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SirTysonius
12-12-2011, 10:42 AM
Cosplay!

Anyone into it?

owlion
12-12-2011, 03:12 PM
Yes! But I'm not great at sewing so I only make simple costumes :(

SirTysonius
12-12-2011, 09:12 PM
I'm not that great with sewing either. But give me some foam mats and some hot glue and I can whip up a decent suit of armour.

theelfchild
12-13-2011, 12:42 AM
I keep meaning to get into it, but I'm a poor university student. I am going to pull a costume together for this years Anime North though, I swear!

Alessandra Kelley
12-13-2011, 12:45 AM
I've been making costumes since I was eight.

Filigree
12-13-2011, 02:58 AM
I love watching great cosplay, but don't indulge much in it. I dress other people. I've done jewelry design, leatherworking, and theatrical and couture sewing since college, so I have strong aversions to hot glue guns and bad fabric choices. Still, some of the best outfits I've ever seen were spur-of-the-moment creations by inspired amateurs. Some of my own favorite costumes were based on thrift-store finds, and re-engineered.

I'd still caution that spandex is a responsibility, not a right. And cotton broadcloth will only drape like linen or microfiber about five minutes before it shreds in a rotten mess.

roseangel
12-13-2011, 03:02 AM
I love love love to look at cosplay, would love to do it myself but don't have the cash.
When I do have the material I like to make dolls that cosplay, anime, video game, historical and so on.

kuwisdelu
12-13-2011, 04:48 AM
Does it count if I make absolutely nothing and only use stuff from clothes I can wear as everyday clothing, too?

If so, then I make a damn good Ryouji Kaji.

Filigree
12-13-2011, 06:03 AM
It counts, Kuwi.

Alessandra Kelley
12-13-2011, 06:28 AM
I love watching great cosplay, but don't indulge much in it. I dress other people. I've done jewelry design, leatherworking, and theatrical and couture sewing since college, so I have strong aversions to hot glue guns and bad fabric choices. Still, some of the best outfits I've ever seen were spur-of-the-moment creations by inspired amateurs. Some of my own favorite costumes were based on thrift-store finds, and re-engineered.

I'd still caution that spandex is a responsibility, not a right. And cotton broadcloth will only drape like linen or microfiber about five minutes before it shreds in a rotten mess.

I hate cotton broadcloth as a main fabric. I've used it to interline a 17th century man's coat (between the wool damask outside and the silk taffeta liking) and interface collars in a pinch, and of course I use it for muslins. But yeah, it has no drape or swing or life.

Cut and shaped and sewn right, spandex is fun. But you have to shape it, not rely on it shaping you.

I never use a hot glue gun where silk floss will do.


Does it count if I make absolutely nothing and only use stuff from clothes I can wear as everyday clothing, too?

If so, then I make a damn good Ryouji Kaji.

Sure, no problem.

I've gotten compliments on my "costume" when wearing my everyday clothes (ruffled blouse, velvet vest, big silk sash, leather skirt, boots, that sort of thing).

kuwisdelu
12-13-2011, 07:33 AM
I wish it were Halloween more often.

Or I had more like-minded friends.

Anna L.
12-13-2011, 12:06 PM
I keep meaning to get into it, but I'm a poor university student. I am going to pull a costume together for this years Anime North though, I swear!

I really miss Anime North but it's hard for me to take weekends off the job these days.

And I've no new costume to wear! I last cosplayed as movie-version Alphonse Elric, with my short sister as normal Edward Elric. Fun times.

Filigree
12-13-2011, 04:33 PM
Most recently, at the 2011 North American Discworld Convention, my best costume was a cobbled-together Steampunk-Edwardian hybrid consisting of brown cargo pants, black lace-up boots, ruffled white shirt, tooled leather belt, purple and brown openweave coat, and a rebuilt brown hat with poufy veiling and brass rivet trim. The only things I made were the belt, the coat, and the hat. I got several hall costume awards.

The coolest sort-of-cosplay item I've made in a while is my TRON necklace, whipped up for the TRON 2 movie premier last year. Using an air-dry jewelry clay, I made a three-part crescent about 1.5"x8", with dimensional swirly 'carving' on the crescent and the toggle clasp. Then I covered the front of both with a very concentrated, professional-grade luminous paint. I sanded the top when dry, floated a little blue-green acrylic wash over all four pieces, varnished them, drilled out stringing holes, and put everything together with waxed tan linen cord and some glow-in-the-dark glass beads. In daylight, the piece looks like celadon porcelain. When charged, it appears to glow from within, in intense blue and blue-green shades. I wear it out to parties now.

I tend not to cosplay as a specific character, but as myself in cosplay-friendly universes. It sucks that the 2012 CostumeCon will be in Phoenix, and I'm not going to have the money to go.

SirTysonius
12-13-2011, 07:54 PM
There's a discworld convention?! Well I know where I'll be next year.

Filigree
12-13-2011, 08:03 PM
It's not every year in North America. I think in 2012, it'll be back in the UK.
The American version for 2013 (I think) is being narrowed down to Boston or Baltimore. I'd rather have Boston.

theelfchild
05-29-2012, 06:04 AM
Thought I'd share the cosplay I finally got around to making for Anime North - not for me, though I did cosplay as Pinkie Pie, but for a friend. It's Fang from Final Fantasy XIII, and got a lot more attention than I was expecting. Probably because my friend is drop dead gorgeous, but also maybe because I have some skill? lol
http://fav.me/d51jbit
http://fav.me/d51jbak

Mutive
05-30-2012, 07:40 PM
I've wasted far too much time and money on it. Oh well. I really need to spend more time sewing clothing that I actually wear. (Vs. costumes I wear once then put in a chest forever.)

Hummingbird
06-04-2012, 09:56 AM
Theelfchild: That is an awesome cosplay! I do believe you have skill. xD

Mutive: Why would you want to do that? It seems so much fun to have a chest full of costumes. ;) Nah, I understand. I'm not sure what to do with mine now either, but I can't bring myself to give them to anyone.

I want to get into making cosplay! I know the basics of sewing and have been studying different costumes and materials. I just need the money for the materials. ;) That and money and transportation to get to a convention so I can enjoy it. ;D

The only cosplays I have been able to make were one of Kairi from Kingdom Hearts 2 and Rinoa from Final Fantasy 8. They were by no means professional since I used what materials I could afford, but they worked well enough people could tell who I was. :D

I was thinking for my next one either being Sheska from FullMetal Alchemist or Quistis from FF8, because I wanted something that goes with my glasses. ;)

Lycoplax
09-05-2012, 04:49 PM
I'm a 'retired' cosplayer. Not that I lost interest, but there's just no affording it. I'm still scratching my head over how I managed to fund 3-4 costumes a year while going through college (no student loan, either. My scholarship only paid a portion of tuition, and all my of insanely priced textbooks were out-of-pocket), on a waitress' income.

Hubby keeps telling me I'm allowed to take cosplay back up if I want, but we're only just making ends meet as it is. I would love to earn money through sewing commissions. I've done some of that before, it's just a bit tough to stir up customers where I am now. I used to live a stone's throw from five conventions, and a lot of my friends cosplayed, making it easy for me to earn some money from those who weren't adept at sewing.

Nowadays, I'm on a Navy base, and there really isn't a local convention scene to work off of. Sure, my friends back home still cosplay, but they can call up other sewing-savvy friends who are still there, and don't have to ship things back and forth.

Haikujitsu
09-30-2012, 01:33 AM
I've dabbled...meaning made a lot of grand plans and succeeded in putting one or two of them together. I'd love to do more, but I hate sewing with a passion and prop-making gets expensive.

I have the same problem as Lycoplax--no cons and pretty much no social scene for cosplay + broke + hard to take off weekends for a road trip = not much going on, unfortunately.

-Hj

srgalactica
11-29-2012, 09:14 PM
I love it. I always go to comic book conventions dressed up. I'm not good at sewing or anything though. My last costume was a character from my boyfriends unpublished novel. It consisted of a green wig with pigtails, a motocross chestpiece, which my extremely talented brother spray painted black for me, padded snow shorts and tall boots.

Kyra Wright
12-05-2012, 03:23 AM
I've cosplayed at a few anime conventions. I'd prefer to wear a Gothic Lolita outfit over a cosplay costume, but for the past couple of years my friends and I have been doing group cosplays.

I don't sew clothing, but I have made headpieces and accessories for a few of my outfits.

Filigree
02-06-2013, 03:30 AM
I'm probably the last person on here to find out about this cosplay (http://elitecosplay.com/) site, which is lovely - and looking (http://phoenix.craigslist.org/wvl/wrg/3593519430.html) for web-savvy contributors.

TMCan
02-06-2013, 08:07 AM
I am currently knitting a sweater Martin Freeman wore as John Watson on the BBC Sherlock series. Hopefully it will be done in time for con season.

maxmordon
02-07-2013, 08:24 AM
I'm finally working on doing some. Mostly, as Kuwi does, combining regular clothing into new and creative ways.

My latest is Gravity Falls' Grunkle Stan. Why? Because I got a freakin' fez, that's why.

When you have a fez, you make excuses to use the fez.

TMCan
02-07-2013, 10:33 AM
When you have a fez, you make excuses to use the fez.

A great fez cosplay is the Eleventh Doctor from Doctor Who. I suggest watching the show just because it is awesome, but you would have to wait until season 5 or 6 for the fez.

maxmordon
02-07-2013, 08:11 PM
A great fez cosplay is the Eleventh Doctor from Doctor Who. I suggest watching the show just because it is awesome, but you would have to wait until season 5 or 6 for the fez.

I've never seen Doctor Who, but I've been thinking around to check it out.

Filigree
02-07-2013, 09:41 PM
You never need an excuse for a fez, just an occasion.

maxmordon
02-07-2013, 10:56 PM
You never need an excuse for a fez, just an occasion.

Yes, but one only gets invited to a reception at the Turkish embassy every so. :D

Also, I have been thinking for a while doing an Adventure Time cosplay. Either the Earl of Lemongrab or the Ice King, The Ice King seems to be easier but the Earl is less... probable to be embarrasing?

Filigree
02-07-2013, 11:32 PM
Both could be fun. But Iceking's robes are going to get a little cold, because he only has briefs on underneath.

Lemongrab would look cool, but you'd have to do the Voice, too. Which might make people want to kill you.

Now I want to make an Elvish fez.

maxmordon
02-08-2013, 12:12 AM
Both could be fun. But Iceking's robes are going to get a little cold, because he only has briefs on underneath.

Lemongrab would look cool, but you'd have to do the Voice, too. Which might make people want to kill you.


Yes, especially since he's even more whiny in Latin American Spanish: http://youtu.be/W52-C5vevwM

Filigree
02-08-2013, 12:36 AM
Good God, Max, I didn't know he could get worse. That's strangely hilarious.

maxmordon
02-08-2013, 12:56 AM
That's strangely hilarious.

Well, Adventure Time is always lost somewhere between Strange, Hilarious and Awesome, in my humble opinion.

Also, I once had plans to build a Bender costume, but I don't have the time nor the resources to do so. Besides, I really don't go as many cons as I wish I'd go. But I LOVE costumes. :)

Edit: Oh yeah, Latin American Spanish Ice King isn't much better. But I love how Joker-ish it can get (and how many ad-libs its voice actor throws in)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQBKa-mT76k

OK, that's enough Adventure Time for this topic. Sorry, people!

Filigree
02-08-2013, 09:00 AM
Back to costumes and cosplay, and the noble fez. Check out this site (http://fez-o-rama.com/blog/).

maxmordon
02-08-2013, 10:12 PM
Back to costumes and cosplay, and the noble fez. Check out this site (http://fez-o-rama.com/blog/).

OMG! Awesome. :D

Kitty Pryde
02-21-2013, 06:37 AM
I'm sewing some Victorian lady bloomers (that might be the wrong era, my history is dreadful), and turning an ugly trench coat into a coat with tails. Fancy! My better half is playing a sort of a Les Mis half-drag character for a play...it's a long story. Anyway, it's fun to make stuff on the sewing machine!

chloecomplains
02-21-2013, 07:41 AM
JUST started costuming for Dragon*Con. Got the first wig done today, but I'm still debating on the fourth outfit before I make the rest of them, just in case I can get away with using the same wig on two costumes. :)

Alessandra Kelley
02-21-2013, 07:42 AM
I'm sewing some Victorian lady bloomers (that might be the wrong era, my history is dreadful), and turning an ugly trench coat into a coat with tails. Fancy! My better half is playing a sort of a Les Mis half-drag character for a play...it's a long story. Anyway, it's fun to make stuff on the sewing machine!

Sounds like fun.

Are those bloomers or drawers? Bloomers were a reform garment adapted by Amelia Bloomer from Turkish women's trousers, basically big, poufy trousers gathered in at the ankle, worn with a relatively short skirt over them.

Drawers were underwear, often frilly, and always -- ahem -- open at the crotch, since there was no way to lower them once they were in place under a corset with all the other layers of underwear.

Kitty Pryde
02-21-2013, 08:02 AM
Sounds like fun.

Are those bloomers or drawers? Bloomers were a reform garment adapted by Amelia Bloomer from Turkish women's trousers, basically big, poufy trousers gathered in at the ankle, worn with a relatively short skirt over them.

Drawers were underwear, often frilly, and always -- ahem -- open at the crotch, since there was no way to lower them once they were in place under a corset with all the other layers of underwear.

It's not the split skirt type thing, although I enjoy the outlandishness of women's historical cycling apparel. I guess they are what you are calling drawers, but sewn up in the crotch! http://webpages.charter.net/lara_the_lacemaker/bloomers.html

We were sort of inspired to do a cross between Monsieur and Madame Thenardier from staged versions of Les Miserable. There's also a thrift store corset involved. I will take a photo, but I may be wounded in the attempt!

ETA: bloomers are done and look awfully cute. I may make some stripy ones with ribbons and bows for jammies. Frumpy ladies' trench coat is now fabulous coat with tails, suitable for staging a revolution, steampunk wedding, tomboy formalwear, or generally swanning about pretending to be posh. Also I looked up those funny red hats and I am going to make myself one. Vive la revolution and all!

Filigree
02-22-2013, 05:44 AM
Just finished a swing coat loosely modeled after a Deco design, in tan and turquoise linen with light green panels cut from a salvaged tablecloth. This tablet is tricky to post links with, but you can see it if you hit my blog and follow the FiligreeSilver link to my Photobucket page.

Filigree
04-09-2013, 12:43 AM
After noodling around with it - and more important paying projects - I finished the crewel embroidery on the coat. Here are links:

http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/VineCoatfront_zpsaba574e2.jpg?t=1365453276

http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/VineCoatback_zps795cd280.jpg?t=1365453300

[url]http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/VineCoathemdetail_zps46f244c0.jpg?t=1365453314[/url

I love the way linen swings and drapes. Cotton-ploy broadcloth just cannot match it. There must be 50 seams in this damn coat, but I'm happy with the way it turned out.

greendragon
02-09-2015, 10:32 PM
JUST started costuming for Dragon*Con. Got the first wig done today, but I'm still debating on the fourth outfit before I make the rest of them, just in case I can get away with using the same wig on two costumes. :)

I've been cosplaying at Dragoncon every year since 2003 :) I usually do a Monty Python character (now I'm doing one of the Inquisitors.), Catelyn Stark, and generic medieval.

Maggie Maxwell
02-09-2015, 10:56 PM
I'm a no-sew talent cosplayer wannabe, so I tend to throw something together from easy-to-find outfits and hope people recognize it. It has worked, though, (Clara from Doctor Who) so yay.

Orianna2000
02-10-2015, 05:03 AM
I've been to DragonCon for the past two years, but last year was the first time I wore a costume. I made a Steampunk outfit, half sewn and half purchased--I had surgery just three weeks before, so I had to compromise and buy a corset instead of sewing one.

This year, I'm hoping to make matching Jedi Knight costumes for me and my husband. We bought lightsabers last year . . . now we just need the outfits! Fabric is proving difficult. Linen would be best, but it makes me itch. So I'm looking for a cotton/rayon blend that has a linen texture.

I didn't really consider it cosplaying, but when I mentioned it to a friend, she said it was, so . . . I guess so! :)

Channy
02-10-2015, 05:37 AM
I'm pretty shoddy at crafts and cosplay myself, but I'm super proud of my brother (okay, brother in law, but he's been in my life for over half of it so he's like a real brother). Last couple years he and his buddy go in duos to cons.. Batman and Superman.. Or Superman and Lex Luthor... He-Man and Skeletor... Goku and Vegeta... And he's the one who's doing the hard craft costumes, not half naked or in a spandex onepiece.

Here's some of his work, and his latest WIP, Groot!

http://tinyurl.com/o5br36a

(If you couldn't tell, I'm super proud of him and a total cheerleader :D Especially after the last con to Edmonton his buddy bailed so he took me instead. I went as a lack luster Ash from Pokemon and Chell from Portal.)

Feel free to follow him on Facebook. :D /shamelesspromotion

https://www.facebook.com/StooshOfficial?fref=ts

http://tinyurl.com/qx5uz43

http://tinyurl.com/k3f35sc

harmonyisarine
02-22-2015, 10:04 PM
I don't do crafting or wigs so much, but I do like to sew. I used to do competitions at cons but took a few years off when I got sick, and now my con group is bugging me to go back into it. I actually am just coming back to this site after a long break due to trying to rush finish a group of five costumes in three weeks, far less than half the time I'd allotted to do them.

For the curious, yes, I finished. Hidden hems aren't done and we used more safety pins that actual closures, but anything you could see was finished. It was a group from Avatar: The Last Airbender, when they're in fire nation disguises. I even made Azula's armor out of lightly tooled leather, and made shoes or shin-guard bits for three of us. I'm a fiber snob, so I used four different silks and cotton/bamboo blend to get the textures right, and I think by the end I had about 12 or 13 different dye baths I had to run.


Orianna, Dharma Trading has a cotton called Waterford cotton that looks nearly identical to linen, and feels awful similar, too. The downside is that it's only in white, so any color would need to be dyed.

Orianna2000
02-23-2015, 01:07 AM
Orianna, Dharma Trading has a cotton called Waterford cotton that looks nearly identical to linen, and feels awful similar, too. The downside is that it's only in white, so any color would need to be dyed.

That's good to know, thanks! I've never experimented with dyeing, although I have a project on my "to do" list that will require some kind of ombre dyeing. (I was thinking maybe I would try dipping white silk in Kool-Aid. . . . ) At any rate, I'll keep Dharma Trading in mind in case I can't find the right kind of fabric in the right color.

CoffeeBeans
02-23-2015, 05:12 PM
One of the cosplay folks here. Was into it when I was little, and in the last five or so years went zero to sixty on cosplaying NYCC.

I'm extra lucky that I've got awesome friends who are in it with me (or don't mind being costume-wranglers/pack mules/photo takers).

I did upper body foam armor for the first time last year, and that was pretty hectic. Still not totally thrilled with the fit in the chest (honestly, accounting for boobs requires so much additional planning).

This year has three of four days planned, and though it's feb. I already feel like I'm behind the 8-ball.

As for wearing normal clothes - after the million hours I spent on my armor, my most successful cosplay last year was a cutdown and painted denim jacket, a beanie, and a spray painted length of plastic chain.


I've never experimented with dyeing, although I have a project on my "to do" list that will require some kind of ombre dyeing. (I was thinking maybe I would try dipping white silk in Kool-Aid. . . . )

I haven't kool-aid dyed since I was a kid, but do not fear the dye. Ombre is all about timing. As long as you've got your materials in place, you know the absorption of the materials, and you're attentive, it is pretty straight forward. My only advice is - when you're going to dye something, it's the only thing you're doing (not half-watching TV, not watching the youtube tut, not answering your phone, etc).

Orianna2000
02-23-2015, 06:01 PM
I haven't kool-aid dyed since I was a kid, but do not fear the dye. Ombre is all about timing. As long as you've got your materials in place, you know the absorption of the materials, and you're attentive, it is pretty straight forward. My only advice is - when you're going to dye something, it's the only thing you're doing (not half-watching TV, not watching the youtube tut, not answering your phone, etc).

Well, since I've never done dyeing of any kind, I really don't know the absorption rates or anything like that. I do think getting the colors right will be hard--mixing the different packets of Kool-Aid to get just the right shades. I need a soft pink that fades into pale yellow for the skirt, and the top must be a very unique shade of blue that fades into pale pink. It's a doll costume, so I should have room for trying over, if it fails spectacularly.

CoffeeBeans
02-23-2015, 06:36 PM
I'm sure you won't "fail spectacularly" but you can figure out the rate for your by testing a strip. Nothing too crazy just "it looks like A after 5 minutes, B after 10" etc.

So, blue top, pink middle, yellow bottom? Depending on your fabric, and the size of the project, you might have better luck applying whatever dye you use with a sponge or a spray bottle. Just some thoughts :)

Orianna2000
02-23-2015, 07:47 PM
If I have enough fabric, I might play around with "painting" the dye on, instead of dipping it. We'll see. It's actually two separate pieces--the bodice has blue sleeves and blue around the neckline, then fades to pink down the torso. The skirt is pink at the top, then gradually fades to pale yellow at the hem.

Here's a picture of one version of the costume (http://s638.photobucket.com/user/potocostumes/media/starprincess/starusritaharvey.jpg.html). Not the best photo, but you get the idea.

CoffeeBeans
02-25-2015, 05:24 PM
In somewhat unreal news, my father will be cosplaying with me this year.

I brought him with me to a con last year, because it was just easier than explaining they are both tradeshows and fan events. He thought it was a great time, and took most of the strangeness in stride (my father isn't even into SF/F, let alone anything particularly geeky).

He said he'd like to go back for a day with me this year, and he wouldn't be against dressing up, if that was what people did. I'm dusting off my Shadowcat costume, because he's totally going as Magneto.

I cannot be more excited about this.

Maggie Maxwell
02-25-2015, 06:21 PM
Oh, that's going to be awesome, CoffeeBeans! be sure to get pictures!

Mr. Maxwell's best friend and his girl brought up doing a joint cosplay for our annual con the last time we saw them. They want to be Coulson and one of the Agents of SHIELD ladies respectively. Mr. and I have toyed around with doing Bruce Banner and Jennifer Walters. All he'd need is a lab coat and purple pants. I'd love to go full Lawyer She-Hulk. Any advice on makeup to get the right shade of green?

Orianna2000
02-25-2015, 07:00 PM
Isn't it great when your family catches the insanity and decides to cosplay, too? For years, I was the only one interested in "playing dress-up." Then, my husband bought a lightsaber and suddenly he wants a Jedi costume! I told him he has to pay for the fabrics, though, and he hasn't done that, so it may not happen this year.

CoffeeBeans
02-25-2015, 07:29 PM
I'd love to go full Lawyer She-Hulk. Any advice on makeup to get the right shade of green?

Oh wow. That would rock, though I am so afraid of body/face paint. I'm one of those people who can barely wear makeup, because I've rubbed it everywhere in 10 minutes.

I've heard good things about the Ben Nye colors, if that's any help? Also, just from seeing others do it, if you're doing part bodysuit - matching your body suit skin tone to your paint skin tone matters way more than what shade.


Then, my husband bought a lightsaber and suddenly he wants a Jedi costume! I told him he has to pay for the fabrics, though, and he hasn't done that, so it may not happen this year.

I swear when people see people do it, and have lots of fun just being weird and surrounded by people who appreciate it, they begin to consider trying it.

My niece (18mo) and I did Elizabeth & Little Sister from Bioshock Infinite last year, and this year her parents are considering joining in as well. (still bummed I couldn't talk the three of them into doing Saga when she was still small enough)

Maggie Maxwell
02-25-2015, 07:42 PM
Oh wow. That would rock, though I am so afraid of body/face paint. I'm one of those people who can barely wear makeup, because I've rubbed it everywhere in 10 minutes.

I've heard good things about the Ben Nye colors, if that's any help? Also, just from seeing others do it, if you're doing part bodysuit - matching your body suit skin tone to your paint skin tone matters way more than what shade.

I swear when people see people do it, and have lots of fun just being weird and surrounded by people who appreciate it, they begin to consider trying it.

My niece (18mo) and I did Elizabeth & Little Sister from Bioshock Infinite last year, and this year her parents are considering joining in as well. (still bummed I couldn't talk the three of them into doing Saga when she was still small enough)


Nah, I'm looking at a costume like this (http://static02.mediaite.com/themarysue/uploads/2012/03/GreenLady3.jpg), so all I'd need is legs, hands, and face. I found these directions (http://ifyougiveagirlaneedle.blogspot.com/2013/03/dyeing-tightspantyhose-with-kool-aid.html) for dyeing pantyhose that get a pretty good green color. Thanks for the tip. I'll look into those Ben Nyes.

