Saturday, July 26, 2014

Resin filled bezels for the steampunk nametags

I am pretty much a newbie when it comes to resin.  I have made a few resin steampunk jewels and buttons using molds but I have never used bezels before.  However, I have been reading a resin crafting blog Resin Crafts and decided to use what I have learned and try bezels.  I wanted them to be a bit complex, so I designed a quick graphic that would be the background. 
I simply printed these out from my printer.  After that, I cut them out and sealed them in Modge Podge 3 times and let them dry overnight.  The sealing 3 times is something I learned from the Resin Crafts blog.  Once dry, I sealed them into the back of the bezels using Modge Podge and let them dry.  I then glued in rhinestones in some of the bezels and let them dry. 
After the rhinestones, I mixed up a batch of the Jewelry Resin and then freaked out about bubbles!  This resin bubbled so much and I was so worried that the bubbles would ruin my project.  However, this resin apparently has very good bubble release and after standing 1 minute there were no bubbles left.   Must remember to wait a little bit before the hysterics.  After the bubbles were gone, I poured resin into each bezel.  Once the resin was in, I added watch parts to each bezel to make them unique.  The watch parts were so light the floated on the resin and I had to use a straight pin to sink the parts.  This caused a few small bubbles, but I managed to get rid of most of them with the same straight pin.  The resin then cured for 24 hours and here they are! 

One observation, look at the colored dots in the bezels, these are the rhinestones.  The rhinestones look more like little mirrors or sequins if you put them under the resin, this surprised me, but I am still happy with the result. 

These were so much fun!  I still have a lot to learn, but I am loving resin!  These bezels were also perfect as they have loops top and bottom so each person can add a personal touch to their badge. 

Steampunk nametags

The major distraction to working on the Black and White Victorian dress has been making steampunk name tags.  In a week, our local steampunk crew is helping out at a local convention called Bubonicon.  We are hosting a panel on steampunk focusing on the influence of non-English culture.  A meet and greet with Cherie Priest, a guest of honor, which I am so excited about.  A kids craft workshop to make goggles and a 2 hour block in the Consuite.  I felt we should have name tags that identify our members as part of the Albuquerque Steampunk Society (ABQSS), so myself a friend are making badges.  We are all using character names rather than our real names for the badges.

The badges are leather.  We first stamped ABQSS and the character names into the leather.  We also used a few steampunk leather stamps for decoration.  Most of the stamps worked pretty well with the leather just moist.  However, the propeller stamp was more detailed that the gear stamps and we found we need to wrap the leather in a wet cloth sealed in a plastic bag for 30 minutes to get a good impression.  To make life easy, we just wrapped all the badges for 30 minutes since we did not completely plan out what we wanted stamped on each badge ahead of time.  Here are the badges just stamped.

We let leather dry overnight.  We then stained the leather with a brown stain to make the details show up a bit more.  We let the stained leather dry overnight.  Once the leather stain was dry, we buffed the badges with a soft cloth. 

Once the badges were dry it was finally decoration time!   We added grommets to the top of each badge for handing cords and to the bottom of each badge for hanging resin filled bezels I made and individual touches.  We also added gears, crystals and other bits to make each badge unique.  Here are a few of them so far! 

Black and White Victorian Remake waterfall drapes

I am continuing to work on the Black and White Victorian.  Mostly I am still sewing all the panels for the skirt together.  I have also washed the corset and the rear skirt drape red silk in synthropol to attempt to remove any remaining excess dye.  After removing the excess dye I remade the rear skirt drape.  I am still very unsure that I have removed all the excess dye, so I am going to attach the drapes to the finished skirt with hook and eyes so they are removable in case I ever need to wash the skirt again.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Black and White Bustled Victorian Remake

A friend has invited me to a Victorian picnic!  I am so excited, however, the only Victorian I have finished is made of heavy velvet and will be way too hot for a outdoor, summer picnic in New Mexico.  So I decided this is a perfect opportunity to redo my favorite Victorian dress ever.  I made a Victorian dress and steampunk accents for a Steampunk Vampire outfit.  I loved this dress!  Unfortunately, after only a few pictures and one wearing of a couple of hours, the dress was ruined.  I was so very angry that I have refused to remake this dress as I get angry whenever I think about it.   However, I am going to remake this dress for the picnic and a new hat as well!  

Here is the surviving bodice and the ruined skirt.  The new fabric has wider stripes and is a slightly different black, so I am going to have to redo the whole dress.  However, I am probably going to save the bodice, remove the trim and maybe alter it so I can wear it with a different skirt.

If anyone is interested in pictures/blog of the original dress it can be found at my old blog     The tag is steampunk vampire for those who might be interested. 

The first big step is remaking the skirt, as I did the first time, I will be using the Truly Victorian pattern for the 1875 Parisian trained skirt.  I learned from experience the last time that this lovely printed cotton behaves epically badly in the front aprons.  Last time, I figured this out after the skirt was constructed and spent hours trying to stitch stay tapes to the undersides of the aprons with it hung from my curtain rod.  This was most uncomfortable, so I am adding tapes before I put the skirt together this time. 

Here is the top apron.  This is a pretty narrow apron, so I did only one tape.   I used cotton twill tape for this.  I have no idea of tapes likes this were ever used on the front aprons in period but I figured it is at least a plausible solution.  I hand stitched the tapes.  

On the bottom apron I stitched 2 tapes rather than 1.  This apron is narrow enough for 1 tape, but with the tape in the top apron and the vertical strips having both aprons with center tapes gives a very strong and structured vertical line.  I wanted this to look more organic than so structured.