Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Part One Tinkerbell Costume Tutorial

In October we are planning on a Disneyland visit for all of the Halloween festivities and what better way to prepare then to make a Tinkerbell costume for our little Lou.  Ironically I'm going to be the larger version of Tinkerbell... so we can be matching... now I'll give you I may not be quite as cute as Lou but I'm still going to "bring it" Tinkerbell style.  So this is just part one ... I'm still brainstorming on her wings and shoes... so you'll have to check back for all that fabulousness.  :)  Just a quick note... for the dress bodice I used  the Viola Violette Field Threads Pattern .  However... in the tutorial I will explain how to do a quick bodice without a pattern also if you don't want to buy a pattern. If you have never used  this pattern before... it's amazing... I can make about a thousand different dresses from this pattern... by the way Violette Field threads does not in any way reward me for these thoughts :) as far as I know I'm sure they don't even know how much I adore this pattern or that I even exist... so you can take that to mean this pattern is truly life changing ;)

What you need:
2 Yards of your satin costume green 
5 yards of green tulle 
green thread
and a very wonky hand drawn leaf frond

If you are having problems with a leaf frond (i think that should be the word of the day... frond) let me know and I can upload my very unprofessional frond to be printed.  If you are crazy brave and like to live on the wild side... measure from just above your littles belly button to your desired length on their leg and add about an inch for seam allowance.  I cut out 10 of these pieces so when there are put tog I had 5 leaves total.  Set these aside after you have cut them all out and grab your tulle.  I used 5 yards but you could definitely use less or more depending on how poofy you want Tinkerbell to be.  I think the easiest way to measure your tulle is keep it the way it was on the bolt or how the fabric lady cut it... so it should already be folded in half... from here add 3 inches onto you leaf frond measurement ... that will be your length and your width will just be however wide your tulle already is as it's folded in half... keep moving down your tulle until you have measured and cut all the way down your five yards...
at this point unfold all of your pieces and align them on top of each other like the picture below... 

Then I took that pile and folded the edges together in half like the picture below... pinned the edges and sew a straight seam down the side.  Next sew a long (4.5 if you have a digital sewing mating) straight stitch along the top of the fabric (should be a tube now that you have sewn down the side) to gather the top (to gather just pull one of the strings and push the fabric along it to gather the fabric).  If you want a liner underneath your tulle... my girl is super picky about itchy tulle... So I just cut two rectangles slightly shorter than my tulle with the green costume satin used for the leaves and folded in half ... sewed a straight stitch up the side and gathered the top just like the tulle... set both of these aside for a sec...

If you have the viola pattern follow that exactly for the top half of the dress (front and back bodice, halter straps, and lengths of fabric for bow in back) 
If not an easy bodice that will slip over her head... take her chest measurement add 2 inches... divide in half ... cut 4 pieces in these dimensions... grab some ribbon for straps and bow in back cut appropriate length for your little peanut ... take first two pieces of fabric place ribbon two to three inches out from center of fabric on top of right side facing fabric... place another piece of fabric right side down and pin together along the top so your ribbon is secure and both pieces are evenly lined up.  Sew a straight stitch just along the top.... turn pieces right side out iron and press and that do a topstitch across the top to secure everything... do the same thing to your other two pieces of fabric obviously omitting the ribbon since this will be a halter top.  At this point if you want a bow in the back cut two more pieces of ribbon long enough to be tied in a bow in the back... place bodice front right side up and place ribbon on both left and right sides facing into center... place back bodice right side down.... line everything up (side seams and ribbon in between)... pin down sides and and sew a straight stitch down both sides... your bodice should now be finished.  

Now for the construction of the bottom half of the dress... sew your leaf fronds together with right sides facing each other... once sewn together turn right side out... now I don't know if you have this problem ... but costume satin and I have a love hate relationship ... love because she's cheap... hate because she's a real Bee-otch to work with... so that you don't throw your beloved sewing machine across the room at this point I found that if I topstitched around the outside of the leaf starting in the center like below... it kept the material from getting all wonky.  Did I say topstitch around all five leaf fronds? I'm getting distracted  :) ... make sure you do the topstitching ... I think it makes the fabric lay so much better. 

Friends ... you are getting so close!!  Bodice and leaf fronds done!  Now just the skirt!  So line up your tulle and liner (if you made one) make sure you have pulled the gathers tight enough so they line up with the width of the bodice.

