Thursday, January 19, 2012

Orange and Teal ‘Steampunk’–Part 5: Done!

Click here for Orange and Teal 'Steampunk' - Part 1
Click here for Orange and Teal 'Steampunk' - Part 2
Click here for Orange and Teal 'Steampunk' - Part 3
Click here for Orange and Teal 'Steampunk' - Part 4

I know it’s been a few days, but I was so excited about current projects that I put this post on the backburner for a bit. Finally it's time for the completion of the Steampunk costume!

When it came to the bolero for this costume it was a bit of a struggle to find a pattern that would suit what I needed. I really wanted something that clasped near the throat, but I couldn’t find it anywhere. Since I was running short on time and I knew I would have to draft the sleeves as well, I decided to forgo it in favor of speed.

I started with B6533. Using the pattern exactly as is for the lining, I self drafted the top of the sleeve to poof out in a late 1800s fashion. Sadly I didn’t take any pictures of the drafting process since I was in such a rush, so all I have are images of the finished garment. I’m sure at some point I’ll make something similar again so I’ll be sure to take tons of photos then.

Orange and Teal Steampunk Bolero
Thanks to all my rushing, I actually finished with about a week to spare. With all that extra time, I decided I would complete the costume with a couple of neat accessories. Because the bolero didn't clasp at the neck like I wanted, I made a neck ruffle with a pretty orange crystal in the center.

Orange and Teal Steampunk Neck Ruffle
It was basically just some pleated fabric with a couple of hook and eyes to clasp it in front. I stitched a strip of the same brown ribbon I’d used on the corset down the center and added the crystal. I can’t remember exactly but I’m wanting to say I just used FabriTac to attach it. It may have had holes to secure it with thread, but I don't think so. To make the crystal a bit more frilly I lined some brown ruffled ribbon around the outside.

I will admit it. I hate the neck ruffle! It was a good idea in theory, but I didn’t like the way it turned out. She really liked it though and didn’t want me to make her something different despite my many protestations. Further proof that my opinion is not the only one that matters ^_^.

Next I made probably the cutest accessory of my entire life. A tiny top hat! *** I'm a firm believer that everything is cuter in miniature! ***

Orange and Teal Steampunk Miniature Hat
I started with a doll top hat I got from Hobby Lobby and added some of the same blue fabric as the bolero and overskirt. I didn’t have a pattern for this and was pretty much just winging it. Usually I don’t like to use glue in any of my costume construction, but I broke that rule here. On the outside it looks exquisite, but it’s basically glued straight onto the base hat. I did make sure to line it though, so you can’t see any of the mess within. I added some ‘decorative’ stitching around the top rim and added a ring of the same frilly ribbon from the neck ruffle.

One of my favorite parts of this hat is the giant copper flower. It looks like I specially made or bought the hat pin from a fancy hobby store or haberdashery, right? It’s totally not! Here in Oklahoma City there have been lots of ‘One Dollar Jewelry and More’ stores that have been popping up. I found this flower attached to one of those cheap adjustable rings for a buck! I just ripped off the cheap ring and glued the flower right on the hat. Perfect.

I finished it off by stitching on a couple of hair combs and some brown netting so that it would stay nicely in her hair.

With all the accessories finished I gave her the present on her birthday in lots of individually wrapped boxes. It was really fun to watch her unbox her costume one piece at a time.

Here is a couple pictures of the costume all completed!

Orange and Teal Steampunk Costume Front
And the back!

Orange and Teal Steampunk Costume Back

Oh! I did sew a modesty panel for the back so her skin didn’t show through the lacing. I just never got a photo of it. Rest assured she was not hanging out of the back.

Perhaps the most frustrating thing about this costume is my lack of photos with my friend actually in it! It seems like all of the photos that are taken of her are indoors with horrendous florescent lighting. ***shudders*** I’ve been bugging her to take some photos out in natural light in it for my blog, but sadly she’s been sick for the past week or two. I guess I’ll just have to settle for what’s already available. Alas!

Amy Steampunk Dress 071

This was taken the night I gave her the costume. I don’t think it was her actual birthday but it was on time!


And here was a picture of her we found online from Dragon Con 2011. It’s one of those evil shots where the photographer didn’t give any indication that he was about to take a photo of her, so she wasn’t even remotely ready. But since it’s literally the only one I have of her in natural light I’m gonna post it! Hopefully she’ll get some new shots to me soon so I can update these.

So that about wraps things up. I absolutely loved making this costume and I’m really glad it worked out well. I can’t wait to make more Victorian and Steampunk themed garments!

Patterns Used:
    Mini Top Hat: Self Drafted (sort of)
    Neck Ruffle: Self Drafted
    Bolero: B6533 + some self drafting
    Corset: TV110 + some self drafting
    Over Skirt: TV303
    Base Skirt: TV201
    Bustle: TV101


  1. Beautiful! I looove the pleats! And mini hats are always a fun accessory to have!

  2. That ensemble is absolutely to die for! So amazing!,! Could you drop by and post it on my link party Saturday?

    1. :o, I'll be on vacation this week, but I'll have to look into it for next Saturday. I'm new to the whole blogging thing,but this sounds intriguing.

  3. Absolutely gorgeous! Beautifully designed and constructed!

  4. I was at Dragoncon 2011 and totally saw her... From two floors up. Wished I had been able to catch a picture of the costume, and now I've seen every detail of it.

    So awesome!