UPDATE!!!! I entered this in the costume contest at Urban Threads and I made the top 10! Follow THIS LINK to vote. The ballot is at the end of the post, scroll down and click on your choice. My personal favorite is between the Wolf Mage little boy and the Awesome Girl.
Halloween has once again come and gone. This year I found my motivation to make a big costume again. With my new machine at my side I decided to go for it and construct a machine embroidery masterpiece.
I found the embroidery designs at Urban Threads, where I find so many inspiring designs. This pack is the Elven Court Design Pack. I used 5 designs and wanted to use more. I did buy ultra-suede fabric to make a long hooded cloak but ran out of time. There are other little accessories and tidbits that I’d like to add to this costume before next summer when I intend to wear it to the Bristol Renaissance Faire. The little Witch Hat is also an Urban Threads design: Lace Witch Hat
To make the dress I used two Simplicity patterns;
I made the blouse and vest from #5582 and the underskirt/overskirt combination from #3623. Now I wish I had gone with my first instinct to make the underskirt separate from the over-skirt so it could be laundered easier. I’m afraid the hem of the muslin underskirt is going to get quite dirty at the Faire.
I also changed the vest a little. The instructions were to bind the edges with bias tape. I didn’t want the contrast so I constructed mine like a traditional lined vest and sewed the outer pieces and lining together along the edges, leaving the side seams open for turning. With the heavier weight of my fabric, bulk of the embroidery and narrowness of the shoulders, this was kind of hard turning. Next time I will widen the shoulders or do it as instructed.
I would also like to make the Scottish blouse in pattern #3623 for a less “wenchy” look. Someday I’d like to make the entire Scottish inspired get-up complete with Tartan plaid but I didn’t have any luck finding the right fabric at the right price for this year.
Technical Embroidery Details:
Stabilizer – OESD Stabilstick Tear Away and Cut Away. Having the sticky back was very helpful in positioning the pieces exactly where they needed to go. I think either Tear-Away or Cut-Away work fine. I had both out on my work table and a couple times just grabbed the other one when hooping.
Interfacing – I used a weft insertion interfacing on all the vest pieces (this also contributed to its being hard to turn right side out). But it did really add a lot of body to the vest and helped with the corset effect. I also inserted featherweight boning in a channel along the front of the vest next to the eyelets. That kept the front from collapsing when laced tight.
Thread – all thread is Isacord polyester embroidery thread, OESD bobbin thread.
Other – All embroidery was done on my Bernina 780E. I love this machine! Because of it I now love machine embroidery too. The absolute check really helps with positioning motifs exactly along with the Endless Embroidery (EE) function. The EE function sews registration marks that you can use to line up the next hooping in a long border like I have on the front of the skirt. I also made use of the built in basting function as well. This helped to keep the fabric exactly where I placed it because the weight of all that fabric kept wanting to pull it off the stabilizer.
My dog Castiel got in on the Machine Embroidered costume bandwagon too. When Urban Threads put all their wings on sale for $1 the day before Halloween I had to grab these angel wings for his signature trench coat. If you are not familiar with the CW show Supernatural you won’t get it but he is Castiel, the fallen angel and our friend pictured here is Bobby Singer, another character from the show.
Steve and I hosted a wonderful little Day of the Dead/Halloween party here on Saturday night. It was fun getting many of our friends together again. There were many inspired costumes, good food & drink, and fun & games enjoyed by all. I’ll close by sharing Steve’s costume.