Saturday, October 2, 2010

Of clothing alterations and October's arrival

At last we return to October!--the one time of year when the rest of the world realizes that yes, indeed, "every day is Halloween." I hope to find suitably spooky and whimsical ways to celebrate this month, such as going to look for treasures among all the Halloween merchandise at places like Target, JoAnn's Fabrics, and thrift stores.
If any of you gothic-and-lolita types would like to read a really wonderful article on Halloween shopping, let me direct you towards the latest column by the Lady of the Manners, a delightful, gothy rolemodel of mine who writes an online etiquette and advice column for the spookily inclined, at Gothic Charm School. Some of you might know her better as cupcake-goth at LiveJournal--she posts sometimes in the EGL and Daily Lolita communities.

While we're on the topic of inspiration for making the most out of October, I urge you to visit Les Fleurs Noires, a wonderful loli blog of the gothic persuasion, by akumaxkami. The most recent, October-and-fall themed posts have already given me quite a few ideas.

So how am I celebrating October so far? Well, in the last few weeks, the wish to properly gothify and lolify my wardrobe has grown stronger than ever. And so a week or two ago, I sorted through my clothes to divide them into a) the "keeper" pile, b) the giveaway pile, and c) (most exciting!) the DIY pile.

Here's a snap of my closet as it is now (after the sorting process). I had to use flash, as my room is quite dark.

And here is the DIY pile! My first ventures into accomplishing said DIY plans will be chronicled later in this post.

Yesterday my sister asked if I had a spare corset top she might borrow for a special occasion, and what do you know! I have two. Moments like these make me feel legitimate as a Romantigoth, don' cha know?

Anyway, my favorite one (which I bought from Charlotte Russe a couple years ago) had frayed at the top of one of the tubes that the boning goes through, so that the plastic boning piece would work its way up and out every time I wore it. So yesterday I took a needle and thread to that, and was able to fix it very quickly. I used what I believe is called a whip stitch, so that the frayed ends would be covered by thread.

And now, it's almost as good as new! I can't wait to wear it again. I love the lace panels, and the lacing up the back. <3

I would like to incorporate this into a gothic and / or ero coordinate (worn over a blouse in the case of the former). Recently I tried it on with the skirt I made, and was pleased to discover that, of course,  a corset top takes a way the problem I've been experiencing of strange wrinkles in my blouses, just above the skirt. Hopefully the blouse I've been planning to make soon will have less of that problem, but until then...

Around this time last year, a family member purchased a very pretty Halloween-themed shirt for me, at Crackerbarrel. (For those of you who haven't visited the South in the US, that's a Southern-style restaurant chain which has a shop full of curios and knicknacks as its front portion. Until this semester I had attended college in Kentucky, so I had ample opportunity to visit Crackerbarrel.) Oh, and do excuse the pile of mail there in the corner.

As you can see (providing the picture isn't too small), the shirt is inscribed with delightful slogans like "Spooky," "Halloween fun," and "Ghouls Night Out" in the kind of delicate Gothic script that I love. I think this would make an excellent cut-sew, but it has languished in my "to be DiY-ed" pile until now. The three-quarter length sleeves are too tight at the openings and too loose at the armholes, and the shirt is too wide acress the bust (I have a very small bust and shoulders).

So I spent the morning unpicking one of the sleeves, and the other soon shall follow. I would like to see if I can use the sleeve fabric to make a short gathered sleeve, and I may change the neckline as well (not to mention fixing the fit of the shirt). And trim! You can never go wrong with adding silky black ribbon.

In case any of my sewing and possibly pattern-drafting lolitas out there were wondering, this is (apparently) what a sleeve-shaped piece of fabric looks like when you lay it out flat. The wider end is where the armhole was.

And lastly, here is Elf-tiger (Elfy for short), who was napping on my bed when I took pictures of the DIY pile.


  1. Looking forward to seeing your finished DIY projects.

    Thanks for linking to my blog!

  2. Wow! Epic closet! I need to post pics of mine too! :D And cuuute cat! xD

  3. lol Thanks! My closet isn't that epic yet, but hopefully will become more so.
    And thanks for commenting!

  4. Awesome job fixing the corset! I wish I found a Charlotte Russe store when they sold corsets D:

    Reading your post makes me want to sew something XD

    Whenever I visit my grandparents in Ohio, they take me there for my first meal haha

  5. Thanks! Glad to have inspired you. ^^ (Making people want to sew is my ulterior motive, haha.)

    lol It's a family favorite for us too.


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