Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Quick Photo Update

Here are just a few quick progress photos as Dragon Con 2015 rushes ever closer.
My Logan's Run/Jessica 6 costume is complete!
Below is a photo of the dress before I put the narrow hem on the bottom edge. Not as annoying a process as I thought it was going to be, but since it's silk it was much easier to work with, unlike slippery synthetic versions.
I was also able to find the perfect bra and boy shorts, that match my skin tone for that nude look, to wear underneath the very minimal ensemble. This is probably my most comfortable cosplay. Ever.

The Wilma Deering costume from Buck Rogers (Episode, "Space Vampire") is coming together quite easily. The piping proved to be a bit fussy to get nicely around the corners, but I made it work.
Tonight I may even be able to finish the matching pants, and be done with it!
The small laser pistol is also coming along, and with my fiancee's help, we made a mold of the original Match-O-Matic base to create a lighter weight version. All it needs is the trigger guard, a short clear acrylic rod for the 'barrel' and some silver paint.

Laser blaster resin mold setting up, and the piping in process for the top.

Stay tuned for a few more posts. I'll see what I can fit in between now and the last few days before the event.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Here are just a few shots of the accessories I have finished, and what I am building during the in-between time.

My finished Wilma Deering boots for our Buck Rogers 'Space Vampire' cosplay.

 The boots themselves were a pair of low cut black leather ankle boots I found on Ebay, then painted a bone ivory with leather paint. I found a cheap pair of similarly colored 1980s leather pants, and used the material to build the 'spats', then painted those with the same leather spray color. 3 ribbons of elastic, stitched on with a zigzag stitch, help to create the ruching at the front of the boot as it was on the originals.

I may top stitch the  edge of the boot opening, but for now they look appropriately disco/1980s.

The holster and belt went together last night, too.
It's really hard to see how the holster attached to her belt (no photos yet), so for now I just added a loop and snap combo that still looks good enough until I can make improvements later. Truthfully from what I can make out, it almost looks like one of those large binder clips with one handle removed, and the other attaching to the holster.
The 'laser pistol' will be made after taking a mold off of the below pictured Match-O-Matic lighter.
Yep, that is indeed a bottle of whiskey....used for medicinal purposes...and as a pattern weight, etc.

So far, so good on the Logan's Run front. I'm making quick progress of my Jessica 6 dress, and the collar made for me by Creative Thinking Studio is on it's way to me now. All it needs is the Ankh pendant I finished this past weekend, molded from Fimo clay and painted a shiny silver. I'll add more photos of the collar and Ankh once it's all put together.
I also received the large link chain belt in the mail yesterday (yay, more super disco items!), that will wrap around the upper rib cage and through the dress front panel. It was a super yellow gold, so I toned it down with a light dusting of metallic silver spray paint.

I was able to track down a low profile nude bra to wear under this sheer little number, and to mount the chain belt to. Still on the hunt for the right shade of nude hotpants/boyshorts. They are all either super pink/pale or super dark, or have really noticable trimmings or seams at the sides.

More to come. so stay tuned!

Monday, August 3, 2015

So Much Dyeing, So Little Time

Sunday was a day of dyeing, sanding and painting.
I was able to get a good chunk of work done on some otherwise time-consuming tasks on my journey to complete at least three different costumes.
Surprisingly, I was able to get my Wilma Deering spandex dyed the perfect color on what I'd consider one dip! Fortunately I didn't need to constantly adjust my dye bath a billion times before I got the color I wanted, and only had to do two swatch tests before finally submerging my fabric. Of course in the below photo, it looks crazy dark and bright, but after the rinse and drying, it's a perfect flamingo coral color.

This color; it's not just pink. I call this 'Pank!'

 Erin Gray as Colonel Wilma Deering

With that success, I knew it would be short lived.
I needed to also dye some of the bright white spandex a pale ivory shade, for the neckline and belt loop piping trim that matches her belt & boots. I had purchased some acid dye in 'Ivory Cream' from Dharma Trading Co. This is the same stuff as all the other dyes used on my fabrics so far with success.
Not this time.
Instead of a nice creamy ivory on my swatch test, it came out a pale butter yellow color. No matter how many times I diluted it to get a paler shade, it came out super yellow each time; not what I wanted at all. So, I turned to a trusty dye source for getting a pale ivory beige; black tea.
Since Nylon is a synthetic I was wary if it would take at all to this fabric, since tea is not an acid dye or like others made for synthetics. Then I remembered that I had tea stained a pair of satin slippers a warm ivory shade, and those were covered in a synthetic satin. So I thought to at least give this a shot, considering how colorfast this Nylon jumbo spandex fabric was proving itself to be.
So I brewed up a big sauce pot of very dark black tea on the stove, turned off the heat after it reached a simmer, then dropped in my 1/4 yard of white Nylon spandex.
After about 10 minutes of letting it sit and stirring occasionally, it turned the perfect shade of creamy bone ivory I wanted. Not too dull and still bright, but without the weird yellow tone. And still colorfast; it didn't completely wash out when rinsing, which is a big plus.

From stark white, to butter yellow and finally the bone ivory I wanted (top swatch).
Both fabrics, finally dry and ready to be turned into a costume.

I'm not showing full photos yet of one other project, since it's one I'm keeping it top secret for now. I will say that I had fun painting the prop a shiny metallic silver, then applying a frosty acrylic paint in raised areas. Onto this I dusted a iridescent white/blue glitter. This was done to make the object appear to have frosted over in some spots.
Here's a cropped sneak peek:

Aside from that, the progress on my Jessica 6 costume from Logan's Run is coming along nicely.
I was able to get the pale aqua blue metallic woven silk Georgette dyed the perfect cool pistachio green.
Using the same dye brand and process as before, I just added a smidgen of the Sunflower Yellow to very warm water, and stirred my silk in it for 5 minutes.

The silver threaded silk Georgette dried post dye bath; perfect!

I have an artist via Etsy working with me now, to create the wide silver tone collar that I can add the ankh pendant to myself. I'll probably make the pendant from Fimo and paint it metallic silver. If it doesn't match the metal of the collar, it's ok. The ankh pendant in the film didn't match either, and was likely made of painted resin or something similar, too. The film-worn neck collar it was attached to, however: was made by Cartier.

I've also figured out that I can take photos to document my process as I go, then write and post about it on my breaks at work during the week. This saves me valuable sewing/building time, not spent at the computer at home. We'll see how that goes as the time ticks away toward go time.