Friday, October 13, 2023

Literary Sewing Circle: Blue Castle Inspo!

It's the first week of our Literary Sewing Circle featuring The Blue Castle by LM Montgomery. Have you found a copy yet? Have you started reading? If so, how are you finding the opening chapters? 

Today's inspiration is going to look at some of the characters in this story; we'll find ideas based on their names and personalities. There are many different names in this book, with the wide ranging Stirling clan & quite a few side characters too, and here are a few suggestions of projects you could make based on these elements. 

Let's start with the main characters! 

I tried to find something to match Valancy's name but nothing exact came up. However, if you want to make something inspired by a variant on her name here are a couple. 

First, you might try the Vali Dress by PatternFantastique. It's close to "Valancy", and the style may appeal to you!

Or, maybe the Valo dress or top by Named Clothing will be the variant you think will fit in here! 

Perhaps you'd like to make something relevant to Barney Snaith. You might have to go to his real name, and make this Bernard knitted collection, perfect for chilly Muskoka fall or winter evenings. 

Looking closer to home in the first few chapters, you could take inspiration from Valancy's mother Amelia, and make this lovely Amelia dress by Mila Onni patterns, which Mrs. Stirling might have worn in her youth, though probably not in such pretty colours. 

Or you could make some Christine trousers by ThisIsKachi -- I could imagine Cousin Stickles would have worn something like this if only she'd been living in the 70s instead of the 20s. 

Or you could try the Christine Sling by Love You Sew, to add a functional, practical purse to the outfit.

If you find Uncle Benjamin of interest, I think this pattern choice represents him very well! I can see him in a Benjamin bow tie (by FreeSewing) behind the counter of his store. 

There's always Cousin Olive, whose lovely clothing and trousseau makes Valancy so envious at the beginning of the book. You could go in many directions here, with a summery Olive Dress, by Megan Nielsen or by Untitled Thoughts -- or, more business-like, in a trim pinafore by Tilly and the Buttons. 

For a relative who is a little nicer, and more sympathetic to Valancy, you could use Cousin Georgiana as your inspiration. You might try the Georgianna Dress by The Tailoress, a loose shift dress that evokes the 20s in some ways. 

Or for something a bit more fitted, try the Mary Quant inspired Georgie Dress, by Alice & Co - it's a free pattern found at the V&A.

If you're thinking of characters outside the family, you could try the Trent sling bag by IThinkSew -- a bag to throw things in if you need to make a quick getaway, like Dr. Trent. 

Roaring Abel might be your inspiration, at least for his carpentry work. This Abel Apron by WISJ is a free pattern that could be handy for your tools and materials for any kind of work -- and it comes in 4 sizes from toddler to adult. 

Or it might be Abel's sweet daughter Cissy who will inspire you, with this gentle fitting Cissy Dress by Homer & Howells. 

Of course you could always go with John Foster and his rhapsodies on nature, and make a Foster Colorblock Hoodie by Petite Stitchery for any little ones in your life. 

I hope that some of these projects have given you ideas! If you have a favourite character, hopefully one of these patterns will fit right into your style. Another inspiration post will be coming in two weeks so if nothing sparks your interest here, just wait ;) 

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