Monday, August 29, 2011

Applying for an Artist Alley Table

So it looks like I'm applying for an Artist Alley table for Ohayocon 2012! I've just submitted my application moments ago. I guess this year they've made some changes to the application process, which means my application has to be submitted to a juried panel, and I had to submit a sketch of my table layout. I've never applied for anything like this before, so I'm not entirely sure how it was handled before.
This past week I've been planning for this: figuring out what I'm going to be selling, and how I'll be setting up said merchandise. So I haven't done a lot of sewing, but instead sketching, planning, and more sketching. This is what I've come up with:

I'm planning on selling a handful of skirts, jsks, dresses, and capelets, as well as parasols, cravats, and plushies. I'll also be doing measurements and taking custom orders/requests to be filled in the near future. In my sketch I've used a lot of PVC piping, but I'm pretty sure that's the most durable way to make a make-shift closet to go on top of a table :P I also just realized that my mannequin can come off her pole and stand on a table! So I'll give her a lovely outfit to wear/promote. I really like making parasols, so I plan on making a few in a variety of colors to bring along as well. I'd really like to find some sort of short coat rack thing to hand them on.. but we'll see. I took a trip out to some neighboring thrift stores this weekend, and found a nice frame I'm planning on using for my "Commissions" sign:

^^It's a bit ugly now, but I really wanted either a heart-shaped, or a round frame. I plan on painting this black, and adding some lace and/or beading around it ♡

Since a lot of the stuff I make is custom-sized, I plan on having a lot of one-size-fits-all type of items such as: parasols, cravats/ascots (since I now know how to make them), plushies, headbands/hair clips, and some skirts - probably elasticized so they can fit a variety of sizes. I also plan on having a few jsks/dresses for the off chance someone's interested in a dress that I've made for their specific size.

I'm not sure when I get notified about having been accepted or whatever, but I hope it's not too close to the convention! I don't want to waste a lot of money making stuff and then get denied >_< 

On a side note.. I've now got a logo! I just haven't applied it to this blog or.. anywhere for that matter:

This is actually a design I drew up months ago - probably like.. at the start of the summer? I'm hyper-critical of my work, and a total perfectionist, which is why I haven't decided to share it until now. I've been tweaking/making changes to it here and there ever since then. The banner at the top of this blog is just a brush I threw behind some text because I needed something. It was before I really plunged into Elegy and really understand/knew what it was all about. Now that I've been successfully pursuing it for several months, I feel it's time to upgrade to something more personal. I wanted the logo to accurately reflect the mood/feeling of Lolita fashion - and I think I've captured it quite well. Gothic is definitely more my style, although I do dabble in a bit of everything, lol. I wanted the logo to feel like a dollhouse - a bit magical, a little gothic, and totally elegant. Purple's always been the the color that conveyed this for me, so I chose to stick with that. 
I've done up the business card designs also - I'll probably be uploading those sometime this week.. I'm planning on getting some super professional/awesome embroidered labels for all my clothing soon too! They take a few weeks to get done, and since I've yet to even start that process.. we probably won't be seeing those for a while. 

Anyways, I've got a lot of work to get done this week - a high waisted skirt with two blouses, and two kitty hoodies - I'm just waiting for materials to arrive.
Hopefully I'll hear about Ohayocon soon - until then... send me your positive thoughts/energy, please!

Miss Chubi

Sunday, August 21, 2011


If any of you have been following my facebook, you may have noticed how I've been working so much on Thursday/Friday trying to get my bf and I's outfits finished for Matsuricon. Well, I did it. I was up until Saturday morning at 4:30 working, but I did it! (For those of you who don't know, my schedule is semi-nocturnal, and I normally don't go to bed til about 5am, so it wasn't that huge of a deal.) We didn't take a ton of pictures.. mostly because the con was a lot smaller than I'd anticipated, and I kinda forgot we'd brought the camera along most of the day, haha. Anyways, I've got a few photos to share:

^^Me right as we're getting ready to leave. This is the head piece I stayed up to make on Friday night. ♡ It's definitely my most complex headpiece, and I think I'm going to be putting more time/energy into making my headpieces more lovely like this one. Ooh! And it's not a headband, it ties in the back with ribbon instead. (I don't know why I never thought about doing this before.) Also - please don't look too closely at my hair color >__> lol. My hair's starting to fade, so it's going back to it's dark brown and doesn't match my twin tail extensions too well anymore D:

^^My bf and I at the event. Here you can sort of see our outfits I've been so hurriedly working on Thursday and Friday!  (I also really need a gothic lolita bag - that wristlet I was carrying around is so old, and not matching at all! D:)

^^Full outfit pic. This was once we got home and I realized I had no pics of us in our full outfits D: I'm really thinking he needs a cape or a jacket to go with this and maybe a cane ♡ Ugh, we have like no accessories >_< Except he did purchase that pocket watch (you can sort of see the chain in the front), so I suppose it's a start.

