Thank you all for the extremely kind compliments! I appreciate them all and have read them several times, taking notes and thinking about the suggestions.
I do have and will be wearing the long over the elbow white gloves with the ensemble on the runway. Check out this very unflattering photo my son took, need I say more?
I have decided not to make a hat for this ensemble, as it is an after 5pm type of ensemble. The original pattern artwork did not show a hat as an accessory, so at least for this aspect, I'll stick to the original look.
Regarding the hem border, I tallied up the responses I got and most of you were not in favor of a blue hem border, with three times as many votes against it than for it. So, I got out my sample and pinned it onto the dress on the dress form:
It would definitely make the skirt look shorter! I'm not sure if I want that at all - I'm 5'2" (155cm) to begin with, and this look doesn't help, as Elizabeth pointed out. Maybe if I were taller it might work.
Now I am leaning towards not doing the border. I have some other ideas, but I am going to think about it a bit, and "decompress" as Jean S. said. Of course, you know I will be involved in something else (rabbit costumes) by the time I get this back from the Mid-Atlantic show and won't want take the 6 to 8 weeks to make the border!
I am glad that this ensemble is finished. For some reason, this one seemed really tough to complete for me. I think it is partly due to the length of time it took me to make it. I really underestimated how long it would take to make. There was the issue with the thread back at the beginning, I've also had issues with the sequins not liking heat and steam and had to replace some of those. I don't know if you noticed, but I ended up changing almost all the flowers on the coat because in the end I didn't like the gold pen detail. The pen left blobs at the beginning or end of a line some of the time and did not look good at all. There were some days when the bluebirds were not so happy, but I am glad I stuck with it and finished.
What did I learn from this ensemble?
- to check with manufacturers to make sure there is enough product available for my project
- to be patient when things are taking longer than I expected
- to be objective and keep looking for solutions, even in unlikely places
- to keep going, even though the task may seem long and boring, like sewing on the 6000th bead! (BTW, I've calculated that there are between 7,000 and 8,000 beads on BOH.)
Parting Shot: Needs Help. It has been a little over a year since I've organized my fabric. I suppose it is time to get this done again. I am hoping to find some fabrics for parts of the rabbit costumes in there somewhere. Tonight I'll be working on this shelf of black, white and brown.