Sunday, May 22, 2011

Waistcoat + Tuxedo in Detail

My previous posts have just scratched the surface on the details of my black tie outfit... please enjoy the close up and detailed pictures that I have taken in abundance for this post! I've tried to hit all the details here so that everything is explained.

Two things to note: the colors are a bit off on some pictures due to the lighting. I attempted to color-correct them, but I may not have completely succeeded. I suppose you'll just have to invite me to something so that you can see this in person! lol Secondly, as usual, you may click to enlarge the pictures.


The outfit as a whole.
No outfit is complete without the right shoes! (better picture later)
Closer picture of waistcoat at MCDCC Spring Ball event.
You can tell my bow tie was not pre-tied... I probably should have tied it again, but it seemed to be ok at the event... that said, I think it's pretty good as I think I remember having tied it while driving!
Closer picture of the waistcoat in context.
I love the way the three buttons look... it adds a sense of completeness and visual interest to the outfit as a whole and the waistcoat in particular. Additionally, each of these buttons is actually mother of pearl, NOT plastic. As evidence, I'll note that each individual button was $2, so $6 for the set here.
Here's what the waistcoat looks like without the tuxedo jacket on.
And the back closure... previously I only posted the in-progress shot... this is a better view of what it looks like.
Right-side view of waistcoat and braces.
Right-side view of waistcoat and braces.
All mother of pearl... button for waistcoat and links/stud set on shirt! :)
Close up view of the lower part of the waistcoat without the jacket on.
I'm thinking of adding tabs to the inside of the waistcoat and the shirt to attach them to the trousers so that when I sit the material doesn't bunch up and come out of the trousers/rise up.
Clearer picture of the shoes... these have been the appropriate mens formal shoes for about 200 years. They are called court shoes or dress pumps (not to be confused with women's shoes of the same name! The reason for the naming is they do actually have similar origins to the women's shoe, although were never designed for women... these have a very short heel, similar to any other men's shoe). Additionally, I'm wearing silk hose (socks) with them for an authentic classic formal look.
Inside the waistcoat detail.
This is how the waistcoat hangs when open.

I'm wearing braces! The braces were actually rather difficult to locate, being that they are authentic formal braces and have button holes, NOT clips.
Notice the front attachment as per proper formal braces.
I believe these are actually silk tabs. They are very different from normal braces, which use leather tabs. 
And it's not called silk formal hose for no reason... I didn't realize initially how transparent it was! The interesting thing, is that you don't notice the transparency unless you're up close or using the right lighting (a camera flash, for example). The benefit of silk, is that the socks give a matte appearance that isn't shiny and doesn't attract attention, which works nicely against the shoes and trousers.

This post is part of a series:

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Union Station Panoramas

I went to Union Station on Thursday to do some shopping (ordered a new seersucker suit fo the summer!) and decided to make an evening of it. I love Union Station... there are so many elegant shops and gorgeous architectural details!

Again, as usual, clicking on the pictures should allow you to see them better!

Yes, it's as tasty as it looks! (not a panorama, but had to include it so that you all could be jealous that you weren't in Union Station with me)

This is the entrance into one of the main halls from one of the side halls

The next picture may take some visual getting used to as it is a panorama of the ceiling from side to side:

Panoramic view from edge to edge by way of the ceiling, in effect a full vertical panorama, as opposed to the usual horizontal ones... conveniently, that makes it easier to magnify on the blog here.

360 degree view of main shopping area!

Smaller angle of previous panorama, Anne Taylor is on the left of the screen... notice the open-aired two level design.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Sewing my first Formal Waistcoat... (Part 2)

Here are the latest set of sewing pictures from making my waistcoat. There are still a couple finishing touches that I may work on later, if I do, I'll post them at that time.

Notice the buttonholes for the collar, I didn't have time before my event to sew on the buttons, so I sewed the top of the waistcoat shut. I'll eventually revisit the topic to add buttons

To determine where I was going to place the button holes, I made a guide out of black thread that I loosely stitched into place.

Using the guide, I sewed the buttonholes.

I then cut out the buttonholes using a seam ripper and my scissors. The tricky part with this step was removing the black thread... I had to use my finger nails and the seam ripper to pull the pieces out of the stitching.

Next, I worked on the back closure... I decided to try using a ribbon... it seems to have worked decently well.

Sewing the ribbon closure together.

A couple of items I may add later:
  • Sewing to finish closing inside of waistcoat
  • Inner tab(s) to hook onto trouser buttons to keep waistcoat from riding up during wear
  • Buttons to top/collar
  • etc.

This post is part of a series:
More to come!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Panoramic Paris: 2009

Here are more of my pictures from my 2009 trip to Europe. Enjoy!

Please note: Clicking on the pictures will enlarge them :)

This one isn't that obvious, but I extended the picture in two directions to make it a large square. :)
Glass pyramid at The Louvre, as seen from inside the museum
One of the beautiful doors in the Louvre... I've found that the combination of white and gold works really nicely. A number of other royal palaces have the same scheme, as well.
Napoleon III's Dining Room in The Louvre
Napoleon III's apartment in The Louvre
Another room inside Napoleon III's apartment at The Louvre
I think this is one corner of the outside of The Louvre

Sunday, May 15, 2011

MCDCC Spring Ball 2011

I had a great evening today at the MCDCC Spring Ball in North Bethesda, Maryland! (aka Rockville) Basically, this was a political fundraiser with a dinner and 'silent' auction. I met a lot of great people and had lovely conversations. Unfortunately, for an event that's referred to as a 'ball' there wasn't much dancing, unless you count 10 kids doing prom-style hip-shaking after the event was mostly over. :P

Another detail, is that I was able to inaugurate my tux and waistcoat by wearing them to this event! I'm going to have more detailed pictures of my outfit in another post, but enjoy these in the meantime!

Of course, there always needs to be a self-portrait!
Picture of my outfit standing up :)
I found this suspended glass feature to be rather interesting
Alternate view of the suspended glass

Gluten-Free Summit

A week and a half ago, I attended the 1 in 133 Gluten Free Summit in Washington DC whose goal was to put pressure on the FDA to finalize guidelines on gluten-free products and to increase awareness... here are few panoramic shots I took. For more information on the event, please visit their website! :)

Watching the giant cake get cut

Eating gluten-free cake :)

Panoramic shot of room with cake

Similar panorama with cake, but earlier during event