Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Water Faerie Halloween Costume

This year for Halloween I decided to be a water faerie.  I really liked all the mermaid make-up I was seeing on Pinterest but totally am not in the shape I'd like for all the midriff revealing required in a Mermaid outfit plus ....wings! Since we prefer to coordinate or theme if we are costuming together my sister decided to be a woods faerie.  

For this year we are doing Mickey's Halloween party at Disneyland with my sister and nephew on Oct 3rd and then regular Halloween so I needed an unobtrusive wing and I really want to try these amazing cellophane wings I'd been seeing on Pinterest as well. 

First I made the headdress we hadn't started the blog yet so no pictures of the process.  I also made an elf ear out of wire.  I wasn't satisfied with the process and ended up buying this really cool tool that I want to use to remake it. (Turns out I am so not ready for wire working.  Elf ear idea scrapped.)

We ran to the Goodwill and found some amazing dresses.  Mine was $12.   After reading an article on washing things from the thrift store at The Budget Fashionista I decided to invest in dry-cleaning the dresses because ewww. The chemicals used on the dry cleaning are supposed to kill anything that is on the dress.  Dry-cleaning was also $12, but ya live and learn. 

So a minor problem with my dress is I was a bit to round and  incredibly too busty for the size of the dress.  I decided to just take the zipper out and put a corset back in instead.  I found an amazing tutorial at Sew for Dough that I didn't really have the skill to make happen so I just took the inspiration for how and went from there as usual.

Step 1 was to remove the zipper from the dress with a seam ripper. I also removed the silly tie on the front.

Step 2 was to attempt to turn the tie into loops following the directions of the competent seamstress.

Step 3 was to acknowledge that I totally messed that up and just use ribbon instead

Step 4 was to attach the loops to the dress.  Working in the zipper seam I pinned a piece of ribbon and looped it back in about a fingers width across from the first piece I pinned it in place on a slight diagonal and then added the next piece ensuring that the ends of the loops overlapped.  Continue down the length of the opening.  Begin making loops on the other side of the seem making sure that they match up as evenly as possible with the loops on the other side. 
Step 5 I cut the bottom most layer of the skirt with the tulle edge out as close to the bodice as possible.  Then cut a piece of material out of it to use for the modesty panel.

Step 6 Hem the top edge of the panel that will be visible.  Then pin the panel to one side of the dress.  If the top line of loops doesn't quite match with the top of the panel just hide it with a piece of ribbon sewed over the top. Sew in using a line of tiny straight stitches.  At this point you need an assistant.

Step 7 Put the dress on and have the assistant tuck the panel in and the pin a few pins in a line where the panel and the dress are going to match up.  You want to attach it a tiny bit smaller than where it lays so that it doesn't bunch up too much in between the stays but also leave enough space to get in and out of the dress.

Step 8 Pin the other side of the modesty panel in and sew closed as you get towards the waist you should have the pins going in a triangle shape to taper the size. 

Step 9 lace it up.  I wanted to use the corset style lace where you have one string starting at the top and one at the bottom that meet in the middle and tie.  To measure loosely lace a piece of ribbon up leaving plenty of room to leave the stays unlaced while putting the dress on then add like a foot and a half and cut. 

Now you can fit in your dress!

Now that my dress fit I had to faerie it up a bit and downgrade the princess level by cutting up the bottom edge.  I cut each layer of the dress separately using randomly grabbed sections and cutting inverse v shapes out of the bottom edge.  Creating a random rough edge for the whole dress.

That's it for the dress.  Now on to the wings and the makeup.

Faerie Wings

I needed a simple, soft, unobtrusive pair of wings for the Disneyland Halloween party.  I found this amazing fabric at Hobby Lobby. It was so shimmery and iridescent it just called out to be made into faerie wings. I bought a yard of fabric.

I laid the yard of fabric out flat on the ground then brought one corner up to the side so that I could make it into a square.  I cut the left over edge off to use to attach the wings.  I turned the now square piece of fabric into a diamond shape and then cut most of the way into the center of the wing down along from the top and bottom points.

You'll need to sew around the entire edge of the wing, to keep it from fraying and give the wing some structure.  I used a zig-zag stitch.  I also felt a need to hand sew "veins" into the wings by had with a large gather stitch.  I don't think that they were really necessary, were a huge pain and a waste of time.  I think that if I wanted the definition it'd be fine to machine sew them but trying to cinch them later just didn't work as planned.

Take the remaining strip of fabric and fold it in half lengthwise (hot dog style for those of us who still remember elementary school) and cut the strip in half.  Then fold the strip in half again.  Pin and stitch creating a casing.

Hold the strip up to your shoulder going under the arm as if it was a tiny sleeve to measure for size.  You want it to be snug so the wings don't fall off, but not so tight that it is uncomfortable.  Cut the casing to the appropriate size.

Take a piece of 3/4 inch elastic and measure the same way, but hold it stretched to measure.  Your elastic should be an inch or so shorter than your casing.

Trim seam allowance and turn your casing inside out.  To easily turn your casing pin a safety pin to a piece of ribbon slide the ribbon through the casing then pin it to the end, pull the ribbon through,  bringing the end of the casing with it and then unpin the safety pin when you finish. Then thread the elastic through.  (Yes my fabric changed color, I forgot to take pics of this part of my wings since I was on the phone with my mom, I took pics when making my sisters wings she was an autumn faerie so hers are brown.)

Pull back the sides of the casing and sew the ends of the elastic together.  Sew the ends of the casing closed.  After a variety of attempts to make it a neat and tidy inside I finally decided I was comfortable just folding the ends into each other and sewing it taught with a little square of stitching.  Make sure you close your ends in the same place you stitched the elastic closed and then sew that same spot to the wings and it keeps all the ugly stitching in the same place against your body when the wings are on.

This next step is going to be much easier with an assistant.  Hold the wings up to your body with the uncut corners out in your hands and figure what point you want the wings to attach to your shoulders.  The uncut middle of the wing should reach somewhere mid-body.  Take the seamed portion of the sleeve and attach it to the wing at the point you want it to lay on your body the sleeve should face out away from the wing.

Cut a piece of beading elastic to make a loop around your middle finger.  Sew one end to the the uncut corners of your wings.  I used a zig-zag stitch and just sewed the heck outta it.  Cross the elastic when you sew it to the other corner.

The wings will go on your body via the sleeves and then when your fingers are in the loops they will open, close and move with you.  If you need greater ease of movement simply slip the loop off your finger and let the wings hang closed.  These are the most practical wings, or ridiculous costume accessory I have ever chosen to wear.

Faerie Make-Up

A huge part of any costume for me is hair and make-up to complete the look.  I couldn't imagine trying to take pictures of this process so I thought I'd give a video a go.

Wheeww that was the longest post ever!! Thanks for staying with me this far!

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