Thursday 29 December 2011

The story of Tasteful Six

As you may have been reading, I recently took a very exciting trip to Chicago TARDIS.

On the Saturday Night I entered the costume masquerade, and won the prize for Best In Show: Workmanship (see right).

I cannot tell you how proud I was to have won it. I had never entered anything like it before, and wasn’t sure what to expect.

I know these events can either be frivolous or greatly competitive – and I was aiming for the upper end of that. There were over forty entries, so a wide range of costumes were on show. My dream was to get some recognition for my tailoring, so to get Workmanshipwas a great privilege.

I had considered entering one of my Matt Smith combinations, but I thought something from left-field would attract a bit more interest, so I wore what I described as a Tasteful Six!

This was made up of my Colin Baker Frock Coat, all made in a single colour melton with matching velvet lapels (see left).

Now, what I didn’t tell you was the FULL story behind the costume. I couldn’t say much at the time, but as you will read there was a reason – and why I can talk about it now . . .

You may recall I made myself a Six Frock Coat as a test back in April. A few keen-eyed readers have asked me about this, because if you look closely you will see it is NOT the same coat I wore to Chicago.

April’s test was made in a deep purple, which is actual a perfect match to Fabric Two in my Fabric Breakdown.

When the coat was completed I showed it to my friends who own the original screen-used coat from which it had been copied so we could compare the two. You may recall I had the jaw-dropping chance to wear the entire costume while back (see left).

They were very impressed and could see how well I had matched the design and its construction, so much so they asked if I would make them two coats for their civil partnership wedding, planned for later in the year. I was very flattered to be asked.

They choose their own colour scheme, a maroon (see above, left), and I sourced a matching velvet (see above, centre) and appropriate lining (see above, right).

Over the next few months I worked on the coats, on occasions taking them in to college with me, where there was an amusing conversation with one of the ladies on the class:
Her    What are you making?
Me     Two wedding coats.
Her    Oh, for the groom and best man?
Me     No, two grooms.
Her    Oh – you’re doing TWO weddings!
Me     No, it is for a civil partnership wedding.
Her    Oh, one of those weddings!
I don’t think she meant to come across like that - she’s real nice - but I thought it was quite funny!

I had been commissioned to make two identical coats, but since I was pining for the purple one I made in April, I thought  why just make two when you can make a third for just a little bit more effort?

The date for the wedding was the 22nd of December, but they wanted to have delivery by the end of November – around the same time as Chicago TARDIS. This worked out quite well, since I wanted my own coat in time for the convention.

They were thrilled with their coats, and were delighted to hear mine had won a prize at Chicago. All that remained now was the wedding itself!

I’ll do a separate entry on this shortly, but until then here are the happy couple – John and Chris!

It was an enchanting location; a very nice ceremony; and a very well organised wedding.

I wish John and Chris a very happy time together.

Raise your glasses

To John and Chris!

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