A Saga cosplay with a baby would have been fantastic! Darn shame. It's true about people seeing cosplayers begin to consider it. The fun some cosplayers have is infectious. Especially Deadpools. You know, the ones who REALLY get into it.

greendragon
02-25-2015, 07:49 PM
Considering my parents had a Star Trek wedding in Las Vegas (on the Starship Enterprise!), I come by my cosplay naturally. My parents have been to Dragoncon twice with me, and dad even brought his Klingon headpiece and uniform. He speaks fluent Klingon, by the way.

I'm a second generation GEEK :)

Maggie Maxwell
02-25-2015, 08:00 PM
Considering my parents had a Star Trek wedding in Las Vegas (on the Starship Enterprise!), I come by my cosplay naturally. My parents have been to Dragoncon twice with me, and dad even brought his Klingon headpiece and uniform. He speaks fluent Klingon, by the way.

I'm a second generation GEEK :)

Your parents are officially awesome.

My dad never did cosplay, or even any cons at all, but he got me into computer games (I remember being teeny and sitting behind him watching him play Dark Seed, the HR Giger game), Star Trek, and comic books (when I discovered his stash of Namor the Submariner comics). So whuttup from another 2nd gen geek. :)

greendragon
02-25-2015, 08:30 PM
Whuttup, SGG! (Second Gen Geek)

It made me really miss the fact that I didn't grow up with my dad. I only found him when I was 30 (he didn't know I existed). Of course, I that means I got to match-make my own real parents, and be in attendance on their wedding :)

Mom hadn't even dated anyone since him. They were married 30 years after I was conceived.

Their story was what inspired me to start writing. I novelized their love story. (submitted to publisher).

Maggie Maxwell
02-25-2015, 08:34 PM
Oh my gosh, okay, that is SO cool. I've seen you say you wrote their love story, but wow, that's one heck of a story. Good luck with the subs!

greendragon
02-25-2015, 09:17 PM
Oh my gosh, okay, that is SO cool. I've seen you say you wrote their love story, but wow, that's one heck of a story. Good luck with the subs!

Thanks! It had been percolating in my brain since it happened (I found him 14 years ago, they've been married 10). I'd only written travelogues and a couple travel books before. Then I novelized their story and BOOM - I've now written four novels total. Novels - not even once! :)

harmonyisarine
02-27-2015, 04:45 AM
Orianna, RIT dyes are good practice/beginner dyes to make sure you even like to do it before taking the plunge and getting the fiber-specific dyes. They've even got a pretty nice mixing chart on their site to get all sorts of colors. They're very good at being a jack-of-all-trades (except polyester) dye, and friendly to tub dyeing.


As far as cosplay, I'm a second generation geek but my parents came at it oddly, so never really got into dressing up or learning the sci-fi languages. Dad was literary geek and mom was a late bloomer. As for me, I kept saying, "Cosplay is a level of nerd I don't think I'll get to..." and now look at me. Preparing competition pieces for my next con.

Well, planning competition pieces. I tend to do simple but well tailored, and this con judges a lot on flashy and rule of cool, so it's difficult to try to pick something that has a good chance of winning.

Orianna2000
02-27-2015, 05:01 AM
I've done lace dyeing, which is a lot of fun. For some reason RIT dyes intimidate me. I was planning to try Kool-Aid dyeing, although I don't know how easy it will be to mix the colors.

As far as costume competitions, I'm giving up on those. I always go into them thinking I have a good chance of placing high, because I'm a perfectionist, so I know my workmanship is superb. And yet, I never win, and I don't know why. Obviously, I'm missing some quality that they're looking for, but I have no idea what it could be.

Actually, I take that back. I won third place in a corset contest, several years ago. (I made a Victorian maternity/nursing corset.) But every other costume contest I've entered, I've done terribly. I always give it my best shot, but clearly, I don't know what they're looking for. It's really frustrating.

greendragon
03-02-2015, 07:08 PM
We don't usually deal with costume contests, but we go for the WOW factor at cons. We like dressing up en masse and walking around for photos. Most Dragoncons we dress in Monty Python Holy Grail - complete with coconuts. There's usually about 15 of us. Several knights, a patsy or two, Zoot, Tim the Enchanter, a monk hitting his head with a bible, sometimes a blood-drenched bunny, a witch. I usually put on a corset and bridal veil and write 'Huge Tracts of Land' across my DD cleavage :)

Alessandra Kelley
03-02-2015, 09:06 PM
I like making people who love obscure things happy. At a few conventions recently I dressed as one of the purple-wigged moon-women from the short-lived UK series "UFO."

harmonyisarine
03-06-2015, 01:05 AM
Most contests, sadly, look at "rule of cool" more than construction, even if they insist they look at construction most. I enjoy competing because it places me in a quiet place with some very skilled costumers that have taught me so very much about fabriccraft, but I know that my usual sort of costume won't win even if it's perfect. This time, I'm going for a costume that is fabric and leather heavy (I do leather tooling as well) that also fulfills "rule of cool," and I think that will allow me to stand an actual chance for the first time.

CoffeeBeans
03-06-2015, 09:58 PM
I'm not a contest person. I don't really like the idea that cosplay can be competitive, and while I've watched some cosplay parades and showcases, I feel like the whole "judging" aspect is pretty suspect.

I've run the gamut from "good heavens, I hope this stays together" to pretty sound/professional looking. I'm just not so comfortable with the idea that someone else gets an official say on which ones get a stamp of approval.

Also, I wish we posted pics in this thread. I'm so curious what some of your cosplays look like!

Filigree
03-08-2015, 04:01 AM
Alas, I don't have pics of me in garb.

harmonyisarine
03-08-2015, 05:13 AM
I actually spent the days since Sunday marathoning a pretty great (if I say so myself) jumpsuit for Chell from Portal, one made to work for both Portal 1 and Portal 2. I was super excited to wear it around PAX East, I go to PAX every year and I've wanted to cosplay Chell pretty much since the game came out, but I only got a portal gun last month.

My flight to Boston was cancelled due to weather. Then my replacement flight was cancelled. Then my last replacement flight was cancelled.

To make it all worse, a favorite author is there, practically unannounced!

I've been wearing my Chell all around the house anyway because I worked so hard on her.

CoffeeBeans
03-09-2015, 07:17 PM
I've been wearing my Chell all around the house anyway because I worked so hard on her.

I am so sorry to hear about all of this! I hope you dashed around your house looking awesome, and eating cake.

Maggie Maxwell
03-09-2015, 07:19 PM
Oh man, harmony, that's terrible. :( I hope they at least refunded your money for the flights.

Melanii
03-09-2015, 07:59 PM
What's a second generation geek? XD

So, one of my favorite things to do is dress up! It means I don't get to be myself for a day, or a couple!

On Halloween last year, my friends and I attempted to dress up as characters from the game we're developing. People kept asking us who we were supposed to be, so we ended up advertising the game to several people, directing them to our terrible Facebook page. That was amusing!

I want to do it again this year, for October (a con, AND Halloween), but I decided that I want to lose as much weight as possible before doing so. Although my boyfriend and I have been doing pretty darn well for hand-making costumes for cheap means, I don't look that good in them. XD

I'm the chick at cons that probably ruins your favorite character. :P

If I don't get at a certain point in weight be July-August, then I'll be cosplaying the next year...

CoffeeBeans
03-10-2015, 08:49 PM
What's a second generation geek? XD

People who are geeks, whose parents were geeks before them. I am not second gen. My mom was into comic books, some video games, and the occasional sci-fi show, but not in any larger framework.



On Halloween last year, my friends and I attempted to dress up as characters from the game we're developing. People kept asking us who we were supposed to be, so we ended up advertising the game to several people, directing them to our terrible Facebook page. That was amusing!

A friend of mine makes this joke every con season, we should all wear outlandish [something] and swear we're from a thing other people have just never heard of.



I'm the chick at cons that probably ruins your favorite character. :P

I have never looked at anyone in any cosplay and felt like they were ruining a character. (even the "sexy" takes on non-sexy characters). I generally just assume everyone is expressing their enthusiasm in their own way.

In other news, I still have not convinced my giant brother to dress up as The Iron Bull for Comicon. Why does he lift all those weights if he doesn't want to walk around shirtless with funny stripey pants?

Maggie Maxwell
03-10-2015, 08:59 PM
I have never looked at anyone in any cosplay and felt like they were ruining a character. (even the "sexy" takes on non-sexy characters). I generally just assume everyone is expressing their enthusiasm in their own way.


This. It's not about the size, the shape, or even the sex of the character. It's about someone (the cosplayer) being passionate about something and expression that passion through costume. There are plus-sized Wonder Women and male Sailor Moons at every con, and they're just as welcome and appreciated as the picture perfect Poison Ivy or the hirsute Hercules. If my muscleless She-Hulk is going to ruin her for anyone, it's their problem. I'm gonna be too busy having fun posing with my Dr. Banner. :heart:

Orianna2000
03-11-2015, 03:38 AM
When everyone is dressed crazy, you can't judge anyone for their weight or even their gender. Everyone is there to have fun.

I swear, the funniest costume I ever saw was at DragonCon last summer. It was a dude dressed as Strawberry Shortcake. I just about died, it was so hilarious! All I could think is, man, that takes guts. But he looked like he was having a blast.

harmonyisarine
03-11-2015, 05:13 AM
Thanks, guys. In good news, I did dash around as an awesome Chell. I didn't have cake but I did have fresh creme brulee (made with eggs from our own chickens), so that's... close? I did decide that I'll need to schedule a photoshoot with her and, oh darn, I'll have to bring the cake with me.

In bad news, I do not yet have a refund from the airline. Continuing to try.


And Strawberrii, don't worry about size in cosplay! Just have fun, and anyone who cares otherwise isn't worth listening to. Just this February I cosplayed Fire Nation Katara for a con. It was right after I'd mystery-gained 25 or so pounds and the costume showed my stomach. I was super nervous, but made sure the costume fit in a way that made me happy and no one even noticed.

If you're really uncomfortable, to the point where you couldn't have fun but really want to cosplay, small alterations are more than understandable. Just adjusting the shape or fit of things can really help with confidence, and unique takes on characters are some of the most enthusiastically received.

Filigree
05-11-2015, 06:21 PM
Late to this, but fully in support of open cosplay. I've seen some fairly hefty people of all gender presentations do some *amazing* costuming. At some levels cosplay can be about precise-as-possible copies of the original material...but a huge part of the experience is simply costuming for the love.

I *never* appear as anyone from a known source. I always do hall costumes, not competitions, and I always wear some off the wall thing I made up and cobbled together. It's more fun that way for me.

In more current news, I has a sad: found a perfect pair of paramilitary-looking gray canvas and leather boots yesterday for $7...one size too small. They're constructed in such a way that I can't stretch them. :cry:

CoffeeBeans
05-12-2015, 02:05 AM
I think uncomfortable shoes are the bane of my cosplay life. Last year's crazy stacked heels to make me tower appropriately as Brienne of Tarth (I'm already 5'11, but why not be 6'4?) left half of my foot was numb for two days.

Doing a group cosplay for Big Hero Six. Why oh why must Honey Lemon have crazy footwear?

Filigree
05-12-2015, 04:04 AM
Yep. Shoes have always been my costume bane, ever since the SCA. I'm still wistful over those boots. If they're still there on Friday (payday!) I'm getting them anyway. I've about worked out how to gusset the backs.

CoffeeBeans
05-13-2015, 07:04 AM
So... shoes still there? ;)

Filigree
05-14-2015, 07:47 AM
Don't know. Can't get back there until day after tomorrow. Sniffle.

benbradley
05-14-2015, 08:36 AM
I'm not into this stuff myself, but I'm a member at "The Space" where a group of such people have invaded - if you're near the land of Dragon*Con, look 'em up on Meetup:
http://blog.freesideatlanta.org/2015/03/atlanta-cosplay-meetup-group-build.html

Filigree
05-15-2015, 03:50 AM
Gorgeous detailed work! They're on a whole different level than I am.

harmonyisarine
06-11-2015, 04:52 AM
Now that I am done with a non-cosplay job (5 bridesmaids dresses, hand dyeing all 25 yards of silk in a 30quart stock pot (not all at once), in only a month... and that's without all the problems and non-related emergencies that cropped up), I not only get to return to AW but I also get to start my cosplay work! I've hired a sewing manager who, so far, is really keeping on my case, and we hope to clear my backlog and open officially for commissions by the end of summer. To this end, I will begin to once again compete in the cosplay contests.

Tonight, I begin shopping for Saber from Fate Zero. I only have to decide if I'm going for a straight screen accurate attempt for the Master's category, or for a more personalized and intricate attempt for the Craftsman's category. Masters would see a simple blue silk or maybe a tone-on-tone brocade, with a hand-dyed low immersion piece for the center and a plain hoop skirt with gold beads at the lacy edge. Craftsman would be definitely tone-on-tone brocade with hand-set crystal or beadery details, with a layered dye resist technique built up in a symbol relevant to Saber for the center piece, and the white underskirt would be a satin with burnout technique to fade in and form the lacy edge.

So torn.

greendragon
06-11-2015, 05:57 PM
I have finally learned that, while I CAN sew, I HATE to sew. So (pun intended) I am outsourcing my sewing to other talented friends who are willing to take jewelry I make in exchange for their hard work. Thus I have a Catelyn Stark dress (with fur!) and a Viking outfit for Dragoncon this year. I still have my poorly-made Monty Python Inquisitor garb :)

harmonyisarine
06-13-2015, 04:00 AM
I hate sewing with a burning passion, but I'm really good at it and really picky about my fit and fiber. For instance, I once made a Catelyn Stark! Tea dyed crinkle cotton chemise (and that is a weird neckline), with wool-blend kirtle-based outer layers and cloak, and I used some fur I'd been given to construct the shape of her cloak animal. My Avatar Water Tribe costumes are all wool and linen, being tundra-based, and I keep picking costumes or outfits lately that give me excuses to work with silk. It's just so nice to look at!

My favorite was the Fullmetal Alchemist military uniforms. I used 20oz Melton wool, as that's what uniforms were made of in the early 1900s (and sort of even now, depending on where and what). We made these for a summer con. Everyone melted. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. My other victims might not. XD

Orianna2000
09-02-2015, 02:11 AM
Off to DragonCon tomorrow!

I was hoping to have a Jedi costume this year, but I didn't get beyond the fashion sketching stage. I've got a Steampunk outfit assembled (same as last year's), which is about 50% sewed and 50% bought. I plan to wear the corset and shrug with jeans one day, for a more casual look, and the whole shebang (skirt, petticoat, bustled overskirt, and Victorian boots) on another day. Also, new for this year, I put together a Star Trek outfit, which, sadly, is all purchased elements. I wouldn't have done it, except I found the cutest uniform dress on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Star-Trek-Generation-Starfleet-Science/dp/B00P1FO7H6/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1441144090&sr=8-6&keywords=star+trek++dress) and I couldn't resist. It's the blue medical/science uniform, but made as a skater's dress, with a high waist and a short skirt. (Looks like a cross between classic Trek and Next Generation.) I'm pairing it with black pants, because I'm not brave enough to wear that short of a skirt, even at DragonCon! The rank pips and communicator badge are screen-printed, which looks a bit cheesy . . . I would have pinned real ones on top of the screen-printed ones, but I didn't have time to order them this year. Next year, for sure!

harmonyisarine
09-13-2015, 01:06 AM
I couldn't find a general sewing thread, but this fits here as well.

My favorite online fabric store, Dharma Trading, has finally expanded into colored fabric! I really prefer using natural fabrics whenever possible (for comfort as well as to reduce microplastic litter) and Dharma's been my favorite source for cotton, silk, and rayon for awhile now. Especially silk and rayon, since they have so many weaves and their prices are good. Only problem was that you had to do the dyeing, which I've gotten very good at but still can take days if I'm doing a big project with multiple outfits. Now they have colored silk! 30 colors and only in three weaves (crepe back satin, 8mm habotai and a chiffon, forget what weight that one was). I got my swatches of all the weaves and colors yesterday and they are so beautiful, and I don't have to do the dyeing. I'm already planning too many things. I want all the yardage.

And Orianna, I hope DragonCon was awesome. That dress looks super adorable, and I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one to wear corset and jeans as a "casual" look. XD

Orianna2000
09-13-2015, 04:31 AM
My favorite online fabric store, Dharma Trading, has finally expanded into colored fabric! I really prefer using natural fabrics whenever possible (for comfort as well as to reduce microplastic litter) and Dharma's been my favorite source for cotton, silk, and rayon for awhile now. Especially silk and rayon, since they have so many weaves and their prices are good. Only problem was that you had to do the dyeing, which I've gotten very good at but still can take days if I'm doing a big project with multiple outfits. Now they have colored silk! 30 colors and only in three weaves (crepe back satin, 8mm habotai and a chiffon, forget what weight that one was). I got my swatches of all the weaves and colors yesterday and they are so beautiful, and I don't have to do the dyeing. I'm already planning too many things. I want all the yardage.

That's good to know! I love working with silk habotai, but it can be hard to find good quality, affordable silk on eBay or Etsy. I'll have to check the new colors out! I do need some white habotai for a doll-sized Victorian dressing gown I'm planning, but colors would be nice, too.



And Orianna, I hope DragonCon was awesome. That dress looks super adorable, and I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one to wear corset and jeans as a "casual" look. XD
DragonCon was pretty great. I didn't get to wear my full Steampunk costume, because I ended up having to take one day off to rest, and that happened to be the day I was planning to wear the Steampunk costume. I did get to wear the corset and jeans, though! And the Star Trek dress. And after I got home, I wore my Steampunk costume to the American Sewing Guild's monthly meeting. I brought along the doll version I'd made, too, which was a hoot! A few of the ladies already knew what Steampunk was, including a couple of elderly gals, which really surprised me.

harmonyisarine
09-16-2015, 05:01 AM
I've been doing Renfaires and corseting for years and Steampunk still intimidates the crap out of me. It seems like such a full and rich subculture that I don't want to just... take the trappings, you know? But I love seeing it! Do you mind posting a pic (or a link to one)? Totally understand if you don't want to.

And I've got the full color swatch pack for the habotai, so if you want side-by-side shots of any of their colors just let me know. I know some people can just put it all together in their minds but I much prefer seeing them.

CoffeeBeans
09-18-2015, 06:52 PM
Orianna, I cannot imagine how cute a matching doll is. I too wish there were pics!

Harmony, I <3 steampunk, but I don't think you have too much to worry about in a "trappings" way. The trappings are a big part, and the subculture is still being written.

I've been waist-deep in con prep this month. I am down to my last few items. I need to buy and paint shoes, finish my dad's cape, and test-wear my WTNV outfit.

Last night, I finally finished my dad's Magneto helmet. It might be the coolest piece I've ever worked on, just thanks to how cool the original blank was. I've been tweeting my progress, so here's a pic (https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CPMYKOBWIAAV9U8.jpg:large)

Orianna2000
09-19-2015, 02:16 AM
Argh! I had an entire post written with all the photos, and it somehow deleted it, not once, but three times. Let's try this yet again. . . .

I'd rather not post a photo of me wearing the costume, since I only have one picture from DragonCon and it's not the best quality. However, I don't mind posting photos of the costume on my dress form. Just to clarify, I purchased the skirt and corset, but I made the petticoat, knit jersey shrug, and bustled overskirt. (I'm planning to make a new corset to go with this costume, because the one I bought is extremely cheap.) Since you're required to display your convention badge at all times, I made a coordinating lanyard out of grosgrain and velvet ribbon. I made the dragonfly brooch to go with the dragonfly pocket watch. And for the hat, I took a straw hat form and covered it with flannel and taffeta, then embellished it with ribbon, feathers, and antique lace.

I also have photos of the matching doll costume. (It's a 22-inch American Model doll by Tonner.) I drafted and sewed the entire outfit, including lace-trimmed drawers and petticoat, tiered skirt, bustled overskirt, shrug, and two-toned corset (fully boned, with tiny hand-bound lacing eyelets). It was so much fun! Probably my favorite of all the doll costumes I've made.

Steampunk Costume



Fashion Sketch (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Steampunk-7a.jpg)
Front View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Steampunk-Costume-1-w.jpg)
Back View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Steampunk-Costume-3-w.jpg)
Ruffled Petticoat (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image8-Steampunk-Petticoat-001-w.jpg)
Closeup of Corset & Pocket Watch (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image15-Steampunk-Watch-1-w.jpg)
Serpentine Ruching & Beaded Fringe on Overskirt (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image12-Steampunk-Overskirt-Trim-w.jpg)
Closeup of Pleating on Shrug (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Steampunk-Costume-2-w.jpg)
Victorian Lace-Up Boots (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image13-Steampunk-Boots-w.jpg)
Hat (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image14-Steampunk-Hat-Done2-W.jpg) (Before & After Embellishing)
Lanyard (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Image-16-Steampunk-Lanyard-w.jpg)


Steampunk Doll Costume



Front View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/SP-22-BD-2-w.jpg)
Back View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/SP-22-BD-3-w.jpg)
Petticoat & Drawers (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/SP-22-BD-5-w.jpg)
Closeup of Corset & Shrug (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/SP-22-BD-6-w.jpg)
Back View of Corset (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/SP-22-BD-7-w.jpg)

CoffeeBeans
09-20-2015, 08:50 PM
So fab, Orianna! Both yours and your doll's!

I have never thought to make special arrangements for the lanyard. That's really clever.

I just spent too much money on a pair of shoes for a cosplay because I've been dawdling on making a choice, and now the price is hiked for Halloween. That's what I get for being indecisive.

Orianna2000
09-20-2015, 10:05 PM
Thanks, CoffeeBeans! I made the matching lanyard because all I could think was how a black/purple or blue/yellow "sci-fi" lanyard was going to ruin the look of the whole costume.

Filigree
09-20-2015, 11:57 PM
Great point. A steampunk 'frame' for the badge itself would be awesome, too. Open frame, so both sides can be seen.

Orianna2000
09-21-2015, 12:46 AM
Hmm. Interesting idea, but it would be a challenge to figure out. Sometimes they put extra stickers on, if you need disability services, or ribbons, for participating in workshops. The badge would have to be easy to pop in and out, for sticker placement, and I'm not sure it would work if you had a ribbon hanging from the bottom. Still, it might be worth experimenting with!

Filigree
09-21-2015, 01:31 AM
Some ideas here (Google search (https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&site=imghp&tbm=isch&source=hp&biw=1518&bih=871&q=retro+robots&oq=retro+robots&gs_l=img.3..0l4j0i30j0i5i30j0i8i30j0i30j0i8i30.128 8.3348.0.3735.12.12.0.0.0.0.88.987.12.12.0..3..0.. .1.1.64.img..0.12.987.R0_mj92dd5M#hl=en&tbm=isch&q=steampunk+convention+badge)). I'd probably ask the convention ahead of time what form factor they were using, so I could get a better handle on what to do. I'm thinking a tooled leather frame with a snap-strap across the back, maybe an open bottom for ribbons, and a fold-out Tyvek page for stickers.

It's all nearly moot for me, since I've about decided I will never be able to afford a large con again.

tiakall
09-21-2015, 06:38 PM
I am not a sewer or a big crafter - I prefer doing thrift-store cosplay. But I really, really wanted to cosplay from my favorite manga (Basara) so I'm finally doing the Sarasa cosplay I've always wanted to do. (That I've lost 120 pounds in the last year and thus would no longer look like crap in it has also pushed this decision.) This required making a poncho, hand and foot wraps, a belt with two pouches, and a headband all by hand. Now all I need to do is find a stuffed owl and a fake plastic katana (which I may get at the con itself this weekend.)

greendragon
09-21-2015, 07:13 PM
I don't think DC is doing ribbons any longer. This year my art show stuff was a sticker, not a ribbon. Your steampunk do is beautiful, Orianna! Hope you enjoyed DC - I did! Next year I probably won't be at DC (first miss in 14 years!) because I am applying as a vendor to the Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival. That's six weekends long, and involves Cosplay, too :)

harmonyisarine
09-28-2015, 04:17 AM
Orianna, that's a beautiful costume and I love the little doll version (and her posing to show off the petticoat)! And those pleats on the shrug and the bustle of the overskirt made my heart go all aflutter. I'm still finessing my pleating skills, and while I understand the theory behind beautiful bustles, I've never had the opportunity to try them.

My con lanyard is a silver and orange chainmaille piece a friend made for me. It doesn't match my costumes but it's enough of a statement lanyard that it tends to work out anyway.




because I am applying as a vendor to the Pittsburgh Renaissance Festival

The Pittsburgh Faire is not too far from me! You'll have to let me know if you get a vendor spot next year.



And, to be fair, I think I'll have to get some photos of my renfaire garb (still in progress but finally recognizable as a classy pirate) posted here. The fabric for her sailor-pants just shipped, so I'll get a few good shots once those are made!

Filigree
09-28-2015, 07:02 AM
I need to get a dressmakers dummy so I can photograph my costumes.

