DIY: Clara Jewelry

As an add on to my previous post about my Clara Oswald wardrobe, I made some DIY jewelry.

Clara wears a lot of jewelry in Doctor Who (maybe more than I am comfortable with). In any given episode, she’s wearing at least a necklace and multiple rings and/or earrings. Some jewelry I have purchased in their screen accurate or alternative form (such as her eagle necklace or Robots of Sherwood headpiece), others (like the rings) I just kind of fudge together with things that I have. A couple of pieces I was going to purchase off of Etsy but figured why don’t I try my hand at making them instead.

So after a very successful trip to Michael’s today, I have cobbled together Clara’s Time of the Doctor triple con necklace and Robots of Sherwood wing earrings.

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The triple cone necklace is, obviously, not identical to the original. I wanted something a little “daintier” that I could wear to work; subtle but still an attention getting. The earrings are almost identical. The hooks might be different but the wings are almost spot on. I found them by chance in a set of 7 wings. I turned 4 others into earrings in the hopes another Clara cosplay might be able to use them. Not sure what I am doing with the last wing though.

I do have a couple of vintage silver rings on my Etsy favorites list I might purchase to use as Clara items. They seem her style even if they aren’t the exact ones.

I’m still on the search for some small twist hoops to turn into Clara’s The Snowmen earrings. They are surprisingly difficult to find.

My Clara Oswald Wardrobe

Doctor Who season 8 with Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman returns this Saturday. I can’t wait! I will be watching the new season from my couch via BBCAmerica (it’s the only reason I keep paying for digital cable).

It’s probably no surprise to you guys that Clara is my favorite companion. Jenna is my height and size, and I just love her sassy attitude. A friend of mine recently told me I resemble Jenna (bone structure and facial structure); while I don’t believe her, it still made me very happy. So I started evaluating all my Clara clothing items. I still need a few items to complete some outfits so here’s my inventory so far.

Bells of St. John

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Clara wears two outfits in this episode but I’ve only complete one of them. I made my own version of her red space dye dress (which I wear a lot on a regular basis), and I recently got her screen accurate Sparkle and Fade cardigan from my friend Lauren. I have black tights and black alternative boots from Dirty Laundry. My version of her eagle necklace is silver and from Forever 21. I don’t have her parka but it’s not something I really need.

Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS

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If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know I made my own version of the JttCotT dress using fabric from Spoonflower (the screen accurate Vaudeville and Burlesque dress is IMPOSSIBLE to get a hold of). My version is a little more faded in color due to the printing process. I also made my own version of her vintage watch face bracelet using vintage watch faces I got off Etsy. I’m still looking for good alternatives for her Jules taupe biker boots (I actually purchased the Jules boots at one point from All Saints but their shoe sizes run small and I had to return them).

Nightmare in Silver

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Woo hoo, one complete outfit! Again, you may already know that this is perhaps my most screen accurate outfit. I only made the undershirt, but I have the All Saints jacket, Sparkle and Fade carnation skirt, and the F-troupe shoes. I found out later my shoes are actually from the spring line that follows the fall line Clara wears; this means the scalloping around the ankle is a little different. Eh, no big deal since you hardly see her shoes. I also have recently purchased a wig to use for this outfit. I need to find an abandoned house or building to take photos in with this outfit.

Day of the Doctor

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Day of the Doctor is the 50th anniversary special. I have the screen accurate dress, but my jacket is an Old Navy alternative. I have yet to purchase the alternative (almost identical) boots from ShoeFashionista but hope to do it soon. I can no longer get the screen accurate NW3 by Hobbs horseshoe necklace so I will just purchase one off Etsy.

Time of the Doctor

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Time of the Doctor is the 2013 Christmas special. I have the screen accurate cardigan I purchased from House of Fraser and an alternative shirt from Forever 21. I could not get a hold of the Karen Millen check skirt so I am in the process of looking for an appropriate alternative. I had the change to purchase the boots but couldn’t justify their price; most likely I’ll save myself some money and use the same boots I’ll get for Day of the Doctor. Necklace alternative will be purchased off Etsy.

