So much craftiness has been going on. But there has been so little time to share it. Operation Steampunk was successful for the gaming convention.

steampunk costume

Steampunk style 1

My embellishments to the jacket I made last year really elevated it into cool territory. My harness gained lots of resin and glitter filled vials, chains, and oddities. I added a “Gibson girl” hairstyle, and topped it with a mini hat that I finshed sewing on the ride to the convention.

Smaller functional details were improved too. The old embroidered purse that I converted into a belt bag was improved greatly by some strap adjustments. The harness gained some new belt holes and resewing straps was much aided by a new leather sewing needle/awl tool.

However, despite these accomplishments, I was really devastated by having my sewing/embroidery machine break in early May. I haven’t had time to take it for repairs. So there are many planned pieces that have moved to next year’s list: embroidered underskirts, bustle/ruffle layer, embroidered lace fascinator, lacey sewn top.

One major new costume detail also arose at the convention –

steampunk costume

I bought a corset! Now I’ve got to make the top strap on my harness removable, because there’s way too much visual clutter when I wear the corset. Until next time, keep those needles stitching!


Dye teasing

I just graduated today, and suddenly I can look forward to all manner of free time.  I’m delighted to be done, and very proud to have a Master’s degree… But I’m also eager to turn my focus to home, arts, and family. 

Our favorite annual gaming convention – and my costuming deadline – is just a few weeks off, so no time for a long post.  Here’s a brief tease of vat-dyeing adventure results:


Seafoam green, plum blossom, and safari grey

The seafoam green came out nearly white (there’s an undyed hankie in there to show the similarity), the plum blossom came out crazy hot-pink on ths skirts (though more dusty rose on some canvas aprons not pictured), and the safari grey came out much warmer and more brownish than expected.  That’s the adventure part of dyeing!  You never know what will happen.  But these base colors are only the beginning.  There will be tie-dyeing, shibori, painting, resists, and more in the future for these garments. 


And here’s an update on the jacket and harness rig that are a staple of my costume.  I’ve been refining both, improving them from what I wore last year.  Adding detail is especially important in steampunk looks.  Adding accessories to the belt/harness have pushed the inspiration into a “faerie hunter” theme, I like that it can be adventurous but not so rugged that frills and lace would be out of the question.  Not sure what might be done before the costume deadline, especially since my sewing/embroidery machine has had a breakdown and needs to go in for a repair and tune-up.

Until next time, keep those dye-baths bubbling and needles a-stitchin’…


Preparing for a new (dye) adventure

School is nearly done.  Not just for the semester but indefinitely.  I am about to graduate and all I can think about is a summer of gardening, crafting and playing board games.  First up is a grand adventure to a gaming convention in my state.  Lots of people dress up in costumes, like any big geeky con, and this year’s theme is “Timetravel”.  It suits me well, because I really love steampunk and I think it will fit.

For last year’s early summer gaming convention, I started trying to cobble together a steampunk look,

Continue reading