Monday, 31 October 2011

Winter In The Willows - The Knife Winter

I went larping this weekend.  Yes, I know I larp every weekend.  Not the point!  This weekend was a camping event and there hasn't been a Winter in the Willows event for a year so it was really nice to see everyone again!

Now this is relevant to this blog because on and off for the best part of this year I've been working on a special sewing project for witws.  The game world is a well documented map and much of the game is spent plotting things with map references.  So I made our group a giant fabric version.

Now sadly our group were plagued by disasters and so only 3 of us managed to go.  So I lent the map to the ref crew who used it as a prop in the NPC stoat tent for the weekend. Want to see?


The main backing fabrics are appliqued onto a poly cotton sheet, then I machine embroidered detail onto the 'Wild Wood' areas and the 'London That Was' areas.  The map is attached to the drill backing by the ribbon grid (which was the worst bit to sew) and then I hemmed it, added tape ties and pockets.  I finished it by hand embroidering the grid references.

It was a long sew and at times I had to leave it alone to think about it seeing as I simply could not work out how to do what i wanted, but in the end I'm very pleased with it.  it was complimented and well received by the ref team so I'm happy.  Next witws event though I'm hoping you'll find it in my groups tent...

Check back on Thursday for aprons and bunting!

Thursday, 27 October 2011


How did life get so busy?  And how did I forget to take bunting photos again?  Super quick post today as I'm so bogged under with jobs I'm not convinced sleep is going to happen tonight...

So here you have the Willi kit.  Our Willi's weren't quite like the original ballet ones.  They got tweaked to be sacrifices to a nature god that had been hanging around for a long time (hundred plus years?).  bad news for the party was that they'd been corrupted so were nasty.  As I recall they dealt with us pretty well though and we had a lot of fun doing our little ballet routine and skipping around the place.  Quick note though - don't wear ballet shoes and try to larp.  It's a lot harder than we thought it would be!

Recognise the cape?
I clearly have a thing for rainbow fabric...

Don't wear tartan corsets and cheap white vest tops
A vile photo, sorry...

Anyhow, I'm possibly away to larp for the weekend, so I'll catch you all next week.  Who likes applique? :D

Monday, 24 October 2011

It's All About the Healer

No purple robe this week, the recipient has been poorly so I don't have photos of it in all it's glory yet.  Instead I thought I'd show off the other character kit from this year that I've made.  Healers are important in a larp, mostly 'cos it's good to know who can pick you up again when you've been dropped so visibility is a must!

Not hugely exciting yet I know.  The shirt is his under layer and can be summarized as basic black larp shirt.  I quite like the cuff buttons though.  I used cotton for the shirt and the pattern is Butterick 4486.  I think I might want to make myself a couple of these actually, they look comfy and baggy enough to be able to hide a thin jumper underneath which is always good as the weather gets colder... 

However, I digress.  The main item of his kit that I wanted to show is his over-robe/surcoat thing.

 It's adapted from the frock coat pattern (simplicity 2333) and is unlined.  It's made of white cotton drill and the buttons gave me trouble as they were too big for my automatic buttonhole foot...

The back has an appliqued design which is the life temple symbol and I just love as I think it makes the whole thing look fabulous.  Plus you instantly recognise the character which is handy as I was saying earlier...

It's made of plain yellow cotton and was fiddly to cut to size but after that plain sailing.

Thursday's offering is likely to be bunting and a larp take on a Willi costume.  Catch you then!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

A LARP Shirt

One of my more recent makes is a shirt for a friends new character for this year.  The design was supposed to be expensive but not showy.  He picked dark green linen and celtic buttons.  Finding green linen around here was a little tricky so I ordered online.  It's the first time I've bought fabric from the internet and I was very pleased, both with how quickly it came and how lovely it is.  I thoroughly recommend Herts Specialist Fabrics and I am already planning my next fabric order from them!

It's mostly hidden by armour when we're in game though, so it has ribbon added to the cuffs and collar. 

Buttons came from a shop in Exeter
Overall it was a lovely sew.  The pattern is a nice one and linen is so lovely to sew.  I then ran the inside seams through the overlocker and it was done in double quick time.  Also adds to my collection of odd sewing stories as this is the first time I've done a shirt fitting in a car park...  The things I do to have kit ready on time!

Next week I'm hoping to have a purple robe to show you and if I remember to find the photos the willi kit we made for a campaign game last summer as well :)

Monday, 17 October 2011

My New Toy

As some of you may have guessed and a fair few of you already knew I have a new toy.  Actually I've had it for a good few months now and I'm slowly getting to grips with it.  Yes, it's my overlocker!

