I like sewing! I like the way that the end result is always entirely unpredictable. All-in-all, it's an under-rated form of creative expression. I angle for beauty, and happen at the nightmarish. Beards! Costumes! Gazelle masks! I even take commissions from time to time. I particularly enjoy working with denim and old curtains, and making things that I couldn't find anywhere else.
Denim mask commission - Autumn 2015
For the first time in quite a while, a client got in contact in Autumn 2015. It was quite an open brief: a denim mask with hair. We discussed designs and over the course of a fortnight I hand-stitched the above mask.
The hair is waist-length, and the mask is laced at the back, and the neck fastens with a denim collar, which is supported by four belt-loops. The whole thing weighs about the same as two-and-a-half pairs of jeans. Click for a bigger image, if you dare.
Patchwork denim collar - floor-length, 2011
This garment is somewhere between a collar, a scarf and a stole. It's made of squares of denim from five pairs of jeans, and lined with a slightly fluffy purple fabric, and worn here over my cassock (which was once a pair of cream-coloured curtains. The look is inspired by the original Time Lords, as they appeared in 1969's 'The War Games' - though they used far plainer fabrics.
It transpires that patchwork is incredibly time-cosuming - I stitched this by hand between 2009 and 2011. I'm very happy with the results, but I don't think I'll repeat them. I have a large bag full of 6cm squares of old trouser which may have to be used to make something to match. A fetching tea-cosy hat, perhaps?
Thoth - 2012
When I was a child, I was very confused between Thoth and Horus. They both had beaks. Horus was the one I liked, really.
Time changed me. Thoth, like the plague doctors, has a beautiful long beak. Besides, I have always harboured a love of blue/yellow and teal/gold as a combination - as the top of this page will attest. Half trouser, half curtain, this is my beautiful monster.
Masks - 2007-2009
I've made more masks than are pictured. They're fascinating garments, variously anonymising and pseudonymising. None of these were meant to be particularly monstrous. I rather like the cow, which was made for a small theatre company that turned out never to exist - it was a comfy and breathable mask.
I've experimented with various closures - some of these lace up, I've tried poppers, but they're a hastle, and the denim dog one, authentic to its material, zips up with a jeans fly. Like 80% of my wardrobe, I really like these things, but can't think when I, or anyone, would ever wear them. This isn't ideal for a wardrobe.
Other bits and pieces
I have loads of costumes. I wish I liked Halloween more, so I could have another opportunity in the year to dress up and jamboree. Still, as it's said, you don't need an excuse for fancy-dress. Just as it's always pancake day in our hearts, so it's always a good day for colour and surprise.