DIY Dress Form Done for Now

She's dressed and ready to go! I am pretty excited about her. Self love, perhaps? I don't know. Compared to what it looked like when I started, I am pleased with the results.
She’s dressed and ready to go! I am pretty excited about her. Self love, perhaps? I don’t know. Compared to what it looked like when I started, I am pleased with the results.
Here's a look under her skirt at the hardware I used from the original dress form. I couldn't find split rivets, which is what was used on the original. I found binding posts, which are probably better because I can remove them if needed.  Notice she is not stuffed. Turns out she doesn't need it now that I reinforced her inside and out with extra layers of the paper tape.
Here’s a look under her skirt at the hardware I used from the original dress form. I couldn’t find split rivets, which is what was used on the original. I found binding posts, which are probably better because I can remove them if needed.
Notice she is not stuffed. Turns out she doesn’t need it now that I reinforced her inside and out with extra layers of the paper tape.
For the neckline, I had to use the collar pieces upside down. Here's why. I closed off the shoulders, so there was no way for me to reach inside to tighten the screws otherwise.
For the neckline, I had to use the collar pieces upside down. Here’s why. I closed off the shoulders, so there was no way for me to reach inside to tighten the screws otherwise. The wooden knob sits lower this way, but I’ll figure out a spacer later if I want.
And on the outside, I used fender washers to give the paper a little more support.
And on the outside, I used fender washers to give the paper a little more support. I may need these inside, too. We’ll see. For now, I am considering this project complete. Spring shows are starting, so I probably won’t give her too much more attention for a while.

Merino Cashmere Blend

A men's turtleneck sweater in one of the best wool blends around. 85/15, merino/cashmere
A men’s turtleneck sweater in one of the best wool blends around. 85/15, merino/cashmere
A patterned front and solid back and side panels. The tie sash was made from the ribbed neck of the sweater.
A patterned front and solid back and side panels. The tie sash was made from the ribbed neck of the sweater.
And a wide brown belt that matches the tones perfectly.
And a wide brown belt that matches the tones perfectly.
The inside got a natural muslin lining.
The inside got a natural muslin lining.
And here's the lady, my newly finished body double DIY dress form, modeling this wonderfully soft tote of a purse.
And here’s the lady, my newly finished body double DIY dress form, modeling this wonderfully soft tote of a purse.

Elna Grasshopper

Found this at the flea market yesterday, and I couldn't pass it up! Would you have? The name. The color. The cuteness. The built-in table/carrying case. The adorable oil can.  I am looking forward to getting it cleaned up, serviced, and a little bit of sewing. Mostly, it's just fantastic to have a piece of well-made history related to what I love. Yep.
Found this at the flea market yesterday, and I couldn’t pass it up! Would you have? The name. The color. The cuteness. The built-in table/carrying case. The adorable oil can.
I am looking forward to getting it cleaned up, serviced, and a little bit of sewing. Mostly, it’s just fantastic to have a piece of well-made history related to what I love. Yep.

Prepping for First Outdoor Spring Show

Spring weather has finally arrived. My first outdoor craft show of the year is in less than two weeks, so I took the opportunity to waterproof the canopy. Last fall I stupidly tried a spray can of waterproofing. That was an utter waster of time, but I did return it, since it sprayed for less than a minute. Then I did some research.
Spring weather has finally arrived. My first outdoor craft show of the year is in less than two weeks, so I took the opportunity to waterproof the canopy. Last fall I stupidly tried a spray can of waterproofing. That was an utter waster of time, but I did return it, since it sprayed for less than a minute. Then I did some research.
This is what I ended up buying. One gallon cost almost $50. Worth it if it keeps me dry. Plus it was super easy to apply with the roller on a long stick and only took about 20 minutes.  And I only used about half the bottle.
This is what I ended up buying. One gallon cost almost $50. Worth it if it keeps me dry. Plus it was super easy to apply with the roller on a long stick and only took about 20 minutes. And I only used about half the bottle. Ignore the crud in the pan. It’s been around for a while.
Here's where I'm headed.  I hope the weather is as nice as it was today. You know what they say...April showers. But...I'm prepared.
Here’s where I’m headed. Crafters will be set up in the Josiah White Park by the train station in historic Jim Thorpe. I hope the weather is as nice as it was today. You know what they say…April showers. But…I’m prepared.

