Friday, January 30, 2015

A is for Aqua Apparel

When I started out to do the January Pinstrosity Challenge -- brought to you by the letter A -- I figured I'd be done with Cloe's outfit by the middle of the month. Easy. Easy-peasy-lemon-squeazy.

Cloe demonstrates the America's Next Top Model "hailing a taxi" pose.
I put the last stitch in her outfit at exactly 6:30 on January 30. The original goal was to start with these pants (Pin, original), which I'd made once before, but turn them into bell bottom jeans by adding a gusset inspired by reading about medieval and Renaissance tailoring (Pin, original), though how I wandered into that topic escapes me. Damn Google.

Hallelujah! It took a month, but I finally have clothes.
The color scheme is dictated not only by Cloe's hair but by her shoes, as she's a Bratz, so to change shoes, she has to change feet. I don't know why MGA doesn't just sell extra 24-packs of feet.

Here is the gore in the process of being installed. The jeans are edged with bias tape -- fastened with fabric glue, which is still drying at this stage -- because I really hated my hemming job and several tries at redoing it did not make it better.

Just. Keep. Improvising.
The bias tape plus turned-under denim creates stiffness and bulk that makes it harder to turn the pants right-side-out after sewing the final seams, though obviously I managed. It's also necessary to glue the cuff seam, as the sewing machine ain't goin' through twelve layers of stiffened fabric (six per side of the seam! eep!).

Behold! The gore.
The stripe is because Cloe's super-power as one of the Bratz Action Heroez is speed. The polka dots are because that was somehow becoming her theme. And the flower at the top is because I needed a pink bead to conceal some infelicities in how the point was seamed, and that was what I had.

The elastic has a tendency to be awkwardly bulky. I'd considered trying non-elasticized jeans (Pin), but wasn't feeling very confident with building a sloper or adapting to the "taller Bratz" body type.

Do you think I should get my navel pierced?
The top ended up being a variant on my same-old fall-back tube top because other plans Weren't Going Well.

The plan for the jacket was to look sort of like a team windbreaker, only without involving sewing on anything slippery. This required contrasting sleeves and... using a pattern. An actual pattern. From a pattern envelope.

But, to stay within my comfort zone of Never Following the Instructions, the pattern was missing a key piece that I had to figure out how to cut by extrapolating from the non-missing pieces. Then it turned out to all be too way wide across the back, so I ran a seam up the back and figured it'd just have to flare. We got gores... we got darts... the only thing we're missing is gussets.

Heading for 80 mph.
Since Cloe's super-power as one of the Bratz Action Heroez is speed, the pattern on her coat is a speedometer. I'm probably going to have to hit the crystals with fabric glue the next time I have it out.

Ynez and Shira are envious that Cloe now has real clothes and can go places other than comic stores without being stared at.

It's just a jacket, Ynez. I'm sure you'll eventually get one, too.
Uh oh! Frankie has a message! Cloe's super-hero skills are needed!

I'm so relieved we're not wearing the same dress! Also...
Hayden's car needs fixing! Cloe's more used to working on race cars, but she can try a few things to get the Chery running.

Oh, Chery! Our gears... roll on... roll on...
With the car in working order and a job well done, Cloe relaxes with her Action Heroez friends in front of the big game.

Whose responsibility was it to order pizza?


  1. You did very well for the Pinstrosity challenge (what a fun idea :-) )! The outfit is great, love the pants! I look forward to see what you will make for the next challenge :-).

  2. Hi Smaller Places! I love this outfit! the trousers are wonderful very much "late 60's" the girls here should use some nice "flower power" outfits, thanks for sharing!

  3. That is a colorful, blingy outfit! Very cool.

  4. Cute design. Great color combo, too.

  5. Very cute - love the way the colours go together!

  6. Cloe's new outfit is super cool. You did a great job coordinating the clothes with her hair and shoes.

  7. @Night Owl, @billa, @Muff, @Vanessa, @jSarie, @Jewell -- I thank you, Cloe thanks you, the other two gals whose likelihood of getting and outfit in February has just gone up thank you.

    You've also inspired me that I sort of think Shira's going to have a more 1970s feel and Ynez more 1980s.

  8. Close outfit is too cute! I love love her hair. These colors look really great together. It was probably Frankie's turn to order the pizza. Lol!

    1. Aw, thanks!

      Frankie always orders extra anchovies...

  9. Love the outfits!!! your name taken from the Chronicles of Prydain, by any chance?

    1. Thank you! And yup, that's the origin of my non-hobby-specific handle. I discovered Prydain in eighth grade and related heavily to the idea of a fantasy heroine who got to DO THINGS (this wasn't completely unique in my reading, since I had the Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy, but it wasn't commonplace, either).

    2. I was in 7th when I first read The Book of Three, which was 1977. I assume you are much younger than me though. lol

  10. Hey there! Great outfit for Cloe. If you don't want the bulkiness of the waist elastic, you can use elastic thread which is great for doll clothes. But anyway, I love the look of the outfit you made for her! Super cute