Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Burlesque Costume - Kiss of the Cobra Woman

Today I'm posting about one of my burlesque acts, called "Kiss of the Cobra Woman", specifically the costume and how it came into being. It's a homage to the Sci-Fi Queens of 1950s B movies and to date is the most complicated costume I've ever made. It took months of head scratching, frustration and eye twitching before it was ready for the stage.

I had a picture in my head of exactly how I wanted the costume to look and even though at times I thought it wasn't physically possible to achieve it I kept trying and am very proud of the finished results. It's had a few tweaks since its first performance and there are still little bits that I think could be better. I like that it's evolving as it goes along though.

In my last post (found here) I showed a picture of the pattern I used to make the dress, which was to be the outer layer of the costume. After I'd pinned the pattern I deliberately left extra fabric below the original calf length line, tapering it along the seam lines so that I could turn it into a longer, almost hobble, dress. Once I'd decided on the final hem length the back split was altered so that a zip could be inserted right to the bottom, although not being able to find a zip long enough I had to compromise and use a couple of heavy duty press studs to close the few inches gap above the hem. Above the waist I followed the pattern exactly and after the pieces were sewn together it took a few adjustments (ok about 6........ish) to make the waist sit as tight as I needed it to be. I was pretty smug pleased with how neat my darts were! To finish off the bottom hem I attached gathered layers of bronze netting to make a stiff frill which took the whole length of the dress pretty much to the floor.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Vintage pattern pile

Today I'm sharing the contents of my pattern box. Some were happy charity shop discoveries hidden amongst hundreds of gawdy 80s knitting patterns and a few were snapped up when Nottingham's Kathleen and Lily's unfortunately decided to close their doors and have a mass clear out of all of their stock (I came away with an unbelievable fabric and haberdashery haul that day but it will need a post all of its own so will save it for another time).

Friday, 12 August 2011

It's the little things....

It struck me yesterday how important the little things can be sometimes........ and also how goofy I can be when I think no one's watching.

One of the things I decided to make, while I was lazily contemplating the day ahead from under my duvet, was a new case for my iPhone. I had a small piece of pink flamingo print cotton hidden in my fabric stash and knew it would be perfect. For extra protection I decided to use some medium weight wadding and quilt the lining with some pretty mint green polka dot cotton.