Monday, December 31, 2012

Completed Daenerys Qarth Dress

Just a quick post with some photo updates from my Daenerys Dress which I finished about 5 minutes before the taxi arrived to take my friend and I to the airport. Wouldn't be so bad I suppose if I hadn't been throwing things into my bag right up til the time we left! Funnily enough as I carried the belt in my carry on, a random passenger at the airport thought it was a Wonder Woman belt haha

Anyway, that's the boring stuff. How about some pictures then? Here are some randoms from Facebook and the last one my friend's camera. All pictures were taken at Brisbane Supanova Pop Culture Convention 2012.

Happy that I found my Drogo haha

As I've had a few enquiries as to where I purchased the fabric from, it is a blue/silver silk chiffon shot with metallic thread, and it comes from the Berwick Street Cloth Shop in London. I contacted them after reading another blogger's account of where she found the fabric.

They were very helpful as I ordered the fabric after a couple of emails and a phone call. They no longer had the colour in stock when she enquired, so she purchased a plain colour and dyed it herself. I was lucky in that they had the same colour, but as the fabric was lightened for Daenery's dress, I had to lighten this fabric myself. The fabric itself was 25 pounds a meter, and I purchased 6 meters. Along with postage costs to Australia and the currency conversion, the fabric cost me $280AUD.

To lighten the fabric, I put all 6 meters without cutting it into my front loader washing machine. The machine was set to 60 degrees Celsius and I put in two packets of RIT Dye remover.

It went from this:
To this:

And finally to this (after sponging on gold paint with sea sponges):

I was quite worried at how see-through the end garment would be, however thankfully the test photographs helped put my mind at ease. I was wearing pasties and flesh toned shorts (similar to Spanx I think) and nothing could be seen (that I know of!! -_-;;;).

I am happy to put up a more detailed explanation of how the dress was put together, if enough people are interested? Leave a comment if you would like to see one!

Felt Friends from Japan

I will start this blog post by saying how much I love Naomi Tabatha and her craft book Felt Friends from Japan! Like others, I was first introduced to her works by other bloggers out there. Somehow I came across Naomi's works and I was hooked from the word go. She has inspired me to sit down for hours at an end quietly sewing away. It all started with this little bambino:

Please forgive the Instagram format of nearly every photo haha... It's kind of addictive to say the least! And from there... I was hooked!

I love him! He stands about 35cm tall...

Let's take a tally of all the animals I've done so far...

Fawn x 1 (Book 1)
Reindeer x 3 (The reindeer is not a design in her book, but it is the fawn which I have modified by bending and twisting some cake wire into an antler shape and creating a pattern from it. I have since repeated that same pattern with success for each subsequent reindeer, and enlarging it by eye for the larger reindeer)
Rabbit x 1 (Book 1)
Ballerina x 2  (Book with donkey on cover) and
Giraffe x 1  (Book with cat-girl in dress on cover)

Since becoming enamoured with Naomi's first book, I splurged and purchased her three other felt creatures books. Thank goodness for eBay :D Unfortunately the last three titles are not available with an English translation, but regardless of this they still indicate how many of each piece needs to be cut, and written instructions are at a bare minimum. It is entirely possible for someone who can not read written Japanese to successfully reproduce her creations.

.:Words of Wisdom:.

If you're keen to try your own, I would say go for it! It's a very cheap venture where your patience is rewarded generously with the cute little creations you will come up with! Warning: It is addicting!   And people will attempt to bribe you for felt friends of their own hehe

Many of the designs you can make without enlarging the pattern, but if you have a photocopier you can enlarge if required. Most of the designs I have recreated are exactly as they are from the sizes in the book, but the larger reindeer and rabbit are at 141% and the giraffe is 200%. 

Although not absolutely necessary for you, I've compiled a list of information that you may find useful...

  • Felt
  • Embroidery Needle
  • Embroidery Cotton
  • Polyfill
  • Small sharp scissors
  • Narrow blunt object for stuffing (blunt end of bamboo skewer is ideal)
  • Pins (to pin the patterns to the felt/if needed to secure felt in position)
  • The book recommended a marking pencil, hence it's appearance in the photo... However I found it useless (for me - it did not mark the felt for me at all) so I don't think it's a necessity, but you could still use it...

