Venus Love-Me Chain Skater Dress, plus Animazement prep!

The past couple of months have been SUPER busy for me. I got a new job that I am super excited about and love very much, and I’ve also been preparing for Animazement! That’s right, I will be selling at their Artists Alley this year. I honestly can’t wait! It’s my first time ever selling crafts at a public event, so I really don’t know what to expect, but I’m super thrilled that I am finally doing it!

In between getting all my stock prepared, I worked on a few personal projects for the show. The main one being – the Venus Love-Me Chain dress I talked about way back in November! Yep, I finally made the thing. Not too long after I made the fabric design I discovered The Lady Skater dress pattern, and I was in love. It was perfect! It’s the dress I always imagine in my head when I imagine the kinds of dresses I’d like to wear. :) I don’t wear many dresses because my body shape is very hard to fit in store-bought ones, so not only is the shape exactly what I want, but I can customize the fit too!

To start, I wanted to make a “prototype” version first, since I hadn’t worked with knits much before and I didn’t want to go cutting away at my expensive fabric only to ruin it all and have to start over. So I got some basic knit fabric from Joann, a bit on the heavier side, to make a test version with. It went really well! I decided to blend sizes since I am super pear-shaped, and it worked out nicely. Sewing with knits (at least heavier duty ones) is no longer scary to me – my secret is the triple stretch stitch! I only used a long, narrow zig-zag when making my shirt for Super Sonico, and I was displeased with the noticeable puckering at the seams. Triple stretch stitch eliminates that! It is a very sturdy straight stitch still has stretch to it – and I love it. :) The main downside is it eats up a lot of thread! But that’s okay.

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I was pleased with how it turned out – definitely didn’t “ruin” the fabric – but I felt that I could do better for the final version. The green dress, while not overly baggy, felt to me like it should fit more snugly, so I decided to go down a size. Originally I was a 6 on top and 8 on bottom, but I changed it to a 5 on top and 7 on bottom. I also shortened the bodice so the waistband would sit where it was intended to and not across my stomach.

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You guys – I could NOT be more excited about this dress! I’ve been dreaming about it for months and months, and it turned out just the way I wanted it to. The only issue I have with this one is I decided for some reason to keep the sleeves size 6 because I over estimated how big my arms are, so they’re a bit loose but not deal-breakingly so. I’m also pretty happy with how well I managed to match the fabric pattern between the bodice and the skirt – it’s not perfect, but I actually wasn’t trying to make it perfect (I VERY haphazardly guesstimated when cutting out the skirt pieces), so considering that I’m surprised it turned out as well as it did!

I can’t wait to wear this at Animazement! Speaking of, here’s the lowdown: I don’t know what table I will be at yet (I’ll let you know when they send out assignments), but I WILL be there, selling:

Merit badges. Lots and lots of merit badges.
Manga covers
Hexie earrings
– Prints of my Totoro Mug Rug and my Rainbow Road design

Can’t wait, and I hope to see you there! :)

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Sonico Cosplay Write-Up

MAGFest has been over and done with for a month and a half, and it almost feels like it’s taken that long for me to recover and get back to serious crafting! Since it’s been such a long time since I updated, I figured it wouldn’t be right for me to leave you all hanging about how everything turned out! (I forget about the blog sometimes since I update my Facebook page much more often)

So, without further ado, here’s the completed cosplay!

Super Sonico Cosplay
please excuse the messy apartment…

For the most part, I’d say I’m very pleased with how everything turned out! My sewing skills weren’t perfect, but of the past cosplays I’ve done, I can tell it’s improving every time, so that’s good. It’s definitely the most wearable cosplay I’ve done; it feels like real clothing, as opposed to something that was cobbled together to look acceptable but in reality is uncomfortable and falling apart.

The jacket is my crowning achievement, I have to say. I adapted Kwik Sew K3693, which turned out to be a pretty good pattern because the hood is relatively oversized compared to most hoodies, which is a characteristic of Sonico’s jacket. I think I ended up cutting out the wrong size because the jacket was HUGE on me when I first tried it on, but I was able to trim it down to size and it ended up being perfect (for once! Usually when I attempt that it ruins everything).

For the shirt, I took a picture of the tiger mascot that I found through an image search, blew it up, and re-traced it as a vector image so it was higher quality. I then printed it onto iron-on transfer paper. The transfer was a total pain to do! They must have changed the formula from when I was a kid (I probably haven’t done one of these in fifteen years) because I don’t remember them being quite so annoying. Basically, I followed the instructions but had to do it about three times before the transfer actually stuck. It all worked out in the end though. It came out a little bit crooked, but my shirt was stretchy enough that I could sort of shift it around and it wasn’t noticeable.

The biggest failure ended up being the headphones. I bought some cheapo headphones at Wal*Mart and had all sorts of other materials ready to go to try to recreate them, but at the last minute everything kind of failed and turned into a big mess. I’m definitely not very good at constructing non-fabric things. I was upset about it for a while but then I just borrowed my boyfriend’s headphones he wasn’t using which sufficed well enough. In the end, I didn’t end up wearing them that much anyway because I couldn’t hear anything! OOPS!

