Monday, September 14, 2009
Here is Part Four of How To Build A Victorian Bustle Cage. We will attach the waistband and build the overlay,which is optional, but kinda fun looking. You could get really crazy with the overlay and even make it interchangable. A different one for each function!! Brandie
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Ok, Here is Part 3. Not too bad so far. The only thing you have to pretend you don't see is the glaring mistake I made. Yes, me...mistake....:) I guess I'm not perfect after all...Which by the way is a total blow to my ego. I treid to skip a step later and sew the ties into the seam. Wrong side, as I discovered later. So, ignore the sight of the ties on the boning side. Duh.... and sew them in later on the side without the long boning channels. Have fun... You're almost done. Brandie
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Here is the second part of my Victorian Bustle Cage Video. In this part we are going to sew top part B together and add the boning channels. Have fun, Brandie
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
For all you renactors out there, or any of you who just want a really cool Halloween costume, here is Part One of my tutorial on how to build a victorian bustle cage. I'm using a pattern from Truly Victorian, TV101 Revised. I also bought the precut and pretipped boning from them which was totally worth the $8.00 that I paid for it. You will need the pattern, $14.00 from www.trulyvictoian.com. This pattern went together fairly easily. Even a new sewer could put this together. You could make this out of a solid color cotton, but you could also get a little crazy and experiment with a satin flounce and overlay. Maybe eyelet lace or fancy ruffles on the overlay. You could make different overlays and make them interchangable to match your dresses. The sky's the limit. I would still make the actual cage part, where the bones go, out of cotton just because it needs to be able to keep it's shape, plus it will never be seen. Have fun with this and post any questions you have. Brandie
Monday, August 31, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
www.mysillybluehippo.com Ok, Finally after months of working on it, my site is now open!! Yea!! I started My Silly Blue Hippo because I could not find any quality dress up clothes for my kids. I am already working for our local theatre making costumes so it was a easy transition to designing and sewing for little people. I will be adding lots more over the next few months so keep checking back. Use the code blog in the coupon code box at the checkout and get 10% off your order. Also, All orders ship for just $4.95. Great deal!! I'll still be posting lots of ideas for Halloween so keep checking back. Brandie
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Ok, Here is another really easy Halloween costume to put together. The devil horn kit was purchased from a local costume store, Zeezos. The top is a black long sleeved dance leotard that you can find at a dance store or thrift shop. The skirt is made from a simple tube of black knit fabric.
To make the skirt. Take the measurement of your hips and then add 2" for wearing ease. Add 1-1/4" for seam allowance. Take this measurement and divide by two. We'll call this measurement "A". Now measure from your waist to your knee, or wherever you want the longest part of the skirt to stop. We'll call this "B". Cut two rectangle pieces. "A" measurement should lay across width of fabric (from selvage to selvage). "B" measurement should lay with the length of the fabric (parallel to selvage). The point is to give the most stretch across the hips.
Now, using 5/8" seam, join the two rectangles together at each side using a stretch stitch. Make sure you have right sides together. You should now have a tube. Find a piece of elastic the size of your waist plus 1". Make a casing for the elastic around the top of the tube. Since we're working with knit and it doesn't unravel we will simply fold over the width of the elastic plus 3/8". Sew 1/4" in from the cut edge and leave a 1" gap to insert elastic. Insert the elastic and safety pin ends together. Try on for fit and adjust.
The ruffles are really easy. I used a cheap satin costume fabric. Cut strips across the width of the fabric (should be about 45" long, depending on your fabric.) Cut them as wide as you want your ruffle times two. So, if you want your ruffle 3" wide then cut your strips 6". Now add 1" for top seam. Take your strips and join them right sides together. Fold them in half. Wrong sides together and sew about 1/2" down from the cut edge. If you have a serger you can finish this edge or use an overcast stitch on your sewing machine. Run a gathering stitch along this edge. Try on your tube and mark where the ruffle will go. Sew ruffle on the right side of the tube along your marked ruffle line. Trim away excess tube and your done!!
The arm bans are just left over ruffle sewn to a piece of elastic, 1" smaller than the forearm measurement. Hot, Hot, Hot!!!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Ok, everybody, It's time to start thinking about Halloween costumes since we all know that it kinda creeps up on you. I don't know how many times I have been up until midnight the night before to finish that dreaded costume. I usually just started it two days before Halloween. :) Here are a few easy ideas adopted from the costumes I made for the Butte Opera House Theatre in Cripple Creek. Any thrift store is a costume paradise with a little inspiration of course.
