I may live in Spain but I still work for a UK company. I should explain, briefly, that it is a company full of nutcases. They are a great bunch, but completely bonkers all the same. Every year the company “End of Year” do (we’re not allowed to call it a Christmas party, though nobody seems to know why) is a themed event. Fancy dress is compulsory and you are deemed to be a complete loser if you do not participate. Some put more effort in than others, but secretly everyone is trying to outdo everyone else on the brilliance of their costume. This year the theme is “Medieval Banquet.”
Now, the Spanish don’t really do fancy dress, (well they might, but the rural Andalusians certainly don’t), so I am stuck with a dilemma. Either I wait till I fly back to the UK, a mere six days before the party and run around like a lunatic trying to find something suitable, I order something online and hope that the post office in Albanchez actually bothers to open so I can collect my parcel, or I make something. I have a sewing machine, so I thought to myself “how difficult can it be?” I am making an outfit.
I’ve been trawling t’interweb for a suitable pattern (same post restrictions apply on ordering a pattern) and have somehow become immersed traditional patterns for “Kirtles,” “Surcotes,” and “Houppelands.” Let me tell you, there are some real fanatics out there, each professing to be an expert and admonishing others for their “fantasy” and “historically incorrect” creations. Whilst I admit there is merit to the immense amount of research that has gone into some of these sites, quite frankly I’m just looking for an outfit that doesn’t make me look like some medieval troll. I’m no Kate Moss, but I really don’t want to turn up looking like a poor copy of Princess Fiona. Not a good look.
Whilst researching my outfit, I have come to the conclusion that what most of us think of as typically medieval is in fact complete fantasy. Do I care? No. Not a damn. I’ve always wanted to be a Fairy Princess anyway, so I don’t care if I’m wearing some make-believe outfit, just “please God,” let me look half decent in the thing!
So without a pattern, I got all Blue Peter and made one out of newspaper and sellotape.
I am only about half way through my master plan. So far disasters (it is me after all) include, forgetting that my bust measurement is considerably larger than my shoulder measurements so that I had gaping holes at the sides, a sewing machine meltdown, my “pattern” accidentally ending up as kindling for our log-burner and a dog that ate my pin cushion – twice!
If I don’t win some sort of award for brilliance and general sewing savvy by the end of this, I’m gonna be right annoyed.