Friday, July 25, 2014

SEW GEEKY: CLASSIC ANIME! AKIRA! LUFFY! SAKURA! (A massive kids clothes week offering ;-) + Giveaway!

This is me.
In a nutshell, my whole life I've been a cartoon addict.  No lie.  I recorded my faves on VHS when I was a teenager and I have never really stopped watching them!  
But as you get older you learn to appreciate new things and I fell, similar Alice, down the rabbit hole into the world of anime.
Why anime?
The character drawings are gorgeous.  The story lines are compelling, complex, at times have left me in hysterical tears of laughter and other times tears of welling sadness.  Getting lost in the lives of the characters, anime gives me so much inspiration.  I draw from it in so much that I create.  It's so special to share that love with my husband who is even more otaku than I am and to pass it on to our kids.  I mean, they fall for it all all on their own!  They have their shows that they love to watch and Mommy and Daddy have theirs!  I really could go on and on about how much it means to me... that I've emblazoned my back in anime tattoos dedicated to my children, heck, even the names of some of my kids derive from anime!
That's probably not why you came here today.
This is what you're looking for:
 I couldn't just pick one.  I JUST COULDN'T!!!!
I was talking with Celina about what kind of Sew Geeky she might be interested in and she actually came up with the anime idea, and since I know we are gonna do anime again in the future as a theme I thought about doing a classic anime theme!!  Max quickly brainstormed as did I, trying to pick the perfect one(s)!  
I was discussing about how I always wanted to do an outfit for Akira from the movie we got her name from.
It doesn't get much more "classic anime" than AKIRA.  
Not exactly one I'd watch with the kids, AKIRA deals with biiig ideals and has a very intricate storyline leading to lots of discussion.  Akira translates into "light" or "clear" and in the movie Akira is enlightenment.  But it goes waaay beyond that. 
It's available to watch for free on Hulu dubbed if you're into watching it!
So I chose to do the iconic Kaneda outfit: red motorcycle jacket, red pants, red boots, and motorcycle goggles.
 I had to make it baby friendly so that ending up being:
  • red asymmetrical sweater (remixed heavily from this pattern) with elastic cased bottom, polo-esque collar with flap and snap, faux placket, faux pockets, pill applique on back, and pleather quilted shoulder details.
  • red baby leggings (remixed from this pattern) with red pleather knee pads.
  • red baby boots (remixed from this pattern) with red pleather and minky brown lining
I used my husband's figurine of Kaneda's bike and a pair of kids red and black power ranger goggles as props for the shoot as well.

 Her photoshoot was really a lot of fun. She looks huge next to that tiny little bike.  HA!  Jon tried to help me re-create some of the iconic poses from the movie.
Peace sign Akira says "chill". hahah.  Poses are all her own, folks

Star Trek Akira says "Live Long and Prosper, yo"
Some were more successful than others.

 Check out these outtakes:
Jon wanted me to superimpose a motorcycle underneath her.  HA!
Trying to recreate this pose... she looks like her arms got cut off!  They're too small to rest on her head!
This is DEFINITELY something to check off the bucket list I just couldn't be happier with the result.  I could stare and laugh at her photos all day!

But if I didn't do that then I wouldn't be able to introduce your to Monkey D. Luffy, aka Straw-hat Luffy.
One Piece is a funny, adventure theme anime about a pirate on the epic quest for the treasure of a lifetime. It's the Great Pirate Era!
 Luffy has a special ability:  to super stretch his limbs which is pretty awesome although he can't go in to water or he'll lose his ability.
This is an anime that was a part of Shonen Jump magazine (as a manga, the printed version of anime, similar to a comic "panel" layout) for a verrrrrrry long time.  And it too is dubbed and on Hulu for free if you're interested.  It's really a fun anime that's definitely a good one for kids.
Sephira's outfit consists of a couple of very wearable handmades:

