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Archive for the ‘costume’ Category

The part of Wendy was played by our 6 (almost 7!)-year old daughter.   (Find the group photos HERE)

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For V’s costume, we referenced the Wendy from Disney’s animated movie.

The pattern that I used for this dress was Simplicity 1507, this time in the girls’ sizes.  This is a tried-and-true old friend of a pattern.  Remember the princess dresses in the past?  Sofia and Elena were both adapted from the little girl/toddler size range of this pattern, and my mom made V a couple dresses from this pattern, too!

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I widened the neckline to make it more of a boatneck look, and I also modified the skirt.  The pattern’s original skirt was a wide rectangle, gathered quite a bit at the waistline.  I decreased the width of the waist seam so that the gathering was more of a 1:1.5 ratio, and I swept out the hem so that it was fuller (the resulting piece looks more triangular).

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I used costume satin to sew the dress, and since it was so very shiny, I decided to use it wrong-side-out for the main dress.  I used the shiny side to bind the sleeves and to make the sash and hairbow.

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V was very excited to have her hair curled for this costume, and on Halloween morning, we even got up extra early before school so that I could curl it again for costume day at school.

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our sweet Wendy Darling

 

 

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Our 4-year old son played the part of Peter Pan this year. (Find the group photos HERE)

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We referenced the animated Disney character, the character description and illustrations in the book the kids read with Husband this summer, as well as the licensed costume I spotted at the Disney store one day when walking through the mall.

I loved the look of a leaf tunic over a green collared shirt, so the first thing I made was a button-up shirt– and since by itself, it’s just a nice cotton top, I’m excited that B will be able to wear it throughout the rest of the fall and winter.  In fact, I’m going to dedicate a separate blog post to that shirt!

I used the Blank Slate Snuggle PJs pants pattern as the basis for the green leggings– I simply narrowed the legs so that they appear more leggings-like, and I left off the bottom cuffs.

The pièce de résistance of the outfit, in my opinion, is the tunic.  Husband did an amazing job of developing the pattern for this garment, which is supposed to look as if it’s been made out of large leaves.  A couple of years ago, a friend gave me a roll of upholstery fabric that was absolutely perfect for this project– there are stitched embellishments that look like leaf veining!

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I added a seam in the front so that the neck opening would be a bit wider and more comfortable, and I set some eyelets through which I threaded some fake leather thong as lacing.

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Of course, we needed some accessories to go with the costume to complete the look!  Husband drafted up the patterns for each of these sewn accessories:

A jaunty cap– I used more of the upholstery fabric and lined it with some of the extra green cotton.  I added a flat loop in which to slip a red feather.

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Elfin-looking shoe covers– these are kind of like spats: we slip them onto B’s ankles, and he wears his actual shoes underneath.  We found some vinyl “pleather” on clearance, and it was perfect for this!

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We used more of that pleather to make a sword holster!  We looked at some LARPing inspiration on Pinterest and found this basic design to be managable–both to make and for B to use.

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And of course, that leads us to the sword, which might be B’s favorite piece of the costume (although I think he really does love the whole outfit!).

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Husband whittled the blade out of some scrap wood we had on hand, and B took great delight in helping Daddy paint it (they used several coats of metallic craft paint).  Husband wrapped the grip in black electrical tape both for looks and also for comfort.

B is so excited about this little wooden sword, and he is quite the fierce swordfighter in his imaginary duels!

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When Captain Hook shows up, you fly!

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just look at that cute, mischievous face! so very Peter Pan…

 

 

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This past summer, Husband read Peter Pan aloud to our children, and after they’d finished the book, they also watched the Disney animated film.  Somewhere along the way, B declared, “I want to be Peter Pan for Halloween!” and upon hearing this, V exclaimed, “And I could be Wendy!”

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And thus our costume plan was born.  We had originally intended to make it a full-family affair, putting to use again Husband’s Captain Hook costume— and I was going to be Tinker Bell!!  But the lack of an event for adults (besides taking our kids trick-or-treating) led us to conclude that perhaps my time/money/energy would be better spent on other things.  However, I am so delighted that our family is still willing and able to do group costumes together.  (Here’s to many more years!)

In this post, I’ll share some costumes of our Peter Pan and Wendy together, and also with our Hook (who dressed up for the photo shoot!  yay!).  I’ll have a couple more posts coming up soon with the details of each of the new costumes!  HERE are the details about Peter Pan, and HERE are the details about Wendy!

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I sewed the Wendy dress and hair bow, the tunic, shirt, hat, and pants for Peter Pan, as well as using vinyl “pleather” to make the shoe spats and sword holster.  Husband designed the pattern for the leaf tunic, sword holster, shoe spats, and hat!  I’ll share all those details soon!

Of course, we need some action shots!

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about to take off!

