For the past couple of days I've been working on a red silk suit for one of our musicians. It's a fabulous suit, and I love it. But I was about ready to chuck it out the window today, because I couldn't get the pleats right. Pleats are one of the things I love about the coats in the eighteenth century--the tails lie smooth around the body, but when the man walks, they swish open, revealing pleats held together with buttons. In this case, shiny gold buttons that will catch candlelight as the performer throws his tails over the harpsichord bench and sits down to play. But I mis-set the pleats last week, and then the hem was off. The only remedy was to pull it all apart, restitch the hems and reset the pleats. It took me two days. We have a saying in theatre: "Done is good." But in this case--done is not good enough. This performer is not going to be twenty feet away from an audience, moving quickly under lights. It's nice to have the time and space to correct mistakes and be completely fastidious about details, but at the same time, it's frustrating. I ought to know how to set ecking pleats by now. But at least it's done. On time and done well.
My storytelling was cancelled tonight--not enough tour participants. That's okay. Staring at red silk for the past three days has given me a wicked headache, and a tendency to see green everywhere. The CDC is incredibly dry as well, so my eyes are aching, and my nose was even trickling blood yesterday. I'm trying to keep hydrated, but it's like this all over. Dry and cold--a far, far cry from the humid spring that greeted me eight months ago.