 red Doli tank (remixed from this pattern) with a v-neck modification
  • chambray and white stretch twill Hosh shorts (remixed heavily from this pattern using this tutorial as a guide) made as shorts with white cuffs.
The hat, Jon insisted, had to be straw.  He typically gets really into authentic accessories for cosplay, and so naturally he had to order a hat from Ebay... at the beginning of July... from China!  I just knew it was going to be late since the goggles I ordered for Tank Girl were ordered from Ebay and never arrived (to this day in fact they are still lost in transit from Pennsylvania!).  He assured me that he has "good luck" with this sort of thing.  I thought he was wrong, but lo and behold last week, there is our One Piece branded straw hat for our little Luffy sitting by our doorstep!  Unfortunately Max did not have as much luck with a wig she ordered from Ebay for this Sew Geeky which also is coming from China!  I thought for sure that since it was  considerably closer than the Pacific Northwest, that she'd have gotten hers before me!  Go figure!
I've been given carte blanche from Sarah, one of my bestest buds in the world to giveaway a combo of patterns used for Sephira's Luffy look: the Doli tank and the Hosh pants!  Guys, these are, legit, some of my absolute go to patterns for life.  I have made and remixed the Hosh pants pattern in particular at least a dozen times but probably I am grossly underestimating.  There will details at the end of the post about how to enter the giveaway!
 My little Luffy was not as chipper and upbeat as the real Luffy for her photoshoot (though at least her eyes are always as big as his ;-).  We drove up to Horsetail Falls in Mt. Hood (twenty minutes from our house!!!) and it was a teeny bit chilly for the kiddos (but perfect for me!  I like brisk weather!)  It's so beautiful there, and amazing that you can get right on top of the waterfall without having to hike to it, but we did end up coming back the following day for an epic rainy, barefoot hike up to the waterfall's top with a friend and her boys the following day!  Can't wait to go back!  I am addicted to the place!  We not only took pictures for Luffy here, but for a secret project you'll see soon AND for a certain little magical girl of mine...

Cardcaptors (aka Cardcaptor Sakura) is a manga/anime that is created by CLAMP in the mid-90s.  I mention this because CLAMP is amazeballs, guys. They created this story first then they made THREE more manga and anime a little later on but virtually at the same time that are very unique stories onto themselves BUT that overlap in storylines together!  Cardcaptors, Tsubasa, Chobits, and xxxHolic.  Isn't that crazy?!  I am not lying when I say that they produce arguably some of the most intriguing and important animes of the 21st century.  Heck, my first tattoo, my "Azriella" tattoo, which takes up half of my back, is a scene from an extremely dear to my heart anime called Chobits.  I can't begin to go into what that anime means to me but suffix it to say it was enough for me to want it burned into my skin for all eternity haha.  And xxxHolic by CLAMP is one of the best animes out there I watch it over and over and over again.  Teaches you so many great lessons.
Cardcaptor Sakura is about a magical elementary-aged school girl, Sakura, who unlocks a deck of magical cards, called Clow cards, with special abilities and must retrieve them all to save the world from calamity.  I started watching all the episodes dubbed on YouTube and Azriella walked in and lost her mind.  She became immediately infatuated with the show!  You guys should see her eyes light up when she talks about it now!

Warms my heart that she's so into anime!!!  
So for her outfit, I wanted to do some simple items that could be mixed matched later when she's in school but that still had cohesiveness enough to be recognizable as Sakura.
  • a white puff sleeved blouse (simplified from a pattern from this book) I kept it simple with no frills so she can wear it with any dress or jumper! and I tacked on a crisp red bow to the neckline (I didn't want to always use the bow on the dress and I can use the red bow in the future for other things)
  • pink one-piece jumper (remixed heavily from this pattern) that I made to have a circle skirt instead of a contrast banded gathered skirt with a star circle applique and revisited my wing insertion tutorial but reinvented it to look more Sakura-esque.  Also, I made those big red buttons on the back of the dress.
  • pink beret (made from a pattern in this book) lined in red.  Easy peasy but it really mimics quite well the headdress Sakura wears but in a more everyday wearable way.
 Some of you might recognize the shoes and the pettiskirt that I made long ago, but they were the perfect accessories to her outfit.  And no cardcaptor would be complete without her Clow cards! I cropped and edited and then printed up on photo paper a dozen cards for Azriella.  She loooves them like treasure!  Only she wanted me to make like all of them and I told her a dozen is good for now ;-)
She has a new smile guys!   When we were at the beach for Sephira's birthday, she lost her front tooth!  Oh man it's so cute to me!!  She's growing up too fast for my liking!  She has become so intelligent and social over the past three years... Most hardly notice her autism; she's gotten much lower on the spectrum and I am so proud of her!!
  So there you have it!  I hope I didn't forget anything!  I'm so action-packed with anime love I feel like I must have left out so many things and yet feel like I've shared so much with you all.  Thank you for reading because I know this is a long post!  Eager beaver over here!!  If you want to get into anime but don't know where to start or if you just want to see what kind of wacky stuff that makes me fangirl all over the place, check out or follow me on Pinterest, particularly this board and this board  and this board here.