Orianna2000
09-28-2015, 07:57 PM
Orianna, that's a beautiful costume and I love the little doll version (and her posing to show off the petticoat)! And those pleats on the shrug and the bustle of the overskirt made my heart go all aflutter. I'm still finessing my pleating skills, and while I understand the theory behind beautiful bustles, I've never had the opportunity to try them.

Thank you! The secret to perfect pleats is measuring and marking to get them precisely spaced and folded (or, if you have a lot of pleats, you can make a cardboard template to help you fold each pleat the same width). Then you have to press the heck out of them, and hand-baste them to keep them from shifting while you sew. I probably spend more time than I should trying to get my pleats just right, just because it bugs me to see pleats that are mismatched or uneven!

As for the bustle overskirt, I used Truly Victorian's Bustled Apron Overskirt (TV305) (http://www.trulyvictorian.net/tvxcart/product.php?productid=40&cat=2&page=1) pattern, which I shortened so it would be proportionate with my Steampunk skirt. I've used the pattern before and it makes such a lovely overskirt. The sides are pleated and the back is pulled up in spots, making it poof. It will fit over a real bustle, too, if you're so inclined. (All of Truly Victorian's patterns are amazing. They cover the entirety of the Victorian and Edwardian periods, and include everything you need to make an authentic costume, from drawers, corsets, bustles, and petticoats, to skirts, bodices, and overskirts, and even coats and hats! I highly recommend them.)


I need to get a dressmakers dummy so I can photograph my costumes.
I found mine on Amazon for around $65, I believe. I think I searched for "dress form." It isn't adjustable, except height-wise, but it's great for holding garments while you pin the hem, or try different embellishments to see which one you prefer. And it's absolutely perfect for taking photos of costumes. The measurements don't quite match my own (it's a bit smaller in the waist and bust), but if I need to, I can put one of my bras on it and use batting to pad it out. It's one of the best investments I've made, other than my sewing machine!

CoffeeBeans
10-12-2015, 08:39 PM
NYCC completed. Sunday was the day I cosplayed with my dad, and it was amazing. His costume was pretty casual (cape and helmet over a dri-fit and slacks) but he gave people a thrill with how much he looks like Ian McKellen (I had to tell him not to joke that he was actually him, because people might believe him...)

Of all the work on four days of my own costumes, my Agent Carter was the biggest hit. It's the one costume I wore where I didn't make/sew/paint a single thing. Guess that says something about my crafting ability :evil

Filigree
10-13-2015, 04:38 AM
Sometimes the most perfect costumes just come together. Who are we to argue with Fate?

CoffeeBeans
10-16-2015, 12:03 AM
Someone instagrammed a pic of my dad! He looks fab! It's been fun seeing what people have posted out there. We were in the Marvel group shot on Facebook too. Magneto-dad! (https://instagram.com/p/8uO67FJWIw/)

I made a cosplay round up for the first time ever. The pic isn't the best but it's a round up! (http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/nycc-photo-parade-comics-creators-cosplay-collide-on-thursday)

Maggie Maxwell
10-16-2015, 12:46 AM
Awesome! Hope you sent that Instagram to your dad. :D

Congratulations on the round-up! You definitely deserved it, that Agent Carter is perfect.

Shadowflame
10-16-2015, 09:46 PM
Has anyone tried to do a dress form out of duct tape (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Duct-Tape-Dress-Form)?
I'm considering one because I'm an odd size anyway and it seems cheap. Over the duct tape I think I'd do some paper mache and then either paint or cover with cloth.

Also would be a good form for jewelry props. *hint Filigree

CoffeeBeans
10-16-2015, 09:52 PM
I made a duct tape form. I have mixed feelings about it.

Upside, it really is cheap and pretty accurate. Downside, stuffing is a PITA (I used plastic supermarket bag, because it would have needed a truckload of batting) and pinning/marking/covering it was a total fail for me. I'd made a stretchy cloth cover for it (sewn around on it for best fit) but that tended to sag/stretch.

It can't bear heavy weights well, and I hang mine from a clothes hanger (I attached inside) on a hook to use it. It's not a bad choice, but I certainly learned a lot about the shortcomings as I used it.

Also -- it's NOT a one-person project! A friend/fellow sewer made mine with me, but even then it was sometimes hilariously awkward. I suggest (adult) beverages to help make it more fun and less annoying.

ETA - TAMaxwell I forwarded the instagram to my dad, who emailed back "I couldn't open it, but one of the younger people in the office got it on their phone." -- so I guess that's good? ;)

Shadowflame
10-16-2015, 10:31 PM
Well the fiance has volunteered to assist me and I have plenty of plastic bags to use. And if we run out (goodness help me if we do) then I have 2 endrolls of newsprint. I do want to put this on a stand so I'll have to make one of those. Guess I'll see how it all goes then. But gotta wait until it's cooler. I don't want to smother.

Filigree
10-16-2015, 11:25 PM
I've watched one being made. If I can't pin into it, I can't use it. Just have to wait for a sale.

CoffeeBeans
10-18-2015, 12:29 PM
They aren't impossible to pin into (even without the cover) it's just a bit of a wreck on your pins. I suppose this also depends on how many layers of duct tape you use...

harmonyisarine
10-21-2015, 04:49 AM
Thank you! The secret to perfect pleats is measuring and marking to get them precisely spaced and folded (or, if you have a lot of pleats, you can make a cardboard template to help you fold each pleat the same width). Then you have to press the heck out of them, and hand-baste them to keep them from shifting while you sew. I probably spend more time than I should trying to get my pleats just right, just because it bugs me to see pleats that are mismatched or uneven!

As for the bustle overskirt, I used Truly Victorian's Bustled Apron Overskirt (TV305) (http://www.trulyvictorian.net/tvxcart/product.php?productid=40&cat=2&page=1) pattern, which I shortened so it would be proportionate with my Steampunk skirt. I've used the pattern before and it makes such a lovely overskirt. The sides are pleated and the back is pulled up in spots, making it poof. It will fit over a real bustle, too, if you're so inclined. (All of Truly Victorian's patterns are amazing. They cover the entirety of the Victorian and Edwardian periods, and include everything you need to make an authentic costume, from drawers, corsets, bustles, and petticoats, to skirts, bodices, and overskirts, and even coats and hats! I highly recommend them.)

I think I'm going to end up making a pleating board next time I have to do pleats. Patience is not one of my strong suits! XD I just have to decide how wide to make the template.

And those patterns look gorgeous. I've been really hankering to do a crazy ambitious project like a full Victorian outfit but didn't know where to start. Now I do!


Someone instagrammed a pic of my dad! He looks fab! It's been fun seeing what people have posted out there. We were in the Marvel group shot on Facebook too. Magneto-dad! (https://instagram.com/p/8uO67FJWIw/)

I made a cosplay round up for the first time ever. The pic isn't the best but it's a round up! (http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/nycc-photo-parade-comics-creators-cosplay-collide-on-thursday)

You guys both look wonderful! One of these years I'll make it to NYCC...


Has anyone tried to do a dress form out of duct tape (http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Duct-Tape-Dress-Form)?
I'm considering one because I'm an odd size anyway and it seems cheap. Over the duct tape I think I'd do some paper mache and then either paint or cover with cloth.

I have one that I use for my little sister, because she's an absurdly tiny lady. I do not recommend them for long term or heavy usage. They are just too difficult to make and stand, as mentioned above. However! If you have the time and would rather start with that, go for it! Make sure to tape it as flat as you can.

For any dressform, duct tape or otherwise, a really good way of sizing them up is to make an adjustable slip cover. I threw one together in ten minutes and I use it when I have commissions that are bigger than my dressform (she's the small end of average). I just wrap the form in more batting than I need and then zip the adjustable cover over it. The cover was made out of a scrap of muslin tall enough to cover her from neck to several inches below the bottom edge, with a separating zipper sewn into the back (really easy when you're not doing it for looks). I then just baste stitches into the cover until it's the size I need!

Pictures of my renfaire garb are coming, I didn't get any at the faire itself so now I have to set it up on my form... after I clean my sewing room. XD

Orianna2000
10-21-2015, 05:22 PM
Harmony, Truly Victorian patterns really are the best. I've made eight of their patterns and all of them turned out amazing! The pattern-maker has a unique way of sizing and fitting that makes it easy to figure out your size and make alterations. Some of the directions assume prior sewing knowledge, so if you're brand-new to sewing, you might struggle a little, but I made a full Victorian day dress (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Wishing_Dress_4.jpg), complete with undergarments, on my own, with very little experience, and it turned out good enough that I was offered a job with a Broadway touring company's wardrobe department--so the patterns are definitely doable, even if you're a beginner.

Regarding pleating, have you seen the Perfect Pleater (http://www.amazon.com/CLOTILDE-Original-Perfect-Pleater-11/dp/B005MGW1MW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1445432838&sr=8-1&keywords=Perfect+Pleater)? It's a board with slots in it, which you tuck the fabric into for perfectly spaced and sized pleats. I've only used the miniature version for doll clothes, and it didn't work for me (the pleats weren't the right type--accordion, not knife pleats), but I'm thinking the larger one might work better. There's also the Quick Pleater (http://www.amazon.com/Quick-Pleater-Mini-Set-Include/dp/B00II8V7NK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1445432838&sr=8-2&keywords=Perfect+Pleater), which comes in a variety of sizes. But you can use a fork just as easily . . . and a heckuva lot cheaper!

I've never made a duct-tape dummy, only because my weight fluctuates, so it would be useless. Plus, I'm claustrophobic and the idea of being completely wrapped up in tape, and being unable to sit down until it's cut off, was just too much for me. But you can buy dress forms on Amazon that are good quality and reasonably priced. Get one that's slightly smaller than your measurements, and then pad it to your size with quilt batting. If the bust is too small, put one of your old bras on it and fill out the cups with polyfil or batting. Easy peasy! :)

harmonyisarine
11-05-2015, 06:51 AM
Ah, that day dress is beautiful! I'm not a beginner but I am very self-taught, so I keep Google handy to look up terms I might not know. Usually I discover that I know the technique, just not the name.

In cosplay news, I spent Halloween weekend at AUSA. First day was Book 1 Korra, third day was Book 4 Korra, middle day was my "craft-level" Saber from Fate/Zero. I even got to wear a dress of my own design to the formal on Friday. The reception to all of these, especially my own designs (Saber's pants are my own design, as they're usually hidden under the hoopskirt), have convinced me that I somehow got pretty decent at sewing and design. I'm going to finally let go my dream of science, as the trouble and stress of getting in has way eclipsed the joy of actually researching and working in a lab. In exchange, I'm going to actively focus way more on sewing and design. Going to touch up Saber (shorten the peplum, make the petticoat and fix the hem of the underskirt--by making a new underskirt, sadly) and compete with her at Katsucon, and meanwhile spend a lot of winter working on my own designs (when not writing, of course! XD).

I promise, pictures of at least some of it will come soon!

Orianna2000
11-05-2015, 07:07 PM
Ah, that day dress is beautiful! I'm not a beginner but I am very self-taught, so I keep Google handy to look up terms I might not know. Usually I discover that I know the technique, just not the name.

That's the trouble with being self-taught at anything--there are always going to be gaps in your knowledge. I'm a self-taught writer (well, I'm actually self-taught everything--writer, dressmaker, artist, etc.), and so I have a huge vocabulary, but I don't necessarily know how to pronounce certain words. I'm getting better at this, but once in awhile, I'll hear someone pronounce a word and I'll be like, "Oh! So THAT'S how you say that!" I love that Kindle Fire lets you tap a word to pull up the dictionary definition, which includes pronunciation. It's helped close that gap a little.

harmonyisarine
11-27-2015, 08:40 PM
I used to be embarrassed for my readers' pronunciation, but now I use it as a point of pride. Though it does mean that if I'm ever successful at writing, I'll have to pre-screen any reading sections so that I don't mispronounce anything. XD

In sewing news, I've made the very difficult decision to give up trying to get back into science. The hoop-jumping and hypocrisy and what-have-you have finally outweighed my love of science. This relates to sewing in that I have a lot more time and focus now, so I'm going to try to get a line of nerd-themed fashion going, with commissions to tide me over until then. My page is only on facebook so far (facebook.com/kirkiicreations, if anyone is interested), but I'll go from there.

Though, speaking of that page, here's the link to the photo album with the pirate queen pictures that I finally got! I did none of the leather work (though I've got a belt of my own design patterend out, I just have to dig out the leatherworking table), but I did all of the fabric-craft parts. I made the skirt before I had a real direction for her, as soon as it falls apart (it's the least durable part), I'll be replacing it with a skirt more inspired by a bustled Victorian style, as I feel the rest is giving a pseudo-Victorian vibe.

Alayna, Queen on the Seas (https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1517007185279712.1073741830.147184870979556 0&type=3)

Orianna2000
11-27-2015, 10:07 PM
Nerd-themed fashion is always fun! Have you seen the "Doctor Who" pinafores someone made? They look like short, fluffy "Lolita" dresses, but they're very accurate (if feminized) copies of the tenth Doctor's brown suit and tan coat. Very awesome.

Your pirate costume looks great, by the way! One tip for when you make the bustle skirt: Don't forget a petticoat (or two) when making anything that's meant to be even vaguely historical. Plenty of people underestimate the importance of petticoats, but they make a huge difference in how your skirts look. As an example, here's a photo (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Petticoat1-3.jpg) showing an 1870s bustle skirt by itself, without a petticoat, and then with one petticoat, and with two petticoats underneath. I was surprised at how adding an extra petticoat affects the silhouette, making the dress look a lot more Victorian.

harmonyisarine
11-29-2015, 12:38 AM
I was going to make just one, but after seeing that I think I will make two. They will, of course, be contrasting colors and show a bit, because a pirate is hardly proper. XD

I have seen those pinafores and I love them, but I'm going to be trying to take a step back from the literalism. I want someone unfamiliar with the inspiration to just see wonderful fashion, and I want someone familiar with it to go, "Oh, nice dress. WAIT a minute, is that Doctor Who?" While the more on-point ones are fine for casual wear, my goal is to wear nerdy clothes everywhere and have no non-fans be the wiser. I've got a few designs and finally have time and money to start, so we shall see! A Portal 50's style sundress and a Stargate maxi-style dress are on deck for this, but both involve some pretty tricky dyeing so I'm procrastinating.

Orianna2000
11-29-2015, 02:46 AM
Well, you know the reason Victorian and Edwardian petticoats have lace ruffles around the hem? Just in case a girl lifts her skirt--say, while climbing steps--and her petticoats show. If they were going to peek out, they had to be pretty! They also had some pretty wild stocking patterns. Everyone thinks, oh, Victorians were all prudes, so demure and ladylike, buttoned up to the throat. The truth is actually more interesting! I've seen images from 19th century fashion magazines that show stockings with stripes, polka-dots, zigzags, and all kinds of crazy patterns. Granted, you didn't often see a lady's stockings, because she often wore high boots, but they were there, hidden underneath. And in the morning, or for business situations, they did often wear high collars, but for the afternoon, they wore wide, squared necklines, or low V-necks, etc. For evening, they bared everything . . . dresses were very low-cut, with tiny sleeves that were just-barely-off-the-shoulder. And it was considered proper, provided you were at the right sort of event, like a ball, the theater, or the opera. If you were just eating dinner, you had to be a little more respectable than if you were going out for the night.

I've read several books on fashion etiquette, ranging from the 1850s to the 1890s. You can really learn a lot about the culture and society by their rules for dressing! It's fascinating--well, to me, anyway. I actually wrote (and sold!) two articles on how Victorians dressed, which garments were proper for which occasion, when to wear kid gloves versus lace gloves, and so forth. It was aimed at reenactors who want to add a layer of authenticity to their costuming. It remains one of my favorite articles, just because researching it was so fun.

I like your idea of being subtle with your geek-wear. If ordinary people wouldn't "get it," but fellow fans would, it adds a bit of fun to it! There's a costumer who, in her spare time, creates sundresses and cocktail dresses out of fabrics from famous Broadway costumes. The average person would just think it's a pretty dress, but someone familiar with the real costumes is going to go bonkers!

I've always envied people who aren't afraid to dye fabric. It's always intimidated me! On the other hand, I LOVE dyeing lace. I have a full set of rayon dyes, which I use to "paint" lace, making appliques look like custom embroidery, or dyeing lengths of Venise lace to match my fabric. I've had so much fun with that, it's relaxing and enjoyable, and the results are always gorgeous. But dyeing fabric? Scares the heck out of me!

I have a doll costume that I've been wanting to make for years, but it's based off a Broadway costume that's constructed of airbushed silk, which fades from blue to pink on the bodice and from pink to pale yellow on the skirt. Initially, I was going to dip-dye organza and chiffon in Kool-Aid, since that was the limit of my courage when it came to dyeing fabric. But then I learned that Kool-Aid dyeing won't work if the fabric is synthetic--and I'd bought poly chiffon and organza. Next, I tried fabric markers. And quickly learned that you can't use fabric markers on textured fabrics, like organza. The ink catches in the fabric's tooth, making a very mottled, irregular pattern that looks horrible. I always intended to try the markers with silk habotai, but I never got around to it. I sort of gave up for a couple of years. Then, just recently, I stumbled upon a pink/blue ombre dyed quilting cotton. It's cotton, while the actual costume is silk, and the colors are a bit brighter than the pastel pinks and blues I need, but my plan is to layer pale pink chiffon and organza over the cotton, so the ombre effect subtly shows through, but the cotton is hidden underneath. We'll see if it actually works. . . .

Alessandra Kelley
11-29-2015, 03:34 AM
Someone instagrammed a pic of my dad! He looks fab! It's been fun seeing what people have posted out there. We were in the Marvel group shot on Facebook too. Magneto-dad! (https://instagram.com/p/8uO67FJWIw/)

I made a cosplay round up for the first time ever. The pic isn't the best but it's a round up! (http://www.comicbookresources.com/article/nycc-photo-parade-comics-creators-cosplay-collide-on-thursday)

Magneto Dad is awesome!

harmonyisarine
12-01-2015, 05:12 AM
I used to be part of a cosplay/sewing forum and I've learned more from you, Orianna, on a writing forum than I did in years on a sewing forum. Especially about historic wear, which always fascinates me! I'm not well versed in any one time period, but I have dabbled in a lot of areas as costume inspiration. I pick the closest real-life society to a costume and use those fabrics and base shapes as my guide, which gives my cosplays a great look but doesn't really let me have so much time to really delve into a time period. And Victorian was such a time for design and fashion... I didn't even know about the patterened stockings, but I do know they had lots more tricks and styles than we like to pretend. Also, I want to make giant mutton-chop sleeves just 'cause.

I don't mind dyeing, though I have frustrations with it. I use fabrics and dyes from Dharma Trading, and they have pretty much anything you can need for any fiber you can imagine. I really hate dyeing more than four yards at once, as I just don't have the setup for that. I then have to hack the fabric up and try to match each dye batch which is... complicated. I use more chemistry in my dyeing than I did when I did my biology undergrad thesis. Silk dyeing also frustrates me, as sometimes I get a perfect, even color and other times it comes out looking tie-dyed, and I can't figure out why. Other than that, though, I've developed a pretty good hand with it. Mostly because I'm too picky with my fabric choices and had to learn, but still. XD My Stargate dress is going to be a low-immersion dye, possibly in two or three colors of blue, to get that watery look of the event horizon. I don't know if I'll use rayon or silk, but it has got to be shiny, you know? The Portal dress is mostly simple dyeing, but I'm making a visible petticoat-type layer that's going to have a blue oval design based on the portal shape. I have to mix up that dye with an alginate thickener that'll turn the dye into a paint consistently, which is a technique I've never used before but sounds so great. That one is going to be a luscious sandwashed cotton broadcloth, such a great texture to this particular fabric and it takes dye well.

For your project, the dye thickener could work and be daubed or sprayed on in the right pattern. I don't know if it'd be worth buying a whole packet of thickener if it's a small project, though. Working with your current fabrics, though, polyester's got a nice little workaround. You say this is for a doll, so if it's a doll that's mostly for display, you can take sharpies or other alcohol-based dyes or markers and make a little spray-on dye. It's only as permanent as the ink you use, and sharpie on polyester is not actually permanent in many cases and will have slight bleed if it rubs against things regularly. If you want to do this, just pull out the inkwells from the marker and soak them in rubbing alcohol (the higher %, the better) for a few hours to overnight. I soak the inkwells in a cheap little plastic spray bottle. Cutting the inkwell up is more effective but such a mess. XD When the alcohol looks colorful, just spray it onto the fabric in the pattern you want and let it dry. If you don't like it, just use the same alcohol % or higher and it'll rinse out most or all of the color. I've used this successfully on wigs and faux flowers.

(All of this said, I say I dislike dyeing but I really love solving strange color patterns with home dyeing)

Orianna2000
12-01-2015, 09:07 PM
I used to be part of a cosplay/sewing forum and I've learned more from you, Orianna, on a writing forum than I did in years on a sewing forum. Especially about historic wear, which always fascinates me!
Well, I'm a sewing teacher when I'm not writing, so that urge to educate is always there, LOL! It's taken years of study and research, but these days, I know a lot about historical fashion, especially Victorian (although I'm always learning new things!). I used to think I knew everything about Victorian costuming, but when I look back at the dresses I designed, I shudder with disbelief and horror. Most of my "knowledge" came from Hollywood, which is . . . well, let's just say they aren't very concerned with historical accuracy when they costume their actors. Throughout the history of film, they've had a knack for costuming their leads in outfits that "look" historical, but with a very contemporary vibe. Look at Scarlett O'Hara, for example. Sure, she's wearing large hoop skirts and frilly ruffles, but the bodice silhouette is all wrong. She isn't wearing a corset underneath, she's wearing a 1930s bra! And it's obvious. They did better with Melly's costumes, they're a lot more accurate, but Scarlett was the lead, so she had to appeal to "modern" audiences, which meant adding a 1930s twist to the costumes. If you want accuracy, you're better off with BBC productions, although there's a few that are just as bad as Hollywood. For the most part, though, they're a lot more realistic when it comes to historical costuming.


Also, I want to make giant mutton-chop sleeves just 'cause.
I have a set of paper dolls with the enormous puffed sleeves, which I just adore! I've had them since I was a kid, too young and innocent to truly appreciate them, but they're extremely accurate, and the artwork is spectacular. One of the dresses is a shot silk, which changes color when the light hits it, and you can actually see both colors of the fabric in the way it was painted. Quite impressive! Just FYI, while enormous sleeves seem like such a staple of the Victorian era, they were only popular for a very brief period. I want to say it was just a year, maybe two, during the mid-1890s. I'm thinking 1894-1895, but I don't recall for sure. (If you want to know which silhouettes were fashionable during which decades, get a copy of Victorian Fashions and Costumes From Harper's Bazar, 1867-1898 (http://www.amazon.com/Victorian-Fashions-Costumes-Harpers-1867-1898/dp/0486229904/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1448987693&sr=8-1&keywords=victorian+harpers+bazar). It has fashion plates from a popular lady's magazine, and as you turn the pages, you can see how fashion evolved. It's one of my favorites, and I have a LOT of books on the history of fashion!)


Silk dyeing also frustrates me, as sometimes I get a perfect, even color and other times it comes out looking tie-dyed, and I can't figure out why.
Could it be the natural texture of the fabric? I know some silks are slubbed or uneven. When I tried using fabric markers on (poly) organza, it came out looking horrible, because of the texture of the organza. The ink caught on the slubs and it ended up looking all blotchy. The only other thing I can think of is, are you wetting the fabric ahead of time? I've read some about dyeing and I know you're supposed to wet your fabric before dipping it in the dye batch, so the dye will absorb evenly. I'm sure you know that already, though.


Working with your current fabrics, though, polyester's got a nice little workaround. You say this is for a doll, so if it's a doll that's mostly for display, you can take sharpies or other alcohol-based dyes or markers and make a little spray-on dye. It's only as permanent as the ink you use, and sharpie on polyester is not actually permanent in many cases and will have slight bleed if it rubs against things regularly.
Interesting idea, thanks! Part of the trouble I had with fabric markers was in getting the colors right. I think experimenting with Sharpies would probably be even harder, since they don't come in a hundred different colors, the way fabric markers do. Also, if might bleed, I can't use it on a doll. My dolls are made of vinyl, so any sort of dye that isn't fixed will rub off, staining the doll and ruining her collector's value. There are dolls available on eBay that are dirt cheap because the owner left the original clothes on them and the dyes rubbed off on the doll's skin, staining it. You have to be careful not to leave these kinds of dolls in jeans, or any dark fabrics.

A couple years ago, I wanted to make a copy of a crimson silk velvet gown from 1560 (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/redpisa1b-w.jpg) (the Pisa dress), but I chose velveteen for the fabric, and when I hand-washed it, the water in the sink turned blood red. No matter how many times I rinsed that fabric, even with a vinegar bath, it still bled to the point where the water looked like blood. It was horrifying! I knew that if I dressed a doll in that fabric, it would rub off and stain the vinyl, so I had to find a different fabric for that project. (And in the end, I had to give up, because it was too difficult to translate the gown's details into miniature scale. 'Twas a sad day for me.)

