Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween Costume: Vintage McCalls Pattern

My Aunt did my hair from 1962

Finally I can reveal what I've been working on. My Halloween costume; I'm McCall's 6351! I wanted to do something sewing related this year, and was thinking of things to do, maybe a pin cushion, maybe some ric rac, and then boom I'M GOING TO BE A SEWING PATTERN!

I quickly ran to my pattern stash and picked this one McCall's 6351 from 1962, I knew Fabricland had the most perfect wool polka dot crepe I have been eyeing up. Halloween costume and cute new dress afterwards..yes please. 


 My husband made the frame for the pattern from lightweight plastic pipes from Home Depot and then reinforced it with wooden dowels. The pipes were about 5 dollars total. I got some super cheap white fabric from Fabricland, and cut out pieces for the front and back. Then I just wrote all of the requirements and pattern pieces on the back, and McCall's on the front. I sewed some webbing in the middle of the front piece so I could strap it to my back. Then I sewed the two pieces together like a pillowcase, leaving the bottom open and I tied it shut. 

I wore the costume to work one day and then to the Halloween Parade yesterday. Everyone kept asking if this was the dress. Yes, of course I made the dress! I'm view A, the slim skirt. My aunt teased the crap out of my hair for the parade yesterday, I looked like a character out of Hairspray, it was hilarious. 

 Happy Halloween! I will post more about the actual dress tomorrow.
What are you doing for Halloween?
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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

8 Easy Halloween Costumes

The great thing about sewing your own clothes is the excess of awesome things to wear. This October at work we were encouraged to wear a costume to get everyone into the Halloween spirit. I took this challenge as well as one upped it. I wanted to see how I could make the things I made, and the accessories I already had into some costumes. 

The one thing I bought this halloween was this amazing wig, it's Chris March from Target. I loved his designs as well as his show "Mad Fashion".  I added it to my ric rac dress and viola, I was channeling Miss Yvonne from Pee Wee's Playhouse.

This was a fun one.. curlers in the hair, vintage looking shirtdress, petticoat and apron, makes an easy vintage housewife. 

I wore this earlier in the month when it was a little bit warmer. This is the Ceylon dress, from Colette patterns made in blue gingham. Red shoes and a basket, easy to be Dorothy. I even had a dog bracelet as Toto.

 My Dad's old old denim shirt, wideleg jeans, saddle shoes and wrapped my hair in a red polka dot remnant, Rosie the Rivetor. This was a great costume, because I had a lot of work to do that day and was running around like a mad woman. 

 One of my idols....Miss Piggy. I already had the tail and ears, just add pink! The dress was a vintage pattern I had from last year. 

I wore this one, and no one really realized I was in costume. Obviously I was channelling Joan from Mad Men. I raided my mom's old Joan Rivers jewelry from the 80s (clip on earrings) and wore my purple wiggle dress. 

 Off the shoulder black top, cigarette pants (collette patterns clover pants) and leather jacket, makes a quick costume. But beware when dressing like Sandy from Grease, certains songs will play over and over in your head all day.... whoo ooo ooooo

 Yes I had a Carmen Miranda headpiece in my collection, doesn't everyone? My tropical sundress, plus a ton of jewelry, makes a fun costume. Halloween is all about accessorizing so pile on that jewelry!

So stay tuned this week for my actual Halloween costume. If you follow me on Instagram you have gotten a little peek at it! What kind of costumes do you guys love to wear? Have you ever made your costume?
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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Halloween Craftin'

I've been hard at work creating some Halloween costumes and decor for display at Fabricland. I was even featured in The Star Ledger, New Jersey's major newspaper!  My favorite quote from the article "She doesn't slash and dice her pumpkins. She dresses them. In lace. And sequins." Makes me sound so professional, lol. Anyway, I thought I would share some of the pictures the professional photographer took for the article. 

photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
The mermaid costume is Simplicity 4043, which I found to be overly complicated, and the directions were definitely hard to follow. A costume should always have clear instructions, so many people are trying sewing for the first time at Halloween, and this pattern would definitely scare them away! 

We had the most perfect sequin fabric, that actually looks like scales up close. Sewing sequins is super easy, as long as you have a microtex needle. I embellished the tail with the sequins strands of my own design. Everyone asks how she walks, but as you can see there is a slit for your legs to hang out of. The bodice is made from purple taffeta, with a blue glitter tulle overlay. The secret to a good Halloween costume is a lot of trim! I used 4 different kinds on the bodice, all in purple. I also made the tulle puff balls to float over the mermaid like she is under the sea!

photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger

I made the wreath from one of those Styrofoam wreath forms,and just tied strips of black tulle. The witch hat is a cardboard one from Michael's, covered in shiny metallic fabric that i just glued on and ribbon and orange glittery ric rac (you know how much I love Ric Rac). The skull and the skeletons are from the dollar store. 

photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
 Witch glam was the theme of this display, I decorated three different pumpkins to show the different things you could do. ALL SO EASY! this one is just different kinds of glittery and lacy trims, I used black and different metallic colors to keep in glam. The pumpkin behind this is just the silver sequin trim, glued in a spiderweb form. 

photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
 This pumpkin I covered in black lace, by cutting a hole in the middle of some lace and just stretching it around, and glueing it to the bottom, with a scrap of black felt to cover the fabric on the bottom. And then just put a bird on it! All of these crafts are excellent for all those extra bits leftover from projects that are too good to throw away.
photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
The pillow was super fast, I cut the letters out of leftover black fabric, then went to the sewing machine and just sewed them, and sequin trim to a square, and then made it into a pillow. The i is dotted with a skull and crossbones button. 

photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
 This wreath came from my front door! I found my inspiration on Pinterest. Wrapped a form in yarn, and cut out leaves from felt. Then I stitched them on the machine to look like the stem and different veins. 
photo credit: Ed Murray/The Star-Ledger
 This pumpkin is just made with the leftover sewing notions from the classroom, zipper and boning eyebrows are my favorite. 

This is one of those plastic bucket pumpkins everyone has laying around. I just took strips of leftover fabric, mod podged it to the plastic and then ric rac and a bow finished it off! 
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Monday, October 7, 2013

Pencil Pencil Skirt

 I found this tiny vintage remnant of a cotton pencil print, only 3/4 of a yard. I loved the print but it was too small to make much out of clothing wise.  Then I had the idea to make side panels and the pencil. pencil skirt was born. 

For the base of this pattern I used the skirt from Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing. I made it up in orange last year, so I knew it would work. After that I used a hip curve ruler to make a pattern for a black panels on the sides of the front and back. I used a red rayon bemberg for the lining, I love a surprise on the inside of garments. 

I also tried a couture method on the waistband, found from sew daily. I used hair canvas and organza to sew channels to stabilize and the facing is covered in red ribbon. It definitely makes a waistband that does not curl under and was rather comfortable at work all day. It was fun to do, but mine did not look nearly as neat as the picture! 

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