Tuesday, October 31, 2017

FO: A Tangled Halloween

Happy Halloween everyone! Halloween is my favorite holiday, and last year with everything that was going on I wasn't able to make a new costume which was a complete bummer. This costume has been planned for about a year and I am so happy I was able to make it happen :) As soon as I had my hair cut at the end of last year I had the idea that it would be cute to dress up as Rapunzel after she cuts her hair from Disney's Tangled (which I love). I had snagged the Lolita Patterns Gunmetal shirt pattern on a pattern selling Facebook group which I knew would be the perfect starting point, so I started planning and acquiring other components soon after.
So here's my full body costume :) It's not 100% accurate to the film (her skirt has a lot of other details going on), but it is certainly close enough that everyone knew who I was at our church Halloween party - particularly all the little girls. I had one little girl who kept staring at me but wouldn't talk - her mother said she was probably star struck, lol. Moments like that made it all worth it. Also - just for the record - I originally had my hair straightened and the ends fanned outward so it looked more choppy and "freshly cut" like in the movie. Good old Florida was pretty humid the night we took these pictures, and these were taken at the end of the party, so my hair went back to its default position, lol. Tonight it's cooler, so hopefully my hair will stay. Anyway. SO - the deets. 
I started out with the Gunmetal shirt by Lolita Patterns. The shirt has princess seams and is designed to have a ruched overlay to the side pieces as well as already having the lacing panel in the center already. I used a purple nylon mesh fabric I grabbed from Walmart for $1 a yard and underlined it with a super pale pink polyester tricot double knit that I got at a thrift store ($0.50 for 3 yards). I did not ruche the side panels since I was going more for a regular dirndl corset look than a fashion top. The center lace up panel is a terribly cheap lycra (also $1 per yard from Walmart) and I thought it gave a nice pop of color since the tricot looks so pale with the purple (on its ow is is noticeably baby pink, but the other colors really wash it out). I ordered 3/8" D-rings from ebay for the lacing - if you plan on making this pattern, I absolutely recommend buying the rings this way as I got 100 for $5.99 shipped!). I used 3/8" lavender ribbon to attach the D-rings. Holy cow was that a saga! I spent a couple of hours just assembling the bodice front of this pattern and I managed to break 5 sewing needles in the process of sewing the D-ring panel to the sides. If I make this again, I will be adding additional seam allowance. The pattern includes 3/8" seam allowance, which is fine if you're serging a regular t-shirt, but when you're trying to sew the ribbon pieces onto a slippery lycra with the metal d-rings in them at a 1/4" seam allowance and then attaching that piece to an underlined piece of mesh with the d-rings sandwiched between all your layers and try to stay at 3/8" - I'm just going to say I think that would've been difficult for pretty much anyone. This pattern is designed with all these types of fabric in mind, so having a wider seam allowance would've been a better idea (even if it was only on these pieces). In the end I got it sewn together, but some of the ribbon pieces slipped a bit and the rings are not perfectly parallel. I had to just let go on that one and accept that this is a costume and no one will care but me. Once the bodice was assembled, it was obvious that the shirt was too low and showed my garments in a major way - no bueno. I knew I wanted to add lace trim to match the costume in the movie, but I was going to need something thicker to cover me up. I experimented with a ruffled band like the pattern includes, but in the end I just cut a long strip of the pink tricot 4" wide and made a neck band. I mitered the band to exaggerate the square neckline and top stitched on the purple mesh to keep the lace laying mostly flat. To me this was not a perfect solution, but once the top was finished it just looked like a deliberate design element. The pattern is designed to have a peplum at the bottom, and even though I lengthened the pieces to accommodate leaving this off it still came up a bit short on me. So I made a hem band out of the pink tricot and when combined with the sleeve pieces it all ties together to look like the pink layer is under the purple corset. At least in my mind it does :)
