Posts Tagged ‘clothes’

i’ve been watching the second season of the l word again. i love it so. some of my very favourite things of that season are jenny’s grotesque, surrealistic carnival scenes.
i’ve also been reading rick moody’s demonology & am going to a burlesque circus show tonight.

so of course i HAD to do something with all that twisted carnival-esque inspiration.

enjoy!

extended version in a treasury on etsy.

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has been for some days now. i just took the last couple of pictures this afternoon! during that long-awaited perfect ray of sunlight. the weather has been ridiculous.
my shop (& its content) still need a lot of work, but here you are.

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& yeah, i ended up only settling on familiar etsy, for now. even though it’s really not that familiar anymore.

go buy! FREE SHIPPING for readers of this blog. just ‘convo’ me on etsy before you place your order, mention it, & i’ll adjust the listing for you.

thank you all for your continued support, i would not be doing this if it wasn’t for you ♥

yes, i am opening up my shop again. i had set myself a deadline for some weeks ago, but SO MANY things kept going wrong. i won’t even get into that. also, if i have a private deadline it’s likelier that i’ll keep pushing it. so here’s an official announcement! maraleopard clothing will be back in business at the end of the week. start getting excited! & putting money aside!

i’m still on the fence about etsy or artfire though. on one hand, i already know etsy. other people already know me on etsy. i have feedback on etsy. etsy has a nice, clean layout. on the other hand, artfire seems to have a lot more advantages, even if you have to pay a regular fee. but because of the regular fee, you never have to pay for listings or EVER RE-LIST PRODUCTS. or maybe i’ll just do both & never re-list anything on etsy, until that shop is empty. in fact, i’ll probably do both.

on to the clothes.

i only have three new pieces so far, two of which took me forever. it’s kind of funny, i was working on this whole professional design concept & trying to sketch as much different variations of things in a coherent collection before sewing anything. then it drove me crazy & i went back to my old method of buying fabric willynilly & then letting them whisper to me what they wanted to be. if it ain’t broke…

i don’t have detail shots of them yet, so bear with me.

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this skirt is my favourite! i really want to make another version of it for myself. i might make different versions in different sizes for my shop as well. it’s so fun & flattering & comfortable &, as opposed to similar skirts you’d find in the commercial shops, it has POCKETS & is lined.

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(the blouse will be for sale, skirt is by obsequies)

i wanted to do something more-ish with a pattern. something with more emphasis on the cut of a garment & not so much the pretty fabric used to create it. of course i drew the pattern from scratch. i wanted it to be more flared from the waist down (although it could be that the flare i meant would show on someone with normal-sized hips), but overall i quite like how it turned out. it’s a pretty basic, but still very fun & girlie blouse. i will definitely make this in more colours & sizes. and/or offer it as a standard custom sized piece.

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(it’s not supposed to fold at the side, that’s ’cause there was something wrong with the zipper & i pinned the dress closed instead. i’ll take a new shot of the back when that’s fixed.)

& here we’re back to emphasis on pretty fabric. i just couldn’t help myself when i saw this GORGEOUS fabric in the store. i knew at once that it had to become a swing dress, without too much distractions. so that’s what i made. i also drew an entirely new & improved pattern for the top of this. the entire dress is lined, has the mandatory pockets & a cute mismatched button detail at the front (that you can’t really see in these pictures, i apologize). it has a scattering of hand-stitched scraps too, which looks really nice with the pattern of the fabric.

my clothes have changed quite a lot since my fashion design course, haven’t they? for the better.

i would love to hear your opinions on these! but thanks for reading/looking anyway.

let me just start by saying that gibbous is my favourite shop ever. it has such a world of its own, which is reflected in the website layout, pictures, descriptions, packaging, even communication with the owner.
& with my renewed interest in recycled/patchworky/’shabby chic’ clothes (& money, yay!), i decided that It Was Time for another gibbous purchase. i obsessively checked their site day after day until they uploaded that product i could not resist. it became this amazing little witchy cape.

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as soon as i bought it, the lovely selene gibbous e-mailed me to confirm my purchase & let me know how soon it could be shipped. when it was shipped, she e-mailed me again to let me know when i could expect it. what service!

