Tagged ‘interns’


November 16th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Sorry about that bad link – I’ve fixed it in the last post and here’s the link Tricia suggested, straight to the book in the mail order shop.

I had an exciting day Friday. I turned on the office computer and it, well, it didn’t exactly swear, but it definitely thumbed its circuits at me. Dennis the IT guy didn’t have good news. “Hmmm,” he said. “That means it can’t find the hard drive.” “Can’t or WON’T?” was my response, not that it helped any.

The bottom line is that my documents are on the server (since last year, when the previous computer was gathered to its reward) but my email may not be. I may very well have lost my emails, including the address updates of Sharon G, Ann B, and two others whom, sadly, my feeble brain cannot recall. As well as anything anyone has asked me to do from before last Wednesday. BUT WAIT, don’t re-send me anything yet. Dennis promised to let me know by the end of next week what he could save, and THEN you can send me updates. And I promise to figure out a better computer filing system. Grrrr.

As this happened on a Friday morning, I took it as a sign to jettison all efforts at correspondence and Just Sew. Sometimes that’s a nice thing. I’m working hard to finish up a few things for the interpreters before they’re done for the season.

Here are a few pictures of what we’ve been up to sewing-wise. The first picture up at the top is Penny and the Stays From Hades. These are hand-sewn, but the real problem was that they were cut out for someone other than Elise, the person she finished them for. She thought they were close enough, and it would be good to finish them and get them in use, but she had to alteration after alteration so that by the end, she could have made three pairs of stays. She says she’ll never do that again. The good news is that, after all that, Elise is happy with them. They look great on her.

I finished Beth L’s sandy-pink gown a while ago and here are the pictures to prove it. In the closer picture you can see just a little gap; Beth and I decided to see if it relaxes in the wearing. If not I can put a hook & eye closure there. I finished the gown in the morning and brought it to her on her lunch break. She went right away and changed into it and I took these, so it hadn’t been worn more than a couple of minutes.

I think she likes it.

Now I’m working on a pink waistcoat for Whitney. Arianna’s already made her a brown petticoat to go with. The weekend after Thanksgiving there’ll be a wedding in the Village – not a real wedding, a pretend 1627 wedding. Whitney’s going to be the bride and I’ve promised her this outfit for early next week. Arianna’s making a canvas suit for Austin. Penny just finished a gold wool waistcoat for Kelley, which I need to photograph. At this point in the season she probably won’t start something else new, but move on to a little housecleaning to get us ready for the Big Piles of Dirty Stuff which will arrive the Monday after Thanksgiving.

I owe you all a mess of pictures from the show & tell portions of the last several embroidery sessions. I’m thinking to save them for the last half of December. It seems appropriate viewing for the season of celebrating treasures.

Penny and Arianna

September 23rd, 2008 by Jill Hall

Update from the Day Job:

Penny’s been working on this pair of hand-sewn stays for the past many weeks. Working off and on, and having to do some alterations on the fit, but she’s really been plugging away at them for a lot longer than she wanted to be, you know?

And now they’re done! Hooray!

And here’s Arianna, our autumn intern, who is off to a fantastic start. Here she’s working on the last bits of a new lightweight waistcoat for one of our new interpreters, Vicki, who will start on Saturday.

Arianna had just had a very successful second fitting, and now only has to sew on the wings, finish the sleeves, and do the buttons and buttonholes and it’ll be done!

I’m also making a waistcoat for Vicki, a wool one,  but have a lot more than that to do. I’m also almost done with a smock for Vicki, and have done an initial fitting of a wool waistcoat for Jenna, another new interpreter. Jenna’s actually already started on site, but will need this as quick as I can pull it together.

Then we’ve got one more new interpreter, Molly, who will be working with the Education Department presenting programs in local schools. The stock of clothing was so totally picked over by Jenna, Vicki, and everyone who came before that Molly needs quite a lot of sewing…tomorrow Penny will be remaking the waists of two petticoats so they’ll fit Molly properly, as well as altering the neck/shoulders of a second smock for Vicki.

Treats for Emily

August 20th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Penny knitted another awesome hat, this one for Emily. The pink is yarn Emily dyed with cochineal, which are indeed little bugs. Penny duplicate-stitched a skull, because Emily has a pirate aura.

I suppose going back to school is an acceptable excuse for leaving us.

Show and Tell August

August 17th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Betty-Anne, Rosemary and Abigail all brought lovely show and tell objects to the last session. Wendy kindly photographed for me, as I had very cleverly “lost” my camera in the trunk of my car. We missed getting a snapshot of Rosemary’s gorgeous Victorian style beaded scissors case, with the beaded fringe and beaded neck cord.