Progress on My Body Double

The original paperboard dress form has been deconstructed, but now without a lot of work. Lots of rusty screws, and the rivets through the paperboard were tough to remove. I plan to re-use some of the pieces, which are shown here, cleaned up by my husband. He even sanded and oiled the wooden knob for the top.
The original paperboard dress form has been deconstructed, but not without a lot of work. Lots of rusty screws, and the rivets through the paperboard were tough to remove. I plan to re-use some of the pieces, which are shown here, cleaned up by my husband. He even sanded and oiled the wooden knob for the top.
And, he cleaned up the base. This is really the best part, and the whole reason to go through such trouble. Old stuff is cooler than new. Usually. We are going to give the base a fresh coat of paint.
And, he cleaned up the base. This is really the best part, and the whole reason to go through such trouble. Old stuff is cooler than new. Usually. We are going to give the base a fresh coat of paint.
The other update on this project is a small breast augmentation. The original job was very lumpy, and I have read other people had the same problem. I took a small set of bikini top padded inserts, taped them on, and repapered over very carefully with small thin pieces. I think she's looking kind of fabulous. But, then again, I may be biased. :)
The other update on this project is a small breast augmentation. The original job was very lumpy, and I have read other people had the same problem. I took a small set of bikini top padded inserts, taped them on, and repapered over very carefully with small thin pieces. I think she’s looking kind of fabulous. But, then again, I may be biased. :)

Bag Crazy

A nice roomy bag emerged from this cranberry red ribbed cashmere. It had frills on the edges of the sleeves, which I incorporated. The lining is a large print of tulips, with a yellow slip pocket.
A nice roomy bag emerged from this cranberry red ribbed cashmere. It had frills on the edges of the sleeves, which I incorporated. The lining is a large print of tulips, with a yellow slip pocket.
The view from above shows some detail about the opening. Two wide straps are sewn from end to end, and another pair are tie sashes from front to back.
The view from above shows some detail about the opening. Two wide straps are sewn from end to end, and another pair are tie sashes from front to back.
A basic boxy bag of a stiff wool in a great orangey pink color. I used an orange-pink floral linen shirt sleeves as a lining, and utilized the roll-up sleeve button straps as a closure.
A basic boxy bag of a stiff wool in a great orangey-pink color. I used orange-pink floral linen shirt sleeves as a lining, and utilized the roll-up sleeve button straps as a closure.

IMG_4877_1

You can button these across to close,
You can button these across to close,
or button back on themselves as an open tote.
or button them back on themselves as an open tote.

My Body Double

I acquired this old dress form from my grandmother, who is now gone. The paper panels have deteriorated, but the cast iron stand is worth keeping.
I acquired this old dress form from my grandmother, who is now gone. The paper panels have deteriorated, but the cast iron stand is worth keeping.
I did some research regarding DIY projects to make a dress form, and settled on using paper packing tape wrapped around my body. Here I am, covered in a plastic bag, ready to go.
I did some research regarding DIY projects to make a dress form, and settled on using paper packing tape wrapped around my body. Here I am, covered in a plastic bag, ready to go.
After my husband covered me, he cut up the back, through the tape and bag. This is the initial result, which is kind of lumpy.
After my husband covered me, he cut up the back, through the tape and bag. This is the initial result, which is kind of lumpy.
I filled it with some washed stuffing from an old pillow to help it keep its shape while I taped up the back.
I filled it with some washed stuffing from an old pillow to help it keep its shape while I taped up the back.
Here I am. Sort of. She was very flimsy, so I continued to add more layers of tape to strengthen her and smooth out the lumps. As I went, I was able to add more stuffing.
She was very flimsy, but in one piece. I prepared to add more layers of tape to strengthen her and smooth out the lumps.
Starting to feel a little better about her shape, but need more stuffing. My leftover cashmere sweater scraps came in handy.
Starting to feel a little better about her shape, but needed more stuffing. My leftover cashmere sweater scraps came in handy. I did notice that as you stuff it, the stomach pushes out and the hips pull in. Funny how that didn’t happen with the breasts! Oh well.
Closing off the shoulders.
Closing off the shoulders.
And here she is at the end of the day. I'm not finished yet, but ran out of steam. My shoulders are crooked, and she's even more flat chested than I am! Now I need to decide what to cover her with and how to attach to that old stand.
And here she is at the end of the day. I’m not finished yet, but ran out of steam. Her shoulders are crooked, and she’s even more flat chested than I am! Now I need to decide what to cover her with (burlap?) and how to attach her to that old stand.