Here's the tricky part .. if you get stumped put your helmet on ... bang your head against the wall a few times... slam a diet coke ... and reassess the situation... you have no idea how many seams I ripped out while experimenting with this dress :) but just keep in mind anything can be fixed... so on that note... with your tulle and liner together right sides out... slide your bodice right side down and upside down over the top of the skirt so that the top of skirt and the bottom of the bodice line up like below... I first pinned this together and then went back through with my leaves and slid them on top of skirt and below bodice so they are in between and lined up at top of skirt...

Pin the leaves spaced evenly and overlapping some depending on the size of your dress... once everything is pinned together sew along the top edge a straight stitch to secure all pieces.  Flip your bodice up and topstitch on the outside of the bodice along the edge where it meets the skirt... you are D- O- N- E!!!  Work it girl (or dude) ... your awesome and your little peanut is going to be totally adorbs!!

So definitely check back for shoes and wings coming soon!  Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave questions and comments! :)


Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Story Behind The Pictures....

It started out as a normal Saturday... finish latest sewing project... bribe youngest daughter to let me take ridonculously gorgeous pictures of her... get a Mcdonald's Diet Coke in a foam cup... cart 14 children (slight exaggeration... 4 to be exact... but you know... 4 rounded up to 14... pretty much the same thing) around to run a few errands and take them to the duck pond to see their favorite duck friend, lovingly named "Afro Duck" (obviously for his fro... who knew ducks had afros... if you are dying of curiosity right now ... look it up ... white crested duck... I'm sure all of you have reached a higher level of genius than I have... and already knew about the white crested duck and his glorious fro... but I promise you when I first laid eyes on "Afro Duck" it was a magical moment for me)  and finish with a few goodies from the chocolate shop. 
It was at the duck pond where our day took a turn... some may say a turn for the worse... however I say a turn for the better... it's not everyday I have the cops called on my children and I while feeding ducks at the duck pond. Who knew you could even do anything at the duck pond that would prompt a 911 call and visit from Mr. Officer.  Let this be a lesson to you... there is apparently a duck patrol on the loose... and they speak for "Afro Duck" and "Afro Duck's" friends... they are the voice for the voiceless.  So anyways back to Mr. Officer (I wish I knew his name... but as any good citizen... I referred to him as officer when speaking to him :) ) 

 I was in the middle of taking these pictures of Lou, when out of the corner of my eye I see an Officer of the Law talking to my son and neighbor kid we brought with us.  I quickly walk over to them and say, "Is their a problem Officer?" Looking back now it was probably laying it on a bit thick to refer to him as officer, but it just popped out!  Mr. Officer replies, "There's been a report made that you were picking up the ducks and throwing them." To which I said, "Well that would be traumatizing."  I can't imagine what my face must have looked like, because there was a long pause and then Mr. Officer awkwardly adds, "Yah, I've never tried to catch a duck and I'm not even sure how you would go about doing that." Me.. "Hmmm... yah that would be tricky." Mr. Officer..."They also reported you were throwing rocks at the ducks..."  Me..."Ummm... we had a loaf of bread we were throwing..."  Long pause again... Officer..."They also said you were running at and chasing the ducks."

At this point I'd like to question... "Is there a law against running towards the ducks?  If so maybe the Certified duck patrol should put out a rule sign... not that I would read the rule sign... but I can see how this would cut down on confusion for other duck pond goers... like say can you run parallel to the ducks... can you run towards the ducks as long as you maintain a 2 foot distance at all times ... or can you chase the ducks as long as they are only in groups of 4.... people lets get specific here who knows if I was running at the ducks or maybe I got something in my eye and was temporarily blinded while running and didn't know I was going toward the ducks... anyways... I say to Mr. Officer..."Listen, I'm not going to lie, my kids were running around near the ducks... but I promise you in no way were we harming ducks."  Long Long Long Pause.... awkward pause... still getting more awkward pause... Me..."Welp, Ok, Sorry about that... kids lets go!"  Mr. Officer... "Just make sure you don't harm the ducks."   Thoughts to self... keep a straight face... don't get arrested for attempted duck violence... do not ask Mr. Officer why we can't run at the ducks.... do not let son who has a big mouth ask Mr. Officer why we can't run at the ducks... Do not ask Mr. Officer if I look like someone who would pick up ducks and throw them... Smile and wave at all the people at the duck pond, so the secret duck patrol knows you're not getting arrested for duck throwing...get out of most awkward situation with Mr. Officer as quickly as possible...

So as you can see pictures can be deceiving... no one would know from these adorable pictures that I almost got arrested for duck death by throwing... 

Thanks for stopping by and sharing in another day in this crazy girl's life! 

This dress is now available in my Etsy store and the poppy lavender head wreath will be available in the next couple days.