I'm not sure if spraying the fabric with dye would quite work for the pink and blue doll costume. It needs to have a subtle ombre gradient, fading from blue to pink, and from pink to yellow, like a sunrise. I would imagine that with spraying, you'd end up with a more splotchy look, wouldn't you? I was going to try dip-dyeing, but gave up when I learned that poly fabrics can't be dyed with Kool-Aid. I still have a bunch of fabric markers, though, so I could obtain some silk habotai and experiment with that, if layering the organza and chiffon over the ombre quilting cotton doesn't work. I like having options, so if one plan doesn't work (as so often happens!), I can try something else. For this costume, I've already tried at least three different ways of achieving the ombre effect!

harmonyisarine
12-10-2015, 08:35 AM
A couple years ago, I wanted to make a copy of a crimson silk velvet gown from 1560 (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/redpisa1b-w.jpg) (the Pisa dress), but I chose velveteen for the fabric, and when I hand-washed it, the water in the sink turned blood red. No matter how many times I rinsed that fabric, even with a vinegar bath, it still bled to the point where the water looked like blood. It was horrifying! I knew that if I dressed a doll in that fabric, it would rub off and stain the vinyl, so I had to find a different fabric for that project. (And in the end, I had to give up, because it was too difficult to translate the gown's details into miniature scale. 'Twas a sad day for me.)

I didn't even think of the dye staining the doll! That would certainly be no good. And it's a shame that red dress didn't work out, it's lovely. As far as the gradient, spraying will work for a nice smooth transition if you have a good spray bottle and a good hand... I do not. XD I've known people who have done it, and I know that making sure the fabric is wet is key, so that the dye spreads out instead of beading up and setting. You also have to have a good detergent when you wash it, or you might get back-dyeing when you rinse it. I use either Synthrapol or Dharma's own version, which are specific dyers detergents made to catch the spare ions. Not cheap and you might be able to get away with vinegar and normal detergent on the smaller scale that doll clothes take, though. I have faith that you'll find a way to make the ombre work!


Could it be the natural texture of the fabric? I know some silks are slubbed or uneven. When I tried using fabric markers on (poly) organza, it came out looking horrible, because of the texture of the organza. The ink caught on the slubs and it ended up looking all blotchy. The only other thing I can think of is, are you wetting the fabric ahead of time? I've read some about dyeing and I know you're supposed to wet your fabric before dipping it in the dye batch, so the dye will absorb evenly. I'm sure you know that already, though.

It's more of a tie-dyeing sort of effect, so I'm pretty sure the silk is just tying itself in knots when I try to stir it. On the other hand, I can't NOT stir it or I end up with a low-immersion effect. I think I need to run a full dye run with just water and silk so that I can see if and how it's tangling. I tried to overdye a section when I was doing 5 bridesmaid dresses in two weights of silk crepe, and the result was a perfectly smooth dye... in a different color entirely. XD So now I know that if the color isn't 100% important, I can just dye it twice for a nice, even, rich tone. These dyes are acid dyes formulated to actually bond on a molecular level with the silk fibers, so luckily the texture is only an issue insofar as it effects how the fabric moves around the pot. It's really neat how it works, but it also has a few extra steps because my water is (delicious, fresh spring water) full of minerals that make it basic, so I have to add buffers. They're supposed to be inert but maybe they effect the dye? I don't know. I'll have to do my clear water test first, and if that gives no answers I'll move on to acid tests. Glad I was good at chemistry! And you definitely need wet fabric for a really smooth dye, though you can sometimes get away without it if the overall evenness isn't very important. I pre-wash mine with my dyers detergent and then only handle it with gloves (to prevent finger-oil smudges in the final dye) and drop it right from the pre-wash into the dyepot. My confusion is that it's only silk, I can dye rayon, cotton, linen and wool without a hitch.

Dyeing rant over, I will certainly have to get some books on historical fashion, especially in the Victorian era. My friend has one that's fashion through several centuries of Europe and I just want to steal it, but this one looks like it's able to get all of the little changes instead of just the overarching styles. And short-lived or not, I want mutton-chop sleeves. They're so ridiculous that I can't help but to love them! I do also love the BBC's costumes, entirely accurate or not. I have dreams to make that famous recurring ballgown (I only know it from Doctor Who's Girl in the Fireplace episodes, but I know it's been in way more than that). Someday!

I'm planning a costume from The Legend of Korra for Katsucon in February, and I don't know which version to pick. One version is a wedding dress, and while it's not exactly Victorian era, I think I could get away with using Victorian inspiration for the shaping of it. Now I don't know if I want to do the cheaper, easier version that I could wear to my actual job afterwards, or take all of these wonderful new Victorian fashion resources and make a fancy silk dress.



In other sewing news, a month or so (sew!) ago, Patrick Rothfuss started up his yearly fundraiser for Heifer International. The first blog post included a request to contact them if you made anything neat and geeky. Well, I've been in a few fangroups for his books and they all want one particular item of clothing: a tailored, many-pocketed cloak that the main character of the books is given for saving a fellow student's life. Now, knowing that "fitted" doesn't really fit with cloaks and sewing just two pockets makes me hate life, much less "a bunch of little" ones, I asked if they'd like some replicas made as donation incentives. They said yes, and two weeks later I shipped off two cloaks, green wool gabardine with a black cotton twill lining.

Well, this week they went up for auction! I'm some strange mix of giddy and mortified because I still think I suck at this sewing thing, even though I don't. Also, because I can't take a good photo to save my life and my ridiculous photo-face was on the blog featuring these cloaks (along with other awesome things made by other awesome nerds).

Link with photos are only here (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Medium-many-pocketed-wool-cloak-from-Kirkii-Creations-/172020487299?hash=item280d385483:g:oRsAAOSwv-NWY5Nx) for now (there's a larger one for auction here (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Large-many-pocketed-wool-cloak-by-Kirkii-Creations-/172020486567?hash=item280d3851a7:g:61MAAOSwAKxWY5M G), but they're the same photos), because I didn't want to put them on my Facebook until I knew they'd be used this year, since we were worried about shipping delays and I didn't know if they'd get there in time. Does any of that make sense? It's late and I was up very early today. XD

Orianna2000
12-12-2015, 07:38 AM
I might try making the red dress again, but I would need to simplify the pattern. I'd have to omit the tiny rows of sleeve puffs, making the sleeves solid, with the only puffs being at the shoulders, where the sleeves attach to the bodice. That might work. But I have so many other projects in my queue, I doubt I'll get around to this one anytime soon.

Wow, way to go with those cloaks! That one you linked to has 43 bids, and there's still two days left. That's great! I've only tried selling things on eBay a couple of times. The first was a "historically accurate" Barbie dress from the 1850s, made of pale yellow cotton with ivory "lace" trim. Unfortunately, my idea of historically accurate was based on Hollywood and watching Seven Brides For Seven Brothers too many times, LOL! It was exceedingly inaccurate for the 1850s, and it wasn't very well-made, which probably explains why no one bid. Also, I was arrogant and asking way too much money for a doll outfit that was made of quilting cotton, with stiff craft trim, and that didn't even have finished seams inside. In the end, my grandmother bought it from me, and she gave it back to me shortly before she died. It was probably the kindest thing she'd ever done. (She wasn't, in general, a nice person, so it's good to have at least one good memory of her.)

I've learned a lot about sewing quality and historical fashion since then, but I probably won't be selling a lot of doll clothes in the future. I'm trying to start a business making doll patterns, which I'll sell, but I don't have enough confidence in my work to sell the sample garments. I have a touch of OCD and a rather large dose of perfectionism, so while others tell me my doll clothes are amazing, I don't really believe them. All I can see are the crooked seams, the uneven darts, the puckered hems, the sleeves I had to reset three--no, four times--and the place where I couldn't get the skirt to lie flat, so I had to tack it down. . . . Basically, I see all the mistakes I made, and they overwhelm me, so I have a really hard time finding the beauty that others claim to see. Seriously, how can they not be bothered by all the errors and flaws?! Ugh.

My point, which I'd nearly forgotten, LOL, is that your cloak is amazing and you're very brave to put it up for auction! That takes guts, no matter what your skill level is. I hope it earns a great deal of money for your charity.

If you're looking for historical costuming books, there's a pretty good list (http://astore.amazon.com/yeststhim-20?_encoding=UTF8&node=5) at Yesterday's Thimble. (The books link from Amazon, so you're not buying from Yesterday's Thimble, you're buying directly from Amazon. However, the website earns a very small commission on every item bought, which goes to support the site.) I especially like the book on Victorian doll clothes. It shows the evolution of fashion in a broad sense (1840s-1910s, if I recall correctly) accompanied by photos of antique dolls and their clothing, patterns to make the clothing, detailed instructions on how to work with antique textiles, and directions for old-fashioned hand-sewing. It's the only book I've found with a decent tutorial for making hand-bound eyelets! Lots of helpful stuff in it, even if you aren't into doll clothes.

There's also some really great costuming books out there, if you're into sci-fi/fantasy. For example, Dressing a Galaxy (http://www.amazon.com/Dressing-Galaxy-Costumes-Star-Wars/dp/0810965674/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1449889401&sr=8-1&keywords=dressing+a+galaxy), which is all about Star Wars costumes (Episodes 1-3, mostly). It's loaded with closeup photos, concept art, interviews with the wardrobe department, and so forth. They've come out with one on Star Trek costumes, too, which I'm dying to get, but it's rather expensive, so I haven't ordered it yet.

harmonyisarine
02-14-2016, 04:30 AM
Thank you about the cloaks and for the newest links about historical sewing. I read it ages ago but I've been too busy to reply.

I was busy, incidentally, with cosplay. I was making a silk satin wedding dress and matching groom's outfit, both inspired lightly by Edwardian era fashion (petticoat lessons from here were very relevant XD), and also putting some finishing touches on a costume to compete.

Aaaaaand then I got the really nasty kind of mono, so I not only didn't finish the wedding outfits, but I also had to not attend the event. ;_;

I've been trying to write or to sew as I can, but man, this virus is really taking it out of it and I've mostly just achieved a pile of garment pieces and lots of naps.

Orianna2000
02-14-2016, 07:45 PM
Ouch. So sorry you weren't able to attend your event. I have fibromyalgia, which is sort of like having really bad mono every day. Constant muscle pain, fatigue, depression, brain fog, all that good stuff. One thing I've learned is that you have to respect your body. If you're too tired to do something, it's okay to take a nap instead. You'll get there eventually . . . just not as quickly as everyone else. But there's nothing wrong with that.

Melanii
02-14-2016, 10:55 PM
I've been wanting to figure out my next cosplay, but I don't think I'll have the chance to go to any conventions for it. XD

harmonyisarine
02-18-2016, 03:10 AM
Ouch. So sorry you weren't able to attend your event. I have fibromyalgia, which is sort of like having really bad mono every day. Constant muscle pain, fatigue, depression, brain fog, all that good stuff. One thing I've learned is that you have to respect your body. If you're too tired to do something, it's okay to take a nap instead. You'll get there eventually . . . just not as quickly as everyone else. But there's nothing wrong with that.

At least mono will eventually go away, though it's doing its hardest to find all the ways to mess me up in the meantime. I'm sorry to hear about your fibromyalgia. I did hear of a recent study looking at a promising possible treatment (a sister in law of mine has mild fibromyalgia), so fingers crossed that goes through! And I definitely learned my lesson about listening to my body. I've had a lot of... probably too many, really, bad infections in the last few years but they were all things that I could sort of push through, and I have a chronic fatigue disorder that absolutely requires it. Tried that with mono and ended up having to cancel my event and was forced to take another week of bedrest.


I've been wanting to figure out my next cosplay, but I don't think I'll have the chance to go to any conventions for it. XD

Just pick an appropriately-weathered weekend for a nice cosplay day! If you can, find a photographer or bring a friend who doesn't mind snapping some shots. No need for cons to cosplay!

CoffeeBeans
04-28-2016, 05:07 AM
Two new cosplays underway, and one of them in a bit abstract. I think a few folks in this thread have some experience with hoop skirts, so I figured I'd give it a shot.

I'm working on a WTNV Glow Cloud cosplay, and I'm trying to keep it a bit more ethereal than most of the iterations I've seen. I'm draping a bodice out of scrim and LED light strings. I bought a hoop skirt to build more shape into the base. While the skirt looked more bell-shaped online, it's really more of a wide-A. How realistic is it to raise the drop of the first hoop to add more immeadiate volume? The waist is drawstring, and there isn't really enough fabric to move the drawstring down and still have it draw (at least, that's how it looked when I tested pinning it on the form.)

I don't need any particular shape since it's a cloud, from an podcast, but I do have a bit of a vision in my head...

Filigree
04-28-2016, 05:16 PM
Hmm, liking that iteration a lot. Have you considered fluffing out the hoopskirt with clear netting ruffles or poofs, with some LED strings running through the edges?

Orianna2000
04-28-2016, 05:21 PM
Oh, I hate modern "bridal" hoops. They're never the right shape! One of the tricks for making it look more like an 19th century hoop skirt is to adjust the bottom two hoops so they're the same circumference. This will give you more of a bell-shape, instead of the A-line shape. You can also adjust the height of the upper hoops, if you think that will help, too.

Which reminds me . . . when I was a kid, I bought a full-skirted bridesmaid's dress at the thrift store, and then I took a hula hoop and tied it to my waist with shoelaces, making an instant "Civil War" hoop dress. I used to run around the house, pretending I was a time-traveler sent back to save President Lincoln from being assassinated. (Yes, I was a strange kid. . . .)

I finally ordered a couple patterns that I think will work for my female Jedi costume. I found some cotton gauze in the right colors, too, but haven't ordered it yet. I still need something to wear under the skirt, like leggings or snug pants. Not sure what fabric to use for the pants (gauze obviously isn't suitable), or if I should just buy them, but matching the color to my fabrics may be difficult. Finding boots is going to be tricky, too, since I wear a double-wide width, but I don't need an extra-wide calf. Boots like that are hard to find, especially within a budget! I'd like ivory boots to match the color scheme--my lightsaber is a gorgeous teal-green, so I picked aqua and ivory gauze for the outfit. I don't think black or brown boots are going to look right. But I suppose I'll end up with whatever I can find that actually fits.

CoffeeBeans
04-28-2016, 05:27 PM
A bit like. I have a short crinoline, that I can fit on top on the hoops. The downside, it creates a really obvious drop between the upper poof and the lower skirt. I've tested out pinning the hoops together to get a less perfect curve of a shape, but it all looks a little iffy.

I want to make an overskirt for the hoops, with more scrim and leds, and fill some of the scim with batting to add some cloud-puff. I chose a hoop to have room to wire the LEDs under the hoop without needing to undress to change batteries. In addition the skirt will actually not fit in my car assembled, so I need to have everything build-able on-site. (Ideally, I'd put the hoops on, and then wrap the "dress" on as one piece or two (bodice and skirt) on top, and then just feed/attach the battery packs through to the hoops.)

I did try changing the hoop size. They are a bit adjustable, and it helped at top hoop a bit. The downside is that the first hoop still falls lower from my waist than I'd like it to. I hadn't considered shrinking the bottom hoop. I'll try that next.

The second costume I'm working on is a Rey one (to compliment my friend's BBSK8.) Boots are an issue there as well. The "real" ones are crazy expensive. I'm using an espadrille base, and making a bootie-shape out of felt to fake the boots. Might be something to look into if you know a type of shoe that works for you. (I'd wanted to use flip flops, but I'd really rather not bite it on a spilled soda.) So exciting you have a lightsaber to go with. Your color scheme sounds beautiful.

Orianna2000
04-28-2016, 05:57 PM
I didn't think of using fake boot covers. Might could work . . . except, the last time I tried to make spats, it didn't turn out well. I wanted Victorian boots, so I tried making covers to go over a pair of low heels. I don't remember what went wrong . . . I have pictures of the mockup, which seemed to work okay, but something must've gone wrong when I tried to make the real thing, because it was a project I abandoned. I ended up buying $40 costume boots from Amazon and modifying them to fit. I bought the next size bigger than what I normally wear and used shoe stretchers to make them wide enough, then added heel grips and gel insoles. Worked pretty well, too! They were comfortable enough to walk around DragonCon for a couple hours, which surprised me.

Tip: If you have trouble with your fake boot tops slouching down when you walk, try attaching boning on either side, on the inside. I've heard that can make a big difference. You can even use plastic cable ties or zip-ties!

My lightsaber is from Ultrasaber, it was an anniversary gift from my husband two years ago. He bought his at ComicCon, and when he saw how jealous I was, he got one for me at DragonCon later that summer. They're expensive, but completely worth saving up for! They're fully customizable, you pick which hilt you want and which doo-dads attached to it, and what blade, and what color, and everything. They make all the sound effects when you activate them and swing them around! Mine even has "flash on clash" which means when you hit another lightsaber with it, it flashes bright silver and makes a crashing sound. Very realistic. Because I'm so much smaller than my husband (5'3" when I don't slouch), I chose the "initiate" hilt and blade, which is meant for children, so it's smaller. I couldn't even hold my husband's comfortably, the hilt is too thick, and the blade is almost as long as I am tall! The kid's version suits me perfectly, it's perfectly proportioned for my size.

Here's a pic of my lightsaber (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Lightsaber-Dark-1-A-w.jpg), glowing in the dark.

CoffeeBeans
04-28-2016, 06:13 PM
Thankfully, mine don't have to be too high (barely mid-calf, and buckled) so hopefully, they'll stay up! I'll try boning/zipties if I need. I've made a bunch of felt baby booties, so I'm really just making a giant pair of those (talk about something I never thought would come up in cosplay?)

I did spats once, I ended up making a masking tape pattern first, with plastic wrap and masking tape. It worked out well enough to get the job done? I don't remember anything terrible happening with them at least.

The lightsaber is SO pretty. Shiiiiny

harmonyisarine
05-02-2016, 08:03 AM
I want an Ultrasaber. One day!

I actually finished my Rey in time for PAX East! I made some pretty big mistakes but it was my first post-mono costume, with only a week and a half to do everything including boots from scratch, and no mock-ups because of that time crunch. Still love it so much. I was wheelchair bound because I'm only just out of mono and honestly was unable to walk from one end of the con to the other, even with breaks (ten weeks of bed rest eats all the muscle), but still had a great time. I've always tried to be careful of not excluding people with visible disabilities from cosplay things, and now I'm going to try harder to make sure that I'm not doing some unconscious thing. Saw a few posts on other sites about "All of the awesome Rey's at PAX East!" I know that I saw the authors of these posts, and that they saw me. Most, though, looked at the chair and walked past or away (most were also Rey, so it was more noticeable than random photogs). Or talked to me only because I called to them first. I don't mind because I don't cosplay for photos and it was temporary, but man. If either of those things weren't true it would have been mighty unpleasant. (and not everyone was like this, so many people were so wonderful, but it was interesting to experience even a touch of it first hand)



Though on the boot topic... I've made a few pairs of soft boots before. I'm going to be hopefully putting together a Rey boot tutorial in a month or so (not 100% on the shape of the first run but they're still pretty nice), but I have a general one up already if you need to make a pair sooner. The shape of these is kind of Ugg-like, but that works... for now. Base tutorial is here: http://harmoniccosplay.deviantart.com/art/Leather-Boot-Tutorial-271777474

Modifications will be a long post on their own, so let me know if you'd like it and I'll type it up.

CoffeeBeans
05-02-2016, 04:27 PM
Nice to talk to someone who has completed a Rey cosplay! What did you use for the cross-draped fabric? I bought drapery lining, which was nice/affordable, but I'm really second-guessing how much width I need (length, I need about a mile LOL). I've mostly been working off the Starbit tutorial, and it was very helpful, but that one part of the drape has been a struggle. If I can't use the drapery lining for the Rey, I can always add it to the Glow Cloud, so not a loss.

Interesting note on being at a con while in a chair. After having a grandmother in a wheelchair, and a mother with severe mobility issues, I would hope I wouldn't overlook a cosplayer in a chair, but yikes. In my experience at NYCC, I'd say I thought people paid particular attention to cosplayers who are working with limitations (braces, chairs, etc) that I am sorry to hear your experience was so far off.

Orianna2000
05-02-2016, 06:09 PM
Harmony, that boot tutorial is pretty great! I've never had the nerve to work with leather, because it's so unforgiving. You can't pin it, or you'll leave holes. If you sew the seam wrong, it leaves holes. Glue is often necessary. And you need a special presser foot, from what I understand, too. I had enough trouble working with taffeta--I was making a pair of stays (18th century corset) and while sewing the boning channels, I kept accidentally catching the under layer of the corset in the stitching. When I unpicked the seams, it left holes, naturally, which irked me so much!

It's impressive that you made your entire Rey costume in less than two weeks! Do you have pictures? When I made my Steampunk costume, I was fighting time, too. I had gallbladder surgery just three weeks before DragonCon and I knew I was barely going to be recovered enough to attend, much less sew a costume, so I had to finish the entire costume before the surgery. When we went, I used my grandfather's cane, which fortunately matched my costume, since it had a brass etched hand grip. I didn't have any problems because of the disability, but then, they have an awesome Disability Services. I got a sticker on my badge that let me use the elevators, instead of having to use the stairs, and it let me have a seat while waiting in line, so I didn't have to actually wait in the looooooong line that snaked outdoors, I could sit inside, in the disability waiting area. It was such a relief! But I've heard stories . . . especially if your disability is invisible, like mine usually is (I have severe fibromyalgia, plus a blood disease that means I can't be in sunlight for more than a few minutes, otherwise I break out in hives and blisters. Neither disability is visible, unless you know me very well. If you know me, you'll recognize when I'm super tired or in a lot of pain, but most people don't notice.). I've heard that if you don't LOOK obviously disabled, you'll get muttering and complaining when you request a seat in the disabled waiting area, and people will accuse you of trying to get into the panels without waiting in line like everyone else. That's why I took my cane the following year, even though I didn't really need it. I mean, it did come in handy when I had to do a lot of walking, it gave me something to lean on, which helped a lot, especially with all the hills we had to walk up. But it also served as a signal to others that I was disabled. Without it, I look young and healthy--no one ever guesses what I struggle with.

I found some new patterns that might work for my Jedi costume. One is a wrap tunic with an obi-belt, should be just about perfect! I also found a cloak pattern that should be pretty good. I located most of the fabrics I need, except for the cloak. For that, I'll be wearing it in winter, for the next movie premiere, which means it'll have to be lined with fleece and flannel to make it extra warm. Not sure what to use for the outer layer, but I have time to figure that out.

CinnamonAntonym
05-05-2016, 03:48 AM
I'm incredibly excited to see a cosplay thread on here. I won't be attending my favorite convention this year due to work and a lack of accommodations, but I plan to attend Youmacon in the fall as Keira Metz from Witcher 3 and Ema Skye from Ace Attorney. I've been sewing for nearly six years, but I only started getting decent at it in the past year or two. I still cringe at the thought of some of my early cosplay attempts ouo;;


Oh, I hate modern "bridal" hoops. They're never the right shape! One of the tricks for making it look more like an 19th century hoop skirt is to adjust the bottom two hoops so they're the same circumference. This will give you more of a bell-shape, instead of the A-line shape. You can also adjust the height of the upper hoops, if you think that will help, too.

Which reminds me . . . when I was a kid, I bought a full-skirted bridesmaid's dress at the thrift store, and then I took a hula hoop and tied it to my waist with shoelaces, making an instant "Civil War" hoop dress. I used to run around the house, pretending I was a time-traveler sent back to save President Lincoln from being assassinated. (Yes, I was a strange kid. . . .)



We would have gotten along very well as children, I think. I was a big fan of dressing up in cobbled-together costumes and playing out imaginary scenarios outside. Time-traveling to save Lincoln would have been right up young CA's alley! I had a lot of free time and nothing else to do as an only child living in the middle of nowhere, haha.

It's great that you were able to recover and attend DragonCon so soon after surgery. I hope you had a good time (it sounds like you did!)

Orianna2000
05-05-2016, 04:54 AM
I've been sewing for nearly six years, but I only started getting decent at it in the past year or two. I still cringe at the thought of some of my early cosplay attempts ouo;;
I can sympathize! I dabbled in sewing most of my life, but I didn't get serious about it until around 2005, when I was 26. That's when I buckled down and started learning all I could. My very first project was a Victorian day dress, which was an authentic replica of a costume from "The Phantom of the Opera." (I don't do things by half, LOL!) It turned out pretty darned good--good enough to land me two job offers with the traveling production of the show, at least. But when I look at that costume today, all I can see is how poorly it fit, how puckered the hem is, how awful the hook-and-eye closure is, etc., etc. I shudder to think I wore it out in public!


