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August 6, 2014

I've been crazy busy all month.  The Myths and Legends Con had better be good, for all the work I've been doing for it!

Obviously I started with the bag and the hat, because I knew exactly what I wanted.  It took a little longer than I expected due to my difficulty in finding the right materials, but I'm satisfied with the results.  The bag took about 4 days, the hat 2.

yes, I AM going to use every excuse to repost this picture.

This was also my way of procrastinating from the costume requests of my husband, because I had NO idea how to make the items he wanted, namely a tunic and a wizard robe.  Yes, a basic rectangular tunic should be fairly simple, but my husband has HUGE shoulders due to his years of gymnastics, and, well, I have no idea how to work around them.  I'm too unhappy with the results of it to share here. Fortunately all you can see is about a foot of tunic down the middle.  

The robe was a challenge.  (It still IS a challenge, but I need a break from sewing, so I'm writing this.)  He had specific requests that made it different from a graduation gown and more complicated than the basic robe patterns I could find.  I did all kinds of different searches, even looking at 18th century banyans (men's at-home casual wear, kind of like a pre-Victorian smoking jacket) to try and get into his head and understand what he wanted.  Time was running short, and fortunately I found a useable Instructables pattern .  It's pretty basic, but the important part was it told you how to take body measurements and design the pattern around those for a proper fit.  I made my own changes, making the back one large bottom piece with a shortened top piece so I could add a pleat in the center of the shoulder blades.  Then I whipped up a sample out of a torn bedsheet so that I could be sure it worked before attempting the horror that was the collar.  

Oh, and you can see in the photo that we also abruptly added another project to the mix and made a B shaped duct tape dummy.  It's hard to find men's sewing dummies!  (He somewhat objects to it being called a dress form.  Shirt form, then?  I'm hoping it will help when I remake the tunic.)   We used cling wrap rather than a t-shirt, and I stuffed it with some of the paper I saved from the move.  I'm still stuffing the thing.  The hard part was keeping the tape from wrinkling - use shorter pieces!

The final product is made from black polyester peachskin fabric.  It has a nice drape and sheen to it, and was conveniently 40% off when we went searching.  The lapel and collar are made from a wool upholstery fabric I found on the remnant table at Hancock Fabrics.  I bought it with the thought of making B. a Victorian style vest, which he liked, but before I got to make it he decided he'd rather have it line this coat.  I think it looks rather nice, and ever so slightly snakeskin-like.

I had the worst time with the collar.  I've never done one before, didn't understand the few tutorials I found, and draping just confused me.  I finally just had to suck it up and make something, and that's what B. will be trying on later.  My collar ended up in a half circle shape rather than an arch, not sure why or if it will work.  I STILL don't understand what I did, or if it actually will work!

I hope to post finished photos of our costumes later.  Just need to remember to get them . . .