Threading it is...  Tricky!
Another present from my amazing Gran, this originally went to my mother, but luckily for me she didn't find the time to learn how to use it so I got it.

I now have 4 different colours to thread it with (black, white, navy and red) and the more I use it the more I love it.  It gives my sewing a very 'professional' air and means I can stop seams fraying with very little effort.

Rainbows coat was made with it and today I thought I'd share a couple of other bits that feature overlocked seams.

First up - arm warmers.  These were made when I was in an experimental mood so I pinned the fleece around my arms, cut it to size and whizzed the overlocker along the edges.  I then decided they were too plain and added felt stars.  I have to admit, I love these and have worn them frequently!  The perfect addition to a half length sleeve top when I'm not quite chilly enough for a jumper.

Fleece blankets are snuggly!
So nice to have the sun shining in!

The colours in this pic are a bit muted, sorry

This was made from left over Rainbow coat material for my step-daughter, who has been very patiently waiting for a blanket of one sort or another to be made for a while now.  It was a very quick sew as I pinned it together every which way, ran it through the sewing machine then tidied it up with the overlocker.  I think it's popular - it got whisked off the bed and curled up in on the sofa all day before being dragged back to bed in the evening!

So there you have it - overlockers are awesome!  Check back on Thursday if you'd like to see a larp shirt :)

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Wedding Anniversaries and Frock Coats...

So, way back in May it was my second wedding anniversary.  For those of you not in the know that's cotton.  My husband is a wonderful man and my present was fabric!  The piece of fabric I'm particularly thinking of is the dark green cotton velvet.  Just enough to make a frock coat out of. :)

So I dug out my patterns, rooted through for the frock coat one, made it up and then...  Well nothing.  I had no use for a frock coat at the time and I certainly wasn't planning on giving this one away to anyone else!  Luckily for me however an evil campaign was devised and I created and anarchy priestess out of little used bits and bobs.  She wears a green and black brocade under bust corset (from corsets uk I think), a shirt picked up from a costume shop in a hurry and originally used by my guard, black mens combat trousers (Burtons) and my lovely frock coat. 

Photos on location no less!

Angels kit in full

I love the yellow lining!

The trim is a chiffon ribbon

I love this coat!

The green and the yellow work really well together to make a coat that feels 'evil' but not traditionally so.  I'm debating a jaunty green hat to add to this outfit I must admit though...

Monday, 10 October 2011


Well, I'm back.  Sorry for dropping of the radar for so many months, first one thing then another got in the way and then I was just out of the habit of blogging.  But I've taken a few photos of the bits and pieces I've been up to (might have stopped writing, but nothing stops me sewing) and I'm hoping to start again and show off all my projects from this year!

I'm starting with my most recent makes.  Sunday just gone saw the start of the new BLADES campaign which can only mean one thing - yep new character kit!  This year I am playing one half of a scatty mage pair.  And I was lucky enough to be given free reign over the kit designing process...

Wizards Rainbow and Monochrome.

So, as soon as we'd decided to play mages I knew I had found the perfect use for the two metres of rainbow satin I had and very quickly after that Rainbow was born.

She has a rainbow satin dress (that I made with vogue pattern 8648 ), a stripey top (charity shop find) the loudest pair of tights I had in my collection (H&M I think..), stripey leg warmers (good ol' H&M again), rainbow crocheted gloves (that I made myself, working it out as I went along) and a rainbow fleece coat with a quilted cotton lining (pattern worked out by yours truly, inspired by

The gloves - I love the ruffles!

My mad coat and the slightly less mad cloak.
Everything minus the coat

My poor long suffering friend (who shall remain nameless in return for letting my post these photos!)  is my opposite and yet not.  So whilst Rainbow has a love of all colours Monochrome does not.  And seeing as he's daft/kind enough to let Rainbow do the clothes shopping, well he ended up in black and white.  Because that's what you get for people who don't like pretty colours, right?

I made him a top (my own design), an over sized tabbard, crocheted gloves (one black, one white but for reasons best know to no-one I failed to take a picture of them, sorry), a fleece cloak and a hat.

Mighty Monochrome! :P

My beloved 'twin' is as daft as I am!
My hood - how cute is the pompom?!
So there you go.  Two mad mages!  Watch this space though, as Ultra-Violet might join the party and I'm hoping for and Infra-Red as well...