Deep Breath

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Deep Breath is the first episode that will air for season 8 on Saturday. I am not entirely sure if this outfit appears in the episode, but promo photos say it does. The screen accurate skirt was purchased from Nordstrom; I have an alternative blouse on it’s way to me from eBay. The pin will be purchased from eBay (maybe screen accurate, if it’s not it’s a helluva good replica). Not sure what kind of shoes she is wearing so I’ll probably be sporting my F-troupes or Shoe Fashionistas for money sake.

Robots of Sherwood

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The third episode for season 8, Robots of Sherwood sounds interesting. I purchased the screen accurate headpiece from Topshop. Unfortunately mine came with a broken clasp so the chain keeps falling off. I am hoping to find someone who can solder it closed or come up with a way to keep the chain and place and not scratch my head with the open clasp. Since the dress was most likely custom made, I am considering making it in the future.

I also made my own version of her Cold outfit and would like to make her Hide dress (since that dress is also impossible to get). Perhaps after AWA I will take the Hide dress. There are a few other season 8 outfits I would like to put together but haven’t figure out yet.

And that’s my Clara wardrobe! I hope to find the pieces I am missing and purchase the wigs I need so I can start wearing her outfits. Looking forward to cooler weather since most of them are cooler weather clothing.

Happy New Year

Happy 2014 everyone!

2013 ended with me being lazy and productive at the same time.  I didn’t do any work related things and I didn’t do any traveling; while my mother/roommate went to visit my brother in New York, I stayed at home with the kitties and knitted to my heart’s content.  I completed a few projects and made headway on others.

I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but I’ve started to make a few. Since this blog is all about my sewing and crafting, I’m only going to discuss those resolutions.  My crafting resolution is simple: knit and sew more.  I have plans to knit all of my close friends winter accessories as Christmas presents.  I have already started, but since I don’t know who follows me here I am going to refrain from posting any specifics.  I decided to do this now since there are tons of patterns and things I want to knit, but I knit so much for myself I can’t use them all.  There are going to be a lot of hats, cowls, and gloves coming off my needles before December rolls around again.

I also plan to sew more. I have this affinity for skater and circle skirts lately so I am going to attempt to be making a number of those.

As for cosplay plans, here are the top 5 picks for the time being.

1506258_699637143403097_1049951217_oI have no plans for anything anime/manga/kpop related. All of my plans circle around my current obsessions: Doctor Who, Hunger Games, and Once Upon A Time. Three outfits on my list – Katniss hunting, Katniss training, and Clara – are done except for a few accessories (shoes and/or wig).  I’ve already started the mock up for Katniss’ parade dress, and have a decent pattern in mind for Snow White. Since there isn’t much to be done, I am likely to add to this list (tentatively, I am considering adding Katniss’ arena outfit from the first movie and a Mary Margaret outfit).

As for the knitting, the following items are on my list to complete by the end of 2014 (and yes, these are for myself):

Dr. Watson’s Cabled Crew Neck Jumper
Chuck
Mereweather
owls
Effortless Cardigan
Mary Margaret’s Lace Tam
Mary Margaret Brioche Pullover
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I said I wasn’t going to knit a lot for myself and now look what I did. In my defense, I have the yarn for three sweaters already, and the lace tam does not take long.

Can I make these resolutions?  Crossing my fingers that I can.

Clara’s Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS Dress(es)

One of my best friends, Holley, has been asking me for years if I would sew cosplays for her.  I generally refuse commissions since I worry that what I make will not fit my client’s body or mental image.  Holley, however, is my height and general size; she has worn some of my cosplays in the past and they fit her fairly well.  So for her I made an exception, especially after she told me what she wanted me to make.

Like me, Holley is a Doctor Who fan. When she began watching season 7 of Doctor Who, Clara became an instant favorite for her – just like me.  She wanted all of Clara’s clothes, and I was happy to oblige as long as I could make a version for myself. We agreed to start with the Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS dress, which is one of my favorites and long sought after pieces.

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It was difficult finding appropriate fabric for the dress.  The original Vaudeville and Burlesque dress has such a unique design it was a struggle to find something even close in a fabric I liked.  That is until Spoonflower came to the rescue. Granted they are a bit expensive but the fabric is custom printed. In person it wasn’t as bright as expected but it was better once sewn together.