It's great that you were able to recover and attend DragonCon so soon after surgery. I hope you had a good time (it sounds like you did!)
I really did. I got a few compliments on my Steampunk costume. I got to meet a few celebrities. And I attended the intensive two-day writer's workshop, hosted by Jody Lynn Nye, which was awesome. I even got to meet Todd McCaffrey, the son of (the late) Anne McCaffrey, the world famous sci-fi author who was single-handedly responsible for the fact that I'm a writer today. It was a special weekend, that's for sure!

harmonyisarine
05-15-2016, 09:43 PM
Sorry I was gone for so long! It's the busy time of year at work (we rent apartments to college students and they all just left), so I've been falling asleep pretty much as soon as I get home.


Nice to talk to someone who has completed a Rey cosplay! What did you use for the cross-draped fabric? I bought drapery lining, which was nice/affordable, but I'm really second-guessing how much width I need (length, I need about a mile LOL). I've mostly been working off the Starbit tutorial, and it was very helpful, but that one part of the drape has been a struggle. If I can't use the drapery lining for the Rey, I can always add it to the Glow Cloud, so not a loss.

Interesting note on being at a con while in a chair. After having a grandmother in a wheelchair, and a mother with severe mobility issues, I would hope I wouldn't overlook a cosplayer in a chair, but yikes. In my experience at NYCC, I'd say I thought people paid particular attention to cosplayers who are working with limitations (braces, chairs, etc) that I am sorry to hear your experience was so far off.

I joined the RPF forums just for their Rey threads, they were very informative even if I disagreed with a bit of their fabric and dyeing choices (which will happen until the designers give us an entire tutorial for the look, so. XD ) I used a lightweight plainweave rayon for the wrap ( http://www.dharmatrading.com/fabric/viscose-rayon-light-45-inch.html?lnav=fabric.html ), which I dyed with Dharma Trading's fiber reactive dyes in ecru (for a good base) and then safari grey. I let the fabric twist lengthwise, which gave it a faint bit of irregularity along the length of it that helped to add a look of depth and wrinkle even when it was flat. After that, I gave it a good broomstick pleat and I think it turned out just about perfect. The wrinkles were too crisp at first but they softened up after a day of wearing. I'll probably have to periodically reset the crinkling, but that's not too hard. I decided on doing it this way because the pleats are falling out at the bottom of the wrap and the close ups of the bust on the official costume display had no crinkling at the level of the fiber, just the overall fabric. That told me it couldn't be crinkle rayon because it's kinky down to the fiber level, and the crinkleness of it doesn't fall out as easily with motion (it will, just less easily).

As far as the wheelchair, it wasn't a terrible experience but that's probably only because it was just a few days for me. Over time I'm sure it'd build up, all the little snubs from other (very few, not most!) cosplayers and those people taking pictures of cosplayers for "official" sites and roundups (though one photog saw me as Korra in my chair and about killed himself trying to get my attention for a photo). I have to use braces and canes a lot for my knees and I've not had nearly the same experience, but I think simply being conscious of being inclusive of people with visible aids means you're probably doing a pretty good job. Many professional photogs and a few cosplayers, though, could learn either some inclusivity or a bit of tact.


Harmony, that boot tutorial is pretty great! I've never had the nerve to work with leather, because it's so unforgiving. You can't pin it, or you'll leave holes. If you sew the seam wrong, it leaves holes. Glue is often necessary. And you need a special presser foot, from what I understand, too. I had enough trouble working with taffeta--I was making a pair of stays (18th century corset) and while sewing the boning channels, I kept accidentally catching the under layer of the corset in the stitching. When I unpicked the seams, it left holes, naturally, which irked me so much!

I'm glad you liked the boot tutorial! I've been working with leather for as long as I've been working with fabric. Mom sewed, Dad tools leather, and I picked up both and then mixed them. As far as needing a special foot, a teflon foot is supposed to help but I just make sure to go slowly and make sure it's feeding well. If it isn't, I use matte scotch tape and it fixes the problem just as well as the teflon does. I also have a few of the all-metal sewing machines that are good to sew through leather as long as I'm using the right needle. The holes are an issue, so I just make sure to make extra mock ups whenever I'm sewing leather and then just dive in with a hope and a prayer. XD


It's impressive that you made your entire Rey costume in less than two weeks! Do you have pictures?

I did a lot of studying before I started, which helped, but I also apparently just sew really fast when I sit down to work. I blame cons and procrastination, and call it my Project Runway moments. XD I have only a few photos, they're all on my facebook page ( LINKY (https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1601206403526456.1073741835.147184870979556 0&type=3)) but my favorite is the picture I will hopefully add to the bottom of this very long post, when a Luke found me in the halls.


When I made my Steampunk costume, I was fighting time, too. I had gallbladder surgery just three weeks before DragonCon and I knew I was barely going to be recovered enough to attend, much less sew a costume, so I had to finish the entire costume before the surgery. When we went, I used my grandfather's cane, which fortunately matched my costume, since it had a brass etched hand grip. I didn't have any problems because of the disability, but then, they have an awesome Disability Services. I got a sticker on my badge that let me use the elevators, instead of having to use the stairs, and it let me have a seat while waiting in line, so I didn't have to actually wait in the looooooong line that snaked outdoors, I could sit inside, in the disability waiting area. It was such a relief! But I've heard stories . . . especially if your disability is invisible, like mine usually is (I have severe fibromyalgia, plus a blood disease that means I can't be in sunlight for more than a few minutes, otherwise I break out in hives and blisters. Neither disability is visible, unless you know me very well. If you know me, you'll recognize when I'm super tired or in a lot of pain, but most people don't notice.). I've heard that if you don't LOOK obviously disabled, you'll get muttering and complaining when you request a seat in the disabled waiting area, and people will accuse you of trying to get into the panels without waiting in line like everyone else. That's why I took my cane the following year, even though I didn't really need it. I mean, it did come in handy when I had to do a lot of walking, it gave me something to lean on, which helped a lot, especially with all the hills we had to walk up. But it also served as a signal to others that I was disabled. Without it, I look young and healthy--no one ever guesses what I struggle with.

The con had great disability services and were amazingly accommodating. The only issues were with photogs and other cosplayers (not even most, just a few), who would look at me and then see the chair and then very clearly decide to not engage, which was a little disappointing. And I definitely get the invisible disability thing. Mine's not as severe, but I have very bad knees and osteoarthritis is already setting in. I am very self-conscious about my canes so I don't use them as often as I should (I'm trying to get over this because of my health, but it's been slow going), and most costumes hide my braces. In the cons where I do need a disabled badge (usually only for ones that don't have public elevators and escalators), I have gotten the nasty looks because nothing is visible even if my knees have started to give out on me. I also don't limp, because both knees are bad and limping on one just causes the other to flare up. Not standing in a two hour line and being able to avoid stairs is the difference between being able to enjoy the con and being stuck in first aid or my hotel room with a pile of ice packs. Luckily, most people I've interacted with have been very understanding and helpful with no explanations of why I need the badge, or just a very basic one if I'm feeling forthcoming that day. The looks and muttering are from random people seeing me proceed to the seated disability waiting area or the off limits elevators, so I don't put much stock in them.

I'm also almost certainly looking forward to a gall bladder removal, so I'll make sure to schedule that in my off season!


I found some new patterns that might work for my Jedi costume. One is a wrap tunic with an obi-belt, should be just about perfect! I also found a cloak pattern that should be pretty good. I located most of the fabrics I need, except for the cloak. For that, I'll be wearing it in winter, for the next movie premiere, which means it'll have to be lined with fleece and flannel to make it extra warm. Not sure what to use for the outer layer, but I have time to figure that out.

That does sound warm! I want to wear Rey to the next movie but she is NOT built for cold and it will be December. XD I'm still not entirely sure how I'll get around that, as a 55 degree day in Boston had me shivering. That scene on Starkiller Base? I can't even watch it without sympathy shivers, even if she's in the middle of a fight for her life and sweating.


I can sympathize! I dabbled in sewing most of my life, but I didn't get serious about it until around 2005, when I was 26. That's when I buckled down and started learning all I could. My very first project was a Victorian day dress, which was an authentic replica of a costume from "The Phantom of the Opera." (I don't do things by half, LOL!) It turned out pretty darned good--good enough to land me two job offers with the traveling production of the show, at least. But when I look at that costume today, all I can see is how poorly it fit, how puckered the hem is, how awful the hook-and-eye closure is, etc., etc. I shudder to think I wore it out in public!

That sounds pretty awesome, though! I was sewing RenFaire outfits between 16 and 22, but I really credit cosplay with my skill level increasing. I had visions of things for Faires, where I wanted my outfits to look less costumey than many of the things you could buy, but my skill level wasn't there to back it up. My first cosplay was from Avatar: The Last Airbender and really stretched me, creatively. I tried to do a lot of fabric choices based on what that society would use, or what the historic precedent was. I also did a lot of dyeing for that project. It was there, and attempting a few contests, that I really learned how to sew like I can now. And proud as I am of those Avatar costumes, I still can't look at any photos of them and they're shoved to the back of my closet for pretty much those same reasons. XD


Now let's see if I can get this photo embedded:

https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13095996_1592620281051735_5841799795853246069_n.jp g?oh=8f0ed7ad4d9758d70729b9a1064a4441&oe=57A8D82C

Orianna2000
05-16-2016, 02:25 AM
As far as needing a special foot, a teflon foot is supposed to help but I just make sure to go slowly and make sure it's feeding well. If it isn't, I use matte scotch tape and it fixes the problem just as well as the teflon does. I also have a few of the all-metal sewing machines that are good to sew through leather as long as I'm using the right needle. The holes are an issue, so I just make sure to make extra mock ups whenever I'm sewing leather and then just dive in with a hope and a prayer. XD
I've heard about using tape to turn an ordinary presser foot into a "teflon" foot, but haven't tried it. I do actually have a white teflon foot, it came in a set of 32 presser feet that I bought off Amazon. As for sewing machines, I doubt mine has a metal frame. It was a fairly expensive machine ($650) and it's both larger and heavier than my old sewing machine, but it's computerized and does fancy things, like auto-cutting the thread when you're done sewing, so I doubt it's heavy-duty.



I did a lot of studying before I started, which helped, but I also apparently just sew really fast when I sit down to work. I blame cons and procrastination, and call it my Project Runway moments. XD
I'm probably the world's slowest sewer, myself. I'm something of a perfectionist, so every seam has to be lined up perfectly and sewn meticulously. Takes me forever to get anything done! Then again, I did just finish a doll's bridal outfit in about two weeks, including the veil and bouquet and everything, so perhaps I'm improving. (I suspect that the main reason it takes so long to finish anything is because I get distracted by the NEXT project and never finish what I'm working on.)


Not standing in a two hour line and being able to avoid stairs is the difference between being able to enjoy the con and being stuck in first aid or my hotel room with a pile of ice packs.
Exactly! I can barely make it from the car to the hotel building, and if I need to attend a panel in a different hotel (DragonCon, I'm pointing at YOU!) I am so worn out by the time I get there, I couldn't possibly stand in line. People think I'm being wimpy, but it's the difference between being able to attend or sulking in my motel room the entire weekend, too tired or in too much pain to go anywhere. Even still, with DragonCon, which is a four or five-day event, I tend to skip every other day, because I have to recuperate from all the walking.

The only trouble I really had was when my hubby dropped me off for a panel a few hours early, then went to go do something on his own, planning to meet me back there when it was time for the panel to start. I was too tired to do anything else, and I didn't want to risk missing that panel, since it was one I'd been waiting all weekend for. However, when the security guard found out which panel I was there for, he said that guests weren't allowed to "line up" until an hour before the panel. I was sitting in the disability section, there were plenty of empty seats, but he made me leave. I'm like, seriously? Where am I supposed to go? I can't wander aimlessly, I'm disabled! Getting to that panel's location was hard enough, what with fighting the crowds and trying to get a space in the overstuffed elevators, which were filled with non-disabled folks who didn't want to take the stairs. If I left the area, there was no way I would be able to come back, I'd be too exhausted. Fortunately, one of the guards took pity on me and told me I could sit in the overflow disability seating, which was around the corner. But he warned me that I might have to leave if someone else caught me there. I had a couple of guards ask which panel I was waiting for, and a few gave me extremely doubtful looks, but no one forced me to leave, thankfully. And once the previous panel had started, I was allowed back in the normal disability seating area.



I'm also almost certainly looking forward to a gall bladder removal, so I'll make sure to schedule that in my off season!
There's a few things about having my gallbladder removed that I wished someone had warned me about ahead of time. First, they remove it through your bellybutton, which means that part of your bellybutton is going to be stitched or glued closed. Once it heals, your bellybutton may be a lot smaller! Mine is about half the size it used to be. Makes washing more difficult, I'll tell you. Also, I noticed some weird things after the surgery. The area around my scars developed a bright orange rash for several weeks. No idea what that's about. And I smelled funny for about a month afterwards. I don't know if it was the anesthesia, or what, but my personal body odor changed. It gradually faded back to normal, thank goodness, but it was bizarre.



I want to wear Rey to the next movie but she is NOT built for cold and it will be December. XD I'm still not entirely sure how I'll get around that, as a 55 degree day in Boston had me shivering. That scene on Starkiller Base? I can't even watch it without sympathy shivers, even if she's in the middle of a fight for her life and sweating.
You could make a lined Jedi cloak and wear that. I doubt anyone will notice it's not fully authentic for the character, and even if they do, if it "goes" with the costume, they'll be forgiving, especially given the cold weather.



Now let's see if I can get this photo embedded:

That photo is pretty darned awesome! Very cool. :D

I've been wanting to make another Phantom of the Opera costume, the dress Christine wears during "Point of No Return." (See it here. (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/PotO_Aminta_Sketch57-w.jpg)) It's a ruffled skirt with a zone-front bodice and an embroidered stomacher, sort of "Rococo Steampunk." I have the main fabrics, and I have a petticoat that should work to fluff up the skirt appropriately, and I even have a pair of Victorian boots that should go with the costume. I would need a new corset, which would be a pain, but doable. And I would have to figure out exactly how to fasten the bodice. The real one is a stage costume, so it zips or Velcros down the back. But that would make it hard for me to get into on my own. So I might have to hide a closure under the stomacher, which would be challenging. It would require several mockups to get right, I'm sure.

The other thing is, there's at least four rows of ruffles on the skirt, plus matching ruffles on the sleeves, and they are supposed to be embroidered with a black scrollwork design, very intricate. I've tried several different approaches, but none really works. I tried using fabric markers and a stencil to paint the "embroidery" onto the fabric, but once it dried, it looked very flat and fake. I tried silk ribbon embroidery, but it would be so much work to embroider that many yards worth of ruffles. I haven't done a mockup of the skirt yet, so I don't know how many yards it really is, but I estimated something like 25-30 yards of gathered fabric. (Length, not actual fabric yardage. I could probably get three or four ruffles out of one width of fabric.) The only solution I can think of is to use an open-weave black lace in lieu of the embroidery. (This actually works, since the original version of this costume used lace instead of embroidery.) I've found a few Venice laces on Etsy that might work, but they tend to be on the expensive side, and I would need a LOT of lace.

I'd love to get this done and wear it to DragonCon or GenCon, or maybe even Costume College or CostumeCon. But I'm starting to think it's more trouble than it's worth! I've already invested a couple hundred dollars in the fabric and trims, but to make it, I'll probably have to spend another $50 on corset-making supplies, and $100 on black lace. And who knows how much on a wig, if I decide to go that route. It might not be worth it. I dunno.

Filigree
05-16-2016, 08:33 AM
Great Rey costume!

Orianna, I would have been spitting mad at the security guard and hauled him in front of the concom with a blistering earful for everyone involved. I'm tired of abled people making stupid assumptions about the rest of us. I'm fine now, but I've had bum knees in my life, and I know the equations that factor into everyday situations. I've had many friends who had to make much more difficult accommodations for their lives. You were not a terrorist, you were not causing nor in any danger, or disruption to the panels. Ugh.

Hmm, more than Star Wars stuff, I'm currently obsessing over some of the stage costumes from Hamilton.

Orianna, I remembered a Thing about handpainting fabric!

Aunt Filigree's Fake Embroidery Paint (about a $100 workshop if you took this from Liquitex or
Golden, hee hee.)

Quick and dirty theatrical method for fake blackwork on cloth.

Have enough plastic sheeting or garbage bags stretched over enough cardboard to hold all your yardage/pieces of yardage (tip: masking
tape round back to keep it taut.)

Gather a couple of plastic (non ziplock) sandwich bags), cheap plastic spoons, needle-tip squeezy applicator bottles OR frosting piping tips & bags, a couple of long thin straight pins, some black liquid acrylic paint (the cheaper the better), some Liquitex or Golden Acrylic Matte Medium, some thicker clear 'Gel' type acrylic medium from either company (since you want a matte finish, avoid using glossy gels from the start), and some Liquitex (not Golden) fabric painting medium. Golden's fabric medium formula is different and much more finicky to use.

Mix more or less close to this formula, in this order, in a large flexible plastic or silicone cup:

6 to 8 parts black liquid acrylic paint, 2 to 4 parts thick gel medium. Mix with spatula or cheap bristle brush until thoroughly blended. Add another 3 to 4 parts Matte Medium, mix well. If it seems to turn too grey at this stage you can goose it back to black with some more drops of black, just don't add more than 2 extra parts.

Mixture should be liquid enough to be just between smooth-runny (like flood icing in cake decorating) and holding peaks (like meringue). A slight bit of 'leveling' out is okay, but you don't want it too liquid. It needs to lock onto the fabric, not sink into it.

If this mix is going on stiff limited-wear fabric like canvas or velveteen, you can probably use it at this stage. If it's going on a thinner fabric that could see more repeated wear and washing, now you add some of the fabric painting medium to make it more flexible and durable. Follow portions on bottle - I seldom use more than 3 parts into my mix - and balance viscosity back with Gel medium.

Now prepare to put it into piping bags. I'm cheap, I never use dedicated piping bags, just sandwich bags. Open up the bags and put them into a sturdy container that will let you fold over the top edge. I like to use plastic jars or tin cans for this. Scoop in your black paint mix to about the volume you'd need for two of your squeezy bottles. Tie or twist-tie the top of the bag shut. Cut a 1/4" corner on the bottom of the bag. Pipe into your squeezy bottles. Have a sealed container ready for the rest of your mix, and a sturdy freezer ziplock bag to put that in. Extra in the sandwich bag? No problem, clamp it shut with a potato chip bag clip or clothespin.

Cut the tips of your applicator bottles to the desired thickness of your line, and experiment with 'drawing' slip-trailed lines along your previously Sharpie-marked designs. Use the pin to seal the tip in between sequences, or to push down dried bits. You can do straight smooth lines, or dots like embroidery that give more embroidery-like illusions. It's almost exactly like doing henna designs, and how I got the dimensional look on this plaster neckform piece.

http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/White%20Henna%20neckform%20small_zpsrldd2bwc.jpg (http://s1132.photobucket.com/user/FiligreeSilver/media/White%20Henna%20neckform%20small_zpsrldd2bwc.jpg.h tml)

Or the glow-in-the-dark paint on this linen tunic.

http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/GlowShirt2_zps2da97e4f.jpg (http://s1132.photobucket.com/user/FiligreeSilver/media/GlowShirt2_zps2da97e4f.jpg.html)

Or the rusted steel/bronze raised work and lines on this acrylic on canvas piece.

http://i1132.photobucket.com/albums/m566/FiligreeSilver/Crane%20--%20Grenada%20detail_zpsh2higgio.jpg (http://s1132.photobucket.com/user/FiligreeSilver/media/Crane%20--%20Grenada%20detail_zpsh2higgio.jpg.html)

Once your black gel dries and shrinks, the milkiness will go away and leave raised, dull charcoal black lines. I've done this with many colors of acrylic gel over the years, to mimic many textures. Fake golden or silver gutta-percha on silk, anyone? You can also set flatback rhinestones or sequins into the liquid lines or dots, for extra glitter.

Let it dry for 24 hours before sewing or wearing, and 72 hours before washing in cold water. May be heat-set with care and a silicone presser sheet, but the iron can squish the lines and make them shiny. The Fabric Medium will help make the design flexible and stronger.

I use this method because I am too cheap to pay $6 a dimensional fabric paint tube at Michaels or even Dharma. This is kinda the recipe fabric designers use, anyway.

Orianna2000
05-16-2016, 05:29 PM
Thank you, Filigree! That's a great recipe. It would be very tedious to hand paint 25-30 yards of fabric, and I have no idea how much medium/paint it would take, but it's definitely worth doing a sample to see if I like the results. I thought about using puffy paints, but I was worried it would be too finicky. It's such an intricate embroidery design, and my hands tend to shake when I do detail work, so I was terrified of messing up and ruining the paint job, which would mean I'd have to throw out the entire length of ruffle. I can't get more of the fabric--which is PERFECT for this project--so I have to be sure whatever method I use is foolproof.

Can your painting method be used with stencils? The design is so complex, I wouldn't want to attempt it without a stencil. Or maybe drawing it on the fabric first, using the stencil and a chalk pencil or something.

Here's the embroidery design. Each ruffle is comprised of scalloped scallops, with black embroidery highlighting the edges, and the filigree-scrollwork heart in the center of each big scallop, but I probably won't be able to "embroider" the edges with whatever method I use. I may even have to simplify the design, but we'll see.


http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Scalloped-Embroidery3.jpg

Filigree
05-17-2016, 08:42 AM
Hmmm. I thought about this over dinner. There are three or four ways. Bear with me, this is going to be a looooong post.

1. Use lace. Seriously, go to the nearest cheapass fabric-by-pound place and look for the right tone of black poly lace. You might get lucky and find a cotton machine lace that would work. Go to Fabric.com (https://www.fabric.com/find?SearchText=black+lace) or Mood Fabrics (http://www.moodfabrics.com/catalogsearch/result/?cat=5&q=black+lace) and see what they have in lace or lace fabric that you can afford (you could also buy light in cotton/mix, dye black if need be.) Cut it into bands, sew it on your base fabric, then ruffle that. As much work as it is, for the amount of yardage you are talking, it's cheaper and better. If I were a little more financially-flush right now, I'd go haunt my local SAS places (I have three within 30 miles) because one of them stands a good chance of having a lace that would work. I'd send it to you...but I'm not going to have that kind of cash for another two weeks.

2. Stencils. Will be simplified because you have to cut cells in thin stiff plastic, with a heat pen or an Xacto knife...and at least three copies of each design. You'll need a stencil brush. I make mine by slicing the pointy top off a thick round bristle brush, but you can buy these sheap at a hobby store. They'll look like Bart Simpson's head. Use the same back paint mix as before, slightly thinned with fabric painting medium. Roll your blank yardage tightly and smoothly on a clean cardboard tube, and spool it out as you paint, onto as much clean cardboard or sheet plastic as you have. (A good idea to exile all pets and small humans during this stage.) Pounce straight up and down through the stencil lines, and move quickly. Pause to rest every nine or ten feet for about 20 or 30 minutes, so the paint will set. If you must fold back the painted yardage, put plastic sheet or backing parchment between the layers. Don't try to match or line up repeats; set up your design to have a 1" or so gap, and fill that later by hand. Let dry. Use dimensional paint to add some details after the stencil lines dry.

3. The harder, more precise, more dangerous way: solvent transfers. I debated about giving the basics here, but they are already online. This can yield stunning results on smooth, fine-textured natural fiber cloth...but it can also be incredibly dangerous with the stronger solvents, at the amounts and detail you'd need to do. Most home costumers are not set up with the proper tools, supplies, work station, ventilation, and protective gear to do this safely when talking about whole yards of design. So no, I don't recommend it for anyone without those tools, or with extreme chemical sensitivity. It's not safe. I was taught how to do it, but I can't give the proper instruction in a forum like this. Cosplay safe, folks!

4. Embroidery machine. Do you know *anyone* with a sewing machine capable of programmable embroidery? Now is the time to bribe the hell outta them. I don't have one yet, or I'd offer. Hop in the phone book and look for commercial embroiderers in your area. Looking at your design, all you really need is the vine motif and the scalloped black edging, the latter of which you can do yourself. Calculate how many vine motifs you'd need, and talk to the embroiderers.

How good is your own sewing machine? I have another related cheat for you: Sulky or other Water-Soluble Fabric, starched open-weave cheesecloth the same general color as your background fabric (can be spraydyed first with liquid acrylic), and a boatload of black thread. Wash and dry your foundation yardage first! Trace your motifs on the Sulky film or the cheesecloth. Set your machine to a tight zigzag at the width it needs, and start playing. Do not bother with embroidery hoops, just see what comes out. You can even cheat and cut the thicker 'leaf' parts of the design out of black felt or microseude, glue them down, and use just a thin zigzag edging to tack them into place. Once you have your designs, trim the cheesecloth to as close to the edge as possible, and sew down onto your backing fabric. Repeat. Then do your scalloped edging. Then wash your yardage again as per the Sulky instructions (usually cold/cold, gentle or no soap).

You will have what you want, it should look lovely, and the cheesecloth will add interest to the interior of the design.

