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Topic: Steampunk Costume for SteamCon II  (Read 5533 times)
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RoaneFaery
« on: February 13, 2011 07:39:34 PM »

So last year I went up to Seattle with my husband and a couple friends to the Steamcon II convention.  I love a good reason to dress up and make a costume or four. 



A few months before my local steampunk group invited a sewing teacher to come down from Seattle and teach a corset making class. It was a one day crash course. We sent our measurements and she drafted the patterns and brought the hardware. We brought the fabric, thread, bias tape, and our sewing machines.  About 9 hours later I walked out with a completed corset (almost... it took me less than 30 minutes once I got home to finish the bias binding.)  I liked my corset and it fit great after making the alterations I needed (apparently I am a "busty gal" and I have no idea when that happened.)

I immediately went online an ordered all the hardware I would need to make three more corsets.  And then I went looking for fabric to make a corset I could wear to Steamcon. The material for the corset inspired the rest of the fabric choices for the undershirt, bloomers, bustle skirt, and cuffs. I knew I wanted color for this outfit. I have enough all brown or black costumes.

Outside of Corset

Inside of Corset


I used some commercial pattern I had lying around for the shirt. I just added a ribbon to in instead of using elastic in the neckline.  This way I had some options when it came to how tight or loose the neckline was.



The bustle skirt was made using this tutorial:
http://www.cutoutandkeep.net/projects/burlesque_bustle_skirt

I added a little to much ease to my measurments and the layers came around the sides too far but it would take a lot of work to fix since there are so many layers to it.  it is hard to see in the pics but the lace trim is a dark brown.

Skirt front:

Skirt back:


The bloomers... well I ended up using the Colette Patterns Madeleine Mini Bloomers pattern but made them longer. I also had to make the fabric since I wasn't going to be able to find anything stripped and I didn't want to use a solid color.  I also had to line them since the insides were a mess with all the seams and there was no way I was going to be able to thread elastic or ribbon through them with all those seams.  I may re-do them at some point but I don't know in what fabric. You can't really see them in these photos but you could from straight on.



And I made a pair of cuffs... they really need to be lined though. They are really itchy on the insides.


And one more picture of me with my husband. I made his shirt from some duck fabric and a thrift store button down and some buttons. I used a Threadbanger tutorial for that one.



Oh and the hair falls were a great find. A woman was selling them at a convention I was at the weekend before Steamcon and they matched my outfit perfectly.  The colors couldn't have worked better if they had been made for my outfit.

I was of course finishing the hand sewing of the bias binding on my corset as everyone was getting dressed to go get these pictures taken. I always seem to work up until the last minute. The cuffs were partly hand sewn on the car ride up as well.

Hope you all like it. Comments and critiques welcome.  And suggestions on what to do with the bloomers.
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BlueCherryFaerie
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2011 07:55:42 PM »

Wow, you did a great job!  I love all of it.  I've really got to learn how to make a corset one day <sigh>.
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cherry_blossom55
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2011 08:38:16 PM »

Very nice! I have to say, I have always had a problem with that bustle skirt tutorial, but the way the ruffles on yours come around the front make it TOTALLY AWESOME whereas the original, in my opinion, is kind of lame. Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2011 09:02:42 PM »

So love the complete outfit. Really cool to get a chance to see the top and realize that the look is carried off with a simple one. Your falls complete it. Shocked Grin
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« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2011 09:52:26 PM »

Wow, its so beautiful, and the hair falls does add a nice touch
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« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2011 09:58:19 PM »

Absolutely gorgeous!
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BrittanyVictory
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2011 10:26:21 PM »

this rocks! :}
I especially love the skirt, and the color choices are so pretty!
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« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2011 02:23:28 AM »

Great costume and you look absolutely stunning in it!
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RoaneFaery
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2011 09:53:29 AM »

Wow, you did a great job!  I love all of it.  I've really got to learn how to make a corset one day <sigh>.

Thanks! and making corsets seems very intimidating but I think drafting the pattern is the hard part. If you have a pattern like the one I have it is all straight seams. The hardest part is putting in the busk but once someone showed me how it was really easy. Oh and putting in the grommets took forever. But once you;ve seen it you'll be surprised by how easy it actually is.

Very nice! I have to say, I have always had a problem with that bustle skirt tutorial, but the way the ruffles on yours come around the front make it TOTALLY AWESOME whereas the original, in my opinion, is kind of lame. Smiley

Yeah, in a way the ruffles coming around kinda works. It makes my hips wider but that just accentuates the small waist from the corset (which wasn't laced as tight as it could have been but I knew I was going to be in it for hours.)  The other trick is fitting it for wearing a corset which alters your measurements.  But you still have to fasten it before the corset gets laced. Tricky...

So love the complete outfit. Really cool to get a chance to see the top and realize that the look is carried off with a simple one. Your falls complete it. Shocked Grin

I knew I needed an undershirt because the pattern is based off a Victorian corset meant as underwear.  And did you know they stuffed their corsets to keep the girls up? I didn't use padding but I also didn't want to wear a bra. So I needed something under so I wouldn't be in risk of showing anything inappropriate.  But I also knew not a lot would show and I didn't want to distract from the fabric of the corset. I did make it a bit too short. I am tall (5'10") and I often forget to lengthen patterns.

And thanks for the comments everyone!
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« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2011 05:07:03 PM »

I don't know how comfortable it would be, but you might find an appropriately stripey, shiny, material in decorator fabrics - like curtain fabric.  You'd probably still need to line it, but you wouldn't have to worry about seams.

I concure with the group regarding the ruffles.  Around the hips makes it more interesting and unique.

All in all, a beautiful ensemble.
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