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And then Captain Hook showed up, and Peter Pan had to do a little sword fighting!

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And then they had the idea to reenact the scene in which Wendy is tied to the mast of the Jolly Roger, and Peter Pan is fighting to rescue her– thanks to a convenient tree in our photo shoot location!

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VBS robot alien

This little “costume” for my son was one of the most last-minute of the VBS theme costumes, but I think it’s my favorite!

Earlier in the week, Husband spent a lot of time getting Becker’s antennae just right; they are made from thin copper tubing and red plastic beads.

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We hadn’t gotten much further than that when Friday morning rolled around.   I was stumped.  I browsed Pinterest for “easy boy alien costume” and similar searches, but was coming up with almost nothing reasonable!  On top of that, I didn’t have much access to my craft room because our contractors were replacing plumbing and had to cut into my ceiling to do so.

Somehow, though, the Pinterest search sparked the idea of a robot costume, and one of the VBS directors had mentioned lots of eyes…  I ran downstairs to my craft supplies and gathered all sorts of bits and bobs and my glue gun.  I assembled my crazy concoction on the kitchen counter while my kids played nearby.

The robot panel is on a base of felt, and I combined felt scraps with textured craft foam to make the different pieces.  I used reflective cardboard for the dial and added beads and sequins from a stash of random bits to give the idea of buttons.  There are little sliders, too– and they actually slide!– fluorescent green pipe cleaners thread through the plastic pony beads.  And of course, since it’s an alien robot costume, there are lots and lots of googly eyes.

robot alien shirt for VBS!

robot alien shirt for VBS!

robot alien shirt for VBS!

I sized the base panel to cover the screen printing on one of B’s red T-shirts, and while I had a phone meeting that afternoon, I hand-basted it into place!  B was so excited about his robot shirt, and it made the work worthwhile!

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Well, another week of VBS is in the books!   We had a crazy-and-fun time again this year, and of course, I couldn’t resist coming up with headwear (and sometimes more…) for each of the nights’ themes.  You know that I love costumes of any kind!

We tried to color-coordinate the themes to the kids’ class colors (because of course, I need to make it more challenging!).  B was in the “Lil’ Red Rockets” preschool group, and V was in the “Galactic Green” kindergarten class.  Husband and I did a little bit of pre-planning and a tiny bit of advance work, but most of these were developed on the day itself…  I intended to do headbands for V and myself again (since they worked out so well last year), and my friend P gave the awesome suggestion of decorating a ball cap for B!  My headband for the week, upon which I based all of my crazy decorations, was actually a cover (made from THIS pattern–I’ve made countless headband covers over the years!) that I sewed from the hot pink bandana that we wore to designate ourselves as the snack team.  I also made a quick ruffly clip with more strips from the bandana to embellish the headband even further– I also used this clip to help stabilize and attach some of the pieces.

My friend J gave us a hand-me-down red hat that we used for B’s headwear.  It had a team logo on the front, but I used my VBS iron-on logo and turned it into a patch to go over it.  I ironed the logo onto some heavy-weight cotton, which I had interfaced with fuseable interfacing.  Then I satin-stitched a border around the logo and cut it out close to the outside edge of the stitching.  I hand-basted this “patch” onto the front of the hat, and I think it turned out really cute!

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Monday night was space night.  I really, really wanted us each to have a rocket launching over our heads…and these creations, made from cardboard toilet paper tubes covered in paper with tissue paper flames, turned out to be more of a challenge than I expected!  I managed to rig them up well enough, though!

rocket selfie!  VBS day 1 (space theme)

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Tuesday night was super hero night.  Husband and I brainstormed a few superheroes that had a signature color that coordinated with each of our kids’ group color.  We chose logos, and I used my Silhouette to die cut or print-and-cut those logos from cardstock.   In keeping with the bobbing-above-the-head tradition, I mounted them on wire and attached them to each kid’s head.  B’s was mounted on his hat, and V’s wrapped around her hair bun.  I’ll show you my superhero contribution in a future post…(I couldn’t think of any hot pink superheroes that had easily-recognizable logos, so I went with an apron!)

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Wednesday night was color night– each kid dressed in their VBS T-shirt (a plain colored shirt with the iron-on logo affixed to the front), and I broke out the hair mascara from a few Halloweens ago and went to town on their hair.  The kids LOVED having their hair colored!  Vivian also wore a little ruffly hair clip I made from fabric scraps, and I painted her fingernails with green polish!