^^A closer view. I realized the lighting isn't spectacular, but this is all I've got for now..

^^Nope, just kidding! I completely forgot I took this picture Friday night after I'd finished it. I was just so busy and forgot to upload it to my facebook then. Yes, the vest is on a dress form with my petticoat :p A petticoat pretty much always stays on my dress form, and since I don't have a male dress form.. Oh and you can totally see the thread rack my bf crafted me months ago! 

^^Full outfit pic. I like this photo a lot because my bow is all askew, and my twin tail extensions are like so ready to just fall out, haha. I was so tired =__=. I'm carrying my parasol as well, it's hard to tell because everything is black. >_<

I did get a lot of photos taken of me, which was totally flattering and awesome. So, who knows where those are going to show up?

That's pretty much it. I'll definitely have some better pics up of our outfits throughout the week. I'm pretty sure I'm going to be adding my dress to my shop, as a made-to-order item ♡ I'll probably be adding some of my bf's Prince garments as well. I think men are really overlooked when it comes to finding decent Prince/Ouji/Kodona style clothing, and I think that's sad.

Since I've started this small business, I've realized there's a whole lot of other ways to sell, other than online. There's for instance.. vending! That was one of the reasons I really wanted to attend Matsuricon this year, to really check out the dealer's room and artist's alley to get some ideas. I've been thinking about doing something similar for a while now (really seriously ever since I attended the Midwest Craft Caucus back in like.. June?), and I wanted to do some research. I've got a lot of ideas, and who knows? I may be doing things like this in the future! ♡ I'm thinking of applying to vend at Ohayocon... but that's really scary to think about! That con is so huge, and I don't want to be a total failure because I'm small. So, we'll see. 

Well that's all for now. I've got a whole 'nother round of sketches and commissions to get started on! 

Miss Chubi

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Rose-Printed Dress Commission = Complete! (Featuring my new mannequin)

This lovely piece of heavenly dress has been finished! I'll admit, it did take a day longer than I thought it would - all the gathering I did for the underskirt really took a while. I have a lot of work I should be getting done instead of blogging, so I'll take up where I left off and try to be quick!

^^This is what your bodice looks like before it's sewn! Bodice and lining pieces cut out - the bows actually weren't sewn on in this pic yet.

^^Bodice sewn, lined, and laced! Bows are actually sewn on this time. I enjoy the use of snaps for my bows - that way they can be removed when it's time to wash, and can go back exactly where they were afterwards.

^^Ruffly, ruffly underskirt! This is about 1/3 of the underskirt in this picture. I did the math, and realized I ended up using about 20 yards worth of ruffles! (With all the hemming, gathering, and finishing of seams involved, no wonder it took me an extra day to get this finished.)

^^A lovely view of my finished seam ♡

^^WOW! :D Look all that loveliness. That's what 120" gathered into about 25" looks like! 

^^Bodice sewn into the overskirt..

^^And now with the underskirt! Ooh, and with waist ties too! It's such a dream ♡

^^Sleeve progress... Before I've made the bows, and sewn them to the bodice.

Okay. Enough progress photos.. onto the finished piece itself! ♡

^^The beginning sketch.

^^The finished piece itself! ♡ (Ooh, and my new mannequin! It's actually a bit smaller than my "old" one in the waist/hip area.. but her bust is bigger >_< It also doesn't have a cover, so this is just plastic and the garments tend to slip around a bit. For example: the dress doesn't actually come down in the front as much as it looks in this pic because of the mannequin's slippery bust.)

^^Side view. It's just so pouffy! ♡

^^The waist ties actually do tie, I just didn't want to wrinkle up the fabric for my client ♡

^^A lovely close-up. Here you can see a glimpse of the satin ribbon used to finish the seam in the underskirt.

^^The secret way of getting into this dreamboat! ♡ And yes, I sewed the zipper in between the outer layer and the lining, so you can't see the zipper at all, except for the pull.