Texture and detail are the main differences between traditional 'stage' costumes and the newer generation of gonzo, Phantom-of-the-Opera, Game-of-Thrones level of high-definition costuming. At a stage distance, the difference between a glitter-bombed glue-painted black lace and genuine Swarovski black crystal on black Guipere (http://aknfabrics.com/product-category/laces/guipere-laces/) lace...will be missed by 90% of the audience. Phantom and The Lion King made use of tighter detail that offered a realistic fractal 'shimmer' at stage distances. People responded to it even if they didn't consciously know what they saw. It just looked better. Then HDTV, cable, and Game of Thrones happened. Cameras are pitiless. Cameras pick up on hand-embroidered, hand-beaded detail, and suddenly Josephine Schmoe in Canton can see *exactly* what the costumers and fitters have been trying to hide.

I'm not a cosplayer. I'm the cosplay equivalent of BASF: I lurk in the background all dressed in black and smeared with marking chalk, and help cosplayers make it better.

CoffeeBeans
05-17-2016, 07:09 PM
I'm not a cosplayer. I'm the cosplay equivalent of BASF: I lurk in the background all dressed in black and smeared with marking chalk, and help cosplayers make it better.

:e2flowers Filigree, I was going to post yesterday to say how beautiful your textured stuff was, but I had to read and run. This post = so much information.

As someone who works in TV, HD has really changed the way we see everything. The friend I cosplay with and I are constantly reminding one another about the 10-foot Rule. In real life, unless you're doing photo shoots or maybe contests, not a lot of people are going to be critically examining your work from six inches away.

One more thought on a machine with embroidery capabilities, Orianna - do you have a local sewing club/quilter's circle? I was part of a sewing club when I was starting out (quit, it was an hour+ drive) and people were awesome about sharing their fancy toys. Also, I know nothing, but what about making a custom stamp and stamping your fabric instead of stenciling? probably less texture, but fewer potential tears?

I went to the hardware store and assembled a Rey staff out of plumbing parts. There are two details I have to make myself (the finned thing towards the middle-ends, and the other trapezoidal thing below the ends.) Including the cost of spray paint, I'm at 30$ and feeling pretty comfortable with that. I have no idea if it'll get pulled by security. It's not that heavy, but it isn't exactly nothing either. Weirdly it also collapses about 8" thanks to using two adjustable compressors. Talk about a function I didn't need.

greendragon
05-17-2016, 07:18 PM
Orianna, if you're headed to Dragoncon again this year, we'll have to meet! I go every year :)

Orianna2000
05-17-2016, 08:37 PM
Greendragon, unfortunately, my hubby wanted to attend GenCon this year instead of DragonCon. It has more gaming-oriented events, which appeals to him. It also has a HUGE number of writer's classes, which appeals to me. They also have cosplaying, so I can get more mileage out of my Steampunk costume. I don't yet know if I'll be able to go, however. I'm trying to find a new doctor to manage my health issues. Without the right medications, I won't be in any shape for conning. Even with the right medications, DragonCon is so hard on me, I spend every other day in my motel room, recuperating from the previous day's walking. But we'll see. Maybe a miracle will happen and I'll find a doctor who isn't intimidated by my myriad health issues.

Filigree, thanks for the detailed post! Now, I'm something of a perfectionist, so the idea of using cheap lace doesn't appeal to me in the slightest. If I'm going to do something, it has to be done right, otherwise it's not worth doing. (For me, anyway.) So cheap, cut-apart lace isn't going to work. I did order some gold and black lace from Fabric.com a few weeks ago, to use for the front underskirt panel of this costume. (The ruffled skirt is split in front, with the underskirt peeking out.) I had been idly searching off and on for a couple of years, and then one day, totally by accident, I stumbled upon exactly what I needed at Fabric.com, and for a very reasonable price, too. The lace is very similar to the real costume, so I'm thrilled.

I tried a stencil and fabric markers, but I didn't like the results. It was relatively fast and easy, but once the ink dried, the motifs flattened out and turned very matte, so it looked painted, not embroidered. If it had retained a little sheen, it would have been okay, but alas, it wasn't meant to be.

I actually do have an embroidery machine--never used it. I bought it about two years ago, and after a year, I sold it to my mother, since it became apparent that I was never going to use it. Well, she's moving now, and she never used it either, so she gave it back to me. The problem is, it's a cheap entry-level model and it can only embroider a 4" x 4" area. The motifs that I need are somewhat larger than that. I think I estimated that each scallop would be 9" across, so the embroidery motif would be a bit smaller than that, maybe 7". I thought about breaking the motif in half and embroidering each one twice, with a mirror-image half-design, but I'm not sure it would be big enough. And not only would it take forever, but it would use a lot of black thread. And now our only local fabric store has gone out of business, so I'd have to order embroidery thread online, and I suspect it would be nearly as expensive as buying lace.

I'm a member of a local sewing guild, and it's entirely possible that someone there has a larger embroidery machine. I would have to pay them, or at the least, pay for the thread, but it might be worth looking into. Although I hate the idea of delegating part of my costume's embellishment to someone else. I don't like losing control over any aspect of my work. I wouldn't be able to say that I made the whole thing myself. And if anything went wrong . . . I can't get more of the fabric, so the whole costume would be ruined. I think I'd rather pay the money for the Venise lace, to be honest. It's less scary! LOL.

I simply adore Maria Bjornson's costume designs for Phantom. She really knew how to embellish. These costumes have layer after layer of silk, and lace, and sequins, and embroidery, and appliques, and more lace. . . . If anyone else had done it, it would have looked gaudy or overdone, but she had a knack for it. I'm working on replicating every major costume from the show in miniature, for one of my dolls. So far, I've finished three, although I'm really only happy with one of them. The other two, well, one isn't nearly embellished enough. I used a plain satin for the skirt, when I should have used a brocade or jacquard, or layered additional trims on it. It looks way too simple. The other was my very first made-from-scratch doll costume, so my pattern-making skills weren't exactly up to snuff. (I had no idea what I was doing!) From a distance, it looks pretty good, but when you get close, you can see that the bust darts are crooked and way too long, and the skirt doesn't fit right, and the embellishments aren't anything like the actual costume's, etc., etc. Whoops! There's my perfectionism rearing its ugly head again, LOL! I'm never satisfied with my own work.

greendragon
05-17-2016, 08:44 PM
Dragoncon is hard on everyone! My husband has fibro and crowd anxieties. The anxiety is recent, but he would always need some recovery time in the hotel room before. Now, he doesn't think he could handle it at all, until he gets the anxiety dealt with. I've never been to Gencon, though technically it's closer to me now. It's so hard to find a doctor that LISTENS to you, much less listens to all you have to say. Our new doctor didn't even read the medical history we had sent before our SECOND appt. Grr.

Richard White
05-17-2016, 08:46 PM
Greendragon, unfortunately, my hubby wanted to attend GenCon this year instead of DragonCon. It has more gaming-oriented events, which appeals to him. It also has a HUGE number of writer's classes, which appeals to me. They also have cosplaying, so I can get more mileage out of my Steampunk costume. I don't yet know if I'll be able to go, however. I'm trying to find a new doctor to manage my health issues. Without the right medications, I won't be in any shape for conning. Even with the right medications, DragonCon is so hard on me, I spend every other day in my motel room, recuperating from the previous day's walking. But we'll see. Maybe a miracle will happen and I'll find a doctor who isn't intimidated by my myriad health issues.

Orianna, I'm going to be a member of the Writer's Symposium at GenCon this year for the first time. Here's hoping you'll feel up to coming to the show!

Filigree
05-17-2016, 11:41 PM
Stamps! Stamps could do it, with dimensional paint accents on top. You will need sheets of 1/8" Fun Foam from Michaels, stiff plastic or wood backing, rubber cement, and Xacto knives. Yuss, yuss, stamps might work. I can make those for you and mail them if you can't.

Orianna2000
05-18-2016, 12:43 AM
That's very kind of you, Filigree! I'll give it some thought. Right now, the idea of any kind of paint or ink scares me, because the slightest twitch of my hands could ruin an entire ruffle. I would have to do LOTS of practice first, before I would feel confident enough to try stamping the actual fabric.

Richard, congratulations! That's awesome. Is there a particular class or panel you'll be teaching? I'll do my best to attend.

Greendragon, I don't understand how doctors can be so . . . aggravating! I saw one recently who didn't even ask about my medical history, just told me she wanted me off all my current medications, and that I would have to start taking medications that she approved of, along with physical therapy, aqua therapy, myofascial release therapy, yadda-yadda-yadda. Well, if she'd bothered to ask, I would have told her that I can't take the medications she wanted me on. Been there, done that, suffered the consequences. There's a reason my old doctor put me on the medications I'm currently taking. It wasn't just a whim! It's exceedingly frustrating. I want to live a normal life, or as close to it as my circumstances will allow, but without a GOOD doctor, I can't. And good doctors are apparently few and far between.

greendragon
05-18-2016, 04:37 AM
Right. Husband's doctor basically told him that his problems would be helped by him losing weight. Why don't you try to lose some and then come back in three months? Because I'm sure you've never actually TRIED before. Bah.

Filigree
05-18-2016, 07:33 AM
One of my best friends has a doctor who is, I kid not, an Iron Man triathlete. Try working with that, huh. Im-possible.

harmonyisarine
05-23-2016, 09:09 AM
I am feeling quite grateful for my doctor, who listens very much to what I'm saying and is sending me to a specialist even though he's of the opinion that nothing is wrong with me. I've pretty much had one very significant medical event a year for seven years, skipping only one (severe and sudden contact allergy to raspberry leaves (yes, the leaves only), a fatigue disorder, Lyme disease, MRSA from a little scratch that almost turned septic, this superbad bout of mono... I'm forgetting something but it's late). That could be just... really bad luck, or it could be a malfunctioning immune system. He believes it's bad luck, but when I asked to have it looked further into he referred me a specialist who might know where to go.

Orianna, that experience at DragonCon sounds horrible. I'm glad you were able to find a place to sit, though. I do hope GenCon works out for you, though! I have friends who go every year and they keep trying to get me (things keep preventing me from being able to and I'm getting so antsy at missing it every year). What I like about PAX, and I've heard GenCon has even more areas like this, is that when I get too tired to con but not so tired I need a hotel break, I play board games in the tabletop areas.

For the lace, if you go that route, have you tried jkmribbon.com? I had to make a visual kei outfit once and that site saved me. You might not be able to get EXACTLY the trim you're looking for, but I've had good luck and they price in bulk, so it's good for projects with lots of ruffles, and they do have Venice lace in different colors and patterns. I'm trying to think of a way to do it without paint or actual embroidery and I'm just coming up blank. ;_;

Also, I never thought of making a Jedi cloak for Rey. It'd be wonderfully warm and you're right, it fits the character enough that people would understand.


CoffeeBeans, I was going to make a staff from the hardware store. Is it the tutorial on Instructables? The reason I decided against it was logistics, and because PAX put in a bunch of new security and I didn't want to test it for the first time with my first big prop. I did see some Reys who used that tutorial, though, and the staff looks pretty nice.

Filigree, I'm just lurking for the painting tricks. XD I don't often have a desire or need to use fabric paints but when I do, I hate the options for textured paint. That sounds like it will get a much more precise and less... cheap result.



As far as my sewing, I keep wanting to sew my own designs but there just aren't enough hours! Now I'm making five cloaks for a charity fundraiser, based off the Kingkiller Chronicles (Patrick Rothfuss). Each cloak has 17 pockets. Me and my sewing slave started those pockets last weekend and I'll be finishing the last five tomorrow, and then I can FINALLY get to assembly of the cloaks. Too many pockets!

Filigree
05-23-2016, 04:32 PM
At the moment, I'm trying to figure how to stuff as many pockets as possible into a mens fitted steampunk vest.

Orianna2000
05-23-2016, 07:10 PM
What I'm worried about with GenCon is that it's in several different locations, like DragonCon, scattered through several different hotels and arenas. If my husband is playing games all day, I'll be forced to find my own way around, from panel to panel, and that terrifies me. I don't do well in crowds, I tend to zone out, because I get too overwhelmed and anxious. Zoning is a safety mechanism, so my brain doesn't short-circuit. It makes it really hard to find my way around if I'm alone. Plus, it's hard for me to walk long distances. So, I'm worried that I won't be able to get where I need to go. Also, when I get worn out and need to go back to the motel for the day, if my husband is busy gaming, he won't be able to take me back. We didn't get a "core" hotel, they were all booked within seconds, and I have no idea how far the place we booked is from the convention site. If he's playing a game, I could be stuck waiting on him for hours, which isn't a good situation for me, especially if there's no comfortable seating nearby. So I'm a bit anxious about that.

Also, it seems you're supposed to pre-register for most of the panels and classes. Many of them cost an additional fee, and a lot of them are already sold-out. Since I don't know yet if I'll be able to attend or not, I don't want to register for a bunch of events, and then have to back out. But I'm scared that all the classes I want to take will be full by the time I know whether I'm going. :cry:

Harmony, I'll look at that lace site you mentioned. I've shopped at CheepTrims.com a few times. They sell all kinds of different laces and trims in bulk, but their quality tends to be low. I ordered what looked like some beautiful embroidered lace from them one time, something like 15 yard each of white and ivory, but when it arrived, it was very stiff and scratchy, not soft or delicate like I was hoping. Plus, it was a lot narrower than I'd thought. It was worthless for what I needed it for (18th century engageantes), so I eventually got rid of it. That was disappointing. But I'll take a look at the site you recommended to see if they carry anything that might work. Thanks for the link!

Filigree, have you thought about using welt pockets for your steampunk vest? They aren't difficult, but since the opening is relatively small, with a pocket bag hanging on the underside of the garment, you can fit more of them in a small area than you could with patch pockets. I watched a really excellent tutorial for them at PixieFaire.com. It's a site that sells doll patterns, but they offer a few different advanced classes, including designing doll clothes, drafting your own doll patterns, a couture sewing class, and a business class, if you want to start your own doll pattern company. I bought a package deal that included both the design and pattern-drafting classes, plus the couture sewing class, for a price that was hugely discounted. It was well worth it, I learned SO much! Anyway, the couture sewing class demonstrated how to sew welt pockets, which had always intimidated me, but she made it look super easy. You just need the right supplies (i.e.: Silk organza is a must) and a little bit of practice. Might be worth looking into.

Not cosplay, but on a sewing note . . . I recently finished a couture bridal gown for a 22" fashion doll (an American Model by Tonner, if anyone's interested). I used a cotton-silk blend fabric, which was so breathtaking, I decided to omit the lace overlay I'd planned on, because I didn't want to cover up this gorgeous fabric. It simply glows! And it sewed like a dream, too. (I found it at Fabric.com for $15/yd. Only needed one yard, so it was a bargain!) The dress is comprised of a mermaid skirt, with a built-in petticoat/lining, and a corset bodice. The corset is fully boned, and has teeny-tiny hand-bound eyelets down the back, so it laces closed. Her veil was cut from the shimmer illusion I had left over from my own wedding veil. I also made her bouquet, using realistic-looking miniature roses, and her jewelry, including a wire bracelet, and a necklace that I did with beadweaving.

Normally, I'm so much of a perfectionist that I'm dissatisfied with everything I make. I always find loads of mistakes and flaws that irk me. But this time, I honestly don't know why or how, but this wedding gown is just about perfect. I didn't make any big mistakes while sewing it. It fits the doll like a glove. And every aspect worked, nothing went wrong. It didn't even take forever. Usually, I sew so slowly that a major project like this would take a few months to finish. I drafted the patterns myself last year, but then I put it aside and forgot about it. When I finally decided to finish it, it only took two weeks from the time I cut the silk until it was done, and that includes making a mockup of the skirt, and all the accessories (veil, bouquet, jewelry, etc.). Normally when I sew, everything that can go wrong, does, so I don't know what happened here, LOL!

Here's pictures. The only thing I'm not pleased with is my backdrop. When I ordered it, it looked like a soft peachy-pink color, but in real life, it's bright orange. I may take another round of photos using a different backdrop, because I really don't like it. It doesn't look soft and "bridal" to me.



Front View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-2-w.jpg)
Side View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-1-w.jpg)
Back View (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-10-w.jpg)
Closeup of Necklace (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-7-w.jpg)
Closeup of Corset (Front) (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-5-w.jpg)
Closeup of Corset (Back) (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-8-w.jpg)
Petticoat Ruffle (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/AM22-Endolyn-13-w.jpg)


So now I'm stuck in that post-project funk, where I don't quite know what to do with myself. I don't want to start another huge project, because I just don't have the energy. But I don't want to sit idly, doing nothing, either. I need a nice, easy project. . . . nothing too strenuous, nothing too complex. I just have SO MANY projects on my "to do" list, I feel guilty at not picking one of them to work on. But maybe I'll start mockups for my Jedi costume. That shouldn't be too difficult. And it's on my list, so I could assuage that guilt, LOL.

Isilya
05-23-2016, 10:31 PM
What I'm worried about with GenCon is that it's in several different locations, like DragonCon, scattered through several different hotels and arenas. If my husband is playing games all day, I'll be forced to find my own way around, from panel to panel, and that terrifies me. I don't do well in crowds, I tend to zone out, because I get too overwhelmed and anxious. Zoning is a safety mechanism, so my brain doesn't short-circuit. It makes it really hard to find my way around if I'm alone. Plus, it's hard for me to walk long distances. So, I'm worried that I won't be able to get where I need to go. Also, when I get worn out and need to go back to the motel for the day, if my husband is busy gaming, he won't be able to take me back. We didn't get a "core" hotel, they were all booked within seconds, and I have no idea how far the place we booked is from the convention site. If he's playing a game, I could be stuck waiting on him for hours, which isn't a good situation for me, especially if there's no comfortable seating nearby. So I'm a bit anxious about that.

Also, it seems you're supposed to pre-register for most of the panels and classes. Many of them cost an additional fee, and a lot of them are already sold-out. Since I don't know yet if I'll be able to attend or not, I don't want to register for a bunch of events, and then have to back out. But I'm scared that all the classes I want to take will be full by the time I know whether I'm going. :cry:


Orianna,

When I get flustered during the con there are a lot of quieter areas to go to, the upstairs near the dealers hall is usually pretty good. It's where a number of the crafting events were held in previous years. Also, this year's writing symposium is being held in one of the side hotels and most of the event/panels are free and usually pretty chill. They run till 7pm or 8pm most days, if you need to kill time. I spend most of my time there.

My husband volunteers during the day and we use his account to hold tickets for friends or if I'm not sure which event I will want to go to. If there are some daytime classes you're looking at for GenCon, I could grab them for you. They're easy to return if you don't need them/ aren't attending.

Filigree
05-25-2016, 05:25 PM
I'd already figured welted pockets were the only way to go. Arggh, doing this project and working FT?

harmonyisarine
06-06-2016, 06:25 AM
Good luck on the pockets, Filigree. I just finished up five cloaks with 17 pockets each. Nice as welted pockets are, with that many I just went top stitched. XD It was much faster. And easier to find the in folds of a cloak lining.

And then today I sewed a project for myself. Not cosplay, but fun. A shirt with a front that's maroon silk crepe, and then the back (and top of the front) are a scalloped rainbow lace. It's a button down style, but sleevless and collarless.

Filigree
06-06-2016, 09:28 AM
So after all that, the vest derailed about six days ago: potential wearer not going to Phoenix Comicon after all. Reprieve! Of course now I'm all obsessed over a sage eyelet Faded Glory Jacket, and how I can add a waterfall bustle to the back hem.

harmonyisarine
06-12-2016, 09:57 PM
Waterfall bustles are my favorite! I keep trying incorporate those into my outfits but not being able to make the look work.

I've decided I need to make a dragonfly faerie outfit for renfaires. Not sure how to make one, but I'll let the idea steep until a design happens. XD

Also, all five of the pocketed cloaks sold in the charity fundraiser! ~dances~ I don't know why I'm always so nervous about these things, but I'm glad it worked out.

Orianna2000
06-13-2016, 12:27 AM
Isilya, thank you so much for your offer of reserving classes for me. I haven't been able to even think about that sort of thing, since I have too much else going on right now. I see a new doctor on Wednesday. If they're willing to help me, I might be able to go to GenCon, in which case I'll let you know which programs/workshops I would like to attend. If they refuse to help me, my chances of finding anyone before GenCon are not good, as I've already called every pain clinic in the entire city. There's supposed to be a clinic in a town about an hour away, whose doctor specializes in hard-to-treat cases like mine, but it's a long-shot.

Filigree, my husband was at Phoenix ComicCon last week! He doesn't cosplay--at least not yet. He's willing to dress up as a Jedi, but I haven't had time or energy to work on that sort of costume.

Harmony, I've made a few waterfall bustles. One for my "Wishing" dress replica, which was a disaster initially, because I was trying to scale it up from a miniature model, only I got the proportions wrong, so the train ended up being about nine feet long! And once I actually got it figured out and sewn up, I wore the dress to see Phantom of the Opera, only a major storm blew in with gale-force winds and an insane amount of sideways-blowing rain. And of course, it hit right when we were walking from the car to the theater! The wind was so strong, it whipped my train around and broke all the stitching, so the waterfall folds unraveled. It was a disaster beyond imagination, LOL! I also made a doll-sized waterfall train for a replica of the "Think of Me" costume, which is likewise from Phantom. Maria Bjornson (the costume designer) really loved her waterfall trains, she used them in at least seven different costumes! Christine's wishing dress and wedding gown, Carlotta's "regular" dresses (the black/silver dress and the red/gold dress), the "Think of Me" dresses (both Christine's and Carlotta's), plus there's a couple of background costumes that have waterfalls, too. I mean, I love the look, and it's historically accurate (I've found several antique fashion plates that feature waterfall bustles or trains), but that's a LOT of waterfalls.

I've had so many people write me to ask how to make a waterfall bustle, I decided to create a detailed tutorial to explain the process. I came up with a really good technique that's easier (for me, at least) than the other instructions I've found online. I've got the tutorial about 2/3 done, but the last section requires me to actually make a waterfall train (1/3 scale) and photograph the process. I haven't had the energy to work on that, so the tutorial is still languishing on my hard drive, gathering dust. Someday, I'd like to dust it off and finish it!

Oh, and congratulations Harmony, about your cloaks doing well at the auction. That's good news! :)

Filigree
06-14-2016, 09:12 AM
Still pondering the waterfall bustle. Obsession of the week now is all the steps needed to make bronze wireform tophat. With steampunk bling.

CoffeeBeans
06-15-2016, 04:35 PM
Oooh Filigree, that sounds awesome. I want pics of the wire-form top hat!

My dining room has been taken over by the Glow Cloud dress. I've finally nailed down the bodice (completely, pathetically simple tied, one-shoulder bodice, with the extra fabric at the knot puffed out with fiberfill and lit with an LED) and the skirt plan devised (four panels, covered with a mix of batting and scrim, with a drawstring, to be removed from the hoops for transport in my tiny car without disrupting the LEDs)

The whole thing is completely insane. I've even bought small toy farm animals to splatter with red paint if someone recognizes me and "All Hail"s.

Filigree
06-15-2016, 11:25 PM
All hail the Glow Cloud.

CoffeeBeans
06-16-2016, 05:11 AM
All hail the Glow Cloud.

For you (https://www.instagram.com/p/BGsM8YORJKA/)

Filigree
06-17-2016, 06:55 PM
For cosplayers who might want to be a little daring, I have a post about chains in clothing today, called 'Etsy Showcase: a few gold chains' (http://www.cranehanabooks.com/blog/2016/06/17/etsy-showcase-a-few-gold-chains/).

Some good links for inspiration.

CoffeeBeans
06-18-2016, 06:44 PM
The Dewitt link, oh my gosh. That's just beyond beautiful work.

Filigree
06-18-2016, 11:31 PM
I know, right?

CoffeeBeans
06-21-2016, 06:38 AM
I have vacation this week, which has unwittingly turned into a bit of a stay-cation.

This means lots of time to obsess over the Glow Cloud. I really hadn't expected it to be so labor intensive, but here I am hand sewing down LED strings. In daylight, the LEDs are a little more point-y than I'd like, but the whole thing is a bit epic with the lights out.

This is one panel done (https://pbs.twimg.com/media/ClcGZ6EXIAAWY3Z.jpg:large), but hey, it's a start.

CoffeeBeans
07-11-2016, 04:49 PM
This past weekend was the con. I reused Peggy Carter as a casual Friday (I just went to pick up my pass, and make one lap of the show floor), did Glow Cloud on Saturday, and Rey on Sunday.

I'd never done costumes to this con (and I've only gone twice before, most recently three years ago). Turns out, WTNV might have been a little obscure. I did get a lot of "pretty dress!" comments... very nice, but it was meant to be much more scary than pretty

Sunday was Rey.... those arm wraps folks. Why? Seriously, why? They were the only part that refused to cooperate. (boob tape for the arm wraps next time, because this was pure frustration.)* Since both Kim and I were pretty happy with this one, I'll probably change the way I'm using them for next wear.

