Thursday, July 6, 2017

Fun Patriotic July 4th USA Things To Make With Quilt Fabric

I have the coolest neighbors here in my Utah town. A little while after I moved in to my current house, an amazing fabric designer, Samantha Walker, gave me some pieces of her fabric after she heard that I like to sew. She designs through a company called Riley Blake Designs, and her stuff is just INSANELY cute. Just look at some of these collections she has done:


One of the many cool pieces from her Parade on Main collection.




Fabric with dresses on it! How META is that?!


Adorable Glampers setting down for a night of glamping.

If you don't see these for sale on the Riley Blake site, just do a search on Google for her name and what's on the fabric. The designs are sold on many quilting websites and physical stores, not just Riley Blake.

I hope I've convinced you that she is just AMAZING. So when she gave me a pile of fabric from her Parade on Main collection based on fireworks, rockets and patriotic festivities, I fervently promised to make some unique items from them and blog about them to help promote her like crazy because she deserves to be known.

But you know, I kind of...had just had a baby. On top of that, I also had a toddler. So life dragged me under, and for two years I was heavily in the trenches of motherhood. It completely stifled me artistically. And mentally. But we won't go there. Because THIS is a long delayed triumph -- I've actually created something that I can finally show to the world.


I call it Sammy the Eagle! Because Uncle Sam + Samantha Walker, that's why!

It's...different, it didn't quite go as I planned, but if it even inspires ONE PERSON to go out there, buy some of Samantha's fabric and whip out the most adorable BBQ apron the world has ever seen, then my shoddy work here is fulfilled!

I meant it to be a little costume type thing that my kid could wear around July 4th to cute out the neighbors as they try not to burn down the mountain while shooting Whopping Whistlers and all those other crazily named doohickeys. He didn't really care for it, but was gracious enough to allow me a couple photos to show the scale and versatility of the outfit.







It's not perfect, but HE is, so it works.

I have a couple more projects in the works. This particular one only used the striped and dotted fabrics that are meant to complement the COOL stuff, like these designs:


So if you missed a chance to make something fun for July 4th this year, get an early start for next year! Make some gifts, some teddy bears, some cute dresses and quilts!



Monday, November 7, 2016

How To Make a Bojack Horseman Horse and Princess Carolyn Cat Cosplay Costume



bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume


For Halloween this year I got inspired by the show Bojack Horseman on Netflix. It has human characters and characters that have animal heads. I think they added the animals just so they could make hilarious animal jokes. My favorite is Princess Carolyn, the hard working talent agent with the head of a Persian cat. She is also crazy bright pink. She does things like bat at a toy mouse while she's on the phone, scratch her scratching post, and land on her feet after flying out of a taxi.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

She often has a stern look on her face while as she constantly has to call out Bojack on his horsesh*t.

When I took a look at Carolyn I realized that this costume would be super simple to do. I just happened to have a bright pink Morphsuit from a previous costume that I now considered to be retired now that I have gotten lots of pics in it:

sailor moon transforming henshin cosplay costume

Remember Transforming Sailor Moon? Those were some crazy times.

I also had leftover fleece fabric from making Sailor Moon's hair for that costume -- JUST enough to cover a mascot head! I grabbed some pieces of AstroFoam and got cranking on her head. I just made a foam cage and did basic draping over it to make it pink, then added details with pipe cleaners and fabric scraps. SO easy and can be done with any type of flexible material, probably even cardboard. I see out of the mouth which is black chiffon type fabric and two little nostril holes I cut under the nose to be as subtle as possible. I made this head to function like a bobblehead, with my neck exposed so I would look more like the character.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Foam cage

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Draping is fun. You make darts by just pulling the fabric tightly over your shape, pinning them, then cutting off the excess fabric. After that you sew the darts and turn it all inside out.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Ears and floofy hair. I made a long tongue shaped piece, stuffed it and added wire to curl it up. The ears are fabric over AstroFoam.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Getting her expression just right. Had to decide between smiling, stern, sarcastic...so many good ones to choose from!

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Almost done. I decided at this point to add some puffy cheeks on the sides to get that nice Persian silhouette.

For her necklace, the drawing is very basic and could be deciphered to be either gold or yellow. I went with yellow to make it cartoony. I also made the pendant attach to the "chain" in a more collar-like fashion, using a keyring to join the two through small eyelets. The collar is just a strip of bias tape with snaps in the back to put it on and the pendant is a piece of yellow fun foam with a plastic jewel glued on. This was all stuff I have lying around in my craft room.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Funfoam yellow matched the bias tape yellow. Yay!

The rest of the outfit was just thrift store finds. I got very lucky to find red high heels, a teal green dress and a yellow sweater all at the same DI. They all fit! I found a blue sweater for my hubby's Bojack outfit with a diamond pattern on it. He already owned jeans and a gray jacket and of course one of those hilariously wacky horse masks you can get anywhere.

