Laura’s Blue and White 1870s Victorian Day Dress from J. Sheridan Le Fanu’s Carmilla

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So yesterday I did the vampire Carmilla’s bloody nightgown, and then I got to thinking how unfair it was that she got all the attention and long-suffering Laura got none. As a matter of fact, I can’t even remember Laura’s name without referring to Wikipedia or my previous entry. Face it, you really have to pile on the lace to make mild victims as interesting as seductive vampire women in bloody nightgowns. And so pile I did, and here is a dress from 1870 that Laura might have worn. To be honest, even though as near as I can tell 1870 is an accurate enough date for the book’s setting, I thought long and hard about going back a few years for inspiration. After all, Laura and her father lived in a castle in Germany in the middle of nowhere and who knows how well Laura kept up with English fashion in between vampire ravishings. But then I thought, she was still a growing girl and if her dresses were two or three years old, maybe she’d have outgrown them and wouldn’t be wearing anything that old? Maybe since her father is sort of vaguely rich, she orders a lot of new dresses? Maybe she spends a lot of time remaking her dresses referring to whatever fashion news she can get, because life in an isolated castle is so boring? So I over-thought this until I got fed up and tried to make an 1870s style day dress anyways, like I had initially planned. Since it’s not a copy of any one dress, it’s probably not historically accurate (I definitely have my misgivings about the way the overskirt turned out) but oh well, it was sure fun to draw.

New poll tomorrow, but this one will remain open for a few days yet…

Calamity Jane in Fringed Leather Jacket and Buckskin Breeches

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I’m listening to Deadwood Dick’s Doom, or, Calamity Jane’s Last Adventure, a dime novel western by Edward Wheeler. At three hours long I will probably be done with it by tomorrow, but if you like westerns or Deadwood, which I do, it’s an enjoyable three hours. The reading is a mite uneven, as with a lot of LibriVox books read by many readers, but overall it’s great, and some of the readers really put some life into it. I mean, how can you not love this line:
“Yes, I am Deadwood Dick, the celebrated cuss from Custer clime– the diabolical devil-may-care devotee of road-agency, from Deadwood the hunted hurricane, Harris, just as you see me. And according to a recent act of Congress, if you or any other two-legged individual attempts to harm yonder girl, whoever she may be, I’ll agree to furnish him with a free pass over Jordan by the most direct ethereal line. I mean business, so let some pilgrim of enterprising disposition open the market.”

Bullock couldn’t pull that off, but just imagine Swearengen chewing on it, preferably while waving around a pistol, even if the chivalrous sentiment isn’t quite his department…

Anyways, this is a drawing of Calamity Jane’s outfit, based off of this picture of her scan courtesy of this Calamity Jane site, Calamity Jane gets to show off in this book, putting a bullet through the neck of a bottle midair, but at the moment she’s in mortal peril. I’m not worried, though, Deadwood Dick has a 3 for 3 record of protecting helpless women, so far, and I predict that tomorrow she’ll be out of her predicament and back with him.