Monday, April 09, 2007

Interview With Judy Mitchell, Masquerade Director for Ravencon 2007

1. Tell us about yourself. How long have you been in Fandom?

Geez... in 1978 in college I fell in with a bunch who were into medieval history (Markland) and F/SF (Galadrim) so we were known as the 'Dragons & Lasers' crowd. That was when I first heard about conventions: Balticon and Unicon I believe.

2. How long have you been costuming? tell us of the various costumes you done over the years.

Not really forever, it just feels that way. I swore after Jr High home ec class (that I nearly flunked) that I'd never sew even a button on. My parents were shocked when I came home from college in 1978 (see above!) asking about the old cast iron sewing machine in the attic. After all, you can get a friend to make your first costume (you might get a different friend to make a second one), then they'll show you how to make your next one. So... somehow I got hooked. Well, in Markland (see above) we did what we called 'meatball sewing': as long as the seams were straight enough and it held together mostly, that was good enough. Hey, it got me over my old home-ec fear! Then I started re-enacting in the 90s and got into much better sewing - still historic though. I've done most of my competition outfits in Historic, and I try to stick with Scandinavian history for very odd reasons. I've been working on branching into the SF/F costuming and it's been fun. I also co-own the largest Lord of the Rings costuming (and other movies) website: <> but if you want to SEE what I've done, my personal stuff is at <> - you know what they say about pictures. Briefly (yeah, right), I've done viking age, 17th cent Sweden, 19th cent Denmark, 18th cent Vermont (yes I know that's not Scandinavian), Bilbo's Party Outfit, a Dawn costume for someone else, and a bunch of hall costumes because they're fun. What do you enjoy most about costuming?I actually love doing the research and the puzzling out to figure out how something goes together. So the construction is a lot of fun.

3. Tell us why you decided or agreed to do Ravencon.

I heard about it last year, probably something Pam posted (Maybe on the International Costume Guild list?) and since it's in my general area, I wrote in and asked if I could do anything to help. Silly Pam took me up on it. I lurked on the yahoo list and was really impressed with the concom: I've been on committees before and I've never seen one that was so.. professional and good natured as RavenCon! Pam had far too much on her plate last year, so when Mike asked if I wanted to handle costuming, I'd figured I'd give it a go. heck, I've been involved in enough costume sections at cons. (side note: actually I myself thought that it was beter to drop something and told Mike to let Judy have it. Being an author I was into promoting that a lot and Publicity was easy enough to do as do for myself anyway :D And yes, I still costume. )

4. Did last year's con prove everything you wanted it to be, or did it exceed beyond your expectations?

I was very impressed that a first year con pulled that many attendees and ran that smoothly. I told you it was an amazing concom.

5. Where do you see Ravencon in future, costuming, of course?

I'd love to see the costuming track grow and I'd love to see more entries in the Costume Show: there was some stunning outfits in the hall, I'd like to see them showcase themselves! So come, sign up for the Costume Show - even if you enter as Not-in-Competition (not everyone wants to compete, that's cool, you can still show off)!!

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