Here is a photo of some of Betty-Anne’s doll beds. She has made eight or nine of them illustrating different historic styles of bed hangings. She brought these two to show.

And this is Abigail’s blackwork truly-a-sampler. She adds to it as she finds designs she wants to record, has used at least one (the double acorn on a garment) and in working another discovered she never wants to use it again. That’s just how samplers were used in the early 17th century.

And here is a picture of Lacey modeling her Plimoth souvenir hat and holding the coveted Janet Arnold book. Lacey dyed the yarn with madder and Penny knit it for her. Turns out the Virginia girl collects winter hats. I’ve been told it gets cold in Virginia. Mmm-hmm. (Lacey spent ten years in Germany, where it really does get cold. We just like to tease her.)

Lacey headed home about a week ago, and we all miss her very much. She’s promised to come back for the exhibit opening in May. This is Emily’s last week with us and today she’s fighting off a cold and valiantly soldiering on with the green canvas suit. She’s determined to finish it before she has to go home. I’m not liking the empty nest.

Our next embroidery session starts Friday August 22. We’ll have several embroiderers and a lacer or two. There’s still room if you have some time, come and join us.

Dye Days

August 1st, 2008 by Jill Hall

To answer Robbin’s question, there will Not be plaited braid stitch instructions in the needle-gold thread kit, so go ahead and order Linda’s from Calico Crossroads. There’s a link in the upper right portion of the blog home page. Go to her searchable catalog and look for plaited braid stitch. That should bring up the $6 + shipping packet of full-color instructions. If you have any trouble you can email Linda through the contact page on her website.

Thanks for the note about the comment box being overrun by text. Unfortunately we’re between Webmanagers right now; I sent Rich a note about it on his last day. I don’t think he laughed, but only because he’s not that kind of person. He did say that issue was already on the list for the interim guy to work on, but I have a feeling the interim guy had a lot more on the list….cross your fingers that another talented webmanager wants to work here and we find him/her soon.

Looks cushy, but hot, hot, hot - dyeing outside the Crafts Center, July, 2008.Here are two tantalizing pictures of the excellent stuff Penny, Emily, Lacey, and two volunteers from the Landmark program did here on Tuesday and Wednesday. I know Pen, Emily, and Lacey want to blog about the whole experience, so I hopefully won’t be treading on their toes by posting these two. The first is their cushy setup outside the Crafts Center. Chairs! And a tent! It looks comfy, but it was scorching hot those two days.

The second is some yarn gently simmering in madder, I think. Yarn in the dyepot and flip-flops!

They all had an excellent time, worked really hard but said it didn’t feel like work; the visitors loved it, the other Crafts Center artisans loved it, and Penny’s so pleased she’s already talking about doing it again in September. That much makes it a ringing success. But they also got loads of gorgeous yarn out of the deal, and that’s just gravy. They all three looked really tired on Thursday, though.

Putting it all together

July 27th, 2008 by Jill Hall

There’s not a great deal going on with the jacket this month. I decided a while ago to not schedule any work sessions in July, and it turns out that was a very good idea.

I have been spending Sundays in the Crafts Center working on the jacket, but today family concerns prevented me; Emily stepped up on short notice and covered my commitments to the site and the jacket. Thanks, Emily.

Aside from embroidering whenever possible, I’m also working on the mock-up of the jacket. By working on, I mean cutting out a model from the same linen and a similar but commercially woven silk. I wrote to Susan North for advice on the making up, and she wrote back with some notes based on her examinations of the Laton jacket as well as others in the V&A collection.

The two most significant points in my opinion are that several different techniques seem to have been used on both the Laton jacket and the others, and that these different techniques don’t seem to be standard from one jacket to the other. In other words (because those ones were pretty opaque) 17th-century tailors of embroidered jackets seem to have used a variety of methods unsystematically. Good news for me, then, as I’ve got precedent for doing what works.

I’ll keep you posted, of course, but if I’m this nervous about working on the mock-up, how will I feel about sewing the actual thing? At least that will be worth taking pictures of – plain linen and plain white silk make a very boring photo.

Search the Collections

July 24th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Hi everyone, I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth. Husband Away turned into Husband Home but with Appendicitis. He no longer has appendicitis, no longer has an appendix even, but I’ve been a little preoccupied. Distracted. Frazzled, as a co-worker so eloquently put it this morning. And then last night we had the Thunderstorms. Thou shalt not fire up the computer during a violent thunderstorm.

