Condo Blues: cosplay




Showing posts with label cosplay. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cosplay. Show all posts

Thursday, October 14, 2021

How to Make a Gnome Costume

I am playing a gnome at a renaissance festival. It’s a fun project because I’m a  second generation Danish American and nisse (what the Danish call gnomes. Some countries also call them tomte) are something we celebrate all year round but especially at Christmas when we thank the nisser (plural for nisse) for protecting the family and helping farms prosper with a bowl of rice porridge with a pat of butter on top on Christmas Eve (similar to American kids leaving cookies and milk out for Santa.) 

That’s why some non Scandinavians call them Christmas Gnomes when in reality, there is no such thing as a Christmas, Halloween, Easter, etc. gnome. Gnomes are just gnomes all year round (similar to Irish leprechauns. They are dress and act the same year round too.)

 

Nissa the Gnome Ohio Reniassance Festival 2021
Everyone say hi to Nissa Tomtesdottir the Gnome!

Traditionally gnomes look like a little man (with or without beard) or woman wearing a red hat, a red, blue, or gray Scandinavian peasant tunic/bodice and skirt, and is the about the size of an 8 to 10 year old child. This is what I am using as the start of my women’s gnome costume while making it in a 16th century silhouette with Scandinavian elements (more difficult than it sounds because the Danish national costume is different by region and based on clothing from the 17th to 19th centuries.) 

I have the added challenge of designing a mythical creature described as looking like a small human (at least I have that part down!) like she belongs with a group of Shakespearean fairies who have very elaborate makeup which doesn’t work for a gnome.  I’m required to have rosy red cheeks (which I’d rather not do at all but I’d rather that than being required to airbrush all of my exposed skin a different color) and wear my hair in braids (I bought these cute rose metal hair hooks to hide my modern hair ties.) (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience.) 


Ohio Renaissance Festival Fairies and Gnome

 Family entertainment from the Fae Family! Sprout, the Seed Fairy (left,) Fawn the Fairy of Fluffy Animals (center,) and me as Nissa the Gnome (right.) Photo courtesy of Steven Kohus

Sunday, August 22, 2021

How to Make a Fairy Ivy Leaf Parasol

I’m performing a fae (a fairy. Well, actually, I’m a gnome) character at an outdoor renaissance festival. True to a gnome’s (and my own) Scandinavian roots, I’m fair skinned and burn easily in the sun. I’m also not fond of standing out in the rain without an umbrella either. 

In the past, I carried a waterproof bamboo parasol but that is not really going to work for the over the top Shakespearean fairy esthetic I need to create. Can we talk about how difficult it is to design a mythical creature described as looking like a human the size of an 8 year old boy and  looks like she belongs with a group of fairies who look like natural elements like this this acorn green man wall decoration (you can buy it here)? (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.)

Elizabethan fairies look less human and more like trees, flowers, animals with a humanish face. The more human-looking Tinkerbell type of fairy we are more used to came about during the Victorian era.

 

I figure the best way to do that is make a waterproof canvas bamboo parasol in the shape an ivy leaf.

 

diy fairy ivy leaf parasol
Save this costume prop idea to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!


How to Make a Waterproof Bamboo Parasol

Monday, September 16, 2019

How to Make an All Weather Elizabethan Jiffy Pop Hat

I need a new jester hat for my renaissance festival character that will still hold its shape when it gets wet in the rain or snow. In the past I have used the traditional buckram (learn what buckram is here) which unfortunately can quickly lose its shape and not really recover it when it gets wet in a thunderstorm. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience.)

I’d like to make something a little different than the traditional jester asses ears I’ve worn in the past. (Asses ears are the name of the jester’s hat with the points and bells on the end.) Since Elizabethan jesters and fools often made fun of their betters and sometimes wore parodies of the style of the nobility to mock them, I decided to make a HUGE British bonnet as an homage to my jester mentor who wore a GIANT flat cap.

But most importantly, I want a hat with a brim to keep the sun out of my eyes.


 Save this Halloween costume hat tutorial to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends! 

This style of brimmed hat with a poufy top goes by many names: British toque or bonnet, Spanish toque or bonnet, Italian toque or bonnet, or by the modern nick name The Jiffy Pop Hat because it looks like a Jiffy Pop pan after it has popped (learn more about Jiffy Pop here if you are unfamiliar with this treat that’s fun to eat.)

Elizabethan men and women wore this style of hat. The poofy hat in the sepia photo is made with buckram. The hats in the color photos are made with plastic canvas. As you can see you can't tell from looking what the hat form is made from. the only difference is the plastic canvas is weatherproof and also stands up any and all abuse an actor may put it through.

How to Make a Hat with Plastic Canvas Instead of Buckram

Sunday, August 6, 2017

How to Make a Folding Cloth Fan

We are in the sweltering hot Dog Days of Summer. Ohio likes to add a little extra misery to the mix with humidity. Hazy, Hot, and Humid is a phrase all Ohioans face with sweaty dread and air conditioning.

Until you have to go outside – yuck.

Fortunately, there is an easy, eco friendly, and cute solution – use a hand fan to keep cool!

 Pin this tutorial for later!

Monday, March 27, 2017

How to Make an Easy DIY Floor To Ceiling Shoe Rack Organizer

The over the door shoe rack similar to this one on the closet door and stackable shoe rack similar to this one worked for awhile. Well actually, it worked for Husband’s shoes rather than mine. My shoes are so small they would often slip through the split shelves and end up in a pile on the floor. (I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience.)

And after years of wear and tear, there came a time when even Gorilla Tape wouldn’t put our dilapidated shelves back together again. Which, frankly, I only put them back together every time they fell apart because Husband and I have grand plans to make this closet a cedar closet and pimped out with a custom closet organizer system.

Someday.

That keeps getting pushed down the punch list because blah, blah, yadda, yadda.

Does this happen to you or am I the only one?

After two months of shoe clutter barfing out of the closet and not being able to shut the door I had enough. This project doesn’t have to be my perfect dream of custom wall to wall floor to ceiling shoe storage, it just needs to be done. Now.

Shoe Closet Before. I am not proud of this.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

How to Get Rid of the Rubber Smell from Latex Halloween Masks

Husband and I couldn’t wait for the Guardians of the Galaxy movie to come out last summer. Of all of the Guardians, it is no surprise that our favorite is the smart aleck little guy Rocket. (I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience)

It was decided long before the movie came out that Husband and I would be Rocket Raccoon and Groot for Halloween. We only waited until this year because we hoped Marvel would release costume pieces because I didn’t know how to fabricate the character heads.



How to Get Rid of the Rubber Smell from Stinky Latex Halloween Masks
 Pin this post on Pinterest for later! Share it with your friends!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

How to Make a Mini Top Hat

I made a super simple fluffy tutu (read my no sew tutu tutorial here) for a costume. I’m going for a kooky Dresden Dolls, Steampunk, Katy Perry, retro, vaudeville kind of vibe. I need one more thing so I can pull off the look: a little top hat fascinator.



 Tiny top hats make Halloween costumes more fun!

Instead of running to the store to buy top hat making supplies, I bought the materials by treating myself to a cup of take out coffee. That’s right!  I made my ring leader’s hat from a disposable cup.

The steps in this tutorial are very forgiving. You don’t necessarily need to do the steps in the order I have them listed in this tutorial with the exception of assembling the hat pieces.


How to Make a Top Hat Out of a Paper Cup