Sunday, August 29, 2010

Summer is always a slow time for making things

And an even slower one for me posting it seems though to be fair I've been out with tonsillitus for a good chunk of August and then we were on holiday.

However i have done a couple of things I haven't mentioned on here so here you go.

First Teachers presents, it has become a bit of a tradition that I give Noddle's teachers a present at the end of the year and it seems that they are always a bag of some kind so this year they all got shopping bags which can be folded into their own pockets making them easy to slip in a handbag or pocket. When I was at school we had one teacher at a time but these days they have several by the time you count the teaching assistants and those teachers they have stand in or cover specific things like gym.


I made a selection in different fabrics and Noddles chose who got which, five teachers in all so I had one spare in the end.

Then we had the summer holidays and making time was rather limited plus the whole tonsillitis thing. I hate that bug it gets me every time and I always get to worse and longer than others, two whole batches of antibiotics to kick it this time. Doesn't help I can't have penicillin either.

However I did get a commission that was rather rushed due to time constraints and illness but I think came out pretty well. The request was for the Red Death costume from the Phantom of the opera film.

costume from the film

Now the original is heavily embroidered and by the look of it it is hand done raised gold work. Not something I could do in two weeks or on a sensible budget. I did manage to find a real good low pile velvet in my stash and in the end myself and the client opted for painting the design on, even so it was down to the wire to get it done and I had to do less 'embroidery' than I wanted, the lapels were only outlined and I didn't extend the embroidery down the coat tails as it is in the original. The collar could have done with coming a little bit farther round the next and next time I will add boning as well as buckrum as it tended to flop backwards in wear. However the client tells me they are very happy with it and got lots of compliments at the event it was for.

The costume includes breeches, the coat, a cummerbund and black cravat as well as a very basic cloak (not shown and really just piece of of light fabric plated up and sewn to the shoulder. The mask is a leather one made by Wookie at Mandala. I lent him a LARP sword which again is not in the picture but apart from not having a skull on it fitted the look pretty well and has a black leather scabbard.


The back of the collar gives you an idea of the painting, I made a stencil for the saw tooth edging though it needed tidying up afterwards as it was hard to stencil the points well. The design of the frockcoat has been much admired and I think there may be more variants on the style in my future somehow !

I plan to design and digitise some edging designs than at 18c in feel so next time I can consider machine embroidering though that would still probably take more time than the painting did even if at times I can be doing something else while it stitches you still have to keep a weather eye on it all the time.

1 comment:

Always smiling said...

Wow the costume is fantastic well done you, some pretty clever sewing!
My damson tree only had 4 or 5 in the first year, last year it had 7 pounds so we were amazed to see it loaded down this year. Its at my house in Billericay Essex and in south facing border.
I should imagine its squirrels eating yours they stripped our fig tree last year so we put chicken wire all around it on the top as well but it was killed by the very severe snowy weather this last winter!
Loved the dinosaurs ate the tomatoes! We have a family joke about some nougat that had a bite out of it many years ago and so the phantom nougat was born and has been mentioned in best man speaches at each of my grown up childrens weddings We still don't know who did it!
Happy Days
Chris x

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