Your Inner Saloon Girl

26 Jul
saloon girl dress

saloon girl dress

Thank you for helping with the Perfectionism book!  It will be out in the late fall.

My creative talents have taken a marvelous screeching turn to the left.  I’m making costumes for a friend who is starting an antique photography business, and I’m immersed in the world of lace, ribbons, and stays.  What fun!  My brain is enjoying working three dimensional, and the lull of the sewing machine has become my waking meditation.

This photo was my inspiration for a saloon girl dress.  I have to say my creation is a dead ringer for this one.  Does everyone have an Inner Saloon Girl?  When I tell people what I’m making, there’s an enthusiastic response.

And this photo is the inspiration for my Gibson Girl blouse with leg o’ mutton

Gibson girl leg o' mutton sleeves

Gibson girl leg o’ mutton sleeves

sleeves.  I know.  Who even knows what that is, but I do because I love clothing and the craftsmanship that goes into interesting fashion.  My blouse is white with a lot of lace overlay on the front.  After completing those gargantuan puff sleeves (requiring 8 gored pieces each), I said to a friend that I’m ready for my honorary degree in architectural engineering.

What fun things do you do to give your mind a creative vacation?  How do you invite the muse? I’d love to know.


Posted by on July 26, 2012 in Uncategorized


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7 responses to “Your Inner Saloon Girl

  1. alicetoohey

    July 26, 2012 at 7:08 am

    I love your creative left hand turn! I have been enjoying writing lately as my creative turn. I like to create a rough draft of many ideas and then narrow in on a specific focus to create my blog posts. I feel like this allows some breathing room and plenty of content to play with. xoxo

  2. Jen

    July 27, 2012 at 7:14 am

    How wonderful! You are a woman of so many talents!

  3. Amber

    July 28, 2012 at 11:53 pm

    I’m amazed that you can simply look at this picture and begin the creation process – – I hope that you will post a picture of the dress once you’ve completed it!

  4. JR

    August 14, 2012 at 1:18 am

    Hi Ellen!
    This looks like great fun! I pilfered a ton of old dress patterns (mostly 60’s & early 70’s) from Ryan’s grandmother’s house. I have a sewing machine — now just need to learn to sew. Grey just started school, so maybe I’ll have time to learn. XOXO — want to catch up soon!

    • Ellen Bowers

      August 14, 2012 at 2:35 am

      JR! I’m so thrilled to hear from you! That’s neat that you have those old patterns. When I was growing up, my mother had patterns from the 40’s and early 50’s. Those images are imprinted in my psyche. Maybe you’ll enjoy learning to sew. I find it very relaxing, a nice balm for my usual overly-cerebral life. Wow! Your little one is starting school. I don’t understand time.

  5. Janet

    August 20, 2012 at 2:49 am

    Never did comment on this, but it was on my mind, because I did some sewing myself this week. Randy had patches that needed to be sewed on his leather motorcycle vest. I was unsure I could handle that, or that my machine could, but we did a little research, got a new needle, and figured it out. I was pretty proud that I was able to do that for him, and I think he was impressed. In my blood I guess.

  6. mary frances

    December 10, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    no one else talked about their inner saloon girl. when i saw the post title it jumped out at me. i guess i’ll be the first. after being in her house, which has been transformed into a rehab called 180, i became interested in and read a detailed book about elizabeth taylor and her relationship with richard burton. it was about a pair of brawling, over-indulgent alcoholics, both of whom never lost their humanity. following the book, i read a remembrance about her written just after her death by her long-time friend joan collins, with whom she crossed paths professionally and socially over the course of several decades. when collins described her as “bawdy,” my inner saloon girl relaxed, I felt a kinship and comfort. collins said taylor received raised eyebrows from grace kelly, then the princess of monaco, for her sometimes raucous manner. I smiled. After spending most of last year swearing and keeping up with a group of often-drunk, male twenty somethings, I needed reassurance. I had questioned myself. Who am I, I wondered. In the company of the likes of Elizabeth, and others with an inner saloon girl, I feel absolved. And I am happy!


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