I finally have stuff to show for this costume! It’s only been, like, a month! But, finally, my steampunk fairy costume is really getting underway. I have corset stuff to show you and hoop skirt/bustle draping too!
I started out by finishing up the corset. When I last blogged about it, all the construction seams were done and all I needed to do was finish the edges.
After three failed trips (and two unfortunate purchases) to Joann Fabrics to try to find a thinner fabric that matched in color to use as bias tape (the self-fabric of the corset is a heavy home-decor fabric and I was worried about the bulk), I gave in and cut bias strips out of my self fabric. That was Tuesday.
It ended up not being a problem. There was not a problematic amount of bulk. And I even remembered to add boning to the previously exposed edges!
And here’s the inside.
And look at that pretty hand stitching! (Wait — you can’t see it)
Okay, bragfest over. Anyway, then I started putting it grommets. All 40 of them.
It took forever. But then I got to try it on, which was a total plus. I laced it up (or, more accurately, my sister laced it up) with black ribbon because that was what I had, but I feel like it makes it a bit too pirate-y, so I’ll get better ribbon.
I LOVE IT. I mean, the ribbon is weird and I need to add panels under the lacings so you can’t see so much of my super pale skin (can you imagine that sunburn? Ouch) and I need to play with the fit a bit in the bust (don’t know how I’m going to do that), but I’m just so happy with it. This was my first glimpse of what the costume is going to look like finished and it was everything I hoped for.
Okay, onto the bustle!
I honestly don’t remember where I was last time I blogged about it. I think I was having trouble with trying to drape it; that had been my status quo for a few weeks anyway, so it works. No, wait, I was waiting to buy more fabric so I could get stuck draping. Lol. Here’s where I was:
On Wednesday, I gave up (for the moment) on draping the bustle and turned to the waistband. That was an adventure.
It was just so much fabric to work with. I mean, the lining is covered in layers of tulle on the inside and then there is like two yards of 60″ heavy home decor fabric on the right side. And then the gathers had stretched out so I had to regather some stuff in the midst of pinning it — it was an adventure, like I said.
The finished waistband is like 1/4″ thick too. I was worried about it showing through the corset, but I think the corset is thick enough for it to not be a problem. And I pressed it with a hot and steamy iron, which helped a bit.
I put all the hoops back in to work on the draping again. I actually made progress at this point, but then I decided that I wanted a pocket.
For some explanation as to why I decided the bustle needed a pocket when I have a belt which is going to be covered in pouches and random steampunk accessories, well, it’s a bit embarassing. The bustle is so round that nothing deep enough to fit my phone will hang nicely from the belt. (Whoops) And I need my phone because I’m going to be wearing this to Comic Con and I need pictures. So, the bustle needed a pocket.
I chose to put it behind one of the tucks at the edge so that the opening would be covered (prettier and no pickpockets)
I tried to find some way to sew the pocket without taking the hoops out and the whole monstrosity off my dressform but, predictably, came up dry. I had to unpin a few of my successful draping points in order to get the outer layer to lay flat enough to sew the pocket.
It was a pain in the butt, to say the least. This is what my sewing machine looked like mid-seam.
But it ended up looking great! My phone fits perfectly, there’s room for a wallet too, and it’s totally hidden. (I don’t have a pic. Lol. Sorry)
Wednessday ended with about three hours of tacking the draping points and painstakingly hand sewing the sides and hem of the bustle to the lining. It was painful. But now THE BUSTLE IS DONE.
This has been an incredibly long post (thanks if you’re still reading; you’re the best). I hope you’re as excited about my costume as I am!
I’ll have more for you next week about accessories, wings, and shorts. And then this costume will be done and it will be time to move onto my sister’s steampunk fairy 🙂
What do you think of my costume? Do you love the bustle as much as I do? The corset?
Thanks for reading