Saturday, September 24, 2011

It's cloak time!

So this Halloween we are going to rennfaire and I am making a special knight costume. For now I am going to keep it under wraps, only showing you little by little.

Ok first up is the cloak. Now I have a lot more done and I will post about that later because, well it's not done yet...

Anyways, the first thing I did was try and find a fabric. I was going to use fancy melton wool but at 18 bucks a yard my wife said no. :(
That's okay though because I recently found 6 yards of black canvas. Now, I would recommend using at least 7 yards for a cape, 7.25 with a hood, but all I had was 6 so I made do.

Here is a picture of my initial drawing:

 (okay I redrew it nice and pretty like so it was readable)
So basically for a nice, big, Sith Lord type hood you need a piece of fabric about 28" tall and have the neck hole plus about 5". In my pictures I drew the fold on the left, but I actually sewed it with the fold on top so I had to sew less. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the hood before I attached it to the hood.

Next we have the actual cloak itself. There are two things you can do here. The first is to lay out the fabric and divide it in to 6 equal triangles. Make the height of the triangles equal to the width of the the fabric (mine was about 60-62").
The second option is the one I chose and is harder to pull off, but saves a whole bunch of time. Fold the fabric so it is the width of one triangle. Next, fold it back on itself. Then again, and again until you have one less fold than the number of panels. The picture in the bottom right corner of my plans shows what I mean. It should look like this:

The reason it is one less than the number of panels is because we are cutting it along the diagonal. This will make two panels that are half the size and would make one panel. This happens to work in our favor with the cloak too because if you attach one half to one end of the cloak and the other to the other side, you already have the split down the front of the cloak. Nifty, huh?
Mark so you have a straight line to cut along and cut from the top right corner to the bottom left corner (or top left to bottom right). Make sure to cut through all of the layers at once so you cut out all of your panels.

I wouldn't use fabric less than 58" unless you are short or don't want the cape to touch the ground. Making the width of the fabric the height of the triangle makes the radius of the cape longer than the height of the fabric. If you wonder how this works feel free to ask and I'll explain it, google Pythagorean Theorem, or just trust that I have taken a lot of math and this is how it is.

Now that I have my panels I washed them so they wouldn't shrink, but they ended up fraying like CRAZY.

After much trimming and sewing I attached all of the panels together and sewed the hood on. This would have taken much less time, but my sewing machine is crap and I hand sewed them all.

Here is the end result:

I still have to weather the edges and maybe hem the edges. Also, add the clasp. So this isn't completely done, but I wanted to get it up here.

Tomorrow I will be posting how I made John's Revan mask!

Until then,


First Post! And it has substance!

Hi guys! This is my first post and I hope you guys like what I have for you today. I was commissioned to make a leather thigh pouch for a steampunk pirate costume. This piece helped me learn a lot and I hope others can learn from this as well. The first thing I want to stress is that pre-planning is tremendously important. There are things I wish I had done in a different order and it would have saved me so much time and hand ache. Also, using sharpie to mark on the leather is not such a good idea. Just use pencil.
I started off by creating a foamies pattern to get a feel of the size and so I knew how big to cut out the leather.

After I had the pattern I cut out the leather and then sewed it all together.
He wanted a telescope holder on the side so I made it simple and it came out great.
I was under a tight deadline so I didn't get a pic of the next few stages, but after this I dyed it and attached the straps. Now this is where I learned the most. The straps were RIDICULOUSLY hard to attach on the back because the inside was less than 2". So those should be put on the back before it is stitched up to form a pouch. Also, the front pouch should have been attached before I sewed it up.  But it all worked out in the end!

I'm going to meet with the client to get better/more pictures of it, including some in action.

I hope you guys enjoyed!