There is a sewing contest afoot, and dolly sewers are welcome to compete! I hope to make an outfit along the "My Favorite Things" theme.
With me being a fan of many things Japanese and particularly school clothes, picking that was a no brainer. As this is supposed to be historical costuming, and I don't know what the era limit is, I'm erring on the side of caution. The Meiji era ended in 1912, and the website covers clothes up to the 1920s, so I'll be going with a Meiji schoolgirl look.
That said, the first idea that came to mind was an outfit along the lines of Elsa Schiaparelli. Alas, while I squeed inside over her outfits I dug up, nothing clicked until I decided to mix her with with an older, foreign style. This outfit, this embroidery, and this hat especially grab my fancy.
The books I'll refer to for this project is Kimono: Fashioning Culture by Liza Dalby, Schiap's autobiography A Shocking Life, and Impossible Conversations by the Met Museum.