Thursday, April 25, 2013

Regency Weekend Part 2: Merry Adventures

I think, after almost two weeks, I am recovered from the Regency Weekend...and I've finally finished going through the pictures, so that I can share our other adventures!

When it came down to making sewing decisions I decided that it was more important to me to make a new day dress to wear on Sunday and Monday, and finish the bonnet I started way back in December, than to make a new ballgown for Sunday night. I LOVE my new dress, which is from the same pattern (drafted based on one from Janet Arnold's Patterns of Fashion with a lot of changes) as my pink ballgown, but with fit adjustments, a waistband, and long sleeves. The fabric is white/sheer vertical stripes, but it's hard to see with such bright sun. The bonnet I am not as happy with...although I was pleased some plaid made it into the outfit! I think the brim shape eats my face, so I will try a different brim for the next one. Even so, I was very glad to have both the bonnet and my plum velvet spencer from the fall--it was really cold! Being right on the water brought a lot of chilly wind, and I was quite grateful for the wool lining.

In my new bonnet and long-sleeved dress at Pioneer Village
Dancing hardly needs explanation on this blog anymore, but the rest of our shenanigans deserve a bit of background. Our non-dancing Sunday afternoon (before the evening Grand Ball and reception) was an outing to Pioneer Village for games, picnicking, and archery lessons. Pioneer Village is a super charming recreation 1630s village built in the 1930s in honor of Salem's 300th anniversary. This means that while it is all historical and fabulous (and a quaint place to walk as a Regency era tourist), everything is modern--and therefore can be touched. This adds a whole new level of wonderful, as when it gets cold (as it did on Sunday!) a fire can be built in the huge (17th century, remember!) fireplace in the Governor's house and everyone can gather around it.
If you're ever in Salem, this is a wonderful "off-the-beaten-path" site to visit!

Of course, I was way too busy keeping warm with archery lessons to sit inside. As it was the era of the War of 1812 and the Napoleonic Wars, we practiced our archery by aiming at Napoleon. It was tons of fun, and we had a wonderful teacher--I even managed a solid chest shot!

braving the cold

it was especially nice to see everyone socializing--after all of the classes, we knew each other well enough to relax, which was really wonderful. Hooray new friends!

Our archery instructor demonstrating proper technique

our crowd of eager archers learns proper safety

shooting Napoleon!

I love the contrast of fabulous dresses and dangerous weapons

and we all did really well!

the gentlemen shot too--some even trading in more modern weaponry to give the bow a go

Napoleons, thoroughly were the "trees" they were hiding behind
shooting in a bonnet was was tough to decide between subjecting my eyes to the bright sun or the brim getting in the way. Both made it vastly difficult to aim!

Antonia shoots without a bonnet to much better effect

It was such a lovely day, we had to take some pretty pictures!

Quinn is a perfect fashion plate

candid in-between-poses shot! 

I've decided I like this bonnet much better off my head

The weekend of the event was Patriots' Day (observed) weekend as well, which meant that Monday was a holiday. We stayed in Salem on Monday to have one last Regency adventure--flying kites! Quinn did some research and made absolutely beautiful silk kites (I helped a very tiny bit!), which we took to Derby Wharf on Monday to fly.
It was quite gusty on the water, but we were unable to really get the kites to stay in the air. hmm. This will require some more research and a second round. In the meantime, this was a wonderful way to end the weekend, and we had a ball even if the kits didn't fly very well. Plus, with the magic of photography, we look quite successful in the pictures (or at least the ones I'm going to share)!

showing off Quinn's wonderful kites!

this is the best explanation of how much fun this was


Antonia by far had the best luck with her kite

although mine did make it into the air...

both at the same time!

the ship to Quinn's left is the USS Friendship,  replica of a 1797 ship captured by the British during the War of 1812
I can't wait to try again!

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