Thursday, November 12, 2015

Hallowe'en 2015 - A Period-Clothing Party

~ This week's posting is going to be history extremely lite. Nothing thought provoking. No historical revelations. Just fun.
Hope you like it ~

Hallowe'en has been over now for a couple weeks - - - so what am I doing writing about the holiday now?
Well, all of the activities for the big day took place on or shortly after October 31, so I couldn't very well post anything beforehand - unless I am a psychic (I'm not----sorry).
And that's my 'excuse.'
Let's hop a broom stick and fly - - - - - -
Our Hallowe'en night was spent, as it has for the past five years, over on Tilsson Street in beautiful historic Romeo, Michigan. This is where nearly an entire block of homeowners decorate the front yards of their Victorian houses beyond anything I've heard of a neighborhood ever doing. It's not just a few extravagantly carved pumpkins, but amazing displays of 'terror' done in a fun sort of way:
Yes, this is the front and side of somebody's yard.

Something for the kiddies...and for those of us who grew up on this best of all Hallowe'en cartoons.

This taught me to never grow pumpkins in a cornfield, for you never know what may come out of it.

A pirate ship----right smack-dab in the middle of a front yard! And it's a haunted one at that!!

There was no sitting and relaxing on the front porch on this night of the dead.

Nightmare Before Christmas. One of my favorite Hallowe'en (or is it Christmas?) movies come to life.

And this is only but a few of the dozens of houses that do extreme Hallowe'en.
Of course, we dress up to go, but not in costumes...but in period clothing:
My son Rob as a WWI doughboy. 
Yeah...we know the uniform is way too large for him, but we only know of one person who has such an outfit. Beggars can't be choosers (or so I've heard).
He is emulating his great grandfather (this picture is of my mother's father from 1917).
Watch out for Judge Judy!

We followed the yellow-leafed road to this house, and look who we found!

A family that brews together...

Such a soggy night that the coffins popped up through the wet ground.

Beetleguise, Beetleguise, Beet----wait! Don't say it a third time!

This is my seamstress, who works her body to the bone sewing everyone's period clothing.

Here I am. Now, looking at this picture it seems like I have painted my face a ghostly white and am wearing clothing suitable for a graveyard, doesn't it? But I didn't put any make up on my face - that's the lighting of the skulls. As for the clothing...
...this is what I had on: a medieval serf/peasant man's garments.
Didn't expect to see me wearing this style of clothing now did ya?

A week after Hallowe'en I had a period-dress party...but for this party I didn't want the typical spooky atmosphere; I, instead, asked my guests (reenactors all) to dress in period clothing, though not in a period they normally reenact in, but in a time they've not experienced before.
And they did.
Some came dressed in biblical clothing of a few thousand years ago, while others came in 20th century fashions, and a few wore styles in between; when you have such a wide band of historic fashion, it would be kind of hard to nail it down to just one period for food and games, wouldn't it? So, instead of attempting to be period accurate in all things, we had modern food and snacks: chips, veggies, cakes, fritos, pizza & pop (or "soda" for those of you from New England), played silly games (though we laughed til we cried at some of them!), and generally just had an enjoyable time.
I asked to have a mini-fashion show where each costumed character can speak of their clothing.
Going in chronological order, we'll begin with... 
What we have here is Moses and his wife Zeporah the Shepherdess.

From Rebecca/Allegorya, the wearer of the clothing:
"Here you can see Silvia Balletti, the Venetian actress in her height in the 1730's. Born to into an acting troupe 27 June 1701, she began acting as a child and would act at the Troupe de Régente of Luigi Riccoboni at the Comédie -Italienne in Paris from 1716-1758. Casanova admired her, was a friend to her son Antonio Stefano Balletti, and courted her daughter, Manon Balletti.
I am wearing a sheer petticoat with spangles, passementrie, and embroidery in toile pattern, a robe à la Française over a Venetian lace chemisette and corset of the period, a Venetian clay mask, and a set of panniers for shape, that open at the top to reveal your hidden pockets( a lady's best friend around pick pockets)."

The young lad you see here is the same one dressed in WWI earlier in this post. Although he's worn his "minute man" clothing at reenactments, it is a relatively new experience for him, therefore it still can be considered something new and different.

Totally skipping the 19th century (for we all are Civil War reenactors), we jump to the 20th century - the early 1920s, to be exact - where we find one who lives in Downton Abby, and she told everyone of the latest gossip there.

Next we have my grandmother. Well...not really, but she could have been. My grandmother was a 1920s hipster, though not necessarily a flapper (but her sister, my great aunt, was).
The era of the 1920s - it was the bees knees. And how!  

Now we find ourselves in the 1940s where we see this young lady dressing in a Canadian military uniform. 
Yes, she had pipes with her but didn't - couldn't - play. Her husband, on the other hand, does play.
But he chose to, instead, dress in a 1940s Russian military uniform:

Speaking of the 1940s, this young lady dressed in her grandmother's dress from the late '40s. Pretty cool, eh?

Here is a teenager from the 1950s who, I would imagine, likes to listen to that rock and roll bop music. Why would I come to such a conclusion? Because she is dressed in dungarees, and no proper young lady would dress in such a manner!
Be-bop-a-lula she's my baby
Be-bop-a-lula I don't mean maybe...

And then we had a few people at the party that did dress a fun way...
Here we have a cave woman...well, a modern cartoonish impression of a cave woman. Wilma? Betty? A grown up Pebbles?
No matter - it was all in good fun!

This is Beckie as the 1985 Marty McFly after he went back to 1955 from the alternate 2015 (in the 2nd movie).

I've never thrown a party like this before, and it went along pretty good. Thank God for my friends with fun ideas for games: finding and blowing out a candle while blindfolded was one:
 click HERE for a short video clip (no, my eyes aren't really that squinty! I was laughing very hard and trying not to make a sound while doing so, for I was the person holding the candle!)~
and another was a writing/sketching game involving the deciphering of sketches into sentences into sketches:
The top piece of paper is what one person wrote.
The second piece shows how the next person deciphered the sentence in a quick sketch.
The third piece of paper shows a written description of what the following person thought the sketch was of.
The the next is yet another person's sketch of the previous person's sentence.
And so on until you see what the final person's sketch as it went through the line.
Does that make sense?
Robbie, by the way, is the guy pictured above in colonial clothing. 
He's also my son - - - 
So, as you can see, we had a pretty good Hallowe'en. I do plan to return to Tilson Street next year and would like to expand on my Hallowe'en party.
Anyhow, it was a lot of fun to let loose and just enjoy ourselves.
Until next time, see you in time - - - -


1 comment:

Gina @ VictorianWannaBe said...

Hi Ken, That's my kind of Halloween neighborhood! Love it! Wish we had somewhere like that around here.
Your party looked like a lot of fun. Thanks for sharing it with us.