I started with my dress to see if the pattern pieces franksteined together were going to work.  I used Burda 7309 for the bodice, Burda 7739 for the sleeves and lining skirt, McCalls 5591 for the main skirt, and Simplicity 1727 for the collar. The dress is lined in red cotton batiste in the bodice and skirt. Like always, the collar bias, sleeve hems, and skirt hem are finished by hand.

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The sleeves are not as puffy and the skirt has larger and less pleats than the original, but I am fairly happy with it.  I wore my dress to work on my birthday; three non-Whovian coworkers thought it was cute. My mom thought it was a little retro. Either way, I like it. I made the skirt hem about 2 inches above my knee, higher than I normally wear skirts. I am hoping I will be less self conscious of it’s shortness once autumn comes and I can wear it with tights.

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Once I finished both dresses, there was enough fabric left over for a skirt. Since I have tons of fabric for other projects, I offered to sew Holley an extra skirt.  I used Burda 7049. It took every last inch of fabric to make the super pleated skirt.  It is very cute and I am almost sad to see it go but I have plenty of fabric to make my own version.

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It had been a while since I last used the buttonhole option on my machine but it came out well.  Unlike the dress, I ironed down the pleats to get them to set (I didn’t do so on the dress to make the skirt more poofy).

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I literally just finished the second dress and skirt about 15 minutes ago.  I have now been conned into another cosplay that is due to wear in a month and I have none of the materials.  I am going to take a break before tackling that one since I agreed to something that should really take me two months to complete. The things I do for friends.

 

Doctor Who Clara’s Bells of St. John Dress

Been on a Doctor Who kick lately, and as I have said before I adore the new companion Clara. After sewing her Cold War outfit and assembling the screen accurate pieces of her Nightmare in Silver outfit, I set out to assemble some more of her other outfits. I have all the main pieces except the shoes for her 50th anniversary outfit. And I have plans to work on her Snowmen barmaid outfit.

One of the pieces I have wanted for a while is her Bells of St. John red asymmetrical dress. I love the Urban Outfitters Silence + Noise dress, but acquiring it has been difficult. It has been sold out for a while and trying to get it on eBay has been a nightmare.  I came close once but never again.  Like always, I set out to sew it but what fabric to use?  Finding anything close to the space dye pattern was not yielding good results…until a lovely cosplayer on Tumblr kindly told me where she got her fabric.  Turns out she got it at Fabric.com (which I frequent) but I just wasn’t typing in the right key words (the fabric has since sold out since other Clara cosplayers also purchased it).

And here it is:

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I meshed two patterns together – one of the top and one for the asymmetrical skirt – into a dress.  The fabric is stretch knit so no need for a zipper or buttons.  The downside to the stretch is that it doesn’t lend itself well to a shaped fit; I’ve taken in the sides and it is still a little loose on me.  I haven’t actually worn the dress except to try it on since it is currently pushing 90 degrees F here and cooler weather is way off.  Hopefully around October I can make use of this dress.

I bought four yards of the fabric and just BARELY had enough.  It takes more fabric to complete when you have the horizontal striped top and vertical striped dress.  I did this because, after careful study, the original dress had horizontal vs. vertical stripes although the striping of the space dye pattern is more subtle.

I don’t have anything for the shoes at the moment; All Saints recently sold out of the non-shearling version of Clara’s boots but they were too pricey for my blood.

I am still trying to bid on and win/sew Clara’s Rings of Ahkaten and Journey to the Centre of the Tardis dresses since they are two of my favorites.  No luck yet on fabric but I am hoping something will turn up eventually.

Nightmare in Silver Clara Oswald Cosplay

Yesterday I posted about my Cold War Clara cosplay, which is about 98% handmade.  Today, now that all the items are in, I am posting about my (not yet aired) Nightmare in Silver Clara cosplay.

Unlike most of my other cosplays, which are 90-99% handmade (except for mostly shoes), this cosplay is 95% purchased.  That is largely because I managed to find most of the screen accurate items around the internet.

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This is one of my favorite of Clara’s outfits so I had to find as many of the items as I possibly could.  The one downside is that the majority of the items were a) super expensive and/or b) really difficult to find.  But I managed to get them all!

