So I decided to start a blog about costuming. Big news there right? I thought it would be nice to share all the useful tidbits of information I have gathered while learning to costume during the past 3 years. Having researched a wide range of costuming topics myself, I hope these posts prove useful to someone else. My goal in costuming is to try to have a minimal impact on the environment - natural fabrics, used materials, non-toxic paints, found items, etc. That's not always easy to do, but I try. Thrift stores are very useful for this purpose, and ebay. I got an entire box of pre-owned paint from ebay; so much better than buying new product.
So now that I have spent 3 whole minutes setting up a blog, I will have to think about what to post. Feel free to make suggestions about topics or ask questions. I'm not an expert, but am happy to share what I know. I also appreciate new information if anyone would like to chime in.
I am currently working on some simple costumes from the original Willy Wonka movie. I'm making a feminine Wonka costume from Simplicity 2525 and an Oompa Loompa. A good portion of the fabric for the Willy Wonka costume came from a thrift store - purple crushed velvet for the jacket, purple cotton for the jacket liner, and tan linen-like for the dress. I had to buy some purple floral cotton for the vest and am using some purple cotton for the vest liner. I also had to buy some canvas material for the jacket interlining - canvas isn't something I come across often at the thrift store. I like that the canvas is cotton, but wish I could have thought of something cheaper than $5/yard for stiff interlining. Something that could go in the dryer would have been nice.
I also made my first costume hat using Simplicity 4083. Since the local fabric stores didn't carry wool felt, I used acrylic felt. The heavyweight fusible interfacing didn't make the hat as stiff as I would have liked, and the hat straight from the pattern is a bit too tall for the small-framed female I am making this for. So I will likely make another one a few inches shorter. I will either use craft-weight interfacing (the kind for bowls and purses) next time or try some fabric stiffener I just purchased. A quick web search for "how to stiffen acrylic felt" was not as useful as I had hoped, but I did find some tips if I ever make a wool felt hat. Those tips led me to the commercially available stiffener product and seemed less complicated than the other suggestions. So I'll try that first.