Thursday, March 29, 2012

Costume Progress - A Super Bodice

I finished the bodice for my new costume. It is made of blue dupioni silk, with boning in the lining, and lacing up the back.


Grommets alternate gold and silver. I originally planned to use all gold but I had one box of gold and one box of silver, so this is what happened.


Figured out what I'm making yet? This is going to be a steampunk/fantasy/Victorian Superman costume. Like, if Superman was a woman and lived in the age of steam engines, bustles and top hats. I'm killing two chickadees with one stone here; this costume will be great for both Comic-Con and SteamCon! Especially when I hook up with the rest of the DC Justice League at Emerald City Comic Con this weekend.


The pattern I used for the bodice is modified from Butterick 3012. I only used the bodice and the drape, not the skirt part of the pattern. I added two inches of height at the waist and  raised the neckline so I could fit the logo on the front. I later discovered I really did not need to make the torso 2 inches longer like I do with Simplicity patterns, since this bodice already has a low waist.

Shown with a blue costume-satin skirt (this is not the final skirt for this costume, it will be shorter and bustled.) Those lacings need trimming!


The drape is sewn onto the bodice, following the instructions in the pattern. I used red dupioni silk, the same fabric I used in the "S" logo.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Cosplay Progress - Final Fantasy XIII-2 Serah Farron, Bag 0.4



As you can see Serah Farron comes with this handy dandy bag that hangs off her waist.  Does that mean it's a duffle bag?  And I played the game through, she doesn't use the thing once! so what the heck is it for?



I didn't wnat to work with the bag panel by panel, so I made the front/bottom/top/back all out of one strip.  I put a band across it with some grey silk like fabric on to of white canvas.

Folding it into the odd shape I cut out more white canvas to match


Whoops I guess my grey panels didn't align properly.  Oh well.


Now for the waist band.  I'm using this shiny vinyl material which will also be used for the skirt.


Sewing two strips together for strength.


Drawing the cirlces and cutting them out after the sides have been sew together.  This will make it an accurate match.


Using the Piping concept.  To give texture to the edge of the waist band, I'm filling and sewing in a pipe (some extra satin cord I had laying around).


For the button I cut out a circle from the left over vinyl, and glued on a pink bead I made from air dry clay.   There's a lot of gold trim around the bag that I will create using long strips of the vinyl. 


I do admit that the gold vinyl for the bag trim doesn't look as refined as if i used real piping, or just put more TLC into it.  But I'm taking a lot of time to finish this Serah outfit, so any short cuts will make an over all difference. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Costume Progress - Superman Logo

I created this Superman logo for the new costume I am working on for Emerald City Comic Con. Here is a picture story of the process with notes below.


1. Draw the logo on a piece of paper, trace onto iron-on interfacing.  Iron onto back of yellow satin.
2. Secure the yellow satin in an embroidery hoop.
3. Draw the logo on the back side of red silk (or trace/use another piece of iron-on interfacing). Cut the logo out, leaving a 1/4-inch seam allowance on the outside of the diamond. Press the seam allowance under.
4. Secure the red logo onto the yellow satin with small straight pins/applique pins and handstitch it in place.
5. Cut the logo out, leaving a 1/2-inch or 5/8-inch border of yellow satin. Logo shown next to my husband's T-shirt which I referenced to create the template.
6. Align the logo on the blue fabric. Machine-stitch the top edge. Then press down along seam.
7. Press the rest of the yellow edges under, pin the logo in place on the blue fabric (top edge is already secured) and hand-stitch the rest of the edges down using small stitches.
8. Done!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Chocolate Truffle Class

Oh those online deals are so addictive!  Me and my friend Liz went to Dawn's Candy and Cake to take a chocolate truffle making class


We filled chocolate shells with chocolate ganache that we flavored with essential oils, fruit purees, nut butters, and liqure. The combinations I picked where
  • Hasetlenut and Chilli
  • Lemon and cheesecake
  • tequila and lime
  • brandy
  • passionfruit

 We were hoping to learn to roll out our own balls, but with the time constraint this was much easier.



Here we're melting chocolate for the coating. 

They taught us about tempering chocolate and how we could skip a lot of the hard work by using an existing piece of tempered chocolate as a starter.


~Stir stir stir~


We had to seal off our chocolate shells with a harden coating of chocolate so our ganache doesn't spill out.  ~dabbing with melted chocolate~ which sets really quickly.


We were taught to THROW our chocolate balls  into the melted chocolates, making a "plooop" sound as we did it.


Fishing them out with a special fork so it can slide off without any finger prints created.


The melted chocolate sets in about a minute so while it's still liquidy we put on little decorations like sprinkles or crushed nutz.  Great tip they taught us is to use a decoration pattern to determine which chocolate you are eating.

Yay, here are my chocolates

Thursday, March 15, 2012

In the Costume Closet: Queen Amidala's Handmaiden


I made this costume for San Diego Comic-Con several years back. My friend Bethany wanted to enter her Queen Amidala gown in the Masquerade,  so my other friend Julie and I both made matching Handmaiden costumes to be her escorts.



Our trio of Queen Amidala and Her Handmaidens won the "Most Beautiful" trophy in the competition, against 51 other entrants. We were number 50 out of 52 and had to follow a giant robot act - Optimus Prime. Needless to say, Queen Amidala took home the trophy. She spent HOURS and HOURS just on creating the beaded panels in her gown. This costume was relatively quick and simple to make.


