Yoshi costume How-To part 2 (Legs/Body) (In Progress…)

 

Since you probably just read my last blog, you already know that I am creating a “Mario riding Yoshi” costume for my son for Halloween.  Read about creating the Paper Mache head from my last post, Here In this post I will be covering nearly everything I did to create the body portion of the costume. I had no designs or patterns to use for what I wanted to create so (many schematics later…) I figured out a way to create my own.  Knowing the existing Mario costume still fit him, I pinned the pants portion to a trash bag to create a template for the Yoshi legs.  I then cut out four identical patterns to be used to create both sides of the pants.  Lastly, I “eyeballed” the shape of the arms and body, laying the leg template from the top to gauge depth/width, since the legs will extend through the entire body to make it appear as though he is actually “riding” Yoshi. 

(click photos to enlarge)

Next, I laid out the green fabric, nice and smooth and taped it into place.  I pinned the trash bag patterns for the legs, body and arms onto the underside of the fabric and cut them out using my handy new little roller/cutter I just picked up.  But, MAN!  I got so excited when I pinned the fabric together to form legs and saw my first glimpse of a Yoshi limb!

It was now time to start sewing! (… sort of.)  I’m quite the novice when it comes to sewing and I generally hand-sew any projects that need it, so when I went out and picked up a Sew E-Z for $40 at a local craft store.  I knew it wasn’t going to be top-notch, but I knew I could just reinforce any loose hems/seams with some tacky glue and it would be sufficient.  I do enjoy sewing projects enough that I will eventually own a nicer one, though.

 

 After a total of 4 hours over two days trying and failing repeatedly at getting the damned bobbin to thread (a widespread complaint amongst angry internetters), I finally got it to work (through no help of the poorly translated manual)… and the stitches actually held securely! Oh yeah. Time to get stitchin’! 🙂  That’s right, stitchin’!

 

 After the legs were complete, I pinned together the fabric pieces for the arms and then arms and hands were sewn and stuffed. 

 I made the hand into a mitten so that it could be sewn into a fist shape (see below) by putting two long stitch rows over each folded hand using a hook needle, green thread and the wherewithal to withstand 14,000 more bitch-ass little finger pokes and jabs during this and the remaining pinning processes.   

 

The hook needle really came in handy on this project.  I also used it to create the bent elbow below by stitching the upper and lower parts of the arm together.

Then I stitched together the two green sides and approximated the amount of white I would need  for the stomach by laying it over the white and cutting it to size.  I glued and stitched it into place, leaving the legs hanging out through the stomach and the pants still open through the top of the costume, where a shell/saddle is going to be.

Over the next several days, for a couple of hours a day, we worked on pinning and tugging and stitching and pulling and gluing Yoshi into the right shape and size.

 

 

  

                 

 

I then cut the along the crotch seam of Last year’s Mario costume, and pinned and stitched it into place, stuffing the Mario legs.  The shoe covers were made with an 18″ wide length of orange fabric rolled down the top and pinned (and glued) 4″ up on the cuff.  I had my son stand in the pant leg and wear shoes he will be wearing with the costume while I trimmed the orange fabric to hang just above the floor.  I then secured the yellow ribbon with tacky glue and ironed to secure it.

 For the shell/saddle I cut out a large circle out of red fabric that I determined to be about the right size and cut down the middle after measuring the top of the waist opening.  I glued the edges of it down and ironed to secure it. I then cut several long strips of white fabric and rolled them and glued them along the edge.  Really happy with how it turned out.

…And here is a sneak peek at Brendan happily in the (ALMOST COMPLETE!) Yoshi costume!

Update:  Final “in-progress” photos and complete costume!  Instead of making another post with the final photos, I’m including the remaining photos as an edit-

 

Thanks so much for reading! Please check back soon!! 🙂 

-Tabitha

Mario riding Yoshi costume- In Progress

So last Halloween my son (Brendan) went as Mario for Halloween, but this year we had an idea so grand… we weren’t even sure if it was a possibility.  Initially, he wanted to be Mario again, but instead of seeming like cheapies (…despite how convenient that would have been ) we decided to brainstorm and came up with:

 A Mario riding Yoshi costume! 

I excitedly started drafting some sketches of potential ideas and realized that it would work best if we designed it so my son would be wearing the Mario costume on top, and his legs would function as Yoshi’s legs on the bottom… something like the cowboy/horse-rider ones you’ve probably seen at some point.

Right away, we realized that if we wanted it to look photo-realistic(ish), then we couldn’t just simply purchase a merchandised Yoshi costume and sew them together.  The retail Yoshi costumes have a head-hole cut right into the face, and are much too elongated and human shaped. The worst is the cardboard, triangle dorsal fin monstrosity barely passing for a tail.

This is the Yoshi currently sold in stores… Yikes.

Aside from wanting my son to have a one-of-a-kind costume, I do consider myself a bit of a Nintendo Fangirl… so I quickly decided that if we were going to spend the time to create a Yoshi costume, I wanted to make sure it actually looked legit… squat body, pointed tail, bulbous head and nose… everything.

I decided that the best way to shape the head would probably be to create it with Paper Mache and eventually cover it in fabric.  I gathered balloons, rubber punching bags and roughly approximated the head shape before we created the goop (flour and water mixture) and started creating.  We ended up doing three layers, allowing it to dry for an entire day in between each.  The first was done with newspaper and for the final two layers we used white paper strips (torn into strips, rather than cut, for easier blending).  Click pictures to enlarge:

Next, we purchased fabric, acrylic paints, cotton fill, thread and began work covering the nose using tacky glue, a round-cutter, patience and strategic overlaps to prevent huge bumps/seams.

Next, I covered the backs of the eyes/eyelids with fabric and allowed it to dry before stuffing the backs of them to creat a nice puffy Yoshi eyeball.  Then, I freehanded the eyes/pupils while looking at several examