Sunday, May 29, 2011

Refashioned infant outfit: one-day project

Today (Saturday, actually) I quickly made an outfit for my daughter.  I love making children items... they usually seem to take so much less time!!!

I am part of the Refashion Co-op, and one of the rules is to add a new refashioned item entry every month or your membership is revoked to make room for one of the many applicants waiting to join.  I like being part of this group, because it forces me to actually buckle down.  I have so many things I want to refashion into items we will use or other projects I keep saying I'll do "one day".  This group inspires me to do these things... and my creations seem to be helping inspire my husband too.

I used three items to make this particular outfit:

1) An infant top that costed me $1.25 at Target (on clearance).
2) An old sleeveless top I haven't worn in ages; it was too short for my postpartum body, but I loved the embroidered botanical design.
3) A hand-me-down onesie that was given to me for my son, but my daughter didn't get to wear before she outgrew it. I really liked the colors, especially the dragonfly applique.

Here's what I did...

I unpicked and cut the bottom off one part of the onesie (either the front or the back).  From that fabric, I made three yoyo flowers which I attached to the infant shirt.  These were my first attempts at yoyos, but they turned out pretty well.

The skirt of this section took a little longer, with some failed attempts.  I'm not accustomed to sewing knit fabrics (beyond minor alterations and repairs), so this was definitely a learning process.  I unpicked the edging and shoulder straps of the sleeveless top.  I then turned it over and hemmed the part that was now the bottom.  Actually, it took several tries... with some unpicking of stitches... Did I mention I'm not used to sewing knits?  I tried altering the top's hem into a waistband but messed it up.  Then I realized I could do something like the lady at MADE did for her circle skirts and which I've also seen done on skirts in some retail stores (one of which I also bought on clearance).  Basically, I combined the two ideas and was really pleased with the results!

That's pretty much all there was too it.  I hope to have my daughter wear the outfit tomorrow (Sunday... which it technically today if you go by my clock) or on Memorial day!

"It's the high level of quality I've come to expect from you."
- my husband 

Sweetling's Faery Wings: Completed!

The wings came together very well and looked adorable.  Unfortunately, the day we were going to go to the Faery Festival, the weather was supposed to be Thunderstorms.  We nearly chose not to go, but at the last minute that morning, we packed up and left.  Got lost for an hour and a half (two unconnected roads named the same thing?  Really???), but we finally made it.  We didn't get many pictures though and didn't wear much in the way of costuming.  My daughter and son were still cute as could be.  So much so that my older sister hijacked Sweetling.  I don't blame her... Who can resist?

The wings, being of simple construction, actually made it through the day.  One of the arm straps did come partially off at the end, when my sister carried her facing outwards (fresh fear of spit up, my husband thinks), which meant the wings were being put into an awkward angle, something that would have been an issue for many wings.  That's okay though; they are easily repaired!  :-)

I'm so happy with how these turned out.  Not bad for cardboard, floral tape, iridenscent tissue paper, scrap ribbon, and hot glue!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Sweetling Faery Wings: Possibly (or nearly) done

The faery wings for my daughter are nearly complete.  They are made of cardboard (because we have plenty of boxes and it seems such a waste not to reuse them in other ways), iridenscent tissue paper, floral tape, ribbon, and hot glue.  I may add snaps to the ribbons; originally I was going to use white elastic, but couldn't fine it.  I also may add flowers to hide the snaps.  One thing I definitely need to do is dust them with baby powder or cornstarch to remove some (or hopefully all) of the outer stickiness on the outside parts of the floral tape.

The first idea was to cut out the cardboard pieces to be one layer, then cut out card stock paper to be another layer, and to sandwich the iridescent tissue paper in between.  Sadly... this idea did not work.  The floral tape did not stick to the card stock, and it was too flimsy to really force the tape to work.  I also tried duct tape (which is the only other thing I felt was dispensible enough to use in case of failure), but that didn't work too well either.  I thought about coloring the card stock and then using it as planned, but decided that it would not be strong enough and the edges would be too "clean cut".  Instead, I figured I woud just be rid of the third layer.  The problem was, I wasn't sure how the tissue paper would look without the extra layer to hide the bulk of it.  I also wasn't sure how well it would adhere to the wing frames.  I wasn't disappointed.  I was fairly careful not to touch the hot tip to the paper and to also work in bits.

 I also needed to figure out the connector piece, but that was simple enough. I took some scrap cardboard from the Clone Trooper armor my husband is making, cut it in with a slight bit of stylization, and covered it with floral tape. It actually took a few attempts to get the tape on the way I wanted, but I was very happy with it when I was finished.

The last thing I needed to do for these wings was to figure out how I wanted them to be worn.  I already thought I'd simply use white cloth covered elastic like what people tend to use for sleeves and such, but I couldn't find the ones I just bought.  I really did not want to use black on this since her outfit would likely be white or a pale color.  I decided to use some pale transparent pink ribbon I actually bought to possibly use on her Spring/Summer dress (but didn't).  I hot glued them in place and they actually look really nice.  They definitey work well with the color scheme.

The last few things I might do is add snaps to the ribbon and cover them with fake flowers or leaves.  I'm not really sure I will do that.  All in all, however, these wings are done and I will try them on Sweetling tomorrow.

Then it's back to working on my son's outfit, which I am keeping in mind that he might choose not to wear.  :-p

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Sweetling Faery Wings: The Plan

For the Faery Festival, while working on my son's costume, I hope to also make my daughter a pair of infant faery wings.  They would be made with cardboard (from our move), iridenscent plastic, floral tape, fake pansies, and sewing elastic.  The idea is for them to be inexpensive, quick, safe, and easy.

These will also be my first attempt at making any faery wings, so I'm really excited!  :-)

Little Faerie Festival Monster to Elfling: Change of Plans

My son is still very much against the idea of the satyr or Cyclops legs.  The first time he seemed against it, I thought perhaps he was just tired.  I had my husband show him "Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe" so he could see Mr. Tumnus (the satyr).  He seemed to like the character, but when I showed him the fake fur and put it over his leg, he made it clear he didn't want it.

So, what to do???

After some thought and tossing around ideas, I think I've settled on continuing the Elfling costume.  A quick tunic, a belt, a cowl, and a fake fur cape.  Should be cooler but with more coverage for the skin.  I'm not sure how many of these pieces will be finished in time, but it will be interesting to find out.

The plus side of this change is that he can choose to be an elfling or he can choose to be a Viking (by simply leaving off the cowl and adding his Viking helmet)!

At least I have some direction with this now.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Little Faerie Festival Monster: Drawback! Oh no!!!

The other night, I was looking at images of Satyrs , including a precious costume Jen Thompson (from Festive Attyre) made for her son years ago, and the Cyclops from "7th Voyage of Sinbad".  My son saw the picture on this blog and said, "Oh no!" for Sinbad (the little guy in the picture) and started humming the theme music.  When I showed him the fake fur and held it to his legs, he got really upset.  Even with the cute pictures of Jen Thompson's son, he was not digging the idea.

I think, perhaps this project may be a "no go" for the time being, but now I'm left in an odd spot as to what my kids should wear.  Heck, I'm not sure we'll even go, since we also have his birthday to plan and prep for!  *grumble*

We'll see.  I'm still very much deciding.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Little Faerie Festival Monster: Ideas

Cyclops from "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad"
I'm working on a costume idea for my son to wear to Faerie Festival.  It will be a special treat for his birthday.  But I'm stuck on what costume to make him.  My husband is making a cardboard Star Wars Clone Trooper outfit for him, so I could always make some "wings" for him to wear with it and he can be a clone fairie... But... I'm leaning towards making him something a bit more "traditional".

My son loves certain films and requests them.  Any of the Star Wars films (or even the cartoons) and also "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad" are top on his list.  He wakes up humming the theme song to Sinbad or the Empirial March from SW.

While working on my daughter's Spring/Summer Dress, I found a long scrap of fake fur I held onto to use as trim, but it got me thinking.  Why couldn't it be used for satyr or faun legs (from the greek mythos)?  And then I started really thinking...

... Why not make a costume based on the Cyclops from "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad"?

Granted, my son has two eyes and I'm not about to try to make it a one-eyed costume.  Well... then I have a couple of options.  I can either make the costume into a "triclops" by drawing an extra eye just above the space between his eyebrows or I can just use the bulk of the Cyclop's costume as inspiration.  I'm thinking I'll do the latter.

Here's what I'm hoping to do:
1.  Make the fur legs.
2.  Make shoe covers that look like a cloven hooves.
3.  Make a plush horn (or use one of my sculpi ones) for the horn or horns.  (I feel plush would be safer.)
4.  Figure out some sort of chest covering to block the bulk of exposed skin from the sun.

After I finish making my son's outfit, I hope to make some simple infant-safe fairy wings for my daughter out of cardboard so she can just wear a pretty dress and be a little faery.  Something uber fast, simple, safe, and cheap.

My deadline would be May 13th... so that gives me only a little wiggle room to get all this done!