I added some gold spandex fish to my dress last minute just to have that extra detail on the front. I just glued them on quick and dirty. Only a couple people knew what we were at the Halloween parties/trick or treating, but really, things are done for the glory of the internet where everyone who's looking for you can find you ;)

Anyway, I loved representing this silly show with my hubby and I'm so glad this wasn't hard to put together. Halloween shouldn't be stressful! It's just fun all around!

Here are some photos that I had my three year old take. He's not bad to have around ;)


bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume



bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Toddler took pics with my phone...this was one of the better ones hahaha.

bojack horseman horse princess carolyn cat kitty cosplay costume

Bojack seems a little...hesitant, as usual.

kawaii kowai halloween pumpkin cute face

I'm a kawaii, not kowai, little pumpkin! Hope your Halloween was so fun!!




How to Make a Sora Cosplay From Kingdom Hearts II

NOTICE: I haven't added photos quite yet but I will eventually. I have two kids under 3 and it gets so crazy around here XD

I recently sold my Sora outfit to someone in Georgia. Sora was my second major cosplay that I made back in 2005. Oh those were the days... the cosplay scene was just starting to really take off as the internet became a better resource for photos and materials. We still didn't have great wigs to choose from but we worked with what we could find.

Sora is a typical Square Enix boy, a mashup of all the things that are signature Squeenix. Spiky hair. Zippers in dumb places. Clothing or gear that is just too heavy for normal people to consider using. Shoes that could double as boats. His overall look in KHII I would call "sporty street", complete with king's crown bling on a big chain. Assless wading chaps plus leg saddlebags are an interesting touch. Also pauldrons on the shoulders, because you gotta protect those. At least his look is super symmetrical, unlike most Squeenix protagonists, who prefer to wear most of their accessories on just one side. Lightning is crazy asymmetrical. Wearing her costume feels so weird. See photo below for some examples.

Anyway, I first got the idea to make Sora while working at JoAnn Fabrics in early college. I spotted a chain with those crazy large links and I began to obsess over how I would make him.

Wig

I bought a cheap 80s brown punk rocker wig and cut and styled it myself but it wasn't quite what I wanted so I asked my friend's mom to style it for me since she did that on the side. It turned out a lot better after she handled it. I had to re-style it after every couple events and eventually it was just such a mess that I had to toss it. I had great fun wearing it. I know it wasn't perfectly screen accurate but it was special to me :) I made a lot of friends those first few years who I still talk with today. I even found my very own Riku and Kairi <3

Necklace

I felt very clever when I figured out how to make this. I had the chain from the fabric store first. Then I got a 1/4 inch thick piece of fun foam and cut the crown from that. I painted it silver with nail polish. I took two quilting pins and stuck them through the sides of the foam, through the chain, then into the middle prong of the crown. Then I cut the little ball things off the top of the pins. It was so screen accurate it made my heart sing!

Jacket and pauldrons

I decided to make the jacket from scratch, something I hadn't done a lot of so it pushed me into new areas of sewing. I had only made simple things like skirts and pajama pants before that. I modified a simple jacket pattern by shortening the sleeves and the length and also making the hood pointier and longer and the back a bit more curved. I wanted the shape to evoke the feeling of the classic Nomura piece where Sora is eating a popsicle while standing in the waves. The black fabric was a soft sweatshirt knit and the white parts where made from a slightly shiny knit that had a fluffy backing. The jacket was durable, washable and so comfy and soft.

The pauldrons were made of pieces of foam covered in a shiny gray vinyl. I used velcro and snaps to attach them to the jacket so I could still wash the jacket. Washable cosplay is the best kind of cosplay!

Tank top

I bought a thrift store tank top that was the perfect sport jersey material, navy blue and slightly shiny. I added white material to the neckline and made a red and white pocket for the front.

Gloves

I bought a huge pair of Gore-Tex gloves at the thrift store. They had so much stuffing and insulation in them it was staggering. I cut the fingers off and just tucked the raw edges in each time I put them on. For the stripes I used just regular bias tape. I made a little vinyl piece with silver button covers attached and sewed it onto the gloves. They were comfy and because they were big they gave that cartoony feel.

Pants

I had a navy blue pair of gym shorts underneath. For the chaps I bought a pair of pants that was several times larger than my size. I added white trim and elastic to the bottom of the pants and the waistline. That way the pants billowed outward from my knees to look cartoony. I added a ring of quilt batting to further add to the effect.

Saddlebags

I made these from scratch and they were fully functional. They were super great to have at conventions and carried all my stuff!

Keyblade

My good friend surprised me by buying me a very screen accurate Keyblade at Anime Expo in 2007. It was made from solid metal. It was so, so heavy. I will forever be indebted to her for her generosity.