So in our last posts you guys saw how Cruise and I created our costumes for Kevin and Russell from Up for Disneyland's Pixar Fest. Well, we had plans to head out to the Fest again and this time we wanted to change up our costumes and decided to go as the Little Green Men from Toy Story. I pretty much did all of the work for this round of costumes because it involved a TON of sewing. This won't really be so much a tutorial as it is a method to my madness, mostly because when I sew I'm totally winging it, and while these came out great, this is in no way the "Right" way to do this. But anyways, I sewed my dress and Cruise's shirt totally from scratch. We even bought a new embroidery/sewing machine so that I was able to embroider the Pizza Planet logo right onto our tops! (We bought it for other purposes too, obviously, we've already started making some really cool hats.)
I started the entire process by drawing up some sketches for how I wanted our outfits to look and wrote some estimates for how much fabric I needed. I always buy way too much fabric and this time was no exception. I actually had so much left over, that I actually was able to double up on Cruise's shirt and make a lining for the whole thing as well. Hey ,I'm too lazy to run back to the store if I run out, so for me it's always better to have too much than not enough.
I always make my own sewing patterns because I'm terrified of commercial patterns and find it super easy to just trace existing clothes that I know already fit me.
So for my dress I used the same circle skirt method that I used for my Kevin skirt, and traced one of my crop tops for the top half. Cruise wanted a hooded T-Shirt for his top. For these outfits, we wanted to be more inspired by the Aliens uniforms as opposed to when Cruise literally became Russel last time. So we traced a Black Panther shirt from Target that he already had and fit him well.
Sometimes it may be more beneficial to create your patterns first, and then figure out how much fabric you need once you have something more physical to calculate with if you want to avoid overspending. As I mentioned we are in no way experts, but we are learning so much every time we try to make something new and we are having so much doing it!
We bought our fabric from JoAnn. Literally all of the fabric I've ever bought is from JoAnn, but living in Los Angeles, I really want to start looking in the Fashion District and exploring those possibilities at some point. For these outfits, we went with performance material because we wanted it to be stretchy and resemble the shininess of the Aliens futuristic uniforms. I loved the final look that this fabric had, but let me warn you, it was a GIANT pain to work with, especially for a novice sewer like myself. This fabric is super slippery and would always come uneven while sewing it or cutting it. The best hack that I found to make my life easier was to baste the hems with not a stitch, but rather a glue stick. This made the rest of my sewing go WAY smoother.
For the embroidery I created and digitized my own embroidery file in Embrilliance Stitch Artist. I just followed the shapes as close as possible to the actual costumes of the aliens. Because this fabric is so lightweight and stretchy, I used two pieces of stabilizer behind it to get the cleanest finish possible. If you are doing your own embroidery it is super important that you only smooth and not stretch the fabric in the hoop.
For my ears I used my typical method. Cruise helped me by cutting down the ornaments and sanding them while I was working on sewing the outfits. I decided to keep one ear totally empty (it give's it a nice outerspace vibe I think) and the other ear I attached a Little Green Alien figure from the crazy straws at Pizza Planet in Disneyland. I used the same stretchy performance fabric for the band and decided to go with purple tulle for the bow. The antenna on top is simply made with pipe cleaners!
Cruise's hat was a whole other ball game. I couldn't find a green hat so I bought a white one at Michael's and then found this spray on fabric dye that CHANGED MY LIFE. It's basically spray paint for fabric that dries soft and is beautifully pigmented and so SO easy to use. The best part is, it stood up against Grizzly River Run and Splash Mountain without turning Cruises head green so that was a definite bonus. Cruise made the pattern and cut out the fabric for the ears, then I sewed it together for him and helped him create his antenna on top because he really liked how mine turned out on my ears. Then the eyes were all him! He used giant googley eyes, which by themselves looked, as you can imagine, super cheesy. So he decided to take more of the green stretchy fabric to create eyelids which really just pulled the whole hat together.
All in all, I'm super happy with how these costumes turned out. I mean I'm definitely getting a lot more practice sewing, but I just wish I could sew like a pro now! Sometimes my uneven seams really bum me out, but then I see pictures of us at Disneyland wearing them and I just think how crazy it is that I physically created clothing that can be worn in public. Plus Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blasters was significantly more fun in this outfit. Chase your dreams ya'll! Get outside of your comfort zone, grow, learn, and create!
Make sure you guys are signed up to our news letter because soon we will be visiting the opening of Pixar Pier with all new outfits and tons of Disney news to share!