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Vivian with Galactic Green hair

Thursday night was pajama night.  I liked the moon-and-stars idea that I’d done last year, so I just modified the attachments I’d made for V and myself.  For B, I cut out red stars from textured craft foam and made a white felt moon (a red moon felt a little too grim!).

pajama night for VBS!  I made moons and stars for us to wear on our heads

pajama night for VBS!  I made moons and stars for us to wear on our heads

Friday night was create-your-own alien night.  By the end of this crazy week, I thought I was clean out of ideas (we also had our upstairs hall bathroom remodel begin on Wednesday morning, and on Friday morning, they needed to cut into my craft room ceiling for some plumbing work…)  However, some ideas came together at the last minute!  I’m going to do a separate post about my son’s outfit, but I’ll show my cute aliens off here, too!  B was a red robot alien, and V was a green sparkly alien!  We combined an old Tinkerbell dress-up costume with a sequined jacket her sparkly alien costume, and I made antennae eyes with pompoms and green mesh, which we attached to her hair buns with wire.

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Last but not least, possibly my very favorite of our costumes this year– Husband as Flynn Rider.

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The main part of this costume is the vest Flynn wears, of course.  I started with Simplicity 4059, view B and made some pretty significant modifications.

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I found a woman who made a Flynn Rider costume beginning with the same pattern and blogged about it in 2011, and her documentation of the modifications she made to the vest pattern (she also started with Simplicity 4059) were extremely helpful, as were her detailed notes on the vest Flynn wears in the movies.

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We chose a faux suede in a slate blue that I found on clearance+sale at JoAnn.  I bought two yards and spent about $9 on it!  I consider that a good deal.  We pored over screenshots of Flynn’s vest and analyzed and studied it some more.  I added some width and length to the pattern so that the front would overlap and the torso would be long enough for my tall Husband.  I also “drafted” faux yoke pieces for the front and back and we marked out what seemed to be miles of topstitching lines.  To give the vest the loft in its quilting, I padded the main torso section with a layer of flannel (an old sheet!)  and the yoke sections with an additional double layer of flannel before doing the quilting. Husband drafted the collar (my brain was fried)

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We collaborated to figure out how to recreate the hook closures.  Husband bought a short length of brass chain at Home Depot and took apart the links– half of them were twisted to form hooks, and we left the other half of the links “whole.”  We devised fabric mounts (for lack of a better word) that involved tiny buttonholes and fabric loops…I was glad to finish that portion of the vest!

Husband wore khaki pants and a white button-up shirt he already owned, but we wanted him to have the rakish adventuring boots that Flynn has–without having to buy much.  Husband had the brilliant idea to turn an old pair of brown pants into a spat-like device that covered boots he already owned to give them to floppy fold-over top (they are also lined with pieces of yet another old sheet!).  We used a swatch of pleather to make Flynn’s spats.  I sewed elastic to the corners to make loops, and we added large brads from my scrapbook stash to look like the studs on Flynn’s.  I didn’t have brass brads, so we used a yellow permanent marker to color some silver ones.  I was amazed what a difference they made!

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To top it all off, Husband grew a beard and shaved it to a goatee for Halloween weekend.  Look at that smolder!

 

 

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Costumes 2016: Pascal

Our almost-two-and-a-half-year-old son played the part of Pascal in our family costume this year!

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We started with the basic jumpsuit in Simplicity 1765 in the smallest size published, but it was still over 10″ too long for our boy, since the pattern is really a “child” sized pattern, not a “toddler” sized pattern.  We shortened the pattern and also took out quite a bit of bulk on the side seams.  Since we were making a chameleon outfit and not a dinosaur, we lengthened the tail and changed its shape a bit.  When the suit was assembled, Husband added some strong twisted wire into the stuffing of the tail, and we used that to curl it up.

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I changed the feet on the pattern to be more like Pascal’s three toes, and instead of making mittens, which B would have hated for restricting his ability for holding onto things, I modified the feet to make something that is effectively a wristband with three big puffy toes that come out over the hands.  The wristbands are held together with Velcro.

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We hand-stitched the head and eye ridges onto the hood and added fabric eyeballs.  To make the eyes, I cut two large circles out of white cotton (old sheet, of course!) and ran a long stitch around the perimeter.  I added some polyfill inside and cinched the stitches.  On the first one, I used a marking pen to determine the placement of the iris and pupil, removed the stuffing and flattened it again. Based on this marking, I used freezer paper templates to paint the iris/pupil onto the flat fabric circles, then cinched them up again with stuffing inside.  At the very end, I added a little catchlight (the white dot) in each eye, and it absolutely amazed me how much of a difference it made– the eyes suddenly looked friendly, rather than staring.

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The hood (as well as the hand-toe wristbands) is lined with some fabric from an old dress shirt of Husband’s.  When I realize that there was a likelihood of the lining being visible, I knew I needed to use green fabric– and the only reasonable green I had in my stash was this shirt.  Before I cut anything, though, I made sure that I could also transform the shirt into an apron!  The hood lining was cut from the upper sleeves– it is amazing how much fabric goes into a sleeve!

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Stay tuned for Flynn Rider!

 

 

 

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