  • Pay attention to the neatness of your stitches, and the positioning of each stitch. Namely here try not to put your needle through the felt too close to the edge as your felt may tear as you are stuffing if it it is too tenuous. Each critter has it's appeal in its hand crafted-ness, so don't worry if they are not perfectly spaced stitches! Believe me though that with each one you complete, you will see how you improve each time :)

The one on the left is an improvement to the one on the right! And they were the 3rd and 2nd ones respectively that I have made
  • Ever since the first two creations which said to glue on the eyes, I decided to sew them on instead - for added durability. Each subsequent book appears to instruct you to sew on the eyes, so perhaps it is for the best :)

  • I have experimented by putting wire into the legs of my 3rd reindeer (picture above), so ideally he will always be able to stand. This is not strictly necessary though, but it was like a back-up insurance policy as it was made for someone else. I would prefer not to use this, and I don't think it is 100% necessary...

  • Don't be afraid to put your own touches to the designs! All of the animals I have made have a heart sewn onto them as one of their spots and the ribbons on the reindeer are also something I came up with to up the cuteness ante. I'm thinking of trying to personalise them even more by stitching the recipient's initial's to the heart... That will be perhaps more if the person requests it. 

Cutting and Stuffing:
  • Be wary when cutting out felt as some areas require a delicate touch, as I've had to re-cut some pieces because I'd gotten a bit close to another cut and it was an extremely fragile connection and not worth continuing with.

  • When stuffing, try to avoid poking too hard with your skewer as you might poke through or distort the felt.

  • Be careful not to overstuff which can distort your creation and particularly with the head as it can overballance your creation and it will not be able to stand on its own. All the designs have the ability to balance on their 4 legs, but sometimes it is by sheer will and mind power that I channel into some to make them stand proper hehe (namely my fawn and first reindeer)

And I think that's about it for my "words of wisdom"...

I have my next few felt creations I wish to recreate including a mermaid and blue bird and a fashionable little cat who has several outfit changes! And the list goes on... I did warn you it was addictive! I think I found the solution to balloons that won't last forever! :D

Really excited, because: 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Daenerys Qarth Dress Update!!

Hello all! I thought it might be overdue that I share you some of the costuming goodness.

Things are seemingly never-ending with things to do etc but I managed to squeeze in some sewing along the way. Here is where my Daenerys Qarth dress is currently at:

The mock up is made from taffeta, because I happened to have 6 meters lying around since 2009. Coincidentally, that is the same number of meters I purchased the actual fabric in.

The cape attaches into the skirt of the dress, just below the belt. I learnt (and still am learning!) how to do a rolled hem. It is so gratifying! 

Here is a picture of the beads I have purchased that hang from her belt:

I couldn't find anything to exact, but I'm really digging the look of some of those beads! I think it captures the essence of what they would be.

And finally, this is the wig I have purchased for Daenerys:

It is a lace front wig, something that I have never used before. So that should be interesting! It was purchased from Arda Wigs, who I purchased several from and I love the look and feel of them. I am planning on braiding the wig and subjecting it to boiling water to help set a crimped look. I hope it works, as it is not something I have tried before...

So there you have some more up-to-date details about the costume, I don't have much longer so I will need to get a wriggle on ;)

Until next time!!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Cat Lady and Her Webcam

Let's take a break from some of more traditionally posed camera photos and check out some spur-of-the-moment webcam shots of kitties!

Meet Blue. Often called Superblue, Bloo-boo and Boo-boo! A beautiful British Blue with 'tude. She didn't really want to sit still for a photo, and so this is the best of what there is haha

 Minette Valentina is a little lady. Mostly. Often called Mumma's Little Princess and Mousecat :) Loves her cuddles!

... and then there is the sad and slightly crazy look of a lady who has no cats left for cuddling :(

Yay for webcam shots! haha The first time I have used it on my new laptop and it was kind of fun.

Oh and I'm joining in an under 300 followers linky party! Go on, check it out! You know, if you want... ;)

Friday, September 21, 2012

Daenerys Qarth Cosplay - Game of Thrones

So something you may have gotten from reading my blog is that I like to Cosplay. As the last 18 months have been leading into getting ready for my wedding, costuming has taken a back seat. That is not to say I haven't been thinking about it a lot!

My time has been spent preparing costuming plans for the stunning gown worn by Emelia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones. Many hours spent Googling and research is paying off! So far here is my progress... I hope to document even more as I finish this costume. My deadline is in November, when I will attend Supanova Brisbane (Brisnova)!

