Monday, 17 January 2011

Statue of Liberty Headdress Tutorial

Happy New Year everyone! How are things?

I was at a fancy dress party last night for a friend's 21st! It was really good fun :D
I ordered a costume off the internet, which arrived the morning after the party. Useful huh! So I spent the afternoon before the party preparing an alternative costume - I went as the Statue of Liberty. I already had a dress in the right colour so it was the spikey headdress I had to recreate using things I already had in the house and with only a few hours.
In the end I used half a large cereal box, some greeny blue card, an old greeny blue tshirt, scrap paper, needle and thread, double sided foam tape (or PVA glue as an alternative, but that's messy!) and a glue stick.

To start with, I used a bit of string to figure out how big my head was from ear to ear, where a hairband would sit. I used this to help me draw a rough arch the shape of the top of my head. Above this I then drew in the spikes, although not all the way to my ears. To make it symmetrical I just drew half, on a piece of folded paper. Cut out your paper template.

Unfold and stick it down on one side of the cereal box. Use a craft knife and rule for the spikes if you have them, or just old-school scissors. Don't cut right up to the curve at the bottom, leave about half an inch - we will need to make tabs from it.

Cut this strip lots of times to make tabs, and score them lightly at the top. Fold alternate ways.

Place your template onto the bluey green card, hopefully you will have a big enough piece to cover the whole thing in a oner. I didn't, so I did the best I could and then filled in the gaps afterwards. Bend all the tabs one way so that you can draw the head-shaped curve in the right place. Alternative you could have thought ahead and used the paper template to cut the curved shape. Just cut the curve first, and stick it on, and cut around the spikes with your craft knife/scissors. Repeat for the other side.

Choose one side to be the front and use the scrap card to make three large diamonds as decoration, to give the design a hint of depth.

Next, cut a strip out of cardboard the length of your ear-to-ear that you figured out before, and twice as wide as the tabs are long. Refold the tabs alternately. Cover the strip in glue from your glue stick, and press it in to the curve, and persuade all the tabs to stick down. Use some bits of string (or the discarded hems from a tshirt you chopped for another project, like me) to tie around the headdress to keep it in place while the glue does its thing.

Whilst waiting for the glue, get that old tshirt and lop off the hem. Cut off a band from the middle which is a little over twice the width of the card strip you've just been working with. Slice the hems so you have two bits of fabric, about 2 and a half inches wide, and long enough to wrap at least half way round your head - it depends how big your tshirt was really.
Take one of these pieces, fold it in half longways - like a hotdog bun - and sew up a tube. Turn it right side out before anyone sees your really wonky stitching. Also try to hide the fact that you didn't cut straight and so your tube is very skinny at one end.

If you are hand sewing, this will take you ages, and so your glue should be fine. Untie the string, and get your foam tape. Put a strip of it along the middle of the headband, on the head side. Stick your second piece of fabric to this tap,making sure there is enough to fold up and round on both sides, and both ends are covered. The photo isn't super clear - I'm sorry, I was in a hurry!
Then place strip of tape on either side of the card spikes, on top, and fold the fabric up and around. Don't worry it's a little to wide - it's home made fancy dress so you make up the rules.

Fold the ends under and sew them down. Remember that no one will see this, so be as messy as you like!
Next, take that long skinny tube from before and sew it on at one side. I sewed all the way round to reinforce a bit better. Unfortunately you can't do this with a machine, but it only takes a minute or two.
Tie your hair in a pony tail. Sit the hairband on top of your head, and bring the strap round the back of your head and up beside your ear. If your fabric is stretchy, pull it tight enough to stay on, without squeezing so it gives you a headache. Mark how long your tube needs to be - probably a lot shorter than the tube you just spent ages sewing, but such is life. You could measure this before hand and save yourself the trouble. Trim off the extra bit and sew the end in place on the other side. Because my tube is wonky, this side was wider so I was able to attach like this, which looks slightly neater. Keep the stiches on the sides small because they will be just visible.

And that is all you have to do! Now go out and show off your home made headdress. A long blue/green dress, a torch (or a wine glass) and a book to carry around will complete your outfit :) And when the party is over, remember you can wear your crown all the time in front of your computer because no one will see you and you can pretend you are queen of the world :D

1 comment:

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