1850s · 1850s sewing · Dress · Finished! · Reenacting · Reenactments

Reenactment: Queen Victoria’s Birthday Celebration

This past weekend was our May reenactment, Queen Victoria’s Birthday! I always look forward to this reenactment – the ladies are so well dressed, and it’s a chance to celebrate the refinements of the British Empire out in the Pacific Northwest.

I finished the little girl’s dress just in time for this event! Despite it being a little too big in the bodice (although for a growing girl that’s ok since she’ll be able to grow into it), I really like how it turned out and Janelle just loved it. She actually told me that she would wear it for every single reenactment she attends at the fort (and then I quickly replied that she didn’t have to wear it when it was really hot since it’s made out of wool).

Janelle in the new dress I made her. Look at her little model pose! I’m definitely having a good influence on her.

So, we both wore plaid Pendleton wool dresses during the day, and weren’t too hot (luckily!)

I also had a first-person presentation in the afternoon (for those non-reenactors, first-person is sort of like method acting where you become the character and speak as them) since I was portraying the wife of the Chief Factor (esentially a manager) of the fort. Despite being a “reenactor” for several years, I don’t necessarily consider myself an “actor” (or, actress). So, delivering a monologue as someone else was slightly nerve-wrecking, but luckily I had notes to read off of (since, despite being a history major, I’m really awful at memorizing lines).

My reenacting bestie, Nona, was also able to make it to the event and we had so much fun catching up!

Nona playing croquet. Isn’t her outfit so fabulous!? I definitely need a red dress now.

Oh, and finally, something really interesting happened last week. I’m currently in the midst of writing a 20-page research paper on Living History and Reenacting for my Senior History Seminar class (which partially explains my lack of blogging). Anyways, I was going through one of the books entitled “Living History Museums an Historic Sites in the United States” and decided to see what they said about fort Nisqually under the “Trading Posts” section. Lo and behold, a photo of Nona and I! I mean, how often does that happen – doing research for a paper and discovering a photo of yourself in one of your source materials!?

I brought the book with me to the reenactment, and of course Nona and I had to get a photo of ourselves with it!

Next month’s reenactment is a 19th century cooking contest and I’m already scheming up what to make after coming in 4th last year. I’ll be entering solo and cooking over an open fire all by myself for the first time (since Nona will be off to Indonesia for the month for a fabulous adventure), so of course a new dress is in order! I’m thinking something more working-class with a crazy mid-19th century printed fabric. 😉

4 thoughts on “Reenactment: Queen Victoria’s Birthday Celebration

  1. Of course you need a red dress!! 🙂 Can’t wait to see what you come up with for a working class dress to wear for the cooking contest. Wish I could be there too!

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