Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Christmas Decoration 2015, Part I - 18th-Century Headdress, DV style


This year I will revisit, with my good friend The Countessa Papera Ephemera, the period from where she comes from, the 18th century. If you recall, she lost her head during the French Revolution, you can read about her here and see the first dress I made for her. So in this spirit I will lose my head for this holiday creation and decorate with appropriate excess and frivolity,
starting with the head dress. The image above The Flower Garden was the trigger 
for all this 'madness'.

The Queen of excess and frivolity was, of course, the legendary Marie-Antoinette, which started the whole thing rolling.


The first image The Flower Garden is a caricature, but not that far off from the reality seen above. Hight and volume is what I aim to achieve, but mostly with elements from my garden. 


Two types of hydrangea blooms, sedum, lemon grass, pine cones and branches. Although I have a huge walnut tree growing in my backyard, I did not risk collecting its fruits as the flesh is poisonous.
All these elements made from a drab palette so I used vegetable dye, mica and gold spray paint to liven it up.




I mixed the dye and micas in water then swished the hydrangea blooms around and left them to dry.
It added colour, all the while keeping the look natural. In some cases, I sprayed the blooms with gold paint and in other cases, I added a touch of gold to a dyed bloom.



The Countess' glass head has been left clear this year. Chicken wire and garden mesh was used as foundation to achieve height and volume.


The branches were cut straight so they can rest flat on the head and secured with hot glue. I made sure this stage was very secure as I did not want everything to collapse once finished.


I started building the wig with a dab of hot glue where needed.






Almost done...

3 comments:

Gina @ VictorianWannaBe said...

Wow, quite a headdress there Anyes. It's looking great! Looking forward to the completion, I know it will be wonderful!
Have a great rest of your week,
gina

The Dusty Victorian said...

Hello Gina,
Big hair in the 80s was nothing compared to big hair in the late 18th century. Spraypaint instead of hairspray though, it's coming along.
Best,
Anyes
xx

The Dusty Victorian said...

To Anonymous, thank you so much for your comment.
When I inserted my branches through the tangled wire, they felt really secure, partly because I had bunched up a lot of chicken wire on top of the head. Only the base near the glass felt looser, thus requiring hot glue. But if you feel that your branches are loose, certainly tie additional wires to tighten up everything. Thanks for the interest and good luck.
Anyes
xx