Tagged ‘Mary’

Colonial Children

June 28th, 2008 by Jill Hall

Practicing first-person interpreting without “real” visitors.I mentioned that we were, a few weeks ago, concentrating on getting clothing ready for our child volunteers. We’ve expanded the program this year (only to children of Plimoth staff, though) and are introducing nine new colonial children to the 1627 Village site this week. Colleen asked when one might find children on site. We’re not holding them to particular schedules, being youngsters and volunteers and all, but this is what I know. You’re likely to find children on site any day except Tuesdays and Wednesdays for the time being. You’re much less likely to find any on those awful, suffocating hot & humid days we sometimes get. The children aren’t scheduled through the front desk, so calling ahead, unfortunately, won’t get you any more information. The children are pretty excited, though, and want to be on site. With nine to choose from you’re pretty likely to find some most days.

Next Thursday, July 3 there will be a “squadron muster” in the English Village and I believe most of the children areA Small Boy. planning to be on site for it. In the 17th century the colonists were very serious about defending their colony, and being prepared to defend it, both from potential European rivals (Spanish and French, most notably) and Native peoples. We have historical references to the colonists “exercising their arms”(arms & armor, not limbs) periodically, and the squadron muster will be a demonstration of what that might have looked like. We have no record of any attack on the Plymouth Colony by either Europeans or Natives up to and including the year portrayed on site – 1627.

A couple of days ago the children got into their period clothing, most of them for the first time except for try-ons. They practiced first person interpreting on our Colonial Education Site with plain-clothed interpreters for pretend visitors. Here are a couple of pictures Penny caught of their work that day.

A couple of days ago Mary asked if we have another Big Project in the pipeline for when the jacket is finished. She wrote “don’t cringe” but what I actually responded with was a sort of manic giggle. Yes, we sort of do have another or few big ideas. One is the 2009 Symposium, which I wrote about yesterday. The exhibit that the jacket will be part of is actually a pretty big project, and pretty “wardrobe heavy” which means lots of hands-on work for us. There’s enough talk about a book about creating this jacket that I think that is very likely, even probable. We’ve even started thinking about another big Volunteer Project, but I’m so not ready to let that cat out of the bag right now. It isn’t likely to be something very similar to the jacket, but it ,will be similarly awesome, ambitious and unique.

Of birds, and lace

February 17th, 2008 by Jill Hall

The bird on the blog header is indeed the same as the bird on the jacket, as Mary says in the comments. The bird on the jacket will be a little smaller, though, and the stitches may be a little different. Since we traced and Tricia worked that sample we’ve received more detailed photos of the original. Last I talked with Tricia about the bird she was musing that there might be something more interesting and complicated going on than she’d first thought. She has to study the photos some more, and maybe consult with Ms North at the V&A. I can’t wait to see what she finds out. Of course we’ll share with you too.

robbin workingSpeaking of sharing, tonight I have pictures of Robbin (of the laptop donation) and one of her treasures. Robbin brought in the piece of antique Honiton lace that was her wedding veil.Honiton

I learned that Honiton lace takes its name from the place in the west of England where it has been traditionally made. Honiton is worked in pieces or motifs and sewn to a net ground. Long ago the net was made by hand, but the piece Robbin has dates from around 1900 and the net is likely machine made. Robbin explained that Honiton was made by the cottage system, where workers made individual lace motifs which were then put together to make big pieces of lace. A worker might make one motif, the small flower with leaves perhaps, over and over and over and over.

Robbin bought this piece of lace intending it for her veil and then shopped for a dress to go with it, like the dedicated textile lover she is. Here’s a detail of the veil.

Robbin also brought her lace pillow with her sample lace still affixed. She thought I would like to see it that way, and take pictures for the blog. She was right. I was fascinated to see the lace on the pricking with some of the pins still in, and the bobbins still attached. Robbilaceonpillown was careful to mention that these bobbins are not the kind recommended for working the sample, but she has lots of them and not lots of the recommended (Dutch) kind. They worked tolerably well, she thought, and was willing to put up with their drawbacks as it was less trouble than hunting up enough pairs of the other.

These are the lace bobbins with spangles – bobbin spangles, not the kind of spangles that will be worked into the lace. Yeesh, this is confusing.

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