Latest Update Pic:
Okay, brace yourselves - this is gonna take loooong and have loooots of pics.
I'll make at least the story short: having three daughters. First one infecting others with pokemon. Three pokemon fans around the house (four if you count daddy who's also playing). Getting news of the pokemontour via a friend of oldest daughter. Sewing big costume last time (Raichu, it's around here somewhere) with only two weeks time. Girls all totally "oooooooh, mee too next year!"
This year comes, no sign of new tourdates. Me not being sad about it, having NOT to sew two new costumes. Come summerholidays. Six weeks in Germany. Four of them occupied in one way or the other. At end of July, a day or two before we start into our holidays, I see a notice: Pokemon tour days publicized. Oh whow, the ones which are possible for us are end of september. Makes about 28 days for me to sew and fit these things on my daughter, cause now they still are in holiday camp!
So I start with the things I can guess about and wait for the girls for fittings.
I need two costumes cause the youngest will reuse Raichu from last year - but I'll need to alter that some cause the youngest ain't the smallest! (And besides, I know I can do better now...)
The middle one will be Squirtle (google him) and the oldest wants to be Quilava. Right now I'm working at Squirtles shell.
So bring on the pics:[
This is the styrofoam(?) I'll need to form the shell.
I start with drawing an octangle into the middle of a rectangle, 60 cms by 60 cms. The outer shell units are trapezoids, so I draw a line which goes straight through the center point of my rectangle and the corner of the rectangle. Because I want the shell to be rounded later on, I draw little triangles over these straight lines. They differ, some are 4 cm at the base, some are just 2 cms. The smaller ones are all to the sides, the bigger ones top and bottom, so the shell will get a more oval appearance.
I get a lot of pyramidal cutoffs which I save for Quilavas flames.
And I wish I had a professional foamcutter, something like heated wire and the likes, I'm literally covered in foam particles after cutting...
I sew the trapezoid planes to each other. The thread will not hold long, but cut through the foam if I don't take the tension off. But I plan to take care of this...
Some brown velveteen originally meant for upholstery. It has a nice, but not offensive structure and I think it perfect for the shell.
It gets the same treatment as the foam, but I don't cut the triangles but sew them together just like darts in clothing.
Then comes the real work: sew the upholstery fabric to the shell. I can't directly sew this to the foam (will rip out with time) but sew it to a linen fabric I have lying around (this was an old coverage from our couch).
But first I have to make sure it positioned correctly and there are no folds that will show later. I'm a perfectionist...
So I take a nylon thread and stitch through the ends of the darts from the fabric, through the foam where the corners of the octacle are and through the linen fabric. And back. And forth. I pull the thread quite short; later on I want to have the shell's structure visible by kind of quilting the shell. But I'm not sure my sewing machine will cooperate on this... the foam is 4 cm thick.
On comes the linen. Hey, come to think of it, this is red... this is getting really lifelike.
I tack linen and upholstery fabric to the foam using needles, and then it's hand sewing time... a lot of little stitches have to be done, all close by, so the tension per stitch will be as minimal as can be. I did that yesterday, so today is Day of Truth - I have to do the quilting now. Wish me luck, as sewing by hand through that thick a foam really is no fun...
Until next step,