I’m guest posting today for CraftingCon at Friends Stitched Together! My Allen has been begging me to make him a Lord of the Rings Ithilien Ranger costume for what seems like ages, and since this month’s CraftingCon theme is LOTR/Hobbit-inspired, it was the perfect time to finally do it. Pop over and read all about it, and see my tips for making a great costume without spending too much time or money: Ithilien Ranger with Fishsticks Designs.
Original post from CraftingCon:
Hi, there, fellow sewing enthusiasts! I’m thrilled to get to visit Crafting Con today! If you’ve ever stopped in at my blog or even my pattern shop, then you probably know that I’m first and foremost a practical seamstress. It’s one of the reasons that I love following Crafting Con! Taking inspiration from your favorite books and movies and creating everyday wear? That is cool! I’m learning, though, that there is value in sometimes going all out and creating an actual costume. I have always avoided sewing costumes because they’re a lot of work, and they tend to not get a lot of wear. However, in the last few years, with plenty of influence from my husband, my teens have grown into self-proclaimed fantasy-crazed geeks. Really! My fifteen-year-old has been planning a Lord of the Rings/Hobbit live action role play for ages. He’s got this huge collection of stuff growing in his closet because, “I can use that for LARP!” (When does it stop being planning and turn into hoarding?)
Part of his plan, of course, was a costume, and since his mom happens to sew for a living, why wouldn’t she make it for him? Well, because she’s always busy sewing something more practical! He asked me one day, “Remember a few months ago when you told me that you would sew my Ranger costume next month? When exactly is that month?” I knew then that I had to just make time to do it!
Because this is a costume, and not everyday clothing, I did things a bit differently than the way I would normally do them. I wanted a nice outfit for Allen, but I also wanted to save time and keep the cost under control, and I found a whole list of ways to do that!
I used a linen-look fabric from Joann for the vest instead of actual linen. It was less expensive, and I appreciate the fact that it’s easy-care. I chose a vinyl faux leather for the overlay for the same reason. After a lengthy discussion of what to use for the lace, we found an old boot and recycled the … um … lace. (Yeah. Sometimes the obvious choice just doesn’t come as quickly as you would think.)Instead of installing grommets for the laces, I just used punches and a hammer to make the holes and left them otherwise unfinished.
The cloak would have been a huge fabric hog if I had lined it. Instead, I used one layer of fabric and made French seams so that you wouldn’t see raw edges when the cloak blew in the wind. I also seamed the hood down the top since it allowed me to use less fabric. (I sort of wish that I had reconsidered that choice, though. I really don’t care for the look of hoods with seams on top. Since it’s a costume, though, I’ll live with it.)
Allen is absolutely thrilled with this whole outfit, and I’m so glad that I finally made him a costume, regardless of it’s practicality! I just hope that I can convince him not to try and wear it as everyday clothing!