For the "Thriller" zombies...Find any 80's style dress. Notice that I have a business man with slacks, white shirt, and vest. A taffeta prom dress, and an old ladies printed dress. My favorite of course is the Bride. Shread the bottom of the hem and the bottom of the sleeves using a sharp pair of scissors and a slicing motion. Pull the fabric across the blade of the scissors so that the fabric looks more like it's been torn rather than cut. You can also tear if you choose a fabric that rips easily. Try to vary the width and length of the cuts. Next use a combination of bleach and water, (about 30-50% bleach to 70-50% water) use a spray bottle to spray down dress. This will give a yellowish tint to the fabric like sun or age damage. You can spray more in areas like the tops of shoulders or underarms (sweat). Next, Use a black spray paint to add shadow and "dirt" to the overall garment. Don't try to be even. Just lay it outside in a heap and lightly spray. Turn or re-adjust the heap and spray again. Now open it up and look to see where you need to fill in at.
It should be pointed out that the costumes would only be hand washable. NO DRYER because of the spray paint. You can find spray fabric paints at your local fabric or craft store that are washable, but I'm going for cheap and easy here. I'll post another idea tomorrow. Brandie
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Here is a video showing you how to sew up the lastest craze in Going Green, mesh produce bags. They are so handy. You can take them to the store with you and use them instead of the plastic ones. Then, when you get home you can use them to store your produce in the fridge or on the counter. Your fruits and veggies keep better because they can breathe. If they do happen to get dirty just throw them in the washer and air dry. Voile!! Ready for the next trip. These bags are so easy to make. You could also get creative and think up new uses. How about filling with bulbs for a gardener? Attach some new gloves for a cute gift. Baby Shower? Kitchen? Don't forget about all the great colors that netting comes in. Send me pics of your great design ideas.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Monday, July 6, 2009
Here are pictures of my son Ricky's room. It took about four days to paint with the help of my oldest daughter, Dara. We started out with a base coat of light blue on 2 1/2 of the four walls. This color doubled as the water in the reef and the sky. We also used this color for ceiling. Then we used a semi-gloss tan color for the base of the walls for the Captian's Cabin. Next, we used a natural sea sponge (an old bath scrubber works too, just make sure it is not a plastic, otherwise it will just drip paint everywhere.) to randomly rub streaks of a shade darker brown over the tan. Wet the sponge first with water and then dip lightly into your paint. Next, dab off the excess on newspaper or a plastic paint tray. You can also thin the paint slighty with water. This helps the paint work in easier so you don't get splotches of color instead of washes of color. The point here is too make it look like the varying colors of wood.
The rest of the painting was done with the inexpensive bottles of acrylic paints you can find at any craft store. We used black to make the lines on the cabin walls. Alot of inspration came from pictures on the internet. This project was not hard at all. If you feel like you can't draw free hand, use a projector to cast your image on the wall, and then trace lightly with a pencil. Argggg......
Sunday, July 5, 2009
Ok, We just got back from our week in the sun at Navajo Lake, NM. Our friend Jan makes up the cutest bags for each of us and fills them with all sorts of goodies, including lots of personal care items. It's always great because I get to try alot of different products that I probably wouldn't buy for myself. The best thing this year was the Neutrogena(c) Sport sunblock lotion. I have tried every sunscreen know to man since my youngest is fair skinned. After going through two spray cans of SPF 50 the first two days and watching her getting redder and redder, I finally dug around in my goodie bag and found this awesome product. It lasts along time, goes on smooth and is water and sweat proof. Brenna didn't even turn pink. This is my new fav for sunblocks and will definitely become a staple in our house for the summer. I will give this a rating of FIVE THIMBLES.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Here is another version of the easy summer top. I used a fabric with a border that ran along the edge, so I turned my pattern for the skirt part to take advantage of this. I didn't add the sleeve detail, and I used a few yo-yo's to make the flower. I also used some green cross stitch thread that I had lying around to sew the stem. Cute......
Monday, June 22, 2009
You made it to Part 5!! Yes, It seems like a long time, but the time it took to make these videos is just about the time it took to make this top. In about 1 hour you can make a cute new summmer top with lots of room to add your own designs and ideas. Drop me a comment about any how to's you'd like to see posted. Sewing is easy and fun once you learn the tips and tricks, and it's great to be able to say "Why yes, that outfit is designer...I designed it myself." Brandie