Rafflecopter hates me today so we are doing this the ol' fashion way!  Leave me a comment (or if you have, you're golden ;-) and I will pick a winner at random TO BE CHOSEN ON THE 18TH OF AUGUST AT 12AM PST!!!!

I'm gonna have the giveaway last for three weeks so make sure to enter if you don't already have this super rad sewing patterns!  Remember, it's for the combo of the Doli tank PDF AND the Hosh pants PDF from LouBee Patterns!  Make sure to pop over there and check out all her fantastic patterns!

 And you HAVE GOT TO SEE what my Sew Geeky co-host, Max-California, did for her classic anime look and our super fantastic special guest, Celina, did!  I love the pants off of those ladies and that's no joke!!  I'm just beyond tickled pink to have Celina sewing along with us this time!!  She is such an immense inspiration to me!!!  So much respect for her!  You might remember I did a post as part of a series of other bloggers who made creations as an homage to her!  She is the co-creator of the famous and outstanding STYLO fashion eMagazine that focuses on handmades of the latest trends from all over the world!
Enough of my yappering, go check it out!
And check out more Sew Geeky goodness by going to the Sew Geeky page here.  Be sure to share your photos with us if you sew along!  We absolutely adore when people sew along with us!!

To make it a little easier to plan ahead, here is our tentative schedule:
(Think "My Neighbor Totoro" and "Ponyo")
(into Maps? Math? Vintage Colecovision games? Or maybe you want to sew something up from a theme we've already done like Star Wars!?  Well the geekier the better!  We want to see all your unique fandom come out in your handmades!!  Perfect time to get those nerdy Halloween costumes ideas out of your head!!)
(Think Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones!)
(Nightmare Before Christmas, Alice in Wonderland, Sweeny Todd and all his other genius films)
January:  [adult swim]
(Adventure Time, Venture Bros., the Regular Show... oh man, I wonder if we should make this more than one!  I'm gonna want to sew all the things for this!!!)

Be sure to use the hashtag #sewgeeky or email us links or pics of the things you make so we can show you some love!!!

And stay tuned for more blogging goodness really soon!  I overfilled my plate with fun, yummy projects!
Till next time!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

SEW GEEKY: TANK GiRL! She's just the girl you want! + Union St Tee Giveaway!

Ready guys?!!!
"Feelin' a little inadequate?"
So who here is a former angsty teenager from the 90s?  I was!  I was the only kid in school wearing patent leather pants in every color and donning a choker necklace made out of safety pins and I listened to punk and ska music and loved every minute of it!  The grown up Kat loves those things still, but I've evolved since then.  But ain't nostalgia grand!  Well, TANK GiRL is like a time capsule for me of my high school days (even though TANK GiRL came out just before I started high school).
Lori Petty plays Tank Girl, Rebecca Buck, in a Post Apocalyptic world in which a comet struck the Earth 100 years ago, ridding the world of virtually all of it's water.  The movie is based of of the comic book by the same name!  It's basically the story of the quintessential badass.  
 Rebecca is feisty, lovable, raunchy, hilarious, brave... the full package, folks.  She is on a quest to bring down the Man in this which is Water & Power. 
So the thing about Tank Girl is that she's a bad girl.  She smokes, she loves guns and ahem her tank and she dresses far on the risque side of things.  Being that I'm a mom and am not into any of those things, I made my look and accessories more of a Tank Girl: the Mom.
inspired by this pic
 I traded a bubble gun for a toy gun; lollipops for cigarettes and I portrayed her as a fun-loving mom who brerastfeeds and care for her young no matter what the case is!
Let's talk about my outfit!  Handmades first!
  • cropped iconic white t-shirt with the red and blue target. 
  • color-blocked sleeveless mini Lady Skater Dress
  • red biker shorts
  • diy candy necklace
  • braided scraps accessories,
  • Trapper Hat with handmade patches
  • face mask
  • colorful zip up corset
Akira's outfit was made by Amanda of Kitschy Coo as a baby shower gift!

