Starting my Halloween costume

After several false starts and lots of delays, I finally have some progress to show on my Halloween costume!

The last time I posted about my costume ideas, I was still trying to decide on what materials to use. Since then, I’ve picked out my pattern, fabric, and thread, and am officially ready to get started on this project!

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I’m working off of McCall’s M7015 pattern, which I’ll be altering liberally. I decided to use flannel for the green dress, since it’s readily available in a wide variety of colors at Joann, and it should help keep me warm (an important quality in a dress, as the end of October is typically pretty cold around the Chicago area). Not only that, but I’m using double-sided fusible interfacing to make a double-thick layer of fabric. In addition to adding some insulation, this should also make it easier for me to cut decorative holes without the fabric fraying.

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First thing’s first: I tested the fusible interfacing on a scrap piece of fabric. The hardest part was peeling off the paper backing, which would often stick stubbornly to the fused webbing. I did notice that the pencil marks I’d made seemed to have transferred to the webbing as shallow indents (seen above)… that might be helpful later.

Once I got the paper pulled off, the rest was pretty easy. I cut along the edge of the interfacing to remove the extra fabric, ironed the piece face-down to a second piece of fabric, and trimmed away the excess!

collage3

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As I’d hoped, the fusible interfacing gave the fabric more structure, added thickness, and made it easy to cut shapes and holes without causing the edges of the fabric to fray. I may end up experimenting with fray check just to be safe, but my test piece was a huge success!

One of the unexpected advantages of using double-sided fusible interfacing was that paper backing I was complaining about earlier… turns out, it’s really easy to trace pattern pieces onto that paper, which meant that I wouldn’t have to pin anything.

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Copying the pattern pieces to the fusible interfacing was a bit time consuming, but doing it this way made it so that I was able to iron my pattern pieces right onto the fabric as soon as they were positioned correctly, rather than having to painstakingly pin and un-pin them. Plus, the paper backing is still totally usable as an extra pattern piece after you’ve peeled it off your fabric, in case you want to keep it for another project!

After I got my interfacing pieces fused to the fabric, it was just a matter of cutting them out one by one.

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I decided to leave the paper backing on the pieces until I start sewing, and at that point I’ll just pull it off and iron each piece as needed. The pattern I’m working from is fairly simple, so sewing the dress shouldn’t take too long now that most of the prep work is out of the way. I’ll share more photos when I start piecing everything together… hoping to have this part of my costume wrapped up within the next few days!

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