The sleeves were another test of my creativity. The pattern includes a short sleeve that has a slightly puffed top, but I needed decidedly more puff. I sliced the pattern and spread it evenly across the sleeve to add 4 inches. I did the same purple mesh with tricot underlining on these pieces.
Since Rapunzel has striped sleeves, I grabbed some 1/2" wide pink ribbon and I just laid the ribbon on the sleeve how it looked good to me and top stitched each piece down on both sides of the ribbon. I used the 3/4 length sleeve piece from my trusty Sewaholic Renfrew pattern for the lower sleeve. I took about an inch out to keep the sleeve piece snug and I cut it out of the pink tricot. The pink tricot didn't fray much, so I just top stitched some repurposed lace elastic to the sleeve hems with a zig zag stitch. Once the sleeve was assembled, I set them in and my top was done :)
For the skirt, I used Kwik Sew 3381 - the pattern I used for my medieval costume earlier this year. I found this lavender polyester "linen look" fabric at a thrift store ($1 for 3 yards) and decided to go for it. It has a linen texture woven in, but it is definitely all poly. The fabric is a bit sheer, but nothing too indecent so I did not line it. I did a lapped zipper and added a clear snap to the overlap piece to secure it at the top. For the hem I just top stitched it, lol. Usually I would do a hand stitched blind hem, but I was fully embracing the costume spirit at this point and I knew no one would be looking at my hem.
 I also decided to crochet myself a Pascal! Pascal is Rapunzel's chameleon side kick, and while this one doesn't look identical I thought it was close enough. I'll be blogging about Pascal separately.
Pascal did made for some fun photo opportunities :) Oh and I forgot to mention - I hand stitched the bow to my top to keep it from sagging. Also if you plan to use a poly rope trim like this, get some fray check for the ends! It keeps things so neat and unfrayed.
I'm also including this picture because you can just barely see a peek of my shoe. I wore this awesome pair of Kenzie flats I've had for over a decade. They are burgundy velvet with gold trim and a bow at the toe. The inside slightly disintegrated on my foot at the party, but it was worth it, lol. I love these shoes.
I also had a very fortuitous revelation on this accessory. Earlier this year, I was really into needle felting. I wanted to felt all the things. So when I came across a package of mandala wool in a thrift store for $2, I planned on dying it fun colors and making little creatures with it. Mandala wool is traditionally used on dream catchers but I knew I could felt it to my own purposes. I took it home and washed it, then had it in a big bad for months until watching the Next Steps in Yarn Dyeing class on Craftsy. In the class she shows how to dye loose fiber, and when she is done she hand crochets the fiber into a chain braid to store it safely and not take up so much space. I decided to make a chain braid with my fiber, and it made a nice long braid of blonde wool when I was done. I immediately knew it would be a great prop for my costume! I was going as Rapunzel after her hair is cut, but I carried this braid around on my shoulder all night to aid in identifying me, lol. I thought it was pretty fantastic, not gonna lie.
I wore my costume to the church Halloween party my sister planned and organized. My sister goes all out, and this year the theme was Fairy Tales. Here I am next to Rapunzel's tower a lady in the church made as a decoration :) I gave out candy for the trunk or treat and had a lot of fun. Also because this is essentially a fancy t-shirt, it was so comfortable!

So that's my Tangled Halloween costume :) I'll be wearing this tonight as well, and I hope it makes more little girls happy. I think that's the most fun part about wearing a Disney costume - the kids all know who you are and they all have such great reactions. I loved being Joy two years ago, and I'm having a lot of fun this year as well. Now I have to plan what I'll be next year!

Happy Halloween everyone! I hope you have a safe and fun night!

Summary:
Fabric: 3/4 yard Purple Nylon Mesh Knit - $1, 1.5 yards Baby Pink Poly Tricot Knit - $0.50 (thrifted), strip of pink lycra - $0.10, 2 yards Lavender Linen Textured Poly - $1.00 (thrifted),
Pattern: Gunmetal by Lolita Patterns - $5.00, Kwik Sew 3381 - $0.50 (thrifted)
Notions: 22 metal D-rings 3/8" - $1.50, 2/3 yard lavender ribbon - $1.28, purple thread - $1.00, lace edging - Free, spool of pink ribbon - $2, stretch lace - Free, white thread - $1.00,  hook and eye - $0.15, gold cording - $2, 9" lavender zipper - $0.10 (thrifted)
Time:
Total Cost: $ 17.03

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