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1  CLOTHING / Costumes: Discussion and Questions / HELP! Drag Queen Emergency! (Involves Glitter.) on: September 01, 2011 10:11:17 PM
Eeeek, help!

I'm doing some costuming for a queen friend of mine, who is starring in a stage production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch. For those who have seen the film, I made the "Yankee Go Home With Me" cape. For the rest: I made a VERY large cape. It's got tons of spraypaint on it, and to amp up the awesome, I threw glitter on the paint while it was wet so it'd stick.

One problem: during dress rehearsal tonight, they found it snags terribly on her nylons.  Embarrassed

The show opens tomorrow.

I do not have enough time, materials, energy or money to make another cape. The only choice is to try and get the glitter to stop being so scratchy.

My thoughts, in the order I'll test them:
1. Rub a candle all over it, hoping the wax will cover the glitter enough to remove scratchyness, OR
2. Lightly rub with sandpaper, hoping to loosen the troublesome particles, OR
3. Spray with clear spraypaint, OR
4. Coat with brush-on poly.

I REALLY want to avoid anything that adds more stiffness (which the spray paint/poly will do) or takes a while to dry (ditto), so I WOULD LOVE OTHER SUGGESTIONS. You can tell I'm serious, because I'm using all caps.

Please help.
If they had a "praying hands with doe eyes" emoticon, I'd use it right here.

2  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Help with a sagging Mother Nature dress on: May 07, 2011 09:55:57 AM
I am building a costume dress for a local Renaissance Faire. It's for "Mother Nature," played by a lovely, dreadlocked pregnant girl. By Faire time she will be about 6 months along, and she's showing quite a lot. So...

We decided to go with an empire waisted dress with a double layer skirt. I took apart a shirt and used it as a pattern for the bodice, adding a cowl neck (a huge one that turns into a hood), changing the sleeves. Now it's time to do the dress's skirt.

The top is made from a fairly lightweight stretch material. We wanted stretch so as her belly and tatas grow, the dress still fits. The skirt we have planned is made from olive green stretch velour, and made in panels that flare toward the bottom, both to reduce bulk around her waist (as opposed to something gathered) and to emphasize her growing belly while still stretching to accomodate it. The skirt also has a split overskirt on it, made from very flow-y lightweight lace.

I am not concerned about the lace. It's so thin that I should be able to gather it and sew it directly onto the bodice's bottom. However, I'm worried that the weight of the velour will drag the bodice down or stretch it out in an unflattering way if I sew it to the bodice.

Ideally, I'd like this skirt to be attached to the bodice. That way there's no worry of anything shifting out of place, and it'd be easier for her to get into in a hurry. The only thing I've thought up is to put a set of waist ties at the juncture of the skirt and the bodice, to help take the pressure off the bodice itself.  But if that won't work, we'd played with the idea of having the velour be an underdress, of sorts, which comes up over her bust and is worn under the bodice/lace skirt bit. That way there's no worry of a gap between the velour and the bodice.

Thoughts? I'd be happy to give more info if needed. The deadline for this is fast approaching, so any advice is more than welcomed.
3  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Help decorate the Dancer Glen! on: May 18, 2010 09:22:03 AM
Hello everyone! I have so missed Craftster... posting this is like coming home. Wink

Anyhow... my bellydance troupe will be performing at our local Renaissance Faire for 5 weekends. We've been given a space for tents, a stage, etc-- but we gotta decorate it. We've already painted our stage, but we'd like to add some fabric to it. A brief explanation:

The back of the stage area is a tall wooden slat fence. It's been painted deep gold. We bought 10 yards of broadcloth (probably cotton/poly blend-- they were remnants, so I'm not sure) with the intention of cutting it into strips 1' long and the width of my clear ruler (yay for rotary cutters!). We'd like to sew the strips onto thin rope along the short ends, so the strips will dangle off and ruffle in the breeze. The whole shebang will be tacked to the top of the fence.

My question: What should I do to the fabric to protect it? The "flags" will be out in the elements for five weeks. They don't need to last any longer than that. I worry about heavy fraying, not so much about color fading (it is the "ye olde" times, after all). I'm limited on time, so I'd prefer not to stay stitch every panel-- there's going to be a LOT of them. I do have a serger, but again-- it'd take forever, and the serged edges might really stand out against colored fabric on a deep gold background. Suggestions?
4  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / How antique-y is Pearl Ex Antique Silver? on: April 08, 2009 02:34:18 PM
I bought a big package of Pearl Ex at Michaels the other day and am kinda having buyer's remorse. I haven't opened it yet and am thinking of returning it-- simply because the cost was so high (it was a 12 pack- "Series 2"). However, the colors are sooooo fantastic that I figured I'd ask some questions before bringing it back.

