Dragon*Con 2012

TARDIS dress complete! I wore it at Dragon*Con 2012 and really enjoyed it. Post to come this week on how I created my TARDIS headpiece that actually lit up!





Here are a few more, on left with my friend as a weeping angel and on right, me with a actual TARDIS.




Conquering the Hidden Zipper

So, I don’t know about you but I have always been afraid of putting in zippers. They just seem difficult and I have heard horror stories, so I basically avoided them like the plague. However, unless we want all our clothes to have a massive amount of buttons or all be made from some kind of stretch fabric, it seems we need to conquer our fear of the zipper. So, with no little trepidation, I undertook my first hidden zipper.

I am currently making a TARDIS dress, which I talk about in my first post here. This dress finally reached the point where it was time to put in the zipper. Many, many searches on the internet of videos and tutorials proved to be somewhat fruitless, especially since I do not have a zipper foot for my sewing machine. At long last, I called my mother- the woman who taught me to sew and is pretty much my go-to for anything crafty when I get in a pinch or need a little creative boost.

So here it is.

The Easy Hidden Zipper Tutorial (no zipper foot required!)

Step 1:  Make your garment and sew it up completely, leaving at least a half inch fabric on the inside seam where you want to place your zipper. **Use large enough stitches for your seam where the zipper will be so that you can easily cut this seam out later by hand.

Step 2:  Turn you garment inside-out and iron open your seam where you are adding your zipper.

Open back seam of dress

Step 3:  Place the zipper face-down on the seam and pin the zipper in place. This step is very important! You want to make sure your zipper lines up as closely as possible with your seam. Also, use the smallest pins you have and place them horizontal (laying across the zipper)- not vertical! This is because you will NOT be removing the pins when you sew, so you want them horizontal so the machine will jump the pin. Don’t over-do the pins, one every inch and alternating sides should be enough.

Zipper pinned face-down to seam

Step 4: Sewing! Once your pins are in place, put your garment into the machine. Starting at the top of the zipper, sew down one side. When you get to the bottom of the zipper, stop with your needle IN the fabric, lift your foot, rotate the fabric, and then sew the small part at the bottom of the zipper. Then again, stop at the corner with your needle IN your fabric, lift your foot, rotate your garment, and sew back up the other side of your zipper.

**Note: It may be difficult to get the zipper into the machine when sewing the very top of the zipper- that is ok. I had to sew the first little bit with my foot still up. Just make sure to GO SLOW!! If you go slow, it will be easier on your machine to hop the pins and you are less likely to make a mistake or break your needle.

CONGRATS! You finished! Now turn you garment right-side out and check to make sure you didn’t sew any extra fabric into your zipper.

Oops! I accidentally sewed some of my skirt fabric into my zipper the first time, but that’s ok! Just flip it inside out again and snip the stitches loose, then sew again.

If everything looks good, carefully snip the seam open on your garment.

CAREFULLY cut seam open on outside of garment

Viola! You now have a hidden zipper which should look like this.

I am now over my fear of zippers! My zipper still wasn’t perfect, I had a lot of puckering, but I know you can do better! Have fun and if you mess up, just remember practice makes perfect!

~The Girl

DIY Friday: The BIG Clutch

So I decided to do a DIY Friday post each week. I figured a Friday post would be best because I hate when I get inspired in the middle of the week but have no time and then by the weekend I forget all about it!

I see a lot of fun DIY on the internet. Many of these have really cute ideas but the details and process are not super informative. So I’ll hopefully be sorting through the bad to bring you only the best DIY I can find. And eventually, I will hopefully create some of my own. But let’s take this one step at a time, shall we?

So today is DIY: The BIG Clutch!

I have been craving one of these giant clutches all summer. They seem so useful and cute! After some scouring the internet, I found a great tutorial that is also REALLY easy!! The tutorial is from Style Scrapbook, and can be found here.

Materials Needed:

  • Fabric of your choice- she uses leather and I probably will too. But a stiff fabric is going to work best.
  • Zipper- have some fun and use a contrasting color or do the matchy-matchy thing, up to you.
  • Basic sewing supplies (machine, thread, scissors, etc)

I suggest adding stiff interfacing or some kind of liner to the inside of the bag. This should help the bag hold its shape and will make it a bit nicer on the inside. Here is another very similar tutorial from Say Yes to Hoboken that shows how to add the interfacing. She actually makes a fold-over clutch, which is basically the exact same but just a taller rectangle shape to give the extra at the top to fold-over.

I will post photos of my finished bag when done.

Have fun!

~The Girl

Getting Started with a Costume

So, for my first post I thought I would share my current project. I am working on a TARDIS Dress fro Dragon*Con, the Atlanta SciFi/Fantasy, Anime, Comic….Geekery Galore Convention. This will be my third year at the convention and my first year creating a Dr. Who costume.

I debated what to make, a Dalek, Doctor Costume, possibly go as Amy Pond. But in the end I decided that a TARDIS would be both instantly recognizable and held the most inspiration for me. After scouring the internet for examples and inspirational pictures on which to base my design, I found this picture and the dress in the middle was perfect for me.

So this also happens to be my first time sewing a dress without a pattern. I am lucky enough to have a mannequin that is pretty much exactly my measurements. This is not a actual sewing dress form, but a mannequin I snagged from a high-end retail store where I used to work. They were going to throw it out (can you imagine!).

The Process

So I used a basic circle skirt for the bottom. I read and followed this great Circle Skirt How To from MADE. I found it necessary to alter the process slightly as my fabric was not wide enough to cut out the entire circle at once. Then I started  designing and cutting out the bodice for the dress, using a well fitting dress I already own as a sort of base for my pattern.

Of course, you are bound to run into problems. I actually found that my skirt ended up being WAY too big. Not really sure how that happened, but I just took out one of the four panels and ended up with a three panel circle skirt that fit.

Looking forward to sharing the finished product with you!

~The Girl