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all in all i received it in a timely fashion. unfortunately i wasn’t home when it arrived & somehow my little brother confused it for something he ordered (he probably wasn’t wearing his glasses) & denied me the pleasure of opening it myself. anyway.
as usual, it looks so much better than in the pictures. it was very well-represented on their website though. & is so soft! & textured! & black! i love it!

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it came wrapped in this cute vintage pattern instruction.

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such a little work of art, so well constructed. & fits me perfectly. or as perfectly as a cape can fit. i can’t wait to wear this everywhere! what i love the very most about this is how versatile it is.

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i know many of you are probably put off by their prices, but trust me, they’re worth it. good service too. both times i’ve bought from gibbous i had a very pleasant overall shopping experience. the only squabble i have is that, if you’re from outside the u.s., you can’t directly buy, but have to e-mail for a shipping quote first. then again, it’s understandable if you don’t have a lot of international customers.

here’s the link to their shop again. go buy things! you’ll love them, i promise.
i’ll probably be heading back there myself entirely too soon. lately they also do clothing make-overs! sounds amazing to me.

been a while since i did a simple t-shirt reconstruction. even with all the regular band shirts i still have. it’s not quite as epic as my recent scrap dress, but still pretty damn fabulous.

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i feel like i’m always saying how i love the clothes i make so much. now i’m going to have to say it again. I LOVE THIS DRESS SO MUCH. it’s the tea. it gives it that amazing impossible-to-capture-properly antique look. & makes the fabrics look much better together.
not that i don’t love everything else about this dress.

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& the back! i was actually really stuck with that, for a good three quarters of a day. i wanted to keep part of it open, but how? vivifromage eventually inspired this. she’s amazing with those details.

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i also really like how the sleeve things turned out. as you can see, they’re ruffles all around the arm opening. with all those ruffles they feel like little wings.

i can’t wait to wear this when i see etid again this sunday! or, you know, just to see them again.

bonus, just for fun picture:

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thanks for looking!

or: THE MOST FABULOUS THING I’VE EVER MADE. probably.

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i’m so happy with it! i can’t wait for an excuse to wear this.

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SO MUCH work & time & materials went into this. i started it the sunday before last, worked on it for four whole days straight, then one of the lenses of my glasses broke & because of all that led to, i couldn’t work on it as much as i liked for the rest of the week. i was away the weekend & then spent the greater part of the past three days on it. & now it’s finally done! i think.

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it was such a massive project, i loved the whole process. i should make things like this more often.

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looking at this picture, i might add some more to that side…

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this whole dress started with a bra. a lovely pink one with black lace i had never worn, would never wear & couldn’t bring myself to get rid of. while i was fanatically getting rid of loads of other crap, i thought why not use it in a scrap dress i would wear? i had so many pink & black scraps i could use for it. so i went through my box of scraps & failures, to-be-reconstructed pile, the debris at the bottom of my sewing box, my accessory boxes, the bag i had just packed for the clothing bin, the suitcase of stuff i was going to sell & this was what i found:

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i didn’t use all of it, but definitely most. despite how fanatically i emptied out my massive closet, there is no way in hell the finished product will fit.
one of the things i unearthed in my box of scraps & failures was half of the beginning of an ill-fitting corset. that & the bra & an atari teenage riot shirt i had forgotten about, formed the base of the bodice. i pinned them to my dressform, which is lovely & alterable & i had already set to my size. to that base i added some matching scraps, decorations & a zipper i had never used, molding it all into shape on my dressform. i almost always work with patterns drawn beforehand & that was quite nice to do for a change. thank you artemis, for introducing me to that other way of making clothes.

here are the only in-progress pictures i made:

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(some of those things i removed, lots of other things were added)

at the front i only added a couple of longer pieces to flow into the skirt at that point. when it was to my satisfaction i took it off my dressform & sewed all the way over the scrappy parts to make it a whole piece. the bra part was later hand-sewn to it. quite a lot in this dress is hand-sewn, mostly in the skirt part.