Anyway, Jill H (the lace making Jill H, as opposed to me, the non-lace making Jill H) asked about finding 1359-1900. The key is to search the V&A collections. You can’t use the search function in the upper right hand corner of their website. That searches for things like exhibits and lectures and new books. You have to click the ‘collections’ option (other options on that page are exhibits, things to do, your visit, support us, contact us, etc.). Once in the collections section, you have choices of which collection to look at. There is also a ‘search the collections’ box. It’s the top left section. Click on that and you get a screen with a search box on the left. Continue to ignore the search box in the upper right. It does not love you.

The search box you want says ‘all fields’ above it, and below there are two buttons: clear field and search. Put ’1359-1900′ in this search box and click search. This will get you the embroidery-pattern jacket. If you instead put in ‘Laton jacket’ you will get the garment-and-lace-pattern jacket. Have fun!

Emily and Lacey have been exceedingly busy while I’ve been frazzling. Lacey has made three pairs of canvas breeches and is working on her fourth. She’s also knitting mittens. Emily is making a gown for a small child who soon will be volunteering in the English Village. She’s also making a green canvas suit for one of the interpretive artisans. Emily left me a note saying that yesterday’s late-afternoon fitting with him went “swimmingly. He says the fabric is the same color as his truck. I’m assuming this is a good thing.” Hope so. Penny is taking a well-deserved looong weekend. When she comes back Monday she and Emily and Lacey will be preparing for a two-day dye fest. On Tuesday and Wednesday of next week they’ll be dyeing wool yarn with natural dyes outside the Crafts Center. I’m so excited about this, I can’t wait. If you’re in the neighborhood, come see.

Hot Dog Buns and a Southern Belle

July 2nd, 2008 by Jill Hall

Lacey guest writes today:

This is Lacey here. I am the other intern here at the wardrobe department and I have a story about my experience here at Plimoth that just needs to be shared.

To begin, I am very much a girl of the south. My mother is from the northwest, but she’s the oddball there. My dad is from Deep South Texas and my brother and I were born in Georgia. I then lived in Heidelberg, Germany for my formative years, where the culture is of course not American, but that southern American hospitality still reigned in my home. When we moved back to the US it was again to the south, though most southerners would argue that Northern Virginia is not, in fact, the south. Needless to say coming here to Plimoth is the first time I have ever been in New England.

Working here as an intern is more than I had ever dreamed of, even after I turned in the application earlier this year. That being said, I am finding it incredibly hard to live on air and sunshine, money definitely has a certain appeal. (we were able to offer Emily and Lacey internships with housing but without stipends – jmh) When some of the other girls and I were offered a job working the Plimoth Cinema in the evenings and on weekends we snatched at the opportunity. Its not a lot of money but it makes my mother’s frugal child feel a little bit better about her bank account.

Now we move to the meat of the story. On Saturdays the Cinema has a concession stand with popcorn, candy and hot dogs so the moviegoers can make an event of it. This past Saturday I was to work the concession stand by myself for the first time. When the time came to sell the first hot dog, which by the way are two for three dollars, I came upon a dilemma. The hot dog buns were like nothing I had ever seen before. To me they looked something like an excessively fat slice of bread that had been shortened about three inches. Hot Dog!

I held it like one would a normal, to me, hot dog bun and tried to find the slice. Failing to find the slice I looked all over the places I would have thought to find it. Now those of you northerners reading this who have never seen what constitutes a normal hot dog bun for the rest of us, its something like a mini sub roll and opens on the side of the bun. Never finding the slice on those first buns, I mangled the poor man’s hot dog buns to the dissatisfaction of my poor confused brain.

Hot dog buns or frankfurter buns?Three dogs later I realized these buns did in fact have a slice, and that it was in the top of the bun. I was mortified that I had missed this. Later, between the two showings I mentioned it to my boss who commented that when she had gone to college somewhere outside of New England, she had not known what to do with the sub roll buns and had her mother keep her supplied in hot dog buns.

Jill again. When Lacey told me this story, I decided to get some pictures of the buns in question. A thousand words and all. I just happened to have some New England hot dog rolls at home. My daughter prefers them because they’re more stable on the plate. I checked the grocery store yesterday, and the ones like this with the slice on the top say “frankfurter buns” and the ones Lacey knows, with the slice on the side, are called “hot dog buns.” There’s no end to what you can learn from the Embroiderers’ Story. Thank you for all the comments, and I’ll be posting answers as well as three more posts from Tricia over the next days. I am having BIG computer troubles at home so if you’re waiting for an answer from me on something – Carolyn and Robbin – I’ll try calling you. Thanks for your patience. ETA: that is my horrifically messy kitchen table around the edges of those pictures. The housecleaning fairies are on vacation this week.

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