Handmade Halloween Costumes 2014!

Given that we’re over half way through November, this is very delayed, but I thought I’d share it anyway! On Halloween this year, I had my oral PhD exam which meant that for the weeks leading up to it I was preparing slides, studying, and cramming intelligently working any other last minute details into my project. This also meant that I didn’t get a lot of sewing time in October. I did, however, manage to make part of two Once Upon a Time (OUAT) costumes for myself and my friend, Camille! I saw a post on Facebook for easy OUAT costumes, and decided to take a stab at it. For my costume I chose Snow White. Specifically, I chose Snow from the flashbacks where she’s a bandit:

For this, I just wore a long sleeved white T shirt, khaki pants and black boots. I also made a simple fur vest. I followed a tutorial by Sew Caroline (found here) where you simply trace out the front and back based on a vest you already own. I actually don’t own a vest, so I just traced out the shape based on a fitted long sleeved shirt that I have, and guessed on the arm hole shapes. It worked out just fine, and took me probably <30 minutes to make! My costume ended up pretty simple, which was fine by me because after studying and stressing and preparing for my exam in the morning, I didn’t want a fussy costume at all!

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Please excuse the cell phone/bathroom picture…

Check out a more elaborate Snow White bandit costume on this blog!

Camille decided on a very dramatic Regina/Evil Queen costume!

And boy, we had fun shopping for fabric for it, brainstorming ideas, and embellishing it! She wore a skirt (made by me) over tights and knee high, high-heeled black boots. For the top, she wore a long sleeved black shirt with a black corset over it. I made a red & black cape for her, too! Then, she did very dramatic makeup, and finalized the look with some cheap accessories from Forever 21.

The skirt:

The skirt is based on a basic knee length pencil skirt pattern that I have. (I used it to make the coral pink pencil skirt.) Making it more “mermaid” was actually very easy. I decided what length I wanted to extend the pencil skirt by just determining the distance between Camille’s knees and the ground. I then lengthened each panel of the skirt. If we weren’t making a mermaid skirt, I would just extend the side of the pattern piece straight by the desired length. Instead, I extended it at an angle to give the skirt more volume beneath the knee. This picture demonstrates it a bit better (click the picture for the tutorial the picture is from):

Instead of curving the bottom of each panel, I simply made it a straight line. So, all you’re doing here is essentially adding a trapezoid of fabric to the bottom of your panel pieces. It’s very easy! I didn’t plan on hemming it (because I was lazy needed to study), and it held up just fine. Here is a picture of the back of the skirt where you can see the effect of adding the extra trapezoids to the bottom:

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I did this extending/flaring effect only to the back pieces and just extended the front pieces straight down. Our theory was that the volume would just be in the back, but in practice it still ended up tripping her in the front. She hiked up the front of the skirt and loved the look of it, so I just cut a high-low hem and called it good! That way, her boots showed in the front, too. I put a ribbon tie where the zipper of the skirt would be, but she ended up covering it up with the corset so we cut off the ribbon and safety pinned it instead. Super easy! Unfortunately, this is the best picture I have of the front of the skirt. (Sorry Camille!) See the high-low hem of the skirt and how her boots peek out?

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The cape:

The cape was also super easy. We found this amazing fabric which was sparkly red on one side, and black on the other. However, from the back/black side the red sparkle showed through!IMG_20141018_134525IMG_20141018_134541

It was perfect for making the inside of the cape red and the outside black. Plus, the sparkle was very dramatic šŸ™‚ Having the red sparkly side against my skin was very itchy, so I decided that the black part needed to be the part against her neck. I simply folded the edge of the fabric over and made two long rows of stitches which formed the casing of the tie. The tie was a thick ribbon that I just fed through the casing made by the fabric. I gathered the cape fabric and added a few stitches which caught the ribbon and it stayed in place. I then cut two trapezoids (sense a theme, here?) out of cardboard, duct taped them together, and fed them into the large open part above the tie casing. This added some appropriately evil structure. Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures of the cape construction! We hemmed the cape to let the back of the skirt show a bit more. I think we hit the costume on the nose pretty well!

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IMG_20141031_230957Fun fact: I ate a bite out of the apple 2 seconds after this was taken!

Can I just say….

We walked around downtown Santa Cruz with some friends, one of which also made her own Halloween costume! Melanie made a Pikachu costume for herself and an Ash costume for her boyfriend:

Look at that incredible tail! She had a sort of attachment between the back of her dress and the top of the tail. It stayed up and actually looked like it wasn’t attached! Very clever! Happy belated Halloween everyone…. can’t wait for next year’s costumes!

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