I've been trying to make "antique silver" pendants. (I make bellydance accessories, and the idea of something that looked old but wasn't too expensive and/or heavy was too alluring.) I bought the Pearl Ex mostly for the #662- "antique silver" color. I planned to apply it over black clay. How antique does this really look? For that matter, how old does the "antique copper" (#661) look? If anyone has example photos, I'd love to see them. Diane B., I've read through your site some... there was at least one picture I found where I went "AHA! THAT'S THE LOOK!" but alas, that particular photo didn't have a "how they did it" attached. Thanking you all in advance...
5  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Where to buy grommets for Dritz hand setter? on: April 07, 2009 05:55:05 AM
I recently bought one of these: http://www.target.com/gp/detail.html/181-9590517-8760358?asin=B001CEAMJC&AFID=Nextag_DF&LNM=More_Categories|Home_%20_Garden|B001CEAMJC&CPNG=home%20improvement&ref=tgt_adv_XSN10001

...to use in making corset belts. I love it, and it works great for my purposes, but the only grommets/eyelets that I can get locally are the matching Dritz ones (I use nickel-plated brass ones that are silvertoned). I use at least 28 grommets per belt, and at $3 per pack of 15, the cost is getting silly. I looked around Google for another supplier, and had trouble finding someone who offered the silvertone ones in the size I need (1/4"). I found these guys: http://www.ahh.biz/hardware_catagories/grommet_sets.htm ... but they say they can't guarantee that their grommets will work with other brands of setting tools. So...

Anyone know of a brand of grommets that will work with the Dritz setting tools, and where I could buy them? I'm looking for silver 1/4" (although other colors will be handy, too, but silver is kinda a must), and looking for bulk-- packages of at least 30.

6  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Beaded bangles~ first shot. on: January 05, 2009 07:30:41 PM
Hopefully my pics aren't MASSIVE HUGE. Been making some bead-wrapped bangles out of a set of bracelets that were too big for my wee hands.

The first one didn't turn out as well as I'd have liked (cowrie shells and coral beads):

The others are pretty ok, I think:

Carnelian and "honey" quartz:

More coral:

One with glass beads and shell dangles:

And one with copper wire and bits of old earrings:

I'm quite fond of the last one, and the all-coral one as well, but alas-- the wire doesn't add enough bulk to make them fit me. Ah well. Hope you enjoy!
7  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Rufflebutt Clown: roughly 8 billion pictures on: November 01, 2008 04:32:15 PM

I was a clown. After years of dressing as things that were unrecognizable, it was awesome to walk around and not get asked what I was "supposed to be."

The costume is about 90% home-made, no patterns. I didn't make my socks, my shoes (though I did decorate them), or the wig base.

I made the undershirt like a tank-top out of stretchy glittery material, then cut some sleeves off another shirt, stitched them on, then "laddered" the sleeves and added ruffles, sequins and stripes of glitter down the front.

The overshirt/vest was an old shrug that I added lace to. It was last-minute, because my outfit wasn't warm or colorful enough with just the black top.

Bad photo, but the best that shows the tops:

My bottom half just brings me such joy, and it's not often I can say that. I made the pants from scratch by adapting VegBee's wrap pants into non-wrap pants, and making the crotch twice as deep. I then folded the extra material over to make an attached miniskirt. Then I sewed on five metric tons of ruffles.

The ruffles are made from four different fabrics, plus purple storebought lace.  I used the info on gathering with clear elastic from VegBee. She was apparently my DIY Halloween saint. Cheesy

I also gave the pants pockets, which I didn't use at all:

I also used the gathering tutorial for my tutu. I made it two layers, and open in the back to show off my rufflebum and to make it easier to sit down and go potty. I think I may do a tut on how I made the tutu (ha!) at some point, because the way I did it makes the layers interchangable. As it stood, I only had two layers, so it didn't much matter. After sewing, I glued sequins on that are kinda hard to see in the photos.

