22 May 2012

What Shall I Wear?

After so long not needing to think much about what I'm going to wear today (and certainly not thinking about what I'll wear in a week or a month's time), I've recently found myself planning what to wear to the Sydney Writers' Festival, and for my graduation next week, then a science fiction convention in early June, and SupaNova in mid June.

In the last few years I have had a very low income (due to little or no work, while recovering from a major illness), and also been putting on weight, so my old clothes mostly don't fit any more, and I haven't bought many new ones (except for geeky t-shirts, which I am addicted to, and buy when they are on special).

The SWF was relatively easy - cool weather meant jeans, usually with leggings underneath for warmth, then a writerly t-shirt over a long-sleeved garment (skivvy or long-sleeved t-shirt), and a jacket for the colder mornings and evenings. The t-shirts I wore to the Festival had: a design of books putting on their jackets (some with fur trim); a quote from TV writer Joss Whedon; a depiction of Mary Shelley writing, sheets of paper flying in the air around her, and her Creature looming behind her; the Bronte sisters at a picnic, with Charlotte and Emily giggling over the brooding heroes in a magazine called 'Byronic', while Anne glowers disapprovingly.

On the first day of the Festival I lost a favourite jacket, which was comfortable, loose enough to still fit and to go over several layers, a lovely combination of shades of brown, I'd had it for over 30 years, and it was given to me by my mum, who died last year. sad to lose it, but at least it was a garment, not a person (one of my darling cats was missing for four days not long ago, which certainly puts a jacket into perspective, even a favourite one).

I bought some nice clothes at an op shop/thrift shop to wear to my graduation (Certificate IV in Training and Assessment), but am not sure now if they'll be suited to the weather - the seven day forecast so far is indicating probable showers and a maximum of 17^C, colder than I was expecting. And I'll probably be walking some distance to/from public transport at either end of the trip between home and venue. Will have to think more about that further...

For the science fiction convention in June, again I'll need warm clothes for travelling between where I'll be staying with friends and the convention venue - winter in Melbourne will definitely be chilly. And layers that I can take off when I get to the venue will be good; since the Con is being held at a 4 star hotel I assume it'll be nice and warm indoors. The theme of this Con is craft, in the sense of hand-made artifacts, artisan work, wearables, etc, so I'll try to wear geeky/spec fic t-shirts that also relate to crafts, and/or wear some hand-made jewellery or textile art. Not sure if I'll have the energy to go to the Maskobalo (for which, surprisingly, a mask is not de rigeur), but if I do, I'll wear a costume. My first thought, assisted by my sister, was to wear a Halloween costume bee outfit that I bought on special at CorsetsAU, augmented with home-made findings, and say I was a Vespiform, as seen in the Doctor Who episode with Agatha Christie. Then I actually looked at the theme for this year's ball, and discovered it is Under Sea, so now I'm thinking of going (if I do) as a selkie, in her human form, inspired by Margo Lanagan's recent novel Sea Hearts (published in the US as The Brides of Rollrock Island).

In their human form, the selkies wear the everyday attire of Rollrock Island, which seems to be early 20th century Scottish peasant's dress. So I'll find something to simulate that, plus I need to find some seaweed that I can knit a sea-blanket from. Not sure where to source that in Sydney - sheets of nori would be easy to find, but I need strands - any suggestions?

I've not yet done cosplay for the two SupaNova events that I've been to, sticking with my usual geeky or cat-related t-shirts. If I get there this year (it's the weekend after Continuum 8/Craftonomicon, so I might still be resting and recovering), I'm thinking of dressing up, and if I've put together a sea-wife's costume, that'd be a good option. Or the bee/Vespiform, which I could do there instead of at the Con. Or, I could go as a Hogwarts student, with my baby Welsh Red Dragon, Nerys. For that I'd need a school uniform, and a Hogwarts tie - preferably in Ravenclaw or Hufflepuff colours.

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