Costume Con 39 took place in San Jose, California in April 2023, after a two year delay. Despite not costuming a lot during the pandemic and the usual time sneaking up before an event, I think I managed to pull together a good wardrobe for the con! New, somewhat new, new accessories, and rewearing things worked well.
On Friday, I wore the Cersei dress from season 1 of Game of Thones that I started for WonderCon 2020. I meant to do the version with the weird hairstye and crown, and would still like to, but ended up doing the more relaxed version of the dress. I started the dress in January 2020 and finished it in October 2022. It's not an exact reproduction, but rather what I thought I'd make if I were given the concept art. I had a lot of fun with it--especially embroidering the sleeves!
On Saturday, I wore a dress I knit from a 1921 pattern in the Bear Brand Blue Book #35. I followed the pattern exactly using Jaggerspun Maine Line 2/8 yarn and US size 8/5mm needles. I have a sample of Peace Dale 1920s yarns, and their Shetland Floss, which the pattern calls for and was a description used by many brands in the 1920s, is a 2 ply fingering weight. It's remarkably similar to the Maine Line yarn (as is Knit Picks Pallette and Jamieson and Smith 2 ply jumper weight, which I've used for other 20s and 30s sweaters). The knitting is quite loose, but it does match the gauge called for and the look of the dress in the pattern book.
For dinner on Saturday night, we went to the Orchestria Palm Court, which is a late 1910s/early 1920s themed restaurant. I wore the 1920s robe de style based on Cersei's season 7 dragon pit dress. It's based on period examples, but the center is actually screen accurate fabric from the show. The back is my favorite part--beads to imitate the spine on her coat.
On Sunday, I wore my 1921 knit bathing suit from The Lady Fair Yarn Book and published on the Vintage Traveler blog. I've since worn this to the beach and have much better pictures than me squinting at the pool! The pattern as written is interesting--with instructions like "for right side of front, knit to correspond to right side of back." I knit the right side of the front to match the left! I think someone made the suit and wrote down what they did without proofreading it. I made a few changes, but I don't think anything someone knitting in the 20s wouldn't have done, such as decreasing the waist so it was smaller than the bust. It's made of Jaggerspun Maine Line 3/8 yarn on US size 5/3.5mm needles. I would like to do a full blog post on this--including my revised pattern.
For the historical masquerade, I wore the 1930s Melisandre dress I wore to the Costume College gala in 2019. I made a matching cape from a vintage pattern. The dress and cape are silk satin and about 32,000 sequins.
So, that's Costume Con, wardrobe wise, at least! As Evil Ted, one of the guests said during his panel, he expected that he'd get so much done during the pandemic, but just didn't, because of the loss of community. I went through so many false starts and false hopes about making things, and am so thankful that I discovered how much I love 1920s knitting, but I did feel the loss of wanting to make things, and seeing the people that made making things worth it. Costume Con was a wonderful return to that community. It was so amazing to see so many friends that I hadn't seen since 2018 or 2019. Even though many of us have grown closer online, it's just not the same as being together.