I promise my makeup didn't look so shoddy in real life. I do wish I'd carried the white further down my neck, though.  Embarrassed

I made the umbrella by cutting down a full-sized 'brella, bending the metal bits to a new, more curved shape, and then replacing the original fabric with some crazy cotton I found. And I got to take the best hardcore crafting photo ever:

Finally, there's the wig. As I said above, I started with base wig. It was a purple bob style with bangs. I then dreaded a lot of it, and added synthetic dreads of other colors, as well as braids, loose hair, three colors of plastic lacing, ribbon, sequins-onna-string, glitter, and a big 'ol pink bow. I pulled the back up, backcombed some loose hair and snuck it into the little beehive I made, and then pulled the sides into pigtails. I loooooove it. I'll probably invent some reason to wear it again some time. Here's pics I took without the costume/makeup on, which are also pre-glitter, pre-sequins and pre-bows:

I don't think I've EVER been so proud of a costume. I had so much fun walking around under my little umbrella, and got a fair few compliments (and one photo taken of me. That's never happened before, so I felt like a celeb).

Many thanks for looking, and SUPER MEGA UBER thanks to VegBee for her tutorials (found at http://indietutes.blogspot.com/); my costume would have been very sad without them.
8  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Mini Clown Parasol? on: October 18, 2008 06:32:26 PM
My husband and I are going as clowns this year. I'm totally jazzed about it; almost my entire costume is self-made, including a crazy purple/blue/pink dreadlock wig. BUT, I'd really like a mini parasol to carry around and be silly with. You can see some in action here:


or for sale here:


I'd rather not have to buy one. Well, you probably guessed that, seeing as I'm posting on CRAFTSTER, which is for people who MAKE things. Cheesy Any suggestions? Right now I figure there's two options: paper mache one over a bowl or similar, or cut down a "real" umbrella and decorate it. I'd rather do the latter, so I could still close it and carry it, but I've never cut apart an umbrella's structure before, so I dunno if it's possible. I'd welcome advice.

9  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / Turning a crib into a fortress? on: August 21, 2008 05:35:43 AM
I have no idea where to put this post, so I'll stick it here for now.

My daughter is 15 months old, and is quite the climber/walker. She's not a good enough climber yet to get out of her crib, but she IS talented at sticking one (or occasionally, both) legs THROUGH the bars, where they get stuck above her knees and cause much crying (and thus, little sleeping). Last night was kinda the last straw. After three weeks of no-full-night's-sleeping for both mom and baby, I cut two huge pieces of cardboard and threaded them through the bars so she couldn't get stuck. This was meant as a one-night-only solution, so now I'm fishing around for more permenant ideas. I'm sure the cardboard isn't the safest thing, and at the very least, it's bloody unattractive and will eventually decay/mold/get torn apart as she slobbers and pulls on it.

Ideas? The "blocker" would have to be stiff-- I already thought of making an oversized bumper pad, but I fear she'll just step on it as she did with her normal sized one. Plus, I don't like the idea of basically supplying her with a step stool. Wink The only thing I can think of is some sort of plasticy material like they use to make, oh, bags and fabric-covered storage, but huge and covered in fabric and possibly still woven through the bars of her crib. Beyond that, I'm arse over teakettle. Any ideas/help is much, much apprieciated. My dreams miss me, like in those sleep-med commercials, and I'm sure I'll have a much happier baby if she starts getting REAL sleep. Thanks in advance!
10  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Glow in the dark thread + blacklight? on: August 17, 2008 07:08:04 AM
I was asked to make a custom gnome hat (https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=238330.msg2616483#msg2616483) for a girl who likes to go to goth clubs. Goth gnomes? Totally. She mentioned liking spiderwebs and skulls and liking the idea of white contrast stitching (probably stitched cobwebs) because it'd show up under a blacklight.

I thought this morning, "Why not use glow-in-the-dark thread?" I've always wondered if it actually glows. In this case, glowing in the dark would be less important than glowing under blacklight. And I'm wondering how subtle the stitching would be in daylight. Anyone have experience with this thread? I'm talking the Coats and Clark stuff they sell at Walmart, by the way.

Otherwise, how well does plain white thread glow under blacklight? Any particular type or brand that really pops? I realize this is a bizarre question. Alas, I don't have a blacklight, and don't much care to trot out to the mall to hold spools of thread under a light in the halloween shop. Cheesy Many thanks...

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