Friday, October 23, 2009

A Fairy Tale (or the making of Jordan's costume)

My 8 year old is very creative (wonder where she gets that?)  She decided that she wanted to be a "peacock nymph fairy" for this year's round of fall festivals.  We had big plans for all those feathers we were going to order from an online supplier.  Then, I balanced the checkbook.  So, no big peacock feather shippments for us!

If necessity is the mother of invention, then frugality is certainly the sire!  We rumaged around the house and gathered all the supplies that we could.  Here's what that looked like:


Then we got started.  The blue dress came from a thrift store for $1.97.  I picked it up several months ago, figuring that we would use it for something.  It was a bit snug, so I let out the sides then we trimmed both layers of the skirt in varrying points.


Next, we used the kite as a template and cut the posterboard into wings.

We custom mixed a shade of blue-green with silver, then painted the wings:



Next, I pulled a greenery bush off the top of my bookshelf, shook off the dust, and dabbed it with the same paint, then sprinkled it with shimmery glitter.



While all of that was drying, we washed up and headed for the studio for some sewing.  I gathered up all the ribbons we could find in appropriate colors and cut them in varrying lengths.  Using one wide ribbon as the waistband, I attached them and then added the fabric left from the bottom of the dress (upside down and gathered) as second and third layers of the dress:


Now the wings and leaves were dry, so we added wire to stabilize them:


and sewed leaves and a broken necklace around the neckline of the dress:

I pulled out the colorful feathers and arranged them inside one of the painted leaves, then stapled it closed over them.  I handstiched them to the shoulder, then covered it with another leaf:



Now, it was time to make the wings really pop!  Using a real butterfly we found:

as inspiration, I painted both sides of the wings, each in unique styles just like a real butterfly:





We decided that the dress "needed" some extra flair, so I added more leaves, around the waist and the hem.  We finished attaching the wings to the harness, creaded with elastic and heavy-duty cardboard:


Jordan is very happy with her costume!






Shhh - don't tell anyone that it was made from junk!

Don't stop - there's lots more good stuff...

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