A guy brought over his glow/SFX light sabre staff. That was the best thing ever. (Also, gave Kylo Ren a cookie, and tried to get him to come to the light side.)

Glow Cloud (https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Cm9zWCGXEAAtgd5.jpg)
Rey + BBSk8 (https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CnBQZLhWYAUieFj.jpg)
With Light Sabre! (https://www.instagram.com/p/BHs1-YohtBL/)

*edited muchly for clarity. Sorry!

Orianna2000
07-11-2016, 05:15 PM
Pretty awesome! Looks like you had fun. Why boob tape, though? Couldn't you just wear a bra with it? Or would it have shown, somehow?

CoffeeBeans
07-11-2016, 07:23 PM
I had a lot of fun.

Boob tape (fashion tape) to hold the arm wraps up. Since it's double-stick and easier on skin than regular double-sided tape.

ETA: OHHHH I just realized I never closed the parenthesis. Yeah, the tape goes with the arm wrap thought, not the lightsaber parts. I hardly have enough chest to worry about in costumes.

Orianna2000
07-11-2016, 07:56 PM
Ah! Okay, that makes sense, now! :)

Alessandra Kelley
07-24-2016, 05:27 PM
The Guardian's picture gallery from the San Diego Comic-Con:
https://www.theguardian.com/culture/gallery/2016/jul/22/comic-con-2016-san-diego-cosplay-pictures

Alessandra Kelley
07-25-2016, 02:25 PM
The BBC's photo gallery from the San Diego Comic-Con:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/36865385/comic-con-2016-the-best-costumes-so-far

Orianna2000
07-26-2016, 07:24 PM
Yesterday, while driving around a part of town I'm unfamiliar with, I stumbled across a Steampunk-themed fence and mural behind a restaurant! It was all done up with brown and bronze cogs and gears, SO awesome-looking. As soon as the weather cools down a bit, which likely won't be until late September or October, I'm planning on dressing up in my Steampunk costume and going back there for a photoshoot. I can hardly wait!

I was wondering though, do I need to get permission from whoever owns the building? Or since it's outside, is it okay to do a photoshoot without asking? I don't want to step on anyone's toes.

Alessandra Kelley
07-26-2016, 07:41 PM
Yesterday, while driving around a part of town I'm unfamiliar with, I stumbled across a Steampunk-themed fence and mural behind a restaurant! It was all done up with brown and bronze cogs and gears, SO awesome-looking. As soon as the weather cools down a bit, which likely won't be until late September or October, I'm planning on dressing up in my Steampunk costume and going back there for a photoshoot. I can hardly wait!

I was wondering though, do I need to get permission from whoever owns the building? Or since it's outside, is it okay to do a photoshoot without asking? I don't want to step on anyone's toes.

I would ask. It is somebody's property and artwork, after all. And it's possible they might be enthusiasts themselves or be pleased at your interest. Try at the restaurant.

Orianna2000
07-26-2016, 11:11 PM
Hmm. Okay.

Filigree
07-27-2016, 09:10 AM
Let us know how it goes. It could develop into a mutual marketing relationship between the restaurant, the muralist, and cosplayers.

Orianna2000
07-29-2016, 05:31 AM
I will let you know. It'll have to wait for the weather to cool down first, it's way too hot to be dressing up and standing out in the sun right now.

Orianna2000
07-31-2016, 05:54 PM
I had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity earlier this week and I wanted to share! It's not exactly cosplay, but the related field of historical costuming.

For several years, I've been writing articles for an online historical costuming magazine, Your Wardrobe Unlock'd (http://yourwardrobeunlockd.com), along with its sister-site, Foundations Revealed (http://foundationsrevealed.com). (YWU teaches how to sew your own historical costumes, while FR focuses on sewing historical undergarments.) Recently, I discovered a local museum, a Victorian house built in 1871, which happens to hold the South's largest collection of antique clothing and textiles . . . including a Worth gown! For those who don't know, Charles Frederick Worth was the founding father of haute couture. His fashion house in Paris produced the most elegant, high-quality gowns for wealthy women, starting in the 1850s and lasting (via his heirs) until WWII. You can look for his gowns on Pinterest. They're unbelievable! So graceful, and always on the cutting edge of fashion. According to some, he's responsible for hoops transitioning to bustles, along with other major trends.

So, I took a tour of this museum house, which was absolutely amazing. It was in June, so they had several antique wedding gowns on display, ranging from 1868 to 1912. Really gorgeous! Afterwards, I spoke with the museum's director about my desire to write a magazine article about their antique clothing collection. She was so thrilled, she invited me back on a day when the museum was closed to the public and promised to open their vaults, letting me see all sorts of garments that aren't usually on display. It's not often that an opportunity like this comes along, especially for me! (I don't usually have good luck.) So I returned last week and spent the entire morning knee-deep in antique dresses. (The air was filled with squealing and "oohing" and "ahhhing!") Sadly, many of their gowns are deteriorating, mainly due to poor conservation techniques in the 1950s and 1960s. The women who ran the museum back then frequently held fashion shows, where they would dress up in the antique gowns! They even had dinner parties and would EAT while wearing these gowns. (Quelle horreur!) It's no wonder they're not in the best shape today. But, oh, they are gorgeous!

The director was kind enough to put several of the gowns on a dress form, so I could see what they really looked like and take photos of them. Between the regular tour and the private tour, I took over 450 photos! (It made me realize just how much I hate my camera. . . . Must save up for a new one ASAP.) The Worth gown was breathtaking. As near as I can tell, it's from the 1890s or thereabouts. It's not in perfect shape, there's some holes in the skirt, and the silk has faded from brown to olive green. I never would have guessed it used to be brown, except they had a photo of the woman who used to own it--she's wearing the dress in the picture, and it's definitely brown. She was a little old lady in her 80s and she liked to wear the gown for special occasions! I just about had a stroke when I found out. Still, the dress is in remarkably good shape, considering.

My favorite was an opera costume from an 1860s production of Romeo and Juliet. It looked vaguely late medieval or early Renaissance in style, with sleeve puffs and an underdress/overtunic design. It's made of cream silk, and rose and gold brocade, with elaborate gold trim, red paste jewels, and large "pearl" embellishments. Mind-blowingly beautiful. There was an Edwardian capelet, too, that I loved. It was black, heavily embroidered and covered in black Swarovski crystals. Reminded me of the Phantom's cloak, from The Phantom of the Opera.

Anyway, this was such a great opportunity, I just wanted to share! I don't often get to do fun things like this, which made it all the more special. And I'm getting paid to write about it, which is icing on the cake! Unfortunately, I can't post any of the photos--I suspect my editor would get mad if anything was leaked before the article is published.

Alessandra Kelley
07-31-2016, 05:57 PM
Oh, Orianna, that sounds like a tremendously enjoyable opportunity!

CoffeeBeans
07-31-2016, 10:15 PM
Orianna, that sounds amazing! Hopefully you'll post a link when your article is up!

Orianna2000
08-01-2016, 01:37 AM
I would love to link to the articles once they're published, but unfortunately, the magazine requires a subscription. Occasionally, they post a free article to help lure people in, but most of the content is only available to paying members. But if you're at all interested in historical costuming, or even steampunk, Your Wardrobe Unlock'd and Foundations Revealed are well worth the subscription fees.

harmonyisarine
08-20-2016, 07:03 PM
Late to the party, but Orianna that does sound wonderful (am also considering subscribing to one or the other of YWU and FR once I get my real estate license and subsequent pay raise).

Anyway, I spent the last month busting my ass to make a competition gown for Otakon. I actually finished most of my dress (wasn't competing with that one, just partnering the competing dress) and I did finish everything on the gown the morning of. It has a giant bell-shaped cage for the skirt that's open in the front and I even figured out how to keep it open AND keep the bell shape.

And then the hoops failed when I tried to set them up to go to judging, and I couldn't figure out why (nerves, probably), and I withdrew.

Plus side, the dresses still looked lovely and my friend/model for the other dress had a wonderful time, and sat me down and had a long talk with me about my time management. We're going to try again in February, at a con that has much better costuming anyway.


And maybe tomorrow will be a local Renfaire, if the rain holds off. I need to go and yell at a vendor who took my money and never sent me the promised item or contacted me about a delay (from last year!), but I'll take any excuse to dress up as the slightly mad Pirate Queen and strut around a faire. XD

Orianna2000
08-20-2016, 07:41 PM
Harmony, sorry to hear about your hoop failure. Nerves can definitely scramble your brains when you're trying to do something important in a hurry!

Time management is something most costumers struggle with, so you're not alone. It's very common for ladies to still be sewing right up until their event starts. When I made a replica of the blue "Wishing" dress from The Phantom of the Opera, my goal was to wear it to the show, but it seemed like the harder I worked, the more work there was to be done. It felt like trying to run in a dream--the harder you try, the slower you go. I moved into my mom's house for a few days, so she could help me finish, but even staying up until 4 am several nights in a row, the dress didn't get done. We drove all the way to St. Louis for the show, and I was sewing in the car on the way there. We got there and a friend came to our motel to help us sew, and when my sewing machine died, she took us to her house to work. We finally had to stop sewing when we realized we were going to be late for the show if we didn't leave immediately, so I didn't get to wear the costume that day. The following afternoon, we had tickets for the matinee, and I did wear the costume, but it was only half-done. No lace, no sleeve cuffs, no embellishments, and a very poor fit. It looked terrible! And my friend actually had to sew me into the bodice while we drove to the theater. It was embarrassing.

That stupid costume took me several years to complete, but then, it was my first foray into historical costuming, and I was still a newbie at sewing, so it was entirely guesswork and experimentation. Plus, I had some major health issues, which were undiagnosed at the time, so that was a major factor, too. I have plans to remake the bodice, which is the worst piece of the costume, but it's such a complicated design, I'm still not confident in my ability to pull it off successfully. The show is coming to a nearby city next spring, and I'd love to be able to wear the dress, but . . . we'll see.

harmonyisarine
08-21-2016, 06:38 PM
While I'm very sorry to hear that you went through that, it definitely makes me feel better that it's not just me. I've competed before but it's been a few years, and I just underestimated how much the nerves were going to hit, on top of not having given myself enough time to finish both dresses in the first place. The biggest issue is we were still deciding what do do in the beginning of the summer, and rather than start right away I hemmed and hawed. And now I know how to fix the hoops so even nervy me can't mess them up. XD

I do get a break from that one, though. We're doing Avatar cosplay in September and it's one of my favorite series and half the group already has their costumes from a few years ago. It'll be a good break to re-grow my confidence.

And then at the end of October I'm making Jin and Mugen from Samurai Champloo. I'm very excited about these because I've been looking into traditional Japanese sewing and dyeing styles, and these are the perfect costumes to practice on.

After that, though, it's back to the crazy gowns. XD

Orianna2000
08-21-2016, 07:26 PM
Nope, definitely not just you! I think people, even experienced dressmakers, simply underestimate how much work goes into the construction of certain types of costumes. And if it's something you're unfamiliar with, regarding the era, or the type of costume (eg: a bustle gown), it always takes longer, because you're learning as you go. Then, too, plenty of people have issues with procrastination, or ADHD, and so they put things off, or get distracted by something else, and their work suffers as a result. Personally, I'm always getting distracted by new projects, so it's hard for me to finish anything. I get a jolt of excitement when I begin a new project, but then I get bored and yearn to start something new. . . . I can't tell you how many unfinished doll patterns and doll costumes I have hidden away in my sewing room. Occasionally, I try to go back and finish something, but often, I've forgotten my original plan, or where I'm at, which makes it hard to pick it back up. (Taking detailed notes helps, but I usually forget to do so.)

harmonyisarine
08-27-2016, 03:42 AM
I'm definitely a procrastinator. I can usually finish any garment or costume I start but only if there's not a hard deadline, else I'll always end up squashed right against that deadline and trying to sew 10 minutes of work for every two minutes of real time. I call it my Project Runway moments. XD

Orianna2000
08-27-2016, 04:54 AM
Early on, I wanted to audition for Project Runway. But as the seasons progressed, I realized how hard they push these poor designers. It's unclear whether they actually film each week's episode back-to-back, or if they get a few days off in-between, but either way, it's not something I would be capable of doing. I would be the designer who quits in tears, halfway through a challenge.

I adore Tim Gunn, though! For awhile, "Make it work," was my mantra. I once made a pair of flannel pajamas that just didn't fit well. (This was before I knew the importance of sewing a mockup.) I didn't want to waste the fabric I'd already used, so I did some crazy stuff to try and get that pajama top to fit. I actually cut a football-shaped wedge and inserted it into the back panel of the pajama top, to try and make it wide enough across the shoulder blades. It looked ridiculous, and I still couldn't wear them. But I did my best to "make it work," so I was proud of them, LOL!

greendragon
09-07-2016, 06:16 PM
I just posted a blog post about Dragoncon cosplay pics :D (https://greendragonartist.net/2016/09/07/dragoncooooonnnnnn/)

harmonyisarine
09-26-2016, 07:46 AM
I'm still torn on if I would audition or not. I think I would like to, but I'm worried about that time. I am glad I missed this cycle (assuming I would, by some miracle, have gotten on) because I'm still running into a lot of lingering effects from being so sick earlier this year. I can't even manage to go to a RennFaire both days in a weekend, so it would have been bad news sewing on that schedule several months ago.

But I figure I'll keep working up my original portfolio and then hey, maybe I'll give it a shot. I do like my designs and I work well under... normal pressure. XD

My last pair of blue jeans ripped today, so I'm going to add jeans to my portfolio this week.



And greendragon, that looked very fun! One of these years I'll make it to DragonCon. ~wishful thinking~

Orianna2000
09-26-2016, 05:18 PM
Have fun with the jeans, Harmony! I made a pair of jeans once. Never finished them, because I lost 30 pounds while I was working on them, so they ended up too big. The pattern was great, except for the directions for the fly. The instructions and diagrams were backwards! As in, the fly closed on the wrong side. I had to mentally mirror-image every step of the directions in order to sew the fly properly. Considering I'd never sewn a fly before, that was a challenge! When I tried the jeans on after finishing the fly and zipper, I realized they were too big, so I never finished sewing them. I still have several yards of denim . . . always meant to sew another pair, but never had the energy. Since I found a brand of jeans that actually fits, it's hard to justify spending the time and effort on sewing a pair.

The weather is starting to cool down, so hopefully, I'll be able to do that Steampunk photoshoot soon. I really need a new corset for my Steampunk outfit, but I can't risk buying one. I bought one at DragonCon two years ago, a really gorgeous brown brocade corset with antique bronze clasps and buckles. It matches my outfit perfectly. But when I got home and tried it on again, I discovered that the corset is too long in the torso. Which means I can't sit in it! If I do, the boning digs into my hips. The lady who sold it to me suggested pulling it up higher on my body before lacing it, so I tried that. It made it possible to sit, but the boning poked me in the armpits instead. When I told her I needed to return it, she stopped replying to my emails, so I'm stuck with a $240 corset that I can't wear. It's a shame, too, because the corset does an admirable job of giving me a hourglass figure! I keep thinking there ought to be a way of shortening the corset, but I can't figure out how. The metal busk goes all the way down, so it would have to be replaced, which would mean tearing up the entire corset. I might as well make a new corset from scratch. Which I would do, except I can't seem to find suitable fabric.

If I'm going to do this photoshoot, I suppose I'd better get my hat finished. I made a lovely little Victorian hat to match my Steampunk costume. Covered a straw frame with fabric and trimmed it with ribbons, antique lace, feathers, and a silk peony. It turned out really lovely, but I have no way of keeping it on my head. I need to attach a wire comb and some elastic cord, so it doesn't fall off when I wear it. I was too scared to wear it to DragonCon, since I was sure it would fall off and get trampled by the crowds.

Filigree
01-14-2017, 09:04 AM
I have inherited (for $20) a dress form. It's burlap covered plastic, too small for my size... but it has a sturdy wood stand and finial. I can pad it out and fit it with a muslin cover. I've needed one for years.

Orianna2000
01-14-2017, 05:24 PM
That's great. My dress form is not my size either, but it's easy enough to put a bra on it and pad it. I haven't used it for fitting purposes yet, but I take photos of my costumes on it.

Filigree
01-14-2017, 10:30 PM
That's one critical reason I needed it, for photographing costumes and large wearable art pieces.

Alessandra Kelley
01-23-2017, 12:17 AM
In light of the millions of women (and allies) who marched yesterday, in DC and worldwide, in solidarity for women's rights and against the incoming US President (who has a proudly bragged-about record of sexual assault and misogyny), I find my thoughts turning to the making of a Suffragist outfit.



(... I realize this is totally frivolous, in view of the grim reality that sparked it, but my hobby is my hobby and apparently world events do turn it.)

Orianna2000
01-23-2017, 12:48 AM
Oooh! I love dresses from the mid-teens! I've got a bunch of reprinted catalogs that show skirts, blouses, dresses, shoes, etc., from that era. I keep intending to make a 1916 (or thereabouts) costume for one of my dolls, but it keeps getting put off in favor of more important projects. Someday. . . .

Alessandra Kelley
01-23-2017, 12:54 AM
I have some good picture reference books as well, as well as a WWI era Red Cross magazine (1917, I think, but I'd have to check) with a full pictorial of different nurses' outfits and possibly a few other primary references.

I'll have to check to see if I have any actual patterns anywhere.




ETA: And I just realized my avatar is pretty solidly there already.

Filigree
01-23-2017, 03:50 AM
Folkwear has some good Edwardian patterns, if you can find them.

Orianna2000
01-23-2017, 07:02 AM
Truly Victorian has some Edwardian patterns now, too, although they're a bit earlier in style. Might be able to modify them, though.

Alessandra Kelley
01-23-2017, 07:20 AM
This is interesting. I can find lots of pictures and patterns and detailed instructions for garments from the whole nineteenth century; lots of Victorian-Edwardian clothing patterns from 1900-1910; and vast numbers of dresses and suits and instructions from the 1920s and later.

But the years 1910-1920 are a big dead zone.

There isn't much to find out there since "Titanic" faded into old pop culture, which is kind of funny. Between "Downton Abbey" and the centennial of the First World War, you would think there would be a bit more interest in the period.

Ah, well, I'll probably do my normal thing, which is to make quick sketches of lots of clothes from the period (from heterodox sources, if I can find them -- I find most "costume histories" to be of less use overall than old magazines, historic photos, and museum exhibits) until I have a sense of the aesthetics and silhouettes and construction techniques of the period, then settle on a general style, find a commercial pattern with similar lines, and go to town with adaptation and wild scissors action.

Orianna2000
01-23-2017, 04:52 PM
Here:

Everyday Fashions 1909-1920 (https://www.amazon.com/Everyday-Fashions-1909-1920-Pictured-Catalogs/dp/0486286282/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485175636&sr=8-1&keywords=everyday+fashions+1909-1920)

Russell's Standard Fashions 1915-1919 (https://www.amazon.com/Russells-Standard-Fashions-1915-1919-Phillip/dp/0486291227/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485175739&sr=8-1&keywords=Russell%27s+standard+fashions)

Gimbel's Illustrated 1915 Catalog (https://www.amazon.com/Gimbels-Illustrated-1915-Fashion-Catalog/dp/0486279383/ref=pd_sim_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=BXQCBRF3BZYRNBT1G0NJ)

The House of Worth: Fashion Sketches 1916-1918 (https://www.amazon.com/House-Worth-Fashion-Sketches-1916-1918/dp/0486799247/ref=pd_sim_14_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=BXQCBRF3BZYRNBT1G0NJ)

Alessandra Kelley
01-23-2017, 05:59 PM
Here:

Everyday Fashions 1909-1920 (https://www.amazon.com/Everyday-Fashions-1909-1920-Pictured-Catalogs/dp/0486286282/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485175636&sr=8-1&keywords=everyday+fashions+1909-1920)

Russell's Standard Fashions 1915-1919 (https://www.amazon.com/Russells-Standard-Fashions-1915-1919-Phillip/dp/0486291227/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485175739&sr=8-1&keywords=Russell%27s+standard+fashions)

Gimbel's Illustrated 1915 Catalog (https://www.amazon.com/Gimbels-Illustrated-1915-Fashion-Catalog/dp/0486279383/ref=pd_sim_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=BXQCBRF3BZYRNBT1G0NJ)

The House of Worth: Fashion Sketches 1916-1918 (https://www.amazon.com/House-Worth-Fashion-Sketches-1916-1918/dp/0486799247/ref=pd_sim_14_2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=BXQCBRF3BZYRNBT1G0NJ)

Thank you kindly but I have most of those already (Amazon sellers are charging $23 and up -- way up -- for that Dover reprint of an old Gimbels catalogue? Seriously?).

What I meant is that for every era but this one library shelves appear to be dripping with books with actual sewing patterns, construction information, and instructions in them. I can readily lay my hands on more or less usable sewing patterns for Greek and Roman clothing, Chinese, Japanese, medieval, Renaissance, (okay, the seventeenth century is a bit of a no-go), and the eighteenth, nineteenth, and every decade of the twentieth century -- apart from 1910-1920.

Perhaps there are some First World War reenactors with civilian auxiliaries out there.

Orianna2000
01-23-2017, 08:49 PM
As for patterns, maybe try searching for extant patterns from that decade. They'd be awfully fragile, I'm sure, but you could (carefully) trace them off. Also, you can sometimes find patterns that have been reprinted from pattern companies' historical archives. I know I saw an authentic 1912-1913 skirt and jacket pattern not too long ago from one of the Big 4.

Here's a "Making History" skirt pattern from Butterick (https://www.etsy.com/listing/268899778/butterick-4092-making-history-1914?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=1914%20pattern&ref=sr_gallery_1) and its matching shirtwaist. (https://www.etsy.com/listing/268900782/butterick-4091-making-history-1914?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=1914%20pattern&ref=sr_gallery_42) Not sure how authentic the details are, but the silhouette looks right. Oh! Here's a vintage pattern book from 1915 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/VTG-1910s-PARIS-FASHION-SEWING-PATTERN-MAGAZINE-LA-MODE-1915-/391203397817?hash=item5b158a20b9:g:KhkAAOSwPcVVqUi E). Love the dresses on the cover! Unfortunately, it's in French. I'm not sure about you, but I wouldn't be able to read it. But if you know pattern assembly, you could probably use the patterns anyway.

I almost forgot, there's a Butterick sewing manual from that era, called "The Dressmaker." I have the 1911 edition, because they edited some things out for later versions, but there's one from 1916, and still others from the 1920s. They're available for reading and download at Archive.org, and there's a reprint of one of the later editions on Amazon, it's called "Authentic Victorian Dressmaking Techniques." I wasn't impressed with the reprint, but I love the original 1911 edition! It has sewing techniques that I've never found elsewhere, like how to sew a placket facing for a skirt opening.

Alessandra Kelley
01-23-2017, 09:01 PM
As for patterns, maybe try searching for extant patterns from that decade. They'd be awfully fragile, I'm sure, but you could (carefully) trace them off. Also, you can sometimes find patterns that have been reprinted from pattern companies' historical archives. I know I saw an authentic 1912-1913 skirt and jacket pattern not too long ago from one of the Big 4.

Here's a "Making History" skirt pattern from Butterick (https://www.etsy.com/listing/268899778/butterick-4092-making-history-1914?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=1914%20pattern&ref=sr_gallery_1) and its matching shirtwaist. (https://www.etsy.com/listing/268900782/butterick-4091-making-history-1914?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=1914%20pattern&ref=sr_gallery_42) Not sure how authentic the details are, but the silhouette looks right. Oh! Here's a vintage pattern book from 1915 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/VTG-1910s-PARIS-FASHION-SEWING-PATTERN-MAGAZINE-LA-MODE-1915-/391203397817?hash=item5b158a20b9:g:KhkAAOSwPcVVqUi E). Love the dresses on the cover! Unfortunately, it's in French. I'm not sure about you, but I wouldn't be able to read it. But if you know pattern assembly, you could probably use the patterns anyway.

Interesting ebay finds! It's a little unclear to me if that 1915 book includes actual patterns. It looks more to me like the sort of luxury pattern catalogues they used to print, with luscious fashion illustrations and sewing tips, but not the actual patterns included.


I almost forgot, there's a Butterick sewing manual from that era, called "The Dressmaker." I have the 1911 edition, because they edited some things out for later versions, but there's one from 1916, and still others from the 1920s. They're available for reading and download at Archive.org, and there's a reprint of one of the later editions on Amazon, it's called "Authentic Victorian Dressmaking Techniques." I wasn't impressed with the reprint, but I love the original 1911 edition! It has sewing techniques that I've never found elsewhere, like how to sew a placket facing for a skirt opening.

Heh. I have two copies of the 1920s edition. They are not quite identical, as one has an intro by some descendant of Worth. It's a good manual.

