Friday, February 22, 2013

Carnival Recap/Das war Karneval

This year's costume experience went like this:

Draft costume. Buy fabric. Start sewing.

Get influenza. Times three (the kids and I).

Orientate yourself. Resume sewing. Console child who can't get his boots done due to said influenza.

Put on costumes. Put on smiles. Put on makeup where applicable.

Drag your pale, weak bodies to three parties and three carnival parades. At freezing temperatures. So all the sewing will  be worth it.

Arrive at Ash Wednesday. Make some tea. Exhale.

I made the coat without a pattern (which really, really shows in the collar; then again if it weren't a costume I wouldn't have made my first notched collar without a pattern OR instructions. Right? I hope).

Other than that it's well made and I'm happy with it. The holographic-dots-err-stars-on-dark-blue is a very elastic lycra stretch fabric. To marry this to the red flannel-backed satin lining I underlined the lycra with some of my precious silk organza (totally wasted on all this stunt sewing I'm sure) so when sewing the stretch was sandwiched between two stable fabrics. This worked a charm and opened my eyes to all the possibilities when a stretch can be treated and sewn like a woven!

The Prince in the TV series "Little Prince" has stars hovering above his shoulders. No way can my old sewing machine replicate "hovering" (haha) so they had to be sewn on instead. For each shoulder I cut two stars with six points, interfaced them, sewed the upper half of the stars together and the lower three points, spread apart, sewed one side on the back and one side on the front shoulder. They stuck up nicely through all of the carnival events; enough hovering for me.

The leggings were made from a lovely thick cotton lycra fabric. I very seriously debated using it for myself, but it was bought for the costume and the Prince had to have his white pants. I used the Ottobre pattern no. 26 "Chillax" from their newest kids' issue (1/2013), but I omitted the pockets and drawstring and had to piece the legs. Ottobre tried to make these less like leggings and more like outerwear by increasing the ease on top while maintaining snugness in the legs. I'm probably just not fashion-forward enough. but these look like loose leggings to me. And I never caught on to the leggings as pants-trend.

That said, they're pretty nice which is probably due to the fabric, and I did add topstitching so they'd look less like underwear (which they don't). I have half a hope DS will be able to use them for ballet recitals so the lovely fabric won't just be wasted on carnival!

Last, I made a cummerbund (shirt and bowtie are RTW). Funny story: I measured DS's waist, added  about three and a half inches to make the cummerbund adjustable, sewed it up and held it on DS to determine the placement of the velcro. It hardly went aound, it was so tight! Lesson learned: never measure when just recovering from influenza! (He sucked it in admirably though and wore it through all the festivities!

Here's how DS braved the cold (at least the coat was visible, and the holographic dots were truly beautiful shimmering in the daylight!):

And here's a parting collage for my international readers who wait all year for my German carnival shots I'm sure ;-) :

Happy sewing!


Die Grippewelle hat auch uns erfasst, und zwar unmittelbar vor Karneval. Mein Sohn war untröstlich, dass er deswegen seine Filzstulpen nicht fertig bekommen hat. Den einen, fertigen muss ich bei Gelegenheit noch zeigen, der ist sehenswert.

Mantel, Leggings und Schärpe für den "Kleinen Prinzen" habe ich wie geplant hinbekommen. Den Mantel habe ich ohne Schnitt genäht, was beim Reverskragen natürlich nicht funktioniert hat (entweder eine Anleitung ODER eine Ahnung sollte man schon haben, ja doch!). Ich habe aber noch etwas für's Leben gelernt: nämlich dass und wie man elastischen Stoff wie unelastischen verarbeiten kann. Der Mantel besteht aus dunkelblauem, dickem, sehr stretchigem Kunstfaser-Lycra/Elastan-Jersey außen und Satinfutter mit Flanellabseite innen. Indem ich als Unterfutter Seidenorganza (ja, für ein Karnevalskostüm, ich bin mir der Verschwendung bewusst) genommen und beim Verstürzen den Elastikstoff zwischen die beiden festen Lagen gelegt habe, hat das ganz wunderbar funktioniert.

Die Sterne auf den Schultern sollten eigentlich "schweben". Das kriegt meine alte Nähmaschine natürlich nicht mehr hin (haha)! Ich habe die Sterne einfach mit Einlage verstärkt und zur Hälfte mit dem Gegenstück zusammengenäht, zur Hälfte auseinandergeklappt und jeweils auf der hinteren/vorderen Schulter festgenäht. Hatte guten Stand durch alle Festivitäten hindurch!

Die Schärpe ist unspektakulär, außer dass auch damit eine Lektion verbunden war: Taillenmaße nicht am Ende einer Grippeerkrankung zu  nehmen. Da sind 9 cm Bequemlichkeitszugabe weg wie nichts, wenn das Kind erst mal wieder isst!

Die Leggings sind die aus der neuen Ottobre (1/2013/26 "Chillax"), ohne Taschen und Tunnelzug, mit gestückelten Beinen. Der Stoff war so schön und dick, dass ich ihm ein bisschen nachweine und hoffe, dass die Leggings wenigstens noch für Ballettkostüme taugen.

Nächstes Jahr? Gibt's neue Kostüme, Söhnchen plant schon.

Näht schön!


  1. Glad to hear you are feeling better! I look actually look forward to your Carnival posts ever year; it's so great to see the newest costumes. I used to make some crazy stuff for my daughter for Halloween. One year she went as Medusa. I made her a black shapeless dress, hot glued snakes onto a wig, and a special-effects-making friend made her a necklace of shrunken heads. (Not really part of the story, but cool.) Now she is grown up. Sigh.

  2. Poor you! I am glad that you are all feeling better. The costume is fantastic! The carnival pictures look like a lot of fun. In England people just eat pancakes on Shrove Tuesday, it doesn't look nearly like as much fun!

  3. You did a fantastic job on the costume, and must get mom-of-year award!

  4. Flu x3 and you still managed to get the costume done...Impressive! It looks great, the jacket is a work of art!

  5. Well yes, I do enjoy your Carnival posts. The costume looks great, kudos to you for finishing it when you have all been ill.

  6. What a wonderful Little Prince costume! Your method for the hovering stars is very clever.

  7. Oh you poor things!!!! Hope you are all better and keeping warm. For what it's worth, the costumes are ace! xxx



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