Alright, and that's all I've got! This dress really means a lot to my client, as it is her "dream dress", and I'm so happy I could bring it to life for her ♡ 

Miss Chubi

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Finished Wa-Lolita Commission... and onto the next one!

Last night I put the finishing touches on this super lovely Wa-Lolita commission I've been working on for the past week. It took a bit longer than expected because I had to wait on some ribbon to come in. Otherwise, I'd probably have finished Wednesday or Thursday. Regardless, it is finished now, and I have a barrage of pictures to show!

I believe in my last post I left off after completing most of the kimono top, the overskirt, and part of the underskirt, so I'll pick up from there.

^^My ribbon came in! I think seams look so lovely when they're finished off with satin ribbon ♡

^^ Obi progress. For me, the obi is the most difficult part/the piece I worry most about fitting correctly. (Also, I know this isn't an actual obi, it's more of a "faux" obi, which is okay with me.)

^^Shirring! This is the very first time I've ever shirred. (Of course I did a few practice runs right before this :p) I'm quite proud of how it turned out, and I'm pretty sure I'll be using shirring in future projects ♡

^^ Top & bottom ruffles sewn on.

^^Shirring panel attached! 

^^Super giant bow for the back ♡

^^Since my ribbon came in, I was able to finish off the middle row of ruffle seams. ♡ I also finished off the top ruffle with some bias tape I made.

^^Three luscious rows of ruffles! The sleeves are actually a bit heavy with all this fabric on the ends, but I think it's totally worth it :3

Okay, that's the end of my progress photos... onto the finished shots! 

^^If you remember, my original sketch. I love to compare the sketch with the finished product. In this case, they're pretty much identical (except for maybe the bow tails not being quite so long).

^^First up, the super alice bow headband! I made this a bit larger and more detailed than I normally do my bows, and I'm quite liking it ♡

^^Here it is, in all it's glory! I'm not sure if you can tell in these shots, but I did mention the sleeves being quite heavy, and they were definitely fighting to pull the whole top off the mannequin >_< lol. 

^^Back view. I'm really loving how that super giant bow turned out. I'm really glad I decided to put bow tails on this one ♡

^^Sleeve shot! They're about one yard long from the top of the sleeve down to the bottom.

^^Bit of a detailed view, so you can really see those lovely ruffles ♡

^^Detail of the collar and those scrumptious ruffles.

^^Detail showing how the kimono top stays put with a piece of heavy-duty velcro.

^^The overskirt and underskirt, front view.

^^A sort of side view showing that the overskirt does indeed get longer as it reaches the back.

^^And a back view.

^^Just the underskirt. I'm quite happy with how this turned out ♡ I originally was going to do a three-tiered ruffle, but I decided that two would probably be enough, and I didn't want the top ruffle to interfere with the shortness of the overskirt in the front. 

^^Back view. This skirt closes on the side with a concealed zipper, and the waistband is fitted.

^^As you can see, each ruffle seam is finished with lovely satin ribbon ♡

Oh.. kay. I believe that's everything ♡ I think I have a good chance of getting client photos for this one, buuuut the con she's planning on wearing it for isn't until January >_< So, keep this one in mind!

As soon as I got this finished last night, I started right into my next commission: a classic long-sleeved dress. I got the request for this about 2 weeks ago, but the fabric my client wanted to use was apparently the most popular fabric on the entire internet. It took me most of those 2 weeks just to track it down! It was quite the scavenger hunt >_< 

I may have posted this sketch before, but I'm going to again:

It's soo lovely, and it was such a relief to finally get started on it last night. 

^^All the dreamy materials ♡ (I actually bought way more lace than I needed for this so I can use it for future garments :3)

^^So far I have the bodice and bodice lining cut out and sewn together, I just didn't take a picture of it yet >_< I mostly worked on the overskirt. The hem's going to be 120" - about 30" bigger than the average lolita hem, so it's going to be super full and delicious ♡

^^A close up of the overskirt hem.

*Whew* I've been mega busy, and I can't stop now! I also put a lot of work into constructing the bows that go down the center front... which I don't have pictures of now. I'm aiming to have this dress done maybe today? Hm.. probably not. I suppose a more realistic goal would be Monday. I feel so bad for making my client wait so long to get the materials, so I'm working on all weekend long!

I've got a lot of work to do, so I better get back to sewing!

Miss Chubi