Making Dante's Dream come true.

25 Mar 2013

Lucy Westenra inspired gown.

No, I am not mad. I am not going to attempt to copy an Eiko Ishioka design. Come on, I would never achieve that. And yet I am allowed to get inspired by this beauty:

It's the snake gown worn by Lucy Westenra in Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992). It's SO gorgeous with those embroidered snakes, also I love that shade.

Well, there's a 1890s event in June and I'm going to adapt this dress into a more historically accurate one. First, I'm not convinced snakes are very suitable for a lady? They work wonders for the metaphor in the film but in real life... I don't think they were very popular. Specially when most designs I've been checking feature butterflies and flowers and all sorts of pretty geometric decorations:

So I'm going to create a similar pattern as the snake one but with a satin leaves trim and some flowers, the fabric is actual silk this time:

Then, moving on to the shape, everything looks fine but the sleeves. For an evening dress short, puffy sleeves would work best. So this is my design and what I've done so far:

I'm quite happy with it! The neckline will be heart shaped and of course, it is not sewn yet, only pinned. Again, sorry for the pics but I left my camera in England (ugh, weight restrictions, I hate them when I'm carrying tones of fabrics with me!). See you soon!

2 Mar 2013

Pre-Raphs in Sheff.

Been exploring what Pre-Raph items could offer the art galleries in Sheffield. The adventure turned out very interesting since I found some unexpected stuff.

The Millennium Art Gallery is currently showing a very impressive exhibition on landscape following Ruskin's taste. It is called Force of Nature: Picturing Ruskin's Landscape. Not all the artists featured are British, nor 19th century, but the whole thing is great. No pictures inside but I specially loved Turner's and Millais' paintings (what a surprise), although some Italian landscapes where quite astonishing too.

As I said, the different works in the collection are not similar, they are connected through Ruskin's ideas of the landscape and the most evident ones are the representation of its grandeur and the perception of its light and colours. Some of the Italian landscapes show as much detail they even seem photographs but then Turner and Millais are masters of colour and of capturing a landscape with a much less precise stroke.

The Moon is Up, and Yet it is not Night, Millais (1890).

There is also a permanent collection called the Ruskin Collection which is quite inspiring. They have great pieces showing Ruskin's love for both nature and architecture.

At least they show the face of the person who collected all these marvellous things...

It is not really worth posting the pics of Medieval prayer books because you can't appreciate the amazing details they have.


Moving on to the Graves Art Gallery, there are great portraits there and lots of 18th and 19th century awesome works. Namely:

Burne-Jones' allegorical painting The Hours (1882)

And this one here which was new for me but with a well-known topic...
The Lady of Shalott by William Maw Egley (1858)

Had lots of fun, I'll be exploring more things these days, hope I discover new treasures!