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The con itself was FANTASTIC! I’m so glad I got to go. There were tons of games to play, an awesome dealer’s room, and some cool panels. I went to the Runaway Guys’ Thrown Controllers panel which ended up being a lot of fun, so I’m glad I decided to do that. I also met Lucahjin and NintendoCapriSun! They were both really nice and I got to take pictures with them. The only bad parts were that it was cold and rainy the whole time (not so great when you’re wearing shorts, but I was inside most of the time so that was alright), and my shoes were NOT meant for walking around all day in. Other than that, it was a fantastic con and I hope I get to go again next year!

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Now that I’m back and settled in to regular life once again, it’s time to get busy crafting again! Last month I found out that I will indeed be selling at Animazement this year. EEEEEEEE!!!! It will be my first ever show, so I’m super excited. I’ve been working for months to get to this point, but now I have to work even harder to make sure I have enough stock! I’m making good progress on badges and book covers, but I can’t let my guard down.

See you soon!

 

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#WIP Wednesday: Super Sonico Cosplay!

As you might have realized by now, I’m a bit of a nerd…and like many of my fellow nerds, I like to go to nerd-related conventions! Also, being crafty, I like to make costumes and dress up. MAGFest is coming up pretty soon, and I’m going to have the opportunity to go! My friends and I have been wanting to go for a while, and we decided to make it a reality. We’ve been planning it for months, so it’s pretty exciting (and a little scary) that it’s almost time.

As for who I will be dressing up as…I’ve been working on my Super Sonico costume for quite a while! Well, I’ve been planning it and preparing the materials, but as is typical of me and many other procrastinators, I have left the bulk of the work until last minute. I’ve got a lot of work done, but there are still some very crucial steps left to go. As long as I put in plenty of work from now until then without goofing off too much, I should get it done without a problem.

One of the things I started working on today is making the “fur” edging for Sonico’s hoodie and boots. Originally I purchased some thin feather boas that I planned to attach to the costume, but after handling them very briefly it became apparent that it was going to be a total pain to go that route. However, after seeing a finished hat made by my friend WoollyRhinoCrafts on her facebook page, I got the idea to construct those pieces after a fluffy yarn instead. A bit more time consuming, but much more durable and easy to sew onto fabric. I purchased a small peg loom used for making large i-cords, and went to town!

so fluffy...and no shedding!!!
so fluffy…and no shedding!!!

Other than that, the majority of the work is done on my shirt and hoodie. I still have to hem the shirt, add ears and a tail to the hoodie, and hem it, but that shouldn’t take too long. I’ve also got the Wig and boots mostly done. The biggest hurdles at this point are the headphones! I can’t believe that I almost forgot about those. I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to figure out a suitable way to construct them, but after doing some googling and having some luck looking around at Joann Fabric, I think I came up with a good plan for how to make them. Expect progress pics soon! For now, here’s a picture of the main pieces I have so far.

Looking pretty good so far!
Looking pretty good so far!

All in all, I’m really pleased with how this is coming along, but I’m still a little stressed out since I’ve got a lot on my plate between now and MAGFest! I think it will all work out, however, and I’m really looking forward to it.

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It’s almost 2015…

Things have been pretty quiet on the blog lately, mostly because I have been a bit absorbed with holiday things. But those are over now, and it’s time to get back to crafting!

I actually did a lot of crafting throughout December, but I don’t have very many pictures to show for it. Things got a little stressful so I wasn’t particularly concerned with setting aside time to photograph things, just making them to pass the time. Once I get some personal life things sorted out, I’ll take some more pictures. Until then, have a selfie of this awesome Kaweah Hat I knit out of some of my handspun! The fiber was Malabrigo Nube in Lavanda, and I fractal spun it at somewhere between fingering and sport weight.

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In other news, as the new year is upon us and I am all about cute stationary, I have been preparing my Hobonichi Techo! As a big Earthbound/Mother fan and subsequently Shigesato Itoi fan, discovering this iconic planner has an English version was too much for me to resist. I’m going to use it as a planner, diary, and scrapbook-of-sorts, and to try to help me stay motivated for some of my goals. I’d like to eat better, exercise more, and be a better housekeeper in the upcoming year, so reminding myself of it daily in cute print form will hopefully help!

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And of course, I plan on making a more personalized cover for it soon! I’m also starting to feel myself get a little bit obsessed with scrapbooking supplies, mostly just stamps and cute stickers. This month I’m trying to budget so I won’t be purchasing very many supplies at the moment, but soon I’m probably going to be decked out in all sorts of goodies.

Stay tuned!

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Sunset Yarn: Fiber to Finished Object!

Like I mentioned last time, I’m really getting back into the spinning groove. I just finished a yarn I’m really happy with, so I figured I’d share a step-by step of how it all came together!

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The fiber is from Three Waters Farm here in NC. I spun the singles fairly low twist so the plied yarn would be nice and fluffy! The singles broke on me several times while plying (live and learn) and the finished yarn itself isn’t very polished looking, but it knit up beautifully! The pattern is Grey Gardens from Knitty. Now onto the next yarn I suppose! :)

 

Before I go, I’d like to mention that one of my fabric designs is in a contest on Spoonflower! There are a few more days to vote on it, but learning today that I got into the Recent Trends list for this week was satisfaction enough! I’ll be updating you on the status of the contest in a few days.

Cozy Dreams Winter Toile
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