stitchrat: (Pins & ribbon)
2010-01-18 09:18 pm
Entry tags:

Pattern-making and my excuse for doing nothing

Winter break, for the most part, was supposed to be my "lock down and SEW MY ASS OFF TIME", but after working and going to college with quite literally no vacation time for over a year I ended up basically doing nothing. And since break is winding down now, I decided I'd frankly rather spend my day watching Torchwood than sewing a petticoat and vest.

This isn't to say I didn't do anything. I doodled patterns while watching the screen, coming up with the designs for the vest I need to do, as well as a dress and a nightgown.



Pattern-making is actually what original got me involved in fashion and sewing. When I made my first shirt I had drafted the pattern myself using an already-owned dress shirt as a base. My mother boggled at me, of course, and when I was done I just sort of shrugged and told her "it's like a puzzle."

Mind, my first shirt was in no way impressive. Better than what I see some sewing newbies stumble through (mind, I already knew basic stitches and how to work a sewing machine), but nothing to write home about.

But that line still rings true for me in many ways. Pattern making, for me, is like a puzzle. You need to craft pieces that fit around one static shape--this is, the body of the person you're making something for.

I literally cannot be happy being given a pattern and told to make something from it. The actual sewing is probably my least favorite part of the sewing process. Sure, it's almost zen running something through a machine and getting the seam allowances right, but where's the thought?
stitchrat: (Default)
2010-01-11 05:53 pm
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zydrate comes in a little glass vial

I was intending to have two of my Shilo costumes done by tomorrow, warranting a nice, long post about both of them and their processes. Instead, one emergency text and a change in plans tomorrow means I won’t have the second costume done for a bit (“a bit” being Wednesday), but I figured I’d still make a post concerning the one outfit I have done.

Shilo’s “Zydrate Anatomy” outfit is probably my favorite in the whole movie simply because it is so much like something I would actually wear. Also because purple is my favorite color to wear (my actual favorite color is green—just so you know).



I started the outfit with the jacket. The original jacket is a muted grey-purple with a light design that you cannot see in the actual film. It had a small peplum on the back—probably my favorite detail. I opted to start the jacket using grey corduroy. I had actually found a fabric with a nearly identical print to the original in a pale tan, but it was too delicate to dye. The corduroy had the right thickness and a nice amount of texture to make the jacket, while not perfectly screen-accurate, suitable. It also took to the purple dye just enough to be the exact color I needed.

I drafted the pattern entire myself, going off the photos on the repo_costumes photobucket. Unlike a lot of the sewing I do, I did not base it off a pattern I had previous done, or a piece of clothing I already owned. Unfortunately I managed to make the sizing too large, misinterpreting my seam allowance, but I managed to tailor it in to fit me nicely, although not as tightly at Alexa Vega’s fit hers in the movie. I also forgot the pockets, a detail I plan on adding at a later date.



The skirt came next, another self-made pattern going off the repo_costumes photobucket. The fabric is 100% purple cotton bottomweight, and is fairly soft to the touch, yet stiff enough to hold the pleats right. This was actually the easiest of the costume, finished in a comparatively short time. It’s still lacking in terms of the bottom lace, which I didn’t buy enough of, but I have intentions of fixing this the moment I can get out to the fabric store.



The final piece of this was the shirt—a high-collared, white number with lace across the front. I had done a button-down shirt with a similar high collar earlier and altered the pattern for my purposes of this. Also, instead of having four darts (two in the front, two in back), I opted only to use two in the front to make it somewhat easier to pull the shirt on and off, with only the zipper in the back half unzippered.

The main downside to the shirt is the lace—for some reason Joann Fabrics had no white lace of the right size, and AC Moore only had very cheap lace, so I had to use the cheap kind. Surprisingly, however, it is not itchy, cheap lace. I plan on replacing it once I have access to the right kind, as well.

I plan on getting some photos of me in the actual costume up in a little. Until this, have a shot of me in my Shilo wig, with the jacket and shirt:

stitchrat: (Default)
2010-01-05 08:50 pm
Entry tags:

Of Zydrate and Television Shows



And so the first post of my sewing blog. At the moment I’m in the process of working on my costumes for my Shilo shadowcasting. I finished the purple jacket for “Zydrate Anatomy” weeks ago, and the skirt this morning—save for the lace, which I didn’t but enough of. The shirt has been a pain in the ass, however. How I’ll manage to take it on and off easily between scenes… I have no idea. It’s a bit of a tight fit, in order for it to fall right on me. And the back zipper is nearly impossible for me to zipper myself. I suppose this was a case where I should have sacrificed screen accuracy for my own personal ease, but we’ll see what happens.

Photos and a real explanation of the outfit will come when I’m actually finished though—for now, on to more whimsical topics.



As someone who spends a lot of time sewing, I find I inadvertently watch a lot of television—I need the background noise, and I enjoy looking up occasionally to catch up with whatever show I’m watching. This means anything that requires thought is out. I’m not much of a comedy fan, however, and I’ve watched my way through Doctor Who, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and various other television shows. Right now, however, I’ve found I love watching “The Addams Family”. For me, it’s the perfect show: short, easy to watch, without the need for me to pay attention to all the details. It’s just as funny to listen to as it is to watch, and the Addams has a particular dynamic I find very enjoyable. Since my voyage into the show, I’ve found my sewing to go a lot faster, and I’ve been getting a lot less frustrated with the small mistakes. It’s enjoyable.