Thursday, 31 December 2015

Costume recap of 2015

It's time to look back at 2015 and see what I did. This will be about my main projects, I will make a separate post about the HSM challenges that I finished.

First though here were my plans for 2015:

Star Wars
Gold Handmaiden
Tusken female
Possible a TFA costume

18th century
pair of stays
pet en l'air
pierrot jacket
pocket hoops

19th century
possible a black bodice

Queen Elsa

The tusken female and Queen Elsa remains in the UFO pile, even if I did work a bit on the mask of the tusken. I ran out of time to make a pet en l'air, but I did use that time to draft a basic 18th century bodice pattern. I did decide to move the pocket hoops to this year instead. The black bodice was a maybe, so I wasn't even close to starting it.

All in all when I look back at the year I think I'm going to call this the year of hats, counting back I I've made four hats and two caps, even if two of the hats were made on the same base and just a matter of redecorating. I've also done a lot more accessories, but those will come in the HSM recap.

My costume year follows a program where spring is historical costuming, and autumn is Star Wars, this was made different this year due to Star Wars Celebration being held in April.

Well enough writing, now I will go on with the costumes and my favorite photos from 2015.

The gold handmaiden was my main project of the year. It was a lot of time and money that went into it, and even if I'm already thinking about improvements I was really happy with it.

In the winter I also got invited to take part in the 100 year celebration of the Swedish Railway Museum. It was fun being able to bring up most of what I needed from what I had in the wardrobe, but I did add a corset cover and blouse, and trimmed up a straw hat.

Me and some of the ladies from the Swedish 19th and 20th century societies, and ArtyAnna as a steampunk chimney sweeper, made quite an impression when we were walking around in a group.

A new experience for me was a visit to NärCon Summer. For this I took the chance to do something totally new, and that was my My Little Pony cospaly of Rariy.

I did some changes to the Rarity for Comic Con. The dress was not the easiest to sew, but it's good to have a comfy con costume to run around in. The wig makes it warm, but otherwise it's really nice. I should upgrade it with some pony years though.

The other big thing was get together in Stockholm for the most fake 18th century clothing that you could think of. I loved my totally over the top style that I did, and it was really funny just doing something for the looks and not having to worry about accuracy in any way. I'm pretty proud of having been finally fulfilled my dream of wearing a big aircraft carrier on my head.

I did get a chance to make a proper serious 18th century photo shoot as well in the summer, now with my brand new Kensington shoes, and a new petticoat for my late 18th century wardrobe.

Going into the autumn I finished my main historical projects by doing a pierrot jacket in brown. I still haven't had time to wear it, but I'm really happy with it, this was also the first really fitted handsewn garment that I made, meaning that I had to trust my seams to hold up for strain. For this jacket I also used a bodice pattern that I had drafted from scratch in the summer. I was also really happy when I realised that I could make a sleeve that actually fit. The major thing I discovered was that it's much easier to adjust two piece sleeves than one piece sleeves, so from now on I will probably work with two piece sleeves.

With the jacket done I packed away my historical garments and went back to Star Wars costumes. I continued with the HSM 15 challenges, but I'm going to make a separate post with all the small things I made for that.

It started to feel that the premiere of the new Star Wars film was getting nearer, and with Björn in Nordic Base doing a TFA Han Solo I decided to make a TFA Leia. At this time there were really few reference photos around, but I did my best and was really happy with the result that I could wear for the first time at the Stockholm Comic-Con in October. This was also my first time making a jumpsuit, so that was something new that I learnt.

I must say that this photo of me and Björn as Han and Leia is probably my favorite photo of me in costume of the year. When we took the photo we didn't know why they looked so worried in the shot from the trailer, now after having seen the film and knowing what's going on I like it even more.

Then suddenly in November I realised that I had finished all the main projects of the year, that I was going to finish. It felt really strange to not have something to stress about. So I decided to upgrade my Endor Rebel Trooper with a vest. With the release of the game Star Wars:Battlefront I had noticed that the ERT was more recognized even on its own, and most of the troopers in the game seem to have the vest.

Without the vest, but in front of the battlefront backdrop at comic-con

The last big thing of the year was of course the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, with meant around 40 hours of Star Wars madness, and most of them in costume. 
Runner up favorite costume photo of the year

So with that lets recap my 2015 costume list.

Star Wars
Gold Handmaiden - done
Tusken female - UFO
Possible a TFA costume - done

18th century
pair of stays - done
pet en l'air - not done
pierrot jacket - done
pocket hoops - not  done

19th century
possible a black bodice - not done

Queen Elsa - still in the UFO pile

Unplanned costumes that happened
Edwardian shirtwaist and small bumpad
My Little Pony - Rarity
new 18th century petticoat
Endor Rebel Trooper Vest

Skills that I've learnt this year

The first one was to dye fabric. I thought dyeing was really fun, even if I still can't get exactly the shade I want I'm looking forward to dyeing more things in the future.

The other one is that I've started to handsew more and more of my historical garments, and even if I don't have the most beautiful seams they are holding up well enough, this is really a matter of practise and more practise and eventually it will look good.

I have made a sleeve pattern that fits!

A smaller thing that I've taken up more and more is to work with wigs and hair. The big difference came when I ordered my new wig for Leia, and saw what a difference it was to work with a lacefront wig. With my own hair I've gotten more and more confident as well and now I actually enjoy doing pincurls and seeing what the hair will end up looking like.

End thoughts

Looking into my wardrobe I feel that I'm starting to get the 18th century wardrobe that I've wanted, and now I have quite a few pieces that can be combined in different ways, meaning that I'm probably going to venture into some new eras with historical costumes in the coming year.

As for Star Wars I really love dressing up as the older Leia, but I think when it comes to newer costumes I will try to look into more generic background characters. I think my most worn SW costumes this year was my Endor Rebel Trooper and the jawa, and they are both easy to pack and really comfy for running around at conventions.

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