Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Francaise Dinner 2017

The Francaise Dinner this year was just as much fun as last year!  I had never been to Annapolis before, so I enjoyed the novelty of a very interesting and beautiful city.  Brian the Engineer and I drove up Friday night and stayed with a group at an Air B&B close to the venue.  This proved to be perfect because we could walk there once we were all ready!

I was, of course, sewing up until the last minute.  I think I left myself barely and hour and a half to get ready.  Here I am in my (still only halfway-bound) maternity stays:

That bump just keeps getting bigger!
Once I had gotten all of my petticoats on, I needed a bit of assistance with my hair.  Fortunately I had help/moral support from Jessica, Stephanie, and Gloria!  Here is what I ended up doing, after a bit of experimenting/trial & error:

Divide the hair front & back, wind the back hair into a high bun, attach hair rats
I think Brian enjoyed taking photos of this process.

Pull the front hair up and over the hair rats, secure to back hair bun
Comb/smooth front hair
Powder well

Have a friend help attach ornaments to cover the join (Thanks Gloria!)
Once my hair was done, I finished getting dressed.  Putting on my Francaise was such a happy moment for me!

Lacing the under-stomacher:

As it was a chilly March evening, I donned my pink mantle and muff:

And as a group we all walked over to O'Brien's Steakhouse.  On the way a pretty gray cat happened across our path, and naturally I attempted to make friends:

Photo courtesy of Maggie
The cat was not interested, however.  :p  Moving on...

We had the entire upstairs room to ourselves:

It was a lovely venue, although not the greatest for picture-taking.  The lights all had red shades, which gave everything quite a rosy-orange glow.  My photos ended up turning out better with the flash on, so that's mostly what you'll see in this post.

The raffle prize table:

So many awesome prizes!  
I donated the yellow brocade workbag, which I had a lot of fun making.  It has tassels - a new technique for me! - on the drawstrings.  Here is a better photo of it:  

Gloria was kind enough to take these photos of my gown for me:

This was before I turned the flash on, so you can see the interesting color effects of the red lampshades.
Those pleats make me so happy.  I am just in love with this gown!
Some candid shots of my tablemates:

Maggie and Doug
Kristin and Matt
Rebecca and Maggie
Delicious food!  I didn't take a picture of the salad, but it was quite good.  I opted for the steak option, although the crab cakes sounded delicious, too!  At the time when I made my reservation, I wasn't sure how well my pregnant stomach would be doing with seafood.  :p

More candid shots of the group at large:

Ashley, Stephanie, Michael, Kristin, Gloria, Rebecca
I love the back of Stephanie's ensemble!  That bow is everything.  
Judy, Maggie, Gloria
Jessica and Kat

Stephanie was showing Ashley something cool. 

Stephanie giving a toast to our hostesses...
...Jessica and Isabella:

They did a wonderful job organizing this event!  
Some final shots - Gloria with her awesome spangled fan:

Kristin with my workbag that she won in the raffle:

Ashley with her awesome mantle and muff matching her awesome gown:

And of course, the obligatory group photo:

Photo courtesy of Gloria
Much too soon it was time to leave.  It was starting to rain, so many of us turned our capes inside out so as not to ruin the pretty fabrics we had made them with!  I draped my train over my arm so it wouldn't drag on the wet ground.  Sadly there are no pictures of this, but I'm sure we were a spectacle!  :p

I'll end with a few photos of me taken by others:

Photo by Gloria
Did I mention my jewelry?  Brian bought the necklace, earrings, and bracelet set for me in Japan!  They are jade, and so lovely.
Photo by Gloria
Of course I must have a sonic screwdriver shot:

Photo by Maggie
I have a few more photos on Instagram under #francaisedinner2017.  Oh, and I won this awesome cap pattern in the raffle:

I can't wait to make it!


  1. This turned out beautifully, you look fabulous!

  2. Such a gorgeous gown, and I love your puffy trim! And the line of the gown is just divine from the back, I don't think silhouettes can get any more elegant than the sacque style. Also thank you for posting your hair-in-progress...I have long hair and have been wondering how to finagle a style like that but it makes a lot of sense to have poofiness going on underneath hidden by a layer over the top! Going to practice now...

    1. Thank you! The hair was fairly easy to do once I understood the concept, and the best part is you can cover any wonky bits with flowers and feathers!