The School of Theatre had a conference last weekend, and asked me to put up a display of 19th century dresses and accessories.
Like all good displays, this looks pretty effortless. In reality, it was a lot of physical work--some of it hard (like getting big heavy storage boxes of dresses off high shelves in a narrow area--I literally balance them on my head until I can get to the work table. I had to make two of the dress forms--a 19th century corseted body with a 21" waist just isn't the same as a modern dress form. I looked through a drawer of about 70 purses to pick the 5 on display. I had to move three racks of clothing just to get to the cabinet of shoes, where I took out and unwrapped a dozen pairs to pick the four pairs for display (and, of course, had to rewrap the others). Everything had to be packed up and taken to the school of theatre and up the elevator and down the hall (God Bless Bob, for the use of his golf cart and muscle power)
And, of course, after the conference, everything had to be done in reverse order--repacked, returned, reboxed, reshelved.
But it's what I do. I liked that they set up drawing stations for the students. And it gave the costume designers some insight as to how the real period clothes were made. You can look at pictures all you want, but it's not the same as having it in front of you, especially when you can (carefully!) look through the layers, and understand how the inner structures work (for example, look at the pink dress--it's not obvious that there is a fitted and boned lining in there).
So that's my moment of glory--now it's back to the inventory.
[side note--tiny squirrel is doing fine, More pictures soon]