(I live in an academic neighborhood and interesting old things sometimes show up in the local used book sales. I have among other things a collection of old home economics textbooks, some of which are gonzo weird.)

Orianna2000
01-23-2017, 10:21 PM
You're right, that 1915 book could be like the old Vogue pattern magazines, which only showed fashion sketches to entice you to buy the patterns. You could always shoot the seller a message to ask.

I adore old books! I have a couple of Victorian/Edwardian sex guides, which are absolutely fascinating. Sadly, the older of the two lost several pages to mice (before I inherited it). It was the more readable of the two, which is frustrating. The other was written by some supposed "expert" in the field, so it's harder to read. I also found a pregnancy and childbirth manual from the early 1870s online. Wish I could find a hard copy! It's surprising how modern some of their viewpoints were. Like it suggested that pregnant women avoid drinking alcohol, a hundred years before fetal alcohol syndrome was recognized.

Back to sewing, I have a 1961 Singer dressmaking book that's fantastic. It doesn't go into huge detail, but it teaches all the basics that someone learning to sew needs. The illustrations are lovely, and it's in a binder, so you can flip it open to whatever page you need and it won't close itself. I pull it out occasionally, usually to show my students what tailor's tacks are.

harmonyisarine
01-24-2017, 06:18 AM
I've also been interested in making a Suffragette dress in light of current events. I've already made a 50s dress (lovely blue and green print on a linen/cotton blend, just bold enough to make it more modern) and have another on the backburner, but now I want to dress like a Suffragette. XD

I've been gone for so long! It was a crazy holiday season and absurd drama with friends that made it super distracting. I've been trying to finish a doublet for this entire time but everytime I think I have a seam finished it makes me pull it and try again. I've never had this much trouble with a sewing project.



I still haven't made those jeans. >_>

Orianna2000
07-18-2017, 06:12 AM
Okay, so earlier this year, my hubby told me we couldn't go to DragonCon, since it's the weekend after we get back from our anniversary trip to London. Yesterday, he tells me that a couple of his coworkers would love to go, so all of a sudden, guess what? We're going to DragonCon! Which leaves me about three and a half weeks to figure out the costuming situation.

Oh, and by the way? He wants a Jedi costume! I've been trying to get him to agree to let me make him a Jedi costume for years and he's always hemmed and hawed and put it off. Now, suddenly, he wants one, because both of his coworkers will be wearing costumes.

A few weeks ago, I decided that if I was able to go to DragonCon this year, I would LOVE to make a Handmaid's Tale costume. Especially because there's a whole group of women dressing up as Handmaids and making plans to walk around together in costume. It would be totally awesome. But if I have to make a Jedi costume for my hubby, there won't be time for a Handmaid's costume.

I've ordered a pattern that I might be able to modify for a Jedi outfit, minus the cloak, because it'll be hot at DragonCon. It should be relatively straightforward, just loose pants, a tunic, an over-tunic, and an obi. He can find a belt somewhere, and he'll have to order boots. He's already got an Ultrasaber. It just irks me, because for one, I wanted to take my time with his Jedi costume, to really make it special, and now I'll have to do a rush job. Plus, it means I won't have time to make myself anything, and I was so looking forward to the Handmaid's costume. :-(

Any ideas for last-minute costumes that don't take much time?

Filigree
07-18-2017, 10:05 AM
The Handmaid costume should actually be fairly easy. The bonnet needs to be shocking white and starched/stiffened, so it will be a PITA to pack. For the robe, you need close to the right shade of scarlet in a drapey linen/rayon weave, very bulky. I'd look online to see if there are any men's hooded red lounge robes that would work.

Orianna2000
07-18-2017, 06:27 PM
I actually ordered a pattern for a cloak, so it's just a matter of finding the right fabric. I also ordered a pattern for a knit jersey dress with long sleeves that should work--again, if I can find the fabric. I've done an 18th century cap before, so that shouldn't be too hard. As for the winged headdress . . . I've got buckram, so that's what I'm thinking. We're driving, so I can pack it carefully. Shoes, however . . . I can barely find shoes that fit me for everyday use. Not sure how I'll manage to find a pair of red or tan shoes for the costume. (I wear a double-wide, plus I have narrow heels, a high instep, and flat arches. Not an easy combination to shop for!)

I'm actually more worried about my hubby's costume. The pants pattern did NOT fit. The waist was WAY too big and the crotch hit his knees, LOL! But he's promised to take me all the way across town to JoAnn's, so I can hopefully find the fabrics I need. And McCall's is having a pattern sale, so I ordered patterns for new men's pants, a dress for the Handmaid's costume, and leggings, just in case I find the time to make my own Jedi costume.

Although, I did find a photo of a female Jedi in my Star Wars costuming book, where she's wearing a floor-length skirt along with the crossover tunic, tabards, and obi. I might be able to do that . . . maybe. At least I wouldn't have to worry about finding boots. A long skirt covers a multitude of sins.

Orianna2000
07-20-2017, 07:15 PM
Update: Hubby took me to the fabric store and spent over $200 on fabric for our costumes! I was not expecting that! We got everything we need for his Jedi costume, except the cloak, because they didn't have enough of that fabric. I got fabric for a handmaid's costume, too. Now we'll just see how fast I can sew under pressure. (Must . . . not . . . be . . . a . . . perfectionist!)

Also, hubby keeps insisting that he wants to help. He doesn't have a clue how to sew, so I had no idea what he could do. But then I washed 15 yards of muslin for the mockups and I realized--he can iron! So his job tonight will be to iron 15 yards of muslin. Tomorrow, he'll get to iron something like 9 yards of osnaburg. Trying to not laugh evilly. . . .

CoffeeBeans
07-21-2017, 06:04 PM
After he's done with his ironing, you could lay out and pin/weight your pattern and ask him to do the cutting if you're working on other things...

Thought of you all last month as I was deep into hours of hand stitching and embroidery for my Horizon Zero Dawn Aloy costume. We must be all a little crazy given the things we do.

Orianna2000
07-21-2017, 06:42 PM
I wouldn't trust him to cut accurately, LOL! All of my first-time students tend to do a horrible job of cutting, with jagged edges everywhere, and edges that are nowhere near the cutting line. Although, if it's just for the mockups, that might be okay. Hmm. Maybe? Thanks for the idea, at least.

And yes, it takes a special kind of crazy to sew cosplay or historical costuming, especially with a looming deadline!

I got my Handmaid's cap done last night. It turned out way better than I thought it would! I think it'll actually stay on my head without the use of pins or ties. I'm not so sure about the winged headdress. I can't attach it anywhere, because the cap goes underneath, which means there's no way to clip it to my hair. I've seen some pics where women used narrow strings, like bonnet ties, but the real ones don't have anything like that. So I'll have to just hope it decides to stay put on its own. Or come up with some crazy, last-ditch effort to make it work.

CoffeeBeans
07-21-2017, 07:03 PM
Can you open a spot to thread something through the cap to hold the headdress with pins? Still might be a jerk to hold, but it might give you a little advantage.

Orianna2000
07-21-2017, 08:42 PM
Well, you're not supposed to wear the winged cap indoors, so if I take it off, I don't want any holes in the under-cap to show. Maybe if I use elastic at the back, like I did for the cap, it'll stay in place. We'll see. Working on it today.

Orianna2000
08-13-2017, 01:16 AM
Got my hubby's Jedi costume done, except for snaps/velcro to hold the various layers together! Might make him a spare obi, because he's wavering between blue and ivory, so this way he'll have both. I also got my Handmaid's costume done, too! Dress and cloak, plus spats, the coif, and the winged cap. Everyone else at DragonCon is apparently skipping the cloak because of the heat in Atlanta, but I decided if a real Handmaid would have to wear her cloak, so should I. (Plus, the dress is rather clingy, being knit jersey, so it makes me look a bit pregnant, which I'm not. Not that looking pregnant is a bad thing for a Handmaid, but I'm still self-conscious about it, so I decided wearing a cloak might hide a few figure flaws.) Anyway, I bought some lightweight crimson cotton and made an unlined cloak. Used mock-French seams on all the seams, and hid the hood seam with grosgrain ribbon. I wore it to my monthly sewing guild meeting and everyone flipped out!

Since I have all this extra time to spare (*eye roll*) I'm trying to make myself a Jedi costume now. The only potential issue is the pants. I cut the tunic shorter than the pattern called for, because I'm rather short and look better when things are proportioned shorter. Then my pants fabric arrived and it's a tad bit sheer. Not totally see-through, but definitely thinner than I thought it would be. Which means I'd be displaying certain attributes I'd rather not display in public. So I'm contemplating a skirt to go under the tunic, or somehow lengthening the tunic, I don't know. I'll have to figure it out quickly, though, because we leave for London in five days and DragonCon is just four days after we get home.

I still can't believe I've made two costumes already and might have a third. I wasn't even sure I'd manage my hubby's Jedi costume in time! You sure can accomplish a lot when you put aside the perfectionism. . . . Not that it'll stick. :-P

Filigree
08-13-2017, 10:16 AM
Good job and great fixes for the issues. We will expect tasteful pic later, of course.

Orianna2000
08-15-2017, 01:21 AM
I'll try to put pics up after DragonCon. Might take awhile, though. Instead of getting to rest and recover from our trip to London and DragonCon, I have to hit the ground running, with doctors' appointments and classes, etc. Ugh.

Orianna2000
09-19-2017, 03:35 AM
So, I didn't get to wear my Jedi costume at DragonCon, but the Handmaid thing sort of exploded. There were at least a hundred women in costume for our meetup/photo session! And one of the group photos is going to be put on a t-shirt and sold, apparently. After pictures were taken, we marched around the con, two by two. We even became semi-famous after a bunch of Handmaids decided to flip off a street preacher who was complaining rather loudly about cosplayers. (I didn't join in the flipping-off, but he WAS saying some extremely rude things about us.) There are videos of it floating around the internet.

Some random excited guy ran up to me on the sidewalk and asked, "Are you Amish? Like, for real?!" That was pretty funny. And late in the day, another random guy asked to take a selfie with me. I guess we'd gained a lot of notoriety by that point!

I didn't get any good pics at the con, although some have showed up on a few blogs, but I did take a decent photo beforehand (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/20914307_1403465286410437_8653927710497693402_n.jp g), when I shared the costume with my local sewing guild. And then I took this photo (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/IMG_2571.jpg), of some of the other Handmaids reenacting a scene from the show. Oh, yeah, did I mention? Some ladies portrayed Wives and Aunts, and some even got their gentlemen friends to show up as Eyes and Commanders. It was awesome.

CoffeeBeans
09-19-2017, 08:39 PM
Oh, Orianna, that's amazing! What a wonderful group!

Thought of this thread while I was hand painting silk flowers last night. Cosplay is one heck of an insane hobby.

Orianna2000
09-20-2017, 11:48 PM
It really is! But I tend to go insane with the details anyway, even for the regular costumes I make, including doll stuff. The world's smallest hand-bound eyelets, for a doll corset, for example. Or topstitching that's less than 1/16" from the fabric's edge. Stuff like that.

For next year, I'm thinking about trying to make the "Idris" dress, from the episode of Doctor Who when the TARDIS temporarily became a woman. It's a gorgeous costume, quasi-Victorian, with lots of tattered layers. The thing is, it would require a fair amount of dyeing and aging, which are techniques I'm not altogether familiar with. And I'm not sure about the hair. I've got very short red hair, whereas Idris has brown hair that's long, sort of teased and tangled and curly. Can you cosplay a specific character even if you don't take it all the way? I tend to overheat, so I'm not sure I could tolerate a wig in Atlanta.

Filigree
09-21-2017, 04:16 AM
Orianna, I have a sage-y blue green bias embroidered rayon skirt that might be perfect. I'm not using it, so would be happy to donate. Pics soon.

http://www.bbcamerica.com/anglophenia/2012/07/doctor-who-cosplay-how-to-dress-like-idris

CoffeeBeans
09-21-2017, 08:49 PM
Of course you can cosplay as far as you want, and no further. If wigs are a no for you (honestly I hate them with a passion) then don't do a wig. I am doing a costume that I've done with a wig before (Honey Lemon from Big Hero 6) with extensions instead of a wig, even those my hair is not blond. I say take what you're doing as far as it's fun for you, but don't feel like you have to match everything.

Orianna2000
09-22-2017, 07:24 AM
I dunno. I'm just one of those people who tends to sew exact (or nearly so) replicas of costumes, so it just feels wrong, somehow, to wear a costume that took so much time and effort, but not bother to get the hair right. But since I'm NOT going to wear a wig, that doesn't leave me many options. Ugh. I'm too tired to think about it right now.

Filigree, thanks for offering to donate your skirt! I appreciate that. I'm not going to have internet access (probably) until the middle of next week, so I won't be able to look at the photos you post, but I will definitely look as soon as I'm able. ;)

Filigree
09-22-2017, 02:55 PM
I probably won't be able to post them for a while, either, so no rush.

Description: size L (about 16) with elastic waistband that could be taken in or spliced out. Ankle length on someone 5'1". General color similar to this but with a little more green & saturation: https://www.pantone.com/color-finder/16-4408-TPX

Woven bias-cut rayon with wide bands of embroidery and trimming, those shaped to form four points coming down almost to the ornate ruffled hem. Typical 'Boho' style skirt.

Orianna2000
10-31-2017, 09:47 PM
Anyone know of a source for patterns from the WWI era, 1915 or 1916? I've several books of sketches and fashion plates, but no patterns.

This is a new idea for an epic DragonCon costume. I still need to work out the details, but just to give a hint, it's a historical/sci-fi crossover. I'm super excited about it! The foundation is a dress from around 1916, when hemlines were mid-calf and skirts were semi-full and layered, with a kimono-style, slightly empire bodice. I've been searching online for patterns all morning, without success. It seems that most of the books and websites that offer Edwardian patterns don't go past 1912.

I could probably draft it myself, but it would take a lot more time. So . . . any ideas on where to find patterns?

lonestarlibrarian
10-31-2017, 10:54 PM
Have you tried any of the vintage costuming pattern vendors?

Patterns of All Time (https://www.patternsoftime.com/products.php?cat=21&pg=18) seems to be the best, but I've never used them.
Possibly Reconstructing History (https://reconstructinghistory.com/product-category/historic-patterns/20th-century-patterns/edwardian-patterns/), but not likely
Perhaps Past Patterns

(http://www.pastpatterns.com/1900.html)I've used Reconstructing History for landsknecht. I did a mockup in muslin first and basically used the patterns to give me an idea of the shape of my pieces and how they fit together, because my people's sizes had nothing to do with the sizes in the patterns. (Two children + one adult man.) It was pretty easy with landsknecht. I don't know if it's quite that easy once you get into the more tailored shapes of the Edwardian era.

Orianna2000
11-01-2017, 01:08 AM
Thanks, Lonestarlibrarian. I'd already checked Past Patterns, found one or two that might work with modification, maybe. But they're expensive, especially considering that they only come in one size and you have to adjust the pattern accordingly. The others didn't have what I was looking for. There were some patterns from the era, but none of the right silhouette.

I checked all my books, too. If I want to make a natural form ballgown, I'm all set. But a simple 1916 skirt and bodice? Doesn't seem to exist!

heza
11-21-2017, 03:53 AM
Would it be weird if I just started wearing Edwardian dresses to normal events? I love the silhouettes so much. :heart:

Orianna2000
11-21-2017, 04:46 AM
Weird, maybe. But so? There's someone in Canada (I think?) who wears Victorian all the time. As long as it's not hurting anyone, do what makes you happy! And never mind whether it's weird or not.

Also, silhouettes have a habit of coming back around. When I was a teenager, based on my study of historical fashion trends, I accurately predicted that the empire waist would come back into fashion in the early 21st century. And it did! My wedding dress in 2002 had a high waist. And when I was hospitalized in 2003, my nurse wore empire-waist scrubs and that's how I knew it wasn't just a quickie fad, but actually had become fashionable again. I was so disappointed when it finally phased out. My point being, you might be able to take the silhouette you adore and make it modern, somehow. Then you'll be a trendsetter, instead of a "weird" costumer or cosplayer.

CoffeeBeans
11-21-2017, 10:45 PM
I vote not weird, Heza. I'm a big fan of wearing what you love and letting others deal with what they think of it. If you love a silhouette, there are often more mainstream shapes that echo/invoke as well, if you're worried about stepping over the dressed up/playing dress up line.

Not to mention, accessories can modernize historical looks. I mix and match a lot of vintage into my daily wear even if I might have originally bought it as cosplay/historical use.

heza
11-21-2017, 10:53 PM
You've all convinced me. I can sew moderately well. I once made a fancy court dress for the SCA, and I'm getting into embroidery. I think I'm going to channel my sewing into making my own Edwardian-inspired dresses.... and other things. ;)

Orianna2000
11-22-2017, 02:14 AM
Yay, Heza! Post pictures when you've made something!

heza
11-22-2017, 10:20 PM
I will. It'll probably be a while, though. (I'd like to slim down a bit before I start piecing together a pattern.)

Filigree
11-23-2017, 03:19 AM
For whatever reason, between stress and diet, I've dropped 12 pounds in the last year, and over 25 since 2011. That means a lot more options for me in costuming and fun day-wear.

My current favorite 'fancy' garb is based on Edwardian tapered coats and embroidered/beaded dresses. But I hardly go anywhere to show them off, so I'm probably just going to start selling them on my Etsy shop.

heza
11-27-2017, 04:22 AM
Oh! Do let us know when they're up!

Alessandra Kelley
11-27-2017, 05:01 AM
Anyone know of a source for patterns from the WWI era, 1915 or 1916? I've several books of sketches and fashion plates, but no patterns.

This is a new idea for an epic DragonCon costume. I still need to work out the details, but just to give a hint, it's a historical/sci-fi crossover. I'm super excited about it! The foundation is a dress from around 1916, when hemlines were mid-calf and skirts were semi-full and layered, with a kimono-style, slightly empire bodice. I've been searching online for patterns all morning, without success. It seems that most of the books and websites that offer Edwardian patterns don't go past 1912.

I could probably draft it myself, but it would take a lot more time. So . . . any ideas on where to find patterns?

Sorry for the late reply. I researched this last spring when I realized I wanted to be a Suffragist for Independence Day, political creeps having made Colonial era garments less fun.

Butterick has some just out of print patterns, like B6337, a 1915 two piece suit. I accidentally got two copies, so if you fit size 14-16-18-20-22 PM me and I’ll mail it to you.

Orianna2000
11-27-2017, 07:04 AM
Butterick has some just out of print patterns, like B6337, a 1915 two piece suit. I accidentally got two copies, so if you fit size 14-16-18-20-22 PM me and I’ll mail it to you.
Wow, that's very kind of you! I just looked up that pattern, but I think it's too early for me. My sweet spot for this particular costume seems to be right at 1916, when skirts get shorter and fuller, just before they go slim again. The kimono bodice is still in fashion, as are wide, gathered sashes, both of which fits with my crossover plan. I need to do a sketch to cement exactly what I need. But thank you! I really appreciate the offer. :)

What's annoying is, I've got a (reprinted) pattern catalog from the 19-teens . . . but those patterns are, of course, no longer available. I wonder what would happen if I wrote the company and requested a specific pattern from 1916 and included the advertised cost (something like 10 cents)? I probably wouldn't get my pattern, but it'd be funny as heck!

Orianna2000
12-12-2017, 01:14 AM
The new Star Wars movie comes out this week. Anyone attending the premiere in costume?

I finished our outfits, although I will NOT be wearing the cloak I made. I made my hubby's cloak out of flannel, lining the hood and sleeves with broadcloth, and it looks great. I get colder than he does, however, so I made mine out of fleece. Which, as it turns out, isn't the best idea I've ever had. I've no doubt it would keep me warm, but unfortunately, it makes me look like a giant gray marshmallow! I actually tried it on for my husband, to get a second opinion, and the look on his face was all the answer I needed. He SAID it looked okay, but his face told a totally different story. So, it looks like I'm going to freeze to death at the movie premiere.

Also, I have to do something with my boots (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/IMG_2941-e1513026693562.jpg). They were the only boots I could find that fit and were even remotely the right style, but they have two straps with wide brass buckles on them, which totally ruins the Jedi vibe. I'm thinking of removing the buckles and just gluing the straps down, but I've no idea what kind of glue works on fake leather. My other option is to try wrapping the boots with fabric, desert nomad-style, to hide the buckles. Which might work, or might look as terrible as my fleece cloak. Any other ideas?

Alessandra Kelley
12-12-2017, 02:04 AM
The new Star Wars movie comes out this week. Anyone attending the premiere in costume?

I finished our outfits, although I will NOT be wearing the cloak I made. I made my hubby's cloak out of flannel, lining the hood and sleeves with broadcloth, and it looks great. I get colder than he does, however, so I made mine out of fleece. Which, as it turns out, isn't the best idea I've ever had. I've no doubt it would keep me warm, but unfortunately, it makes me look like a giant gray marshmallow! I actually tried it on for my husband, to get a second opinion, and the look on his face was all the answer I needed. He SAID it looked okay, but his face told a totally different story. So, it looks like I'm going to freeze to death at the movie premiere.

Also, I have to do something with my boots (http://yesterdaysthimble.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/IMG_2941-e1513026693562.jpg). They were the only boots I could find that fit and were even remotely the right style, but they have two straps with wide brass buckles on them, which totally ruins the Jedi vibe. I'm thinking of removing the buckles and just gluing the straps down, but I've no idea what kind of glue works on fake leather. My other option is to try wrapping the boots with fabric, desert nomad-style, to hide the buckles. Which might work, or might look as terrible as my fleece cloak. Any other ideas?

Camouflage. Paint the buckles.

Orianna2000
12-12-2017, 02:43 AM
Can you paint metal buckles with acrylic paint? That's the only kind I have on hand.

CoffeeBeans
12-12-2017, 04:03 AM
Yes, you can... the only thing is that the paint might rub off if you rub them too hard on anything. You can rough up the metal with sandpaper or a nail file (nail polish is a more permanent solution if you have any handy!)

Alessandra Kelley
12-12-2017, 05:38 AM
Can you paint metal buckles with acrylic paint? That's the only kind I have on hand.


Yes, you can... the only thing is that the paint might rub off if you rub them too hard on anything. You can rough up the metal with sandpaper or a nail file (nail polish is a more permanent solution if you have any handy!)

Yes, you can paint metal with acrylic paint, as long as the metal is clean and grease-free.

(Much of my hobby time is spent painting tiny pewter RPG figures with acrylic paint.)

CoffeeBeans’ suggestion of sanding the buckles a little first is a good one.

Orianna2000
12-12-2017, 06:49 AM
Nail polish . . . hmm. I might manage a trip to the corner drug store for nail polish. But isn't it usually glossy? Do they make less-glossy nail polish? (I haven't painted my nails since I was a teenager.)

CoffeeBeans
01-28-2018, 04:10 AM
One of my mentor girls is having a Star Wars themed birthday, so I lent her my Rey cosplay to wear. I've spent a lot of time lately obsessing over how far I am from trying out for the local Rebel Legion that it was really nice to see someone excited about the costume.

Anyone working on anything cool at the moment?

Orianna2000
02-02-2018, 07:38 AM
Sadly, no. I've been thinking about maybe starting on a Phantom of the Opera costume that I've had in the planning stages for several years. (It's the ruffled coral/peach and black dress from "Point of No Return," if anyone is familiar with the show.) It's been plaguing me for ages (read: I've been putting it off for ages) because there's a lot of complicated issues that have to be worked out.

I actually haven't done any sewing since finishing my Jedi costume in early December. I'm not sure what's going on, I just haven't had the desire to work on anything.

Orianna2000
04-05-2018, 09:41 PM
Anyone got any projects in the works? In preparation for DragonCon, I've started a new cosplay costume. It's the Hannibal slave-girl ballet costume from the first act of The Phantom of the Opera. I'm actually going to be brave and try a wig this time.

With regards to my Handmaid's costume, I need to remake the wings (stiff bonnet that limits field of vision and hides your identity). I used buckram for the first one, but it's got a few dents in it. And I'm concerned that if it rains, the buckram will disintegrate. Any ideas on a material that's somewhat stiffer than buckram, yet still sewable? If necessary, I can add a layer of white shower curtain between the buckram and the outer fabric, to help waterproof it. But I'd like something that won't dent as easily.

Also, I could use ideas on how to keep the wings safely on my head while outside. Last time, I tried bobby pins to clip it to the coif/cap underneath, but I could only clip the back section, so it didn't work very well. I had to keep my hand on the wings at all times, because a mild gust of wind would've blown it away. I might try some kind of button/loop system to attach the wings to the under-cap. But even that might fail if the wind caught it at the right angle. Any suggestions?

Alessandra Kelley
04-06-2018, 02:03 AM
Maybe plastic cross-stitch canvas as a waterproof substitute for buckram?

For hoods and things I usually do my hair in a french braid across the top and bobby pin the thing to that. Some of my hoods have ribbon loops sewn in the inside center seam for this.