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then i left the top for what it was & started on the skirt part. that was the most work, of course. for those scrappy skirts you always need more than you think you do.
for the base of it i used cut pieces from an old flared pinstriped dress i made, an old poison industries dress i never wore & a pink petticoat i made with too little tulle. i’m so glad i finally found a use for that poison industries dress. i bought it in an emergency (one of the hottest april days in the history of the netherlands in a full v costume) at the elf fantasy fair four or five years ago & hadn’t worn it since. i started with a full piece of the skirt cut from it, pinning it to the back in an upwards curve. i added some more long scraps of fabric to the front.

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then i cut the petticoat in half & gathered it into about half its size. it made a nice base for the other half of the skirt part. in-between & above i added parts of the pinstriped dress. then it was a long, long process of adding smaller scraps to it all. among those scraps are a black with white print bandanna i bought at some random bazaar in surinam & was a sort of signature of mine throughout my childhood & early teens, a pink polka dotted sheer scarf i got for free with a copy of cosmo girl & i had worn to death in lots of different ways when i still loved pink, the sleeves from that old laughing vampire dress & fabric samples that were too small to use for anything else. at some point i sewed together all the base parts of the skirt to make it one piece. i also added one tier from the poison industries dress to the other side & continued pinning & (hand-)sewing the scraps in co-ordinating layers.

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when i was done with all that, it still seemed like something was missing at the front. so i fell back on one of my old trademarks, a bow. i made it out of the lining of an old hell bunny dress, also bought in an emergency, for a party in 2008, because i had ‘nothing to wear’, & never worn again. the painfully cute skull fabric is from that same dress.

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then i went on to the top of the bodice. i bought some new lace for that, my supply was very low. it was pretty hard to find a good way to sufficiently disguise the origin of the cups, but, after looking through my inspiration folder from gibbous, i think i succeeded quite well.

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besides lace & a ruffled bit of a fabric sample i bought for that old fashion course of mine, i also used half of the top of a tank an aunt gave to me because she didn’t think she’d wear it after all. for one of the straps i used a whole strap cut from my pinstriped dress, with some scraps sewn to it at the front. for the other i first only used the elastic strap attached to the glittery top, but it looked so small & awkward next to the other one. so i added half of a garter belt bought in the wrong size & more of that fabric sample used for the front. it turned out super cute.

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to top it off i added some beads to the front top. they were from a bracelet i got for my sixteenth birthday from some of my favourite people at the time, loved & wore almost every day until it tragically snapped at an arch enemy show some years later. at the back i also added another, open, zipper & one of the strange wheel things i got with my serger & never discovered the use of.
i was planning on adding lots more of those small things, but everything else i added seemed to detract from the perfection of it.

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some suggestions if you want to make your own:
+ gather as many different materials as you can, at least twice as much as you think you’ll need
+ the higher quality your materials are, the higher quality of the end product
+ specifically for the skirt part: the more light, sheer, shimmery materials, the better it will look
+ also for the skirt part: don’t just bunch all the scraps together at the top, work in layers; it’s easiest to start at the bottom with these
+ the more smaller pieces you use, the better
+ for molding on a dressform: keep in mind that you’ll have to remove your clothing from it in one piece, don’t stick your pins in the body
+ preferably pin in a way that you don’t have to remove your pins & they won’t hinder you when sewing
+ more is more.
+ if you’re using clothes that still look good on its own & you’re hesitant to cut them up, just start cutting; staring at them for hours on end is not helpful
+ don’t just do some random shit, it’s better if you have some sort of base/rhythm/recurring theme
+ keep track of your pins! it’s very easy to lose them &/or get them stuck in the patchworky parts
+ use old, existing things in a completely different way
+ surprise yourself
+ feel free to change things you’ve already pinned or even sewn; our first ideas aren’t always the best
+ be patient
+ it’s better not to listen to very energetic/aggressive music when you work on it
+ if it starts to irritate you, step away, take a deep breath, have a cup of tea, go back to it at a better time
+ don’t forget to change to thicker needles for thicker parts
+ if you can’t decide between this way or that way, pin & take pictures of both & decide later
+ serge/zigzag edges where you can; you don’t want something like this falling apart on you, do you?

thanks so much for looking & reading!

as you loyal blog followers might have noticed, i have recently been reborn to darkness. the 10’s & 30’s of the past century also hold a new fascination over me. this collection started as me leisurely browsing through etsy for things to buy. i unearthed such wonderful items, i had to share. besides, i haven’t done one of these features for far too long.

enjoy!