The robe is velvet, with the pattern stamped into the velvet. Bethany's husband carved the block stamps (in three sizes) which Julie and I both used to make identical cloaks. I lined up and pressed the stamps onto the velvet (prior to sewing the velvet to the lining).

Velvet Burnout Process:
1. Carve out a block for a stamp - wood or linoleum(?), a material that does will not melt
2. Lay the stamp on an ironing board or table with the stamp facing up.
3. Lay your velvet on top of the stamp with the velvet side against the stamp pattern (wrong side up), lined up where you want it placed. Secure your fabric (if necessary) so it will not slide around.
4. With your iron on the Silk setting, press the iron for 10 seconds against the wrong side of your velvet so the velvet fuzz is pressed into your stamp.*
*Do not slide the iron around because you do not want the fabric to slip. If you need to move the iron to cover the entire stamp, gently lift the iron straight up, then move it and press straight down.
*Be careful not to press the corners of your stamp block - you do not want to leave corner imprints in your velvet.


This is what the costume looks like under the cloak. The dark blue sleeves are actually half circles attached at the shoulder seam - looks pretty cool from the sides. I covered the slipper shoes (house shoes found in Chinatown) with the same dark blue fabric. It stretches so I just hand-sewed it over the shoes. The underdress is cheap polyester flag material - has a nice sheen but I wish we used a light cotton or linen instead. The hood/scarf is silk.


This is by far the hottest costume I have ever worn. By hot, I mean IT DOESN'T BREATHE! Dupioni silk headscarfs and polyester velvet cloaks are sweatering. Needless to say, this costume doesn't come out of the closet much. I think the only time I wore it besides Comic-Con was for the Sci Fi Museum Hall of Fame inaugeration of George Lucas, Neil Gaiman and Anne McCaffrey.

Photos taken by JediKai of Alpha Base, Rebel Legion, at the Omni Hotel - San Diego Convention Center

Monday, March 12, 2012

Cosplay - Colouring your Wig

I fell in love with the blended color wigs that are sold on this site but they are always sold out.  So I decided to make my own multi color wig.  This project is easy but tedious, it can be done in front of the TV :)


Start off with a White wig, for the same reason we draw on white paper.

I picked two colours I wanted to use, a Pink and a Blue.  I also have hair elastics handy so I can separate out my hair for colour.  It's mostly useful to separate the Already done portions.



You can see where this is going.  Just start colouring with your Sharpie.  You want to get every single strand (but done in clumps) so do it up against a surface that is throw away like a shoe box cover.

I liked holding on to a clump of hair and just rubbing the Sharpie nib and up and down the hair.  The colour might need several runs to be even, BUT having it not even looks even cool!  Automatic highlights.


I didn't finish the whole wig cause I actually thought it was pretty cool with just the bangs and part of the side as the only color. 


Just thought I would throw in this picture for fun.  I wore this around work for halloween, but I wanted to straighten it first.  Possible but make sure it's on the lowest setting so the fibers dont start melting.

Friday, March 9, 2012

My Little Pony Drawings

I great way to learn to draw a style is to copy the process of one that already exists. With practice you can learn the lines and curves that make that style unique. I know I know, there are people who argue this is just stealing people's style, but this is how the artists of the victorians times learned the the basics to their craft

So I wanted to learn how to draw the new My Little Ponies Friendship is Magic series.

Here's a few runs of me learning how to draw the style. I paused clips and copied what I saw, observing mostly on the eyes and back legs.



Here's the first piece of my trying on my own from scratch. Of course it's Ava and myself. I like our little crafting icons on our butts.


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Costume Progress - Velvet Steampunk Jacket

Time for a new costume! I am working on a steampunk superhero costume for Emerald City Comic Con. How does that work? Take one well-known male superhero, a bunch of Victorian lady clothes, and put them in a blender!

Or something like that. Here's the first piece of the costume.
Ignore the skirt, it's not part of the costume.
But in case you are wondering, the skirt is Simplicity 5006-D, bustled.
I have one month to put it together, so I'm saving time by modifying store-bought patterns. The first piece is a steampunk jacket based on the Simplicity 2172 pattern.

The blue fabric is there because I wanted to see what blue would look like under the red.
I made a few adjustments to the original pattern. I left off the sleeves, shortened the bottom hem considerably, added two inches of height at the waist for my long torso and added extra panels in front where the buttons go so it wouldn't be so tight around the middle. I need room to breathe!


The jacket is made of red velvet with yellow ribbon and gold buttons.

The rest of the outfit will include:
- a bustled skirt (almost done!)
- some kind of fitted corset/bodice with a superhero logo on the front
- a miniature top hat (taking a page out of SmallRiniLady's book)
- spats!

I've got my work cut out for me, that's for sure!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Sugar Gamers Article

SmallRiniLady was featured in a Sugar Gamer Article about "The Goods:  Where to find the best geeky gear"   http://www.sugargamers.com/where-to-find-geeky-gamergear/

YAY, much excited, go check it out.




Sugar Gamers is an organization in Chicago who promote "events that make the fun of 'geek' culture come alive while being surrounded by remarkable and unique individuals."

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Cosplay Progress - Final Fantasy XIII-2 Serah Farron, Boots 0.3



I was going to go to the clearance store and try to get a flip flop shoe with the extra thick sole, but found this ugly rubber shoe instead.  It's PERFECT

I cut out fabric pieces from felt to cover the shoe to make it more of a boot style with it's straps.


I glued the laces into the inside of the flap.


Ok I lost the front strap in the process because got glue doesn't stick to rubber, so I had to with Industrial super glue.  But now I have the perfect Serah shoes