Thursday, October 29, 2015

Costumes, costumes, costumes (part1)

Oh my goodness, the past two and a half months have been BUSY. Between Comic Con, Disneyland, Halloween and a Gardner Village Witch; my days have been packed. 

Back in August I decided to get Mina's Halloween costume nailed down. She had been pretty undecided until we went to the fabric store. I found some embellished tulle on clearance, perfect for a mermaid! I was off to a great start. 
Then Mina changed her mind. 
She wanted to be Elsa instead. 
We went back to the fabric store and bought some more fabric. 
I decided to layer some silver knit behind the embossed blue knit, it was fairly see through. I made the mistake of washing the glitter tulle because it washed out all the glitter. A drafted a pattern and made the base of her costume. 
This was very early in the process and I knew it would take a lot of work to make it special. A trip to Hobby Lobby resulted in bags of jewels and flat sequins. At this point I took a break to work on other projects. 

Our friend Steph called me up with a favor about mid-August. She was auditioning as a witch and needed a costume. She brought over her fabric and I took her measurements. The top was a breeze and so easy to make. The rag skirt took a lot of time but I'm so pleased with how it turned out!

Next up was my nephew's Link costume for Comic Con. He didn't want classic Link from "The Legend of Zelda," he wanted the version from "Hyrule Warriors." Initially this seemed like an elephant of a costume; armor AND chain mail AND lots of layers? Once I figured out a lightweight alternative to chain mail, the costume seemed more manageable. 
Once I broke down the elements I could start "eating the elephant." It wasn't so bad after I listed them all out!
Initially I thought about spray painting yarn for the chain mail layer. This wasn't successful and it was pretty smelly. While I was buying giant knitting needles I came across a skein of metallic yarn in the clearance bin. 
I'm not much of a knitter but I can knit and purl! 
After that I worked on the base layer and the green tunic. I couldn't find the right color of knit at Hancock so I bought a bunch of white knit and dyed it. The shirt and leggings came together really fast thanks to my serger. 
The tunic was fairly easy, construction-wise. I altered the sleeves because they were too long. After the main costume was sewn together, I cut the armor pieces out of craft foam. 
The armor was challenging because it was a new medium for me. It was difficult but in the end I'm pretty happy with the results. 
My biggest lesson was with the color of the foam. I used white because it was available in large sheets so it seemed like a good idea. Foam is pretty fragile and if you ding it then the paint will wear off.  Comic Con is really crowded so bumps are inevitable. At least it looked good up to that point!
The silver spray paint was amazing, totally worth the higher price tag. Design Master Silver Metallic spray paint with details in acrylic paint. I painted most of the costume with a variety of spray paints. It gives it more of a worn look as opposed to brand new. 
At this point I hadn't secured the armor pieces with much of anything, I needed a fitting! I struggled with adhesive quite a bit with this project. Hopefully next time it will be more durable. 
Ready for Comic Con!

Next up was my niece, Kate. My brother and his wife were going to Disneyland in October so they needed to dress up. Somewhere along the line they decided to forgo the princess route and dress their daughter as a villain. 

Due to the fact that Kate's hair is practically white, they chose Ursula as their daughter's costume. 
I sketched up a rough design and took some measurements. 
I divided up the elements into a onesie, skirt and pants. The pants would be bicolored; black on the front, purple on the back. 
I decided to stuff the tentacles that made up the skirt. I had hoped they would stick out like cartoon octopus/squid legs. 

Success! I'm so grateful for my little model, Magnus. He wasn't convinced!
The underside of the skirt:

I made little shoes as well and added suckers for good measure. 
Kate made the cutest Ursula!

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