I've been reading lots of blog posts about all the little ones that are heading back to school. We still have another few weeks before school begins - school doesn't begin until the State Fair ends and that only began today.
The beginning of the State Fair not only signals the end of summer, but it is a reminder that the six week run of the Renaissance Fair is under way.
It's been seven years since I've attended the festival, but it used to be something my girlfriend and I looked forward to all summer.
The first time I attended the festival was in the early 80s. It wasn't nearly as crowded then. The focus was more on arts and crafts with a few performances and many roving performers. That was the first and last time the kids and I attended the festival. On a single mom's salary we never seemed to have extra funds for such an extravagance.
Fast forward to the early 90s and my best friend tells me I have to go again.
Not only must I go again, but I must go in costume.
Huh? Why would I want to do that?
I resisted. She persisted. Next thing you know a tradition was born.
Every year we would dream up costumes to wear to the summer's festival. Mind you, this was before the Big 4 began offering the many wonderful costume patterns they now have. Our costumes were designed to give a feel for the era; they were not meant to be authentic period costumes.
My favorite was this green and blue dress with a white cotton underdress. There are no buttons or zipper closures - just lots of eyelets and lacings. This photo is from the 1997 festival and was taken at the end of the day. I was worn out from all the festivities (maybe the wine had something to do with it) and had found a big shady tree to rest under. Now my best friend is an incredibly talented artist who sews beautifully, has a dry sense of humor, just happens to possess a very high IQ, is a mommy to four great kids, always know the right thing to say at the right time, and wouldn't you know it? She cute too. It's a good thing we've known each other since we were ten because if I didn't love her so much I'd want to dislike her.
Her costumes change every year - sometimes its a gypsyisc look, sometimes a middle eastern dancer, sometimes a princess, sometimes a wench. But her all time favorite is her goat costume. I kid you not. (No pun intended, LOL!)
She designed and sewed goat pants (complete with tail) for herself, her daughter and for me. She and her daughter wore theirs with tops that she designed and sewed from deer hides. The deer hide came from the deer she killed when she went deer hunting...with a bow. See? She can do anything. She's like wonder women only funnier...and blonde.
This photo is from the summer of 2000. Doesn't she look great?
Trust me, the guys in the background aren't checking out my new pair of cropped pants (sewn with a Vogue pattern by the way).