Bonnie lass (faeriecross) wrote in tipping_velvet,
Bonnie lass

Wanting to dress up like Nan?

Hello all! I've just recently finished the book Tipping the Velvet and adored it so, obviously. I'm looking to soon watch the mini TV show too - from what I here, it seems good? Is it too different from the books? Well, if anything, I would watch it just for the prettyness..

But I had another question, and I apologize if it is too off-topic.. but I wondered if anyone here had any idea of where to find suits like Nan and Kitty had, as I am going to a ball soon. Boy's suits for girls, so to speak. Besides getting them custom-fitted, because that's expensive. I'm a small girl myself, so should I look for boy's (small boys) suits in the largest size? Every time I search girl's suits I just find those feminine business suits. Any ideas/tips on where to look?

Thank you! <3
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I really enjoyed the show. (I also read the book first.) They cut out a bit, of course, but for the most part it was true to the story. Yes, it is very very pretty. The costumes and scenery are to die for!

As far as suits go, you'll probably just have to search around rather diligently. There are some cute little numbers on Ebay--if nothing else you can collect bits and pieces and put together a nice ensemble. :)
Thank you. (: I'm trying to search around ebay right now.. boy's suits might fit me. >.> And I so can't wait to see the show! It looks gorgeous.
Are you looking for vintage/repro or modern?
More vintage, I think. Adorable icon!
eBay is about all you can try for actual vintage. Because you're looking for things 100 years old, and the period isn't as popular for re-enactors, it's harder to find repro items. Moreover, much of the interest in repro fashion is on the female side, which makes it harder to find mens items that are not "Old West" or "Civil War" (which will tend to be in rougher fabrics and less fashionable cuts than Nan would really approve of, the little fashionplate *g*).

It's fairly easy to find the accessories you'll need - bowler hats, braces, neckties, collars, collar studs, etc. - than to find the major items (particularly the appropriate jackets, as trousers are easier to modify).

Check the links at Costumer's Manifesto - while most of what is out there is for female costuming, there are some places that cater to the male re-enactor. Dig through either the "Costumes 4 Sale" or "History" sections to find tailors who do this kind of thing and/or patterns. And then have a heart attack at how much repro costs because it's all essentially handmade because there's so little demand that mass production is impossible.

But because women are generally more of a boys size, it's going to be v. difficult to find vintage items. Boys were allowed to be much harder on their clothes than girls were, particularly teenage boys, which is what you're really looking for. It's easier to find vintage for adults (because oftentimes they died and thus clothes were packed away in good condition) and small children (because they outgrew things). I have had a bear of a time finding slightly newer vintage (1920s) that would fit because I'm short and thin.
Oh, wow.. All of that makes my head spin. Thank you for explaining! Yeah, vintage would be way too hard for my size, and especially my price-range. I'm thinking I'll probably just look for something formal in a boy's size, like a tuxedo a boy wore at a wedding but outgrew.
You can somewhat period-up a modern suit - the collars are quite easy to find, as are patterns or even actual vintage neckties, which will help immensely. A tuxedo isn't going to do it for you, really, because of the cut and also the cheap ones for kids tend to have the nasty shiny lapels. (or else I've only see the pictures from weddings of people without taste, which is entirely likely, as my friends with taste have not had people younger than themselves involved in the ceremony)

I'd look for a basic suit, preferably in grey, on eBay, then use period detailing to pull back, which you can do with vest, collar, and tie. You'll want single breasted of course and three button would be best. And be very careful of all your measurements, of course.

(vests are v. easy to make, as are ties if you can deal with the silk. It's everything else that's a bear. Not that I have a sewing machine anymore, but some fabric stores do rent them, and as a non-sewer, I was able to help my non-sewing mother make a vest for a halloween costume when I was 11. And all the images in the relevent sections of Costumers's Manifesto are tremendously helpful for figuring out what fabric you'd want to use.)
Sadly, I've already bought a boy's tux on ebay now before this reply. ): I wish I had known - I'm not sure if the one I got is a nice one or not. Nasty shiny lapels? But I definitely plan on trying to find more suits in the future as soon as I get my next paycheck probably, so I'll try to get a nice pants suit and accessories next time. Accessories are especially fun because I can add them to other outfits too. <3

Again, thanks for all of your advice and wisdom over this. I'm completely clueless. >.>
I love it when girls dress up as boys. Hehe.

And THAT'S what I'm going to do this summer. READ THE DARN BOOK!!
Look in a magic shop... often times they'll have suits for both sexes. :)

Happy hunting!! :D