The Enlightened Optimist (britgeekgrrl) wrote,
The Enlightened Optimist

Idris - Updates and Whatnot

Right then. Even though I've promised myself I'll hold off the actual construction (because my waist measurement is currently what my bust measurement was, 20 years ago and I know it's a long way from 21 to 41 but I can get rid of at least SOME of that, dammit) I've made a lot of progress in the materials manipulation for Idris. Details behind the cut tag.

Click on the pictures for larger versions (MUCH larger in the case of the last four)


All the fabric for Idris (I'm sure this time, I swear!)

1. Fabric for skirt. Olive green/aqua-ish blue taffeta. Its actually quite fantastic when not being photographed with a celphone.
2. Trim 1, dark royal blue/black taffeta (might be ditched in favor of two rows of trim 2)
3. Trim 2. sorta dusty-aqua-teal/black taffeta. (also more fantastic in-person)
4. Sleeves/dickey. Olive jersey.
5. Trim 3, for bows and other trimmy bits on bodice. Sky blue/silver polyester (will be abusing it a bit)
6. Trim 4, burnt orange silk that doesn't deserve what's going to happen to it.
7. What happened to the silk. Left is a bit that was painted with a concentrated (brown) watercolor. Middle is a bit that was dunked (briefly) into black liquid Rit, diluted 12:1 in a paper cup (I know, I know, that's kinda strong but I needed to work on a small scale, here). Right is the same as the middle bit, but dunked for about ten minutes, just to see how it would take up. More on that, below
8. Bodice fabric, overdyed a pale green.
9. String! Currently being crocheted by EDeV. Sample on left is the original thread. Sample on right was soaked in (hot) tea for ten minutes. Will def. go with the tea-dyed but I wanted to show the original for contrast.

The burnt orange silk for skirt trim, before dye.

Burnt orange silk AFTER dye. Yes, it's supposed to be uneven. Click through for the MUCH larger picture to see the details. Getting it like that was pretty simple. I rolled each piece up, wrapped a rubber band around one end. Then I tied it with a piece of string to a skewer which rested across the top of the stewpot. I filled the stewpot so that the dyebath was about two and half inches deep (the trim is five inches wide). I soaked the silk in plain water, then dunked it for 3 - 4 minutes in the dye, rubber-band end up and out of the bath. Not shown: as the fabric dried - and most of it I hung up to dry still rolled up and dunked-end-down - the dye continued seeping through, so the "bright" orange edge is gone on almost all of the pieces. But I like that. It looks good but I totally forgot to get a photo of it. Oops!

bodice before during after 2
Bodice fabric au naturel, then after dyeing, and then after dyeing and painting - taken in natural light (more details below)

bodice before during after 1
As above, but taken with the flash on my celphone. You can see the paint job better, but the green pops up far more, um, green than it actually is. But if you click through to the LARGE version of the picture, you can see the reflective/metallic element quite nicely.

Dyeing involved a weak solution of iDye Poly (SMELLY STUFF) of one-quarter teaspoon of dye powder to two gallons water. I dunked the swatches for one minute, stirring the entire time. I highly recommend threading a bit of string through the corner of your swatches, as if you have to stand over your steaming, smelly stewpot trying to fish those swatches out with a spatula, you'll wish you hadn't. Fortunately, I figured this out the last time I played with iDye Poly.

The paint was a mix of matte acrylic medium, Jacquard brand dry pigment (copper) and a couple of drops of brown (concentrated) water color pigment. Here's hoping I can recreate that when the time comes. An initial coat was brushed on with a foam brush, for coverage, and then I laid down a second coat with a piece of natural sea sponge, which helped bring up the glittery-factor. There's a technical explanation that The Swain patiently gave me, but I forget what it is. He's a working artist, I'm just a schmuck who asks him for help a lot.

Tags: cosplay madness, idris

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