Saturday, October 26, 2013

The 2014 ORS Regency Retreat

Ahoy, visitors, we are announcing the ORS's 2014 Retreat dates and location (that's all we have so far!) But details will be added as we get them together.  In the meantime, this is an inclusive event, and all are welcome from anywhere. So mark your calendars, and plan your wardrobes.

September means autumn appropriate clothing! Redingotes and hats. The lodge is all ours, and the rooms are comfortable double-occupancy with lots of privacy. It's a destination venue and we will have some activities listed soon.

Registration forms can be downloaded here.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Recent events

The ORS has been organizing a list of new events for the next six months or more. They are being populated on the main website ( as they are finalized.  In the meantime, enjoy some movies of our three most recent events, A celebration of Shakespeare dance, the Topsails & Tea event in Hood River on June 1, and the Pittock Mansion Picnic, held this past Sunday, July 28 at the Portland landmark, the Pittock Mansion. :)

We will also be holding three costume workshops, with details to be posted here: A bonnet workshop, a stays workshop and a gown workshop. See our events page for details.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Speaking of shoes....

The American Duchess has been producing a growing array of historically inspired shoes for the costuming hordes for a while now. She has already produced the 'Pemberley' for the folks from our preferred time-period, a shoe with a small heel designed after shoes of the early Regency.  She made it in white leather, which is easily paintable... a canvas for your imagination.

The Pemberley
Here is an example of how you can take this simple white shoe, and elevate it to Regency bliss.

Click this image to see the blogpost detailing this project.
Now, the American Duchess has presented the newest Regency model called the 'Highbury'. This is a full Regency flat, and is something to covet.  For one... it is made of dyeable satin.  For two, there are four ribbon loops on each side of the inner shoe for ribbons, which can be laced through in myriad pleasing configurations.

The Highbury
As you can see, these are yet again, a wonderful canvas to play with.  Here is a blog post on a project working with a similar shoe:

Click this image to see the blogpost detailing this project.
Personally, I have always found the portraits of Regency ladies in white with a bright, jewel-toned pop of colour on their dainty feet, ribbons elegantly wound about their ankles to be visions of elegance.

Regency shoes were also intricately patterned and ornamented sometimes.  As seen by these examples, and by many more examples that can be dug up from around the interwebs:

A dye project is easy enough, as demonstrated by Miss Reeser (The American Duchess) in this helpful video.

However, like the project posted before, with the delicate painting, you can do just about anything, including even attempt silk-painting techniques using resist and dye to create an intricate design. I am not sure if this will work on dyeable satin, but it might be worth a try, maybe on some cheap shoes from David's Bridal or something first.

A modern silk-painting.
You can research more on silk painting through Dharma trading, where incidentally, you can find some fine voiles, cottons, silk gauze and dupioni silk for costumes for extremely reasonable prices if you are not afraid to dye fabrics.

The Highbury is on pre-order at present, which means, the model is proposed but not stocked. It must sell at least 100 pairs to be stocked. So I recommend you pre-order a pair as soon as possible so they can be made available to everyone.  They are at a decent discount, and you will also find some elegant accessories and shoe charms and clocked stockings for your costuming needs.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The 2012 retreat afterglow

A closeup of a man's frock coat, photo by Sara Palmer.
The 2012 ORS Regency Retreat was a resounding success. A completely different dynamic took hold this year as the retreat was held in the depth of summery August, and included lots of outdoor activities.  Organizer Stephanie Robertson was again extremely successful in blending together a succession of informative workshops, entertainments, activities and dining events.  From learning the art of making death-head buttons to writing regency letters with a quill, participants enjoyed a variety of period pursuits along with the welcoming society of their fellow participants. Presenters included the Lady of Portland House, who explained in detail the construction of period men's garments, to Author Mary Robinette Kowal, who taught writing letters with quill and ink, and Miss Kristen Behlings taught the workshop on creating a Regency hairstyle.

Miss Brehlings first sets the example.

The evening before, preparations are made for hair styling the next day.
Here is a delightful movie made up of some of the images captured from the four days at Newberg.  Below that, I have provided additional links to albums containing even more pictures.


More photos can be found here:
Mari Roll's Album (Facebook)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

2012 ORS Regency Retreat (and some photos of Topsails and Tea)

Apologies to all for the lag in updates. The ORS has had a bit of a spike in fertility and we've had some unexpected pregnancies among the leadership that sort of threw a couple of sabots into our proverbial looms. We're now one baby boy (Master Logan) stronger in our Regency family here with the ORS, and hopefully we'll know tomorrow if it will be a little white dress or a skeleton suit for the second arrival coming in November.

Anyhow, I'm happy to post the details on the ORS retreat in August. There are a few spots still open, so please feel free to query us if you're interested in coming.  Full payment should be submitted before July 25, if possible. Contact us at if you have questions, or if it's after July 25 and you want to know if there are still spots available.

Click HERE to download the registration packet.

Read the details online on the ORS 2012 Regency Retreat page.
Click HERE.

Additionally, I'm adding some highlight photos of our lovely May 19, 2012 'Topsails and Tea' event in Newport Oregon.  We enjoyed a sail on the tall ship, the Lady Washington. She sails out of Grey's Harbour in Washington State and with her sister ship, the Hawaiian Chieftain, they visit a number of ports along the Pacific Northwest throughout the year.

It was a lovely event and we all had a great time. It began with a delicious tea, we enjoyed a lovely day, heard great music, saw baby sea-lions, and some of us capped off the night with some wine and seafood and good company.  I cannot wait to do it again next year! We're going to try to buy out a whole ship this time. :)

Here come LOTS of photos. These were taken by myself, Stephanie Johanesen, Stephanie Robertson and by Megan Funk.

A golden-locked serenade.

Spiders on a web.

Paul always cuts a striking figure.

One of the highlights of the sail. Beautiful

Blue steel.

It wasn't just the men making striking poses.

Our sister ship offered lots of 'beauty passes'

The crew.

Some of the AMAZING crew of the
Lady Washington.

This is George. I was going to sea-lion-nap him.
I was advised I could not. Mostly by
George's massive family members loafing nearby.
As you can see, it was a lovely event. We hope to have more and more as the baby-making surge levels out. :D  Happy weekend all!