Some reference shots!


And some 'in progress' shots!

 The shoulder pieces and belt were commissioned from a prop maker. He is a friend of mine in Brisbane, and I think he did an amazing job!

Please excuse the dirty mirror... Xx

Now the really cool thing about my research, is not only have I come across some amazing ladies who have made this costume; one of them was able to say where she purchased her fabric from, which incidentally is the store where Michelle Clapton purchased the actual fabric used in the dress! At that time, they only had it in a white colour so she had to dye it (which incidentally she has done an amazing job of!). When I emailed the store she spoke of, they happened to have the original colour of fabric in stock!!

Right away I enquired, and now 6 metres of the fabric is on its way to me! It was pricey, that's for sure; but I hope to make it worth it! They sent me a picture of the fabric also:

And just because it is so awesome!

Daenerys is also Mother of Dragons, and this dragon cuff earring is ah-mazing! The Etsy store Marty Magic Jewelry has so many other beautiful pieces, it is so hard to pick a favourite :)

That's probably enough awesome for one post, otherwise computers will melt down from the sheer awesomeness of it all! I hope to put in more in-progress shots, and share some of my favourite links of resources that are helping me along the way. Until next time!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

So I Got Married...

So it's been a pretty long time since I was properly blogging. The big reason, was a big one... Getting married! Just thought I'd share some of my favourite pictures from the day.

Okay yes, I'm sure there would be heaps more! But I don't want to be too overloading :) It was a hectic and fun day, and I can't believe how quickly it all went! Best of all... Muahahaha... Wait for it....


No more planning! Phew. Glad to have that load of my mind. I am not the best at being organised, and of course so much organisation is needed for a wedding. Not the first bride to be faced with that dilemma, but so glad it is over :)

And lastly, here is a picture of me and my handsome man as balloons! I was planning on making a couple for the reception too, but of course the timing was not good, and I ran out of time! haha

Ah well, at least I have these to remember :)

One last picture!

Most of the photos were taken by our official photographers of the day (friends' of my Husband's family), but the last from one of my good friends who is also a photographer. I love them all! <3 p="p">

Good luck and wishes for all brides-to-be out there!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Discoveries of 2012

It has been a short while since we've 'talked', so I thought I could share some of my newest discoveries I made during my absence! Click on the images to learn a bit more about each one.

Lana Del ReyDaenerys Targaren - Game of Thrones

Once Upon A Time - Snow Whiteeverlastinglifashion

So... You maybe wonder what made the list? Read on!

  • Lana Del Rey - Amazing American songstress. Came to learn about her though a co-worker who would claim my dress sense reminded her of me! Very flattering when I saw who she was (I don't exactly see it though! :S) I heard a few of her songs and I was hooked!
  • Game of Thrones - I have chosen the image of Daenerys to illustrate my discovery! She is my favourite character of the ensemble cast. I cannot wait until season 3 airs in March! I am also planning a costume based on her outfit worn in Qarth in season 2. Of course I will share it with you all :)
  • Once Upon A Time - Another fabulous ensemble cast performance bringing beloved characters to life (those we love, and love to hate)
  • Embellished Shoes - Whilst looking for wedding shoes, I was agape when I found these beautiful shoes from Etsy seller Everlastinglife. Out of my budget however, and would have arrived too late... But how gorgeous are they? Please visit her store, she has some ah-mazing shoes! I would love to do something very similar for a shoe makeover. If I do, I will share :)
  • iPad and iPhone - Purchased one of each within the last year, which was great. My sadness though is that my iPhone fell out of my back pocket into the toilet! Sigh.... I'm planning on getting a new one again when I can save up the money again!
  • Bootcamp - I joined Bootcamp in January with the intentions to lose weight for my impending wedding. I was immensely pleased with my results, loosing 10 kilos (22 pounds) over the 6 months I attended. I have put on a couple of kilos thanks to amazing food on my Honeymoon, but I'm back again! I look forward to increasing my fitness even more. I was also so happy that I went from walking/jogging for a short spell all the way to being able to run 5K's, within a short spell. I hope to maintain this ability, and will be sad when I lose it haha

I'm certain there are more discoveries I've made, but I look forward to making more! Do you share any of my interests?

Image Credits:

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