Monday, September 8, 2014

Han Solo Costume: Making the Vest (2)

Once I finished the mock-up, I started working with the fashion fabric. It was very easy to start piecing everything together, especially after making the mock-up as it gave me a template to follow.

However, I had forgotten that I had wanted to add magnetic closures to the pockets so that they wouldn't flap open. They are slightly more expensive than other closure types (such as snaps), but the ease of use of the magnets, especially when you're in full costume, outweighs the cost.

When I drafted out the pockets initially I hadn't taken into consideration adding the one inch closure into the pocket and pocket flap. Consequently, I had to increasing the size of the flap and the pocket slightly to allow for the size of the closure.  It was a minor, but annoying modification.

I made each panel (front left, front right, and back) and added each pocket to each panel. (It was much easier to sew the pockets onto each panel individually.) First, I marked out all of the seam allowances, then using my mock-up as a guide, I pinned all of the pockets into place.

Once I pinned all of the pockets into place, I eyeballed the two panels together to make that all of the pockets lined up horizontally. I used a lot of pins. Then I did the same for the backpiece.

After I put together the fashion fabric together, I made the lining using a black cotton/polyester blend, then seamed the whole thing together.

As a side note, black denim attracts lint & fur like a magnet, and my kittens love to sit on it! By the time I was done, it looks like a Wookie had shed all over the vest. (I must remember to bring a lint roller to the convention!)

Once the whole thing was together, I did a bit more finishing work, including top-stitching the neckline, armholes, and bottom. Then there was minor tailor stitching for all of the pocket flaps to ensure that they won't stick out .

Here's the semi-final costume, sans the holster. We're still working on the blaster.

(Vest with shirt and pants)

Back of the vest.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with how the vest turned out. There were some fiddly bits (primarily pockets and their placement), but it was an easy pattern to draft out. 

With this completion of the vest, it's just a matter of the rest of the accouterments.