The whole outfit started with the target shirt and quickly I knew I wanted to make a mini Lady Skater.  The target shirt I used the latest Union St Pattern by Hey June Patterns and I hacked it up a lot. First I made an iron on transfer of the target. Also, I widen the neckline quite a bit, I cropped-top the pattern, and I did something I think is interesting but perfect for this look: shredded binding.
 How can you do a shredded binding?  Well, basically I folded the binding in half longwise, sewed it WST along the neck edge,then I folded that over the front.  Then I used a wide twin needle and topstitched and then I used tiny scissors to slice down the middle of the binding between the topstitching (being careful to only cut the top layer; not all the way through) and the parts on the outside that are at above and below the topstitching lines.  Why would I do this instead of just leaving the edges raw?  Because since I widened the neck, I wanted to ensure that it wouldn't over stretch and become misshapened. I liked the look so much I went on to do it for the sleeve openings and the hem.  It is time consuming, but I think it's worth it!
The mini Lady Skater by Kitschy Coo was key.  I know I'll love it even more when I drop a few pounds! But I didn't do too much editing to this one other than, once again, widening the neckline and then making it sleeveless.  I meant to write "Charlie Don't Surf" in red across the front but I ran out of time!
The little red biker shorts are self drafted and straight-forward.  I safety-pinned the to some trouser socks that I ripped up to make it look like garters.  Ha!  I actually love it!!!  High school Kat is all "why didn't I think of that?
  The candy necklace was made from other candy necklaces but restrung on elastic thread and put into color order.  And I knotted and braided a bunch of rejects from my big ol bag of bias scraps.

The Trapper Hat I made using See Kate Sew's free pattern and tutorial.  It fits but it's a bit snug.  I'm sure the girls will be happy to acquire what doesn't fit me.  Azy was going around gathering my elements as I took them off so she could dress up as Tank Girl.  It was -so- cute!  I made the patches too.  One I made by cutting a circular piece of vinyl and then satin-stitching with a 9mm stitch width a big red "X" and the other patch I made by printing out some artwork I made with PS and then applied it to white canvas so I could stitch it on.  The little pin on my hat says "Sew Geeky!"
The face mask... I love my face mask.  Face masks and eye patches are two things I want to bring into fashion more.  Eye patches are so cool looking, especially when you think of all the different fabrics and embellishments you could do.  And face masks not only look neat, but are sooo good for hygiene!  Imagine how many illnesses we could save our school-aged children from if we made them wear sick/face masks when they are under the weather?!  Mine, is merely for keeping the desert sands that Tank Girl is faced with every day out of her face.
The corset!  The corset was a last minute addition as I couldn't deal with how the outfit looked with my rolly body.  It's cool, I'm working on that ;-)  I used some leftover fabric from Sephira's birthday dress last year, made some bias tape, and followed the directions in this pattern/tutorial (substituting a sturdy separating zip for a busk).  I did have to size up the pattern but I may have sized it up a bit too much.  It's fitted but not cinched so that I can barely breath and oddly enough that makes me a little sad!
Other not handmade elements I love include the arrow and toy knife in my hair (just like Tank Girl with her helmet), the Garbage Pail Kids keychain on my boots, the pink bear hanging from my teeny bubble gun (just like Tank Girl), and um, Akira.  But I suppose that last one is technically handmade!  I didn't plan on her being in the pictures but since we were allllllll the way out in the Painted Hills and Jon was taking my pictures, someone had to hold her!  And I loved where it took the photoshoot: to a more Tank Girl the Mom look.
favorite pic of the whole shoot guys! inspired by this pic 
 I tried to play around with goofy animals like she does in the movie and really tried to make my makeup look just like Lori Petty's.
If you haven't seen Tank Girl, it's a really fun movie albeit one that's not for the kids under 14 to watch in my honest opinion.
 SO MUCH FUN GUYS!!  I am so gung ho about anything steampunk/post-apocalyptic in fashion as is my co-heart Max.  It really is one of the things that makes us gravitate to one another!  SPEAKING OF WHICH YOU HAVE GOT TO SEE WHAT THE OTHERS MADE!!!  

Our special guests this month include Kelley from Casa Crafty

 and Betty from Betty Again!  Betty is a fairly new blogger but she comes from good blood:  she's Max's real life sister!
All three of those lady SERIOUSLY knocked it out of the park on their Tank Girl looks!  Unbelievable!
Go check them out!

And lastly, A Giveaway!
I'm giving away one PDF pattern of the latest must haves, the Union St. Tee by Adrianna of Crafterhours and Hey June Patterns!  We'll announce the winner on our Sew Geeky Facebook Page on July 3rd, so be sure you follow us to find out if you won!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
As always, if you want to sew along or show us whatcha got, please email us at sewgeekyseries{at}gmail{dot}com or post to our Facebook page!  You can get all the info here!
 Next month is shaping up to be a super fun one too!  Theme will be announce on the 1st of July!  And mark your calenders for the 25th to see what's up with Sew Geeky every month!  We promise it'll be a good time!
Till next time!

let others know!

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