Starting with the jacket, this is the All Saints Axelle denim jacket.  I believe it retailed for close to $500 in stores, but I managed to snag it on eBay for $150 (including express shipping).  My jacket came from Turkey, which is the origin of manufacturing for the jacket.  The only real difference I can see from the in store jacket and this one is that the tag is slashed; other than that, it appears to be exactly the same.  For anyone who is considering getting this jacket, keep in mind it is a very slim fit.  I normally wear a US size 2/UK size 6 on top but had to get a US 4/UK 8 in this jacket to be comfortable.

The skirt is from Urban Outfitters UK.  It was advertised as “Sparkle and Fade carnation zip front skirt” but the tag says Silence+Noise.  Er….anyway, I bought the last one and have not seen it on any other website nor on eBay.  I had to buy a large because I wanted it so badly.  UK women must run smaller in their sizes because it wasn’t as big as I thought it was.  I still had to take in the waist by 2 inches, but I was expecting much more than that.  And this skirt is SHORT, at least for my tastes.  Good thing I am wearing tights underneath.

The shoes were purchased off ASOS and are the F-Troupe wedge heels Clara also wears in Hide.  These don’t come in half sizes and with my wide feet I had to size up to an 8.  They are a bit large but not too much.  There is a 3.5 in heel so I feel a little taller.

Clara’s tights are pretty generic.  Mine are black opaque tights I bought from Urban Outfitters UK for a little under $5 when I bought the skirt.  The undershirt is the only thing I made.  It is speculated that the undershirt is Sessun’s contrast collar and cuff shirt, which retails about $120.  I can’t find it anywhere and I wasn’t going to pay that money for it considering I got everything else for at least 50% off.  Instead I made it from black and dark red knit fabric.

The only real items I lack to make this cosplay complete are all the crazy rings Clara wears.  She wears so many plain band stacking rings; I only have 2 of them and have been scouring Etsy to find some inexpensive stacking rings.  I found some but am having difficulty talking myself into buying them since I over spent this month.

In any event, this cosplay will also debut at Animazement at the end of the month.  I cannot wait to wear it!

Cold War Clara Oswald Cosplay

Whew!  It’s been a while.  I have been super busy at work which doesn’t leave a lot of time for sewing.  Also, when my mother is home we tend to jump into the Jeep and drive somewhere to hike.  This pretty much means I can only sew when my mother is not around.  Since she’s been overseas attending to family business the last three weeks, I’ve gotten a lot done in preparation for Animazement at the end of May.  It is also exam time; since both of my exams were on the first day, I’ve had a few extra days off to sew.  There is still some stuff left to do, but the majority of my sewing is done.

I’ve got four cosplays to debut at AZ this year, none of them anime/manga related which is a first.  The two kpop cosplays are not quite done so I won’t be posting them just yet.  The remaining two are Doctor Who cosplays focused around the new companion, Clara Oswald.  I love Clara, and Jenna-Louise Coleman is my size and height which makes cosplaying Clara so much easier.  One of the cosplays uses screen accurate clothing I spent hours scouring the internet for.  The items haven’t all arrived so I won’t be posting it here just yet.  The other is Clara’s Cold War outfit.

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Took me about two days to complete this outfit, one day for the dress and the second for the jacket.  The dress is made of an ice blue satin that, depending on the lighting, looks more silvery.  I used Vogue Vintage pattern V1172 for the top of dress and modified the front a bit.  The shoulder straps are wider than Clara’s but they are hidden under the jacket so I didn’t bother to mess with them.  I used a skirt bottom from another pattern to give it more poof.  The amountof fabric needed for the poof prevents the side zipper from closing properly.  I can close it, but it’s needs an extra pair of hands to pull the sides together to do so.  It’s very form fitting.

The jacket is made of black twill and white muslim for lining.  I think the original jacket is dark navy wool, but I could not find a fabric in the color and feel I liked.  The buttons are gold with anchors, which fit since the entire Cold War episode takes place on a submarine.  The sleeves are a tad bit shorter than they should be, but I prefer that since I usually roll up my sleeves to 3/4 length.

I have silver glitter heels on their way from the UK (not the screen accurate ones) and a vintage watch face bracelet I put together from vintage watches purchased on Etsy.  I cannot wait to wear this cosplay!