Monday, November 28, 2016

Halloween 2016

Now that I have a working computer again, I've got some back blogging to do. Starting with Halloween, where I blab about sewing for far to long.

We went to Main Street Fright Fest in downtown Temple. We went last year but felt super awkward without a kid, it is definitely an event for children. So we were happy to tote Indiana around and pretend like we feel like real parents. HA! Parenthood is still so surreal.

We take costumed events pretty seriously, as you well know, so our baby's first Halloween was a big deal. We had about a hundred costume ideas, but for whatever reason I picked Frozen? And not even the regular Frozen but Frozen Fever, which is, if you're not a Disney nut like me, an animated short about Anna's birthday. I swear it was really just an opportunity for Disney to sell even more Frozen merch because this film had two new dresses in it. I could go on forever about the insanity of the money making machine that is Frozen. But all that being said, I picked these costumes for us. I thought Indiana would make a crazy cute Olaf (I was right) and I am an insane person so I thought making Anna's dress would be a fun challenge. Right again.

I made my dress and Brendon's costume. He's Kristoff, which is confusing because Kristoff is blonde and beardless, but whatever. I did NOT make that Olaf costume. Amazon provided that. I know everyone thought I'd be making her costume (and a ton of outfits for her), but sewing tiny clothes turns out to not be my thing. I am a selfish sewer and mostly just like sewing for myself. Plus sewing tiny things is hard. And I mean, look at that Olaf costume! It's hilarious, I could not have done better.

Brendon's costume was pretty simple. I used fleece for his pants and vest, and altered an existing shirt to make the shirt. The most time consuming part was all that trim, which was sewn on by hand. Lots of layers of ribbon. But there's something meditative about sewing by hand and I really didn't mind at all.

My costume on the other hand was an undertaking. Also I am so proud of my my hair! I did it all by myself and I made that little sunflower thing.

I used Simplicity 1094 for the costume and altered it pretty heavily. The good thing about Frozen being so popular is that there are mass produced costume patterns out there, and they're licensed so they're fairly accurate. That being said I still made quite a few changes to make it a bit more accurate. I shortened the skirt from the top which made a sort of wider fuller skirt and then I pleated it to match Anna's in the film. The pattern had you make your own bands of binding between the shirt, bodice, and dress, but I used bias tape instead and sewed it on to make it look like the dark blue part of the bodice was more like a bustier/corset (which I believe is more accurate) instead of all one piece of the dress. It's still all one thing, I just tried to create a more layered instead of flat look.

The vest is where I took the most creative liberty, and it's my favorite part of the costume. Anna's vest in the film is full of appliques/embroidery front and back, but the pattern just had a few flowers on the front. So I added all kinds of stuff and made up a design for the back using the same sort of patterns from the skirt/front of vest. I added a yellow braided cord that swirls around the whole vest, and sewed that bad boy on by hand. Also the vest is made from the prettiest grass green flannel backed satin, which was a serious pleasure to sew.

All those flowers, leaves, and butterflies on the bodice are appliques that I individually cut out and ironed on. There are probably over a hundred pieces. It seemed daunting at first, but it really wasn't bad and I love that sort of crazy challenge. I'm pleased with how it turned out. My only issue with the dress is that I chose cheap fabric for the yellow undershirt and bodice lining and it was constantly falling apart as I sewed. It just shreds. Indiana grabbed the front of the shirt while I was holding her and it just ripped right apart. Fixable, but it's a huge bummer because I'm very happy with this dress otherwise. You get what you pay for I suppose.

Sometimes when I have an idea for a project it turns out nothing like I imagined, but this thing came out better than I hoped. Also, the blue bodice of the dress is drapery fabric. Forever channeling my inner Fraulein Maria and forever grateful for my years sewing drapes in Austin and for allll the marvelous fabrics Susi sent me home with!

Anyway, I want to give a shout out to Simplicity for this pattern. It's not perfect, but it is pretty dang close. One of the first things I do when before I start a new pattern is a google it to see other folks who have made it, to get an idea of what it looks like when it's sewn up. But no one has made this (and posted it on the internet) which I sorta get but I sorta don't. Cosplaying is a huge thing these days and people love Frozen and this is a great pattern! But it is definitely time consuming and not easy so I guess I get that too. But maybe someone will Google it like I did and find this post and say, "Hey, I can do that!" Because you can and you should!

ANYWAY enough about sewing. Let's talk about how we entered Indiana in a costume contest!

This picture cracks me up, that little cowgirl was obsessed with Indiana and she just came right up and yanked her hat down over her face by Olaf's nose. Kids are so weird. Indiana didn't win (possibly because the lady announcing thought she was a penguin??? WHAT?) but the little baby who won was dressed as Carl from Up with a little walker with balloons and it was amazing. His dad was Russell and his mom was Kevin; mad respect from fellow Disney nerds. This pirate who was serving serious face got runner up:

Indiana's little face under that big ass Olaf head kills me. She is the sweeeeetest baby.

It was pretty fun! We had some grilled cheeses from a Star Wars themed grilled cheese food truck and then headed home. A decent first Halloween if I might say. I hope Indiana had a good time anyway! Next year she might have some opinions on what she's dressed as, but I'm hoping I'll be able to squeeze at least another year of family themed costumes out. And maybe we can go trick-or-treating!!! Eee!

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