29 augustus 2015

I am the Bad Wolf. I create myself.

This was a very simple project. Should have been a quick make. But today I will tell you the tale of how sewing a hoodie took me four days.

I have a few H&M (gasp!) hoodies I like to wear as jackets, and decided to try and make my own a few weeks ago. The pattern is so simple I could just trace it from one of them (two front pieces, a back, a sleeve, a hood and an optional pocket) and I already had my fabric (an interesting textured black-and-white knit). What could go wrong?

Not too much since I finished it.
 Well, for one, the fabric frayed like a motherfucker. it unraveled if you pointed at it, so I realised I'd probably have to bind the seams (guess what got chosen when I had to decide between a printing press and an overlocker- definitely no regrets there though, expect some printing love in the near future- but back to the point). I also wanted this thing to be a bit hard-wearing, so I underlined every piece with a thin viscose jersey.

Except the jersey was very drapey, so to prevent sagging added rows of hand-basting on the inside, catching small bits of the outer fabric. This took a few Doctor Who episodes.

I then sewed the thing up, stitching bias binding to every seam allowance and hand-stitching them to the underlining. This took another few Doctor Who episodes.

I watched the entire first season whilst hand-stitching in the end. And because that got me in the mood, I made a matching patch:

I just started season 4 and gah, I remember why I love this show so much! Realistic characters with backgrounds and real personalities and just really nice stories (take note, Moffat)... But this is a sewing blog.

I used a black sweater knit to make cuffs and a hem band, and finished it with a metal zipper. The end result does feel nice and sturdy, and it has the fit I liked from the storebought hoodies with the added bonus of cool fabric (and hours of hand-stitching).

Super amazing superhero team, the Scarf and the Chin

These pictures were taken during Lieke's birthday party, by the way. Stephanie, Caroline and I are such professional bloggers, we'd even leave an amazing picknick (with CAKE!) to take pictures. And photobomb each other. And then we jumped into a fountain.

Running for my LIFE
Later that day I joined Lieke to the pool and got to pretend I was a mermaid. We also won a diving competition. Not even kidding!

And of course, thanks again to Caroline for making my handiwork look so pretty!

23 augustus 2015

The Hobbits the Hobbits the Hobbits the Hobbits...

It's no secret that I love themed parties. Love, love, love them. I love coming up with an idea for a costume and then doing the best I can to make it come to life (usually as cheap as possible). One of my friends had been planning a movie party for a long time but I wasn't going to be able to make it at first because of work... Until the schedule changed. I suddenly found myself with an unexpected day off and three days to make a movie-themed costume!

I got an idea really quickly though. I reread the Lord of the Rings trilogy about a month ago (and saw the movies again for good measure) so my head was kind of full of hobbits and elves, and when I came across this classic my mind was made up. Inspired by the genius of Cation Designs I went for a Party Legolas look!

Now, it was going to be a hot Saturday, so I decided to forego total screen accuracy. I found a green top and a jersey skirt and set to work to add some Elvish touches:

The lettering and the brooch took the most time, but in the end everything was done in an evening and a morning. I cut a stencil out of a heavier paper and used silver fabric paint to get the text on the top. This is a super easy way to transform t-shirts, and if your printer can handle the heavier paper you don't even have to do hand-lettering!

The brooch is made out of felt and embroidery thread. I wasn't sure how to do the silver wire bits that go around it at first since it's a bit too fragile to do in felt, but in the end I decided to add a background layer and just embroider on that. The result is clear enough! Both the t-shirt and the brooch will get some wear after this (but maybe not together). I love it when parts of a costume become part of my wardrobe (and it happens more often than you'd think).

I decided to make a bow and arrow on the morning before the party, and challenged myself to only use things I already had because I didn't have time to go to the shops wanted to push my creativity. The bow is entirely non-functional, it's basically rolled up paper wrapped with masking tape and string. I added a coat of acrylic paint in three colours to make it look pretty. The quiver was made from a plastic water bottle wrapped with paper and masking tape and painted again. I used my long double-pointed knitting needles as arrows and gave them masking tape fletchings. I finished the look with an Elvish-inspired hairdo (tiny braids, that's the secret) and some green eyeshadow.

Sadly enough the party was too much fun to bother with outfit shots, so you'll have to imagine what it looked like! We did manage to take some photobooth pictures. If you look closely you can spot one or two other celebrity guests: