Monday, 22 May 2017

Pet en l'air main part finished

The last time I posted about my pet en l'air was in September. Over the winter I brought it to a couple of sewing meets, but when I started to work on my kitchen it was thrown in a bag and packed away. Then I had to clear up my living room after it had been used as a storage, and I found the bag. I simply didn't know where I should put this UFO, so I just threw it onto my dressform...and realized that it looked pretty nice and didn't have much left until it was finished.

Basically I just had to hem the sleeves and skirt and sew the front skirts to the bodice.

Now I need to finally decide on what kind of closure and if I'm going to trim it. The next step will probably be to make a loose stomacher and add ribbons so that I can tie it closed. After that it will be wearable, and then I'll see about the trim. This is supposed to just be a trial version, so I'm not sure that I want to add too much time on trim for it.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Wig work day

Today I decided to try and untangle my Rarity wig. I've had it for two years now, and I've been so worried that doing anything would destroy the beautiful curls. Now the curls weren't beautiful anymore though, it looked like a matted mess with some curls.

 There are a lot of tutorials for wig care out there, but the basic thing to remember is to work with a small piece of hair at the time, and work from the bottom and up. It takes a lot of patience though, not my strong suit and a big reason why I have put it off even if I've seen that it was needed. I didn't wash the wig before untangling it, since I haven't used any Products in this one. I also didn't have any kind of detangler/lubricant in it, that would probably have done the job easier.

After around three hours of work the wig had turned into this.
It's not as curly, but it's tanglefree and still quite wavy. My plan is to recurl it, but I couldn't find my curlers. Still it's looking so much better and I wouldn't mind wearing it in this more wavy shape either. I have braided and put it away for storage now. Long wigs should always be braided when they aren't in use.

Now I need to work on the tail. The tail is basically the same wig, but tied up. It's in a worse state, since I've been sitting on it for example, and the hair is veary teased from rubbing against stuff. I also need to take a break from the work due to my bad left shoulder. I hold the hair that I'm working with in the left hand and pull with the right, the pulling motions were simply too much and now my shoulder is aching.

Friday, 19 May 2017

The finished 1950's half-hat

I've had these photos in my phone since Star Wars Celebration, but my phone has stopped communicating with my computer, so I just haven't uploaded them.

The 1950's half-hat that I started this winter was going to go with my Vintage Amidala.
The headpiece worn with the original Amidala costume
 I chose the half-hat shape because I felt that it was pretty similiar int he general shape. I ordered a fairly large brown lace applique and attached it to the middle of the hat, to look like that rustcoloured center ornamentation. I also added some brown veiling, since I definitely wanted some of that on my hat.

When I got the center lace on it was obvious though that the hat wasn't perfectly symmetrical. The shape had gotten a bit bent, and it was made very obvious when there was a symmetrical piece of lace in the midde. So I took it off. I decided that instead of going for the more obvious reference to the original headpiece, I wanted a hat that looked nice. The answer was to add the lace to the back instead, and hide a bit of the triangular shape under a cockade of brown satin ribbon. I had bought the satin ribbon in order to try and do something similar to the braided hairstyle of Amidala, but this looked better.

And then it was only to wear the hat for the Ladies of the Legions tea.

As you can see, or rather not see, the brown veiling is almost invisible agains my red hair. I'm also not happy with the shape of the veil, so I might do something about that before I wear it again.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Vintage Amidala

Last year when I ordered the Greedo print, I also picked up another fabric from Spoonflower. It was a fabric mimicking the fabric in Padmé Amidala's peacock gown from Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith.

If you don't recognize it, it's not so strange. Eventhough it featured in the marketing, and is seen on the film poster, the scene in which she wears the gown was cut out from the final film. The original costume is made is mainly made up of a coat in Brown shot devore velvet worn over a fortuny pleated shot brown/blue satin gown.

To be honest it was never a favorite of mine, but I really liked the pattern of the reproduced fabric. At Spoonflower you can have the pattern printed on a variety of fabrics and I chose to have it done in cotton satin, by recommendation of the creator of the print. I only ordered a meter or so, hoping to be able to some day just make something Amidala inspired from it.

Last spring I also picked up this Vintage Vogue pattern (V2401)
I even took the time to copy and cut out the pattern pieces, but didn't go any further. Now when my silk for my Lady Poe ensemble disappeared I still wanted something new to wear for Celebration. This pattern was similar to the peacock gown, in that it looked to be a coat worn over a petticoat, so I ordered some more of the peacock gown fabric.

Overall the pattern was easy to follow. There were some steps, especially around the collar, that I didn't quite understand but I simply followed the instructions and the result came out good. I had read a review that said that the pattern was fairly tight. It's closed all the way around, so you need to pull it over your head and then get the waist by tying the sash. I don't know why but I had cut out the pattern a size or two too large, so my problem was actually that it was too large and bulky. Since I still wanted to have a fairly large skirt and be able to put it on and take it off with easy I didn't take it in too much though. I made the center back seam more curved and made the darts belowe the waist larger, but kept it fairly large above the waist. One difference to the envelope picture is that the skirt portion is a lot slimmer, which suited me fine but don't expect a traditional big 1950's New Look-skirt from this pattern.

Except for the size adjustment I made three major changes from the pattern. I did not sew the center back seam all the way to the hem. Instead I have a split skirt in the back, making it look more like a coat than dress. I also didn't add the front skirt portion. I wanted to be able to combine the coat part of the dress in different ways. Without the front skirt though it ended just at the waist, showing off my tummy. To hide that I lengthened the bodice front section down to the top of my hip.

At the Ladies of the Legions' tea I wore the coat with a blue summer dress under, to make it look more like the original. I also wore the dress to a party on Friday night, and then I paired it with a pair of tight black trousers instead. I actually prefered the trouser look, but I didn't have any photos of that.

Overall I can really recommend the V2401 pattern. It gives a really nice classic look, and since the skirt is quite restrained it doesn't scream 1950's. There is also no need for buttons or other kinds of fastenings. I made the whole outfit in around three days. If I was to change one thing it would probably be to make the sashes that tie around the waist a bit longer.

This is really an obscure fan fashion, no person that I ran into at SWCO recognized the Amidala inspiration for the outfit. I'm looking forward to wearing it and feeling like a queen at non-Star Wars events though.

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Star Wars Celebration - fan fashion

I really love seeing good fan fashion. At Celebration my friend Jazz and some of his other friends had a panel on fan fashion, and I had to go there. It was a really interesting panel, and Jazz made an interesting observation that for many years it was hard finding anything for women, since the basic fan fashion was a male t-shirt, nowadays though there are a lot of different designs available for women, but men are stuck with basic black t-shirts with a print in the middle of the front.

The panel divided fan fashion into three areas; Convention wear, Prom wear and Everyday wear. Convention wear is when you take a costume, but use it as an inspiration. Prom wear of course is for fancy dress, and everday wear is the more subtle things. For example my Greedo dress is everyday wear, since I can walk in it without people immediately recognizing it as a fandom thing. Quite a few of the panelists went up and showed what they wore, but I didn't get any pictures of that. Here are some of my favorite fan fashion pieces that I met though.

These ladies had taken printed Star Wars fabrics that you can find in regular tores and used them for making clothes of. The first fan fashion pieces that I saw were usually made of bedsheets and curtains, but now there are cotton fabrics available on the roll if you want a Star Wars fabric.

Another way of expressing your fandom is to take a costume and translate it to another style. 1950's is deinitely popular. These were some of my favorites, and I loved that the Leia outfit had made the quilted patches over the hips that are there on the original jumpsuit.

Then of course you have Holly, who makes her own gorgeous prints. I feel very privileged that I got the permission to use her Greedo fabric, but she has so many different designs that she has made and turned into nice clothes. When I met her she wore this great ensemble.

Friday, 21 April 2017

Star Wars Celebration - costumes on the floor

There are so many amazing costumes at Celebration, and I have hardly taken any photos of them. Here are my favorites that I ran into though.

 Earlier this year a very talented member of the Rebel Legion put up the design of the embroidery on Leia's Bespin Gown. This is a costumer that I ran into that had bought the fabric so I could finally see what it was like for real. I also stood beside the designer at the RL photoshoot and got the chance to thank her for making this gown so much more accessible to costumers.

Ever since Disney bought Star Wars there has been quite a lot of Disney/Star Wars mash up costumes done. This was my favorite pair and especially Merida's lightbow was amazing up close.

There are also the fun/humorous costumes, like this Bothan Walking around the floor.
For the Running of the Hoods, the humans were also joined by a Jawa and a wookiee.
That must have been so hot to run around in.

One of the best costumes was this Jawa with BB-8 though.
It's actually an adult, with the head in the BB-8 dome, but it looked like the Jawa was carrying him around. Both the Jawa costume and BB-8 was really well done and together it was perfect.

My favorite costume of the weekend was this really handsome Bail Organa. Yes, I am a total Bail Organa fangirl, and just seeing this costume made me happy, but then I almost died when he had the rest of his family with him.
The Breha costume was really well done, and the little girl's real name is actually Leia. Awwwwwww. It really was a perfect family cosplay.

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Star Wars Celebration - what I wore

I'm back from a week of travelling, and four full days of Star Wars Celebration madness. Madness is really the best way to describe it, which I guess is what you get when you gather 75 000 fans in one place. It also didn't help that there was quite a few examples of really bad managment, but thankfully I didn't personally suffer from it, mostly because I made a choice not trying to get into the major panels but happy to just go to the smaller events and didn't want to go after any exclusives.

This is a blog about costumes though, so I will concentrate on that here. I've divided it into three parts; what I wore, other people's costumes and finally fan fashion. I had decided not to go for any big costumes, but rather just pieces that were comfortable and easy to pack, I still had a few outfits though.

It actually started on Wednesday before the Celebration when me and a group from the three main costuming groups went to an Afternoon Tea. For this tea I decided to go for a Queen Amidala inspired vintage look. I'm going to write a separate post about this outfit later, but one thing that's not visible is the 50's half hat that I've posted some info about earlier.

I wore the coat part of the outfit to the 501st banquet on Friday as well. Then I paired it with some sleek black trousers and a hair updo, I didn't get a single photo of that evening though, but I actually think I prefer that overall look.

The costume I spent the most time in was the X-wing pilot. I didn't bring the helmet with me, and I didn't wear the gloves. It was basically a "briefing scene"-version. The main reason for bringing the pilot was that I had paid for a photo with Denis Lawson, who plays Wedge Antilles in the original trilogy.
I also met up with Sigge in his TFA pilot outfit.
And on Sunday I wore it again and walked around a bit with Ingeli in her TIE reserve pilot.
The other proper costume that I wore was my Mon Mothma costume. I had it on for the Rebel Legion group photo, but didn't get any individual photos of that one either. In a weird way of costume misidentification I got called Aunt Beru in it though.

A reason for me not wearing Mon Mothma so much was that the RL group photo was on the same day as the Running of the Hoods. The Running of the Hoods is hard to explain for non-hardcore fans, but it's great fun being part of around 70 people running around in orange, shouting about "Ice Cream". I must say that I have abeen a trendsetter here. Last year in London I brought my giant IKEA moustache, and this year the Germans had bought a load of them and gave them away to people. I learnt in London that it's hotter and more taxing than you might think to run in slow motion for an hour or so, so I this year I made sure to bring a water bottle and I didn't have the giant wig.
Me and Ryan as moustache twins
All the Willrows
And for some live action there is the stream from the Star Wars live action show. I think I linked to the right mark, otherwise it's around 4h35m in.

The outfit that I get most compliments for though, even if people don't stop and take photos, is my Greedo dress. I was really happy that I could run into Holly, who designed the fabric, while I was wearing the dress.

On Thursday evening there was an evening celebration for Carrie Fisher. I decided on Saturday to go, so I hadn't prepared anything for it. The dress code was dress up or cosplay, and since I knew a few of my friends were bringing gowns and tuxedos, I went for one of my ballgowns.
This is a gown that I made in 2005 and it consists of two parts. It's a black undergown, that's a gown in itself with a flurry of chiffon ruffles. Over it is simply a large piece of silk that's been draped. I made it like that before I was simply too afraid of cutting into the fabric, so it's just sewn together at the shoulders, and then I've tied a black sash at the waist to keep it in shape. Originally it was worn with a black corset, but I think I prefer this softer look. The pattern on the fabric resembles hazy moons, so in honour of Carrie Fisher I think I'm going to call this my "Drowning in moonlight"-gown from now on.
Me and some friends at the gala.

Overall the Mon Mothma costume and X-wing pilot will probably be my go to costumes for conventions, both are easy to pack and nice and comfortable to wear. I'm inspired to make more pieces like the Greedo dress though.