Saturday, July 11, 2015

The past two weeks

Over the past two weeks I have finished:
Two costumes,
A button up shirt,
A shirt dress, 
And I repaired Mina's doll stroller. 

A few months ago I received a phone call from a family friend, asking if I could design the costumes for a musical. It wasn't feasible with two small kids but I told her that I would be happy to help with a few costumes. My sister-in-law, Candice, was the assistant director and her husband and son were in the cast so she got first dibs on costumes. 

Candice acted as go-between with the director and I asked questions. The director wanted bright colors (but no red or huckleberry,) 14th century-ish and no peasants. The ensemble was made up of members of the court so everyone was supposed to look nice. I did a little research and drew two fast sketches. 
Her husband was cast as the minstrel and their son was cast as in the ensemble. 
Candice and I went fabric shopping and then I went to work. I made leggings out of cotton jersey and tunics with attached linen sleeves. The costumes needed to be lightweight because the show was staged on the outdoor stage. I made the tunics out of quilting cotton backed with interfacing to give the costumes more heft without the weight. I chose patterned fabrics so the costumes wouldn't appear so "flat" on stage. I made their hats as well. 
Hutch's costume suffered from a cutting mistake I made late one night. His tunic was supposed to be alternating instead of half and half. It worked out anyway, I guess. 

Mina's button up shirt was started back in April after I finished her Easter dresss. I patterned it late in the month and finished it in July. I hope it still fits! That's a long time!
It started with two yards of chambray and I ended up with a pair of shorts and two shirts. I finished the shorts first because she needed a pair or two. Next came the blouse with the rounded collar. 
Last up was the button up shirt. It was my first foray into a cuffed shirt with working cuffs. I was pleasantly surprised how it came together. Almost. 
I sewed the button holes and the buttons and realized that I had sewn the sleeves on backward. The left sleeve was on the right and the right was on the left. I think it took longer to unpick the seams than it took to set in the sleeves the second time around. Mina hasn't tried it on yet, I hope it fits!

Despite her small size, Mina is growing. Her shirt dress from last summer got to be too short this spring. I decided to dive in my stash and make a new church dress for Mina. 
I sketched out the design and then used markers to divide up the fabric. 
I was kind of uneasy about the orange fabric, it seemed kind of dark next two the other two pieces. I hoped for the best and started sewing. By the end of the first late night I had an idea of the direction the dress had taken. 
I felt a lot better about the fabric and I finished the dress the next day. 
I tried it on Mina and it's a little bit big. She'll grow into it, right?

Last up was a project that has been over a year in the making. We have Mina a doll and a stroller for Christmas back in 2013. Mina was so excited by her stroller that she tried putting lots of things in the seat. Things that were too heavy. The seat was made out of lining fabric so it tore pretty fast. 
We even put Magnus in the seat, it wasn't meant for a real baby!

I saw a great tutorial on Delia Creates on making over a doll stroller. Her makeover was fairly involved including spray paint and matching straps for the seat. I took a faster route and reused the straps from the seat.  The stroller BEFORE
I used yellow bias tape to help tie in the wheels and the handles on the stroller. The new seat was made from canvas from the home decor section. I reused the straps from the old seat. 
Mina tested out her new seat with her gorilla, Dan. 
He's a little large but she didn't mind! 

I finished up this pair of bubble shorts earlier. I should have used interfacing in the cuffs. Now I know!