to set up a meeting.

(pssst check out my blog for pics of James in a diaper + my other costumes + my new sketches)

Procrastination is Key to Creativity!

Alors, ze moment you’ve all been waiting for…  Some progress!  Now Odyssey Qualifiers is looming uncomfortably near, can it be only a week left?  Oh la la!  My mentor situation has been a little hectic seeing as she’s gotten incredibly busy these past couple weeks so I’ve had to make some headway on my sketches before I get her help refining my ideas.  I’ve decided that a great way to test what I already know about costume design is to take my ideas and build them with one trip to Value Village within the Odyssey price limit and ransacking my teammates’ closets.  Now that trip to Value Village was made, and I must say the results were rather fantastic in some areas, and disappointing in others.  That means I’m really gonna have to get creative!

My mentor has been so kind in having agreed to be my mentor, and though I am disappointed we haven’t seen each other as much as I’d hoped, she’s been rather fantastic indirectly mentoring me over email!

I have met with her a couple times though, and I find it fantastic that she teaches through demonstration, then allows me to take over.  My greatest pet peeve has always been teachers who attempt to teach through doing it entirely by themselves (*cough cough* “Yes Dad your guitar solo sounds lovely…”).  I found it fairly easy to talk to her in fact, well, I suppose it would be more truthful to say that it was easier than with most adults.  I listen attentively to everything she says, I have never once forgotten to backstitch, and this I am very proud of!  The same is true in the reverse as she is very careful not to trod on my ideas before I’ve laid them out.  I tend to be a little muddled when it comes to my thoughts, so I’m glad she takes the time to allow me to explain.

I have not truly begun to lay my hands on the sewing machine with her, but I look forward to learning the more intricate techniques once my ideas are firmer and I have found some applicable patterns!  That said, I’ve already learned much in the way of choosing patterns to piece together.  I’ve learned that you don’t need the perfect pattern to create your entire costume, but that you can take pieces from many patterns and put them together to form what you are envisioning, without having to do it freehand.

The most obvious hindrance to our communication is her busy schedule.  We’ve been emailing back and forth quite a bit, but that in itself also hinders natural communication.  Also, though I do like my mentor very much, I still struggle speaking freely and openly with her.

The first strategy I would like to implement is a regular meeting schedule.  A day each week, or two, where we will set aside time to meet.  The second would be for me to have a little diary from our meeting to jot down little notes of what we got done and her suggestions.  Not only for my forgetfulness, but it will also be beneficial for other projects in the future.  A final strategy I’d like to implement is to jot down, in my ideas diary, questions I have for my mentor between sessions.  This will not only remind me of what I wanted to ask, but may help break the ice at the beginning of every session for me.

I look forward to posting some progress pics with my models (teammates), but my sketches are already up for the Odyssey costumes so feel free to check them out at http://fabricateddrama.tumblr.com/.

And then my irrational fear of adults came to light.

Since my last blog post I have discovered my main goal for this project.  Surprisingly, it has nothing to do with fabric!  It has to do with learning to be confident.  I’ve always struggled with working with people who have more experience than me, such as teachers and adults.  This is why the idea of a mentor was so daunting for me.  Having to work with an adult for such a long period of time is always scary for me, especially when I must organize and plan everything for myself.  I hope to improve my confidence in working with a mentor, become more used to talking to her, and learning from her.

For the questions relating to the blog post, we had only time for a very brief meeting so I didn’t get the chance to ask.  I did send her an email detailing the questions and asking for her Criminal Record check, but I feel that it will be more useful to my goal to talk to her in person when we have more time to look over the sketches I’ve been working on.  If you wish to see the progress I will be making this weekend, feel free to check out my Tumblr!

In working, or up till now corresponding, with my mentor I have gained some interesting knowledge.  For starters, I’m learning how to write an email.  This is a skill I will need to continue to work on, however corresponding with my mentor has, and will continue to, help.  I’ve also learned how to communicate my needs clearly.  The first time.  I can sometimes be a little unclear when I’m nervous, and thus confuse and worry potential mentors.  Finally, I hope learn to organize regular meetings with a mentor or adult.  Through the course of the project, my goal is to learn to be more open and confident when working with mentors and the like.

I realize I have not answered all the questions to be pondered for this blog post, but I’m glad I’ve found my inner goal for the project. I look forward to completing my idea sketches, starting to post on my Tumblr, and beginning work on my costumes for my Odyssey performance!  You can look forward to getting to know my mentor better in an upcoming blog post for sure!

Mentor, mentor, mentor… Aha! Here we are!

At long last the search for a mentor is over.  I’ve recently gotten into contact with Charlene Jamieson, a textiles teacher from Maple Ridge Secondary willing to mentor me on my “very involved” project!  I’m super excited to work with her, I’ve heard great things about her class so I’m really looking forward to it!  I will be planning our meetings very soon, and I will be checking back in a couple weeks!

Thread, Thimbles and Needles! Costume Design: Post I

When I first started thinking about what I wanted to learn for InDepth, my first thought was that I wanted to create something.  I wanted to have a tangible end product to be proud of.  So after having had the crazy idea to design my own Halloween costume a week in advance, I decided that perhaps costume design would be a topic I’d like to pursue!  Costume making, I have discovered, is much more than fashion design.  Rather than creating an article to be worn by anyone, you are turning fabric into a character of its own.  Through the course of this project I hope to learn how to portray a character through the art of costume design.

A great example of a costume with its own character.

I hope to document my progress with my Tumblr blog, fabricateddrama.tumblr.com.  I hope to perhaps get some outside opinions on my work to gain confidence and boost self esteem.  Costume making for plays and the like is often a team sport, so I will be glad to have some constructive criticism should it come my way!

My mentor however, is a trickier topic.  I have found it very difficult to find someone willing to spend time mentoring me in this area!  I will put out a second post the moment I have one, I’m very excited to introduce whoever they may be!  I plan to meet with them as often as I can, and I will also have to learn how to sketch my ideas down more coherently.

That’s all for now folks!

“Clothes make a statement, costumes tell a story.”

-Mason Cooley

Ah ZIP, what a lovely Christmas present.

Slideshow!

I was super duper excited for this project, as I had had so many ideas rattling around in my brain since ZAP.  I am psyched to introduce you to the wonderful world of FanFiction.

FanFiction is actually super cool, because it’s fascinating just how many ways people can interpret the characters developed by others.  I assure you, it is not all twelve-year-old girls living out their fantasies with One Direction, but a collection of amazing authors who have chosen to share their works that bring your favourite characters to life in a whole new light.  One way in which authors of this form of literature reduce the chances of being dull and shadowing the original authors material is through AUs.  AUs, also known as alternate universes, are when you take the characters and put them in a different time period, geographical location or both.

In our story, we chose to use the characters from Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.  We used a medieval AU because we felt that it best suited the characters and the plot line we wanted to establish.  Then came the planning.

Planning Doc

This took the most of our time as we hadn’t really planned to write three (or four) stories in one.  It did considerably lessen the writing time though, which really helped us as we were prone to writer’s block.

Then the writing and posting, which all happened in one fell swoop.  This was where our shiny vocab words got off the bench, and our dialogue became more formed to the characters. We learned a lot about how to match our wording and sentence structure to the characters, for usually you get to set the character voice whereas in FanFiction, the one rule is to follow the original characters’.

AO3 Link

FanFiction.net Link

We’d really love to get feedback, and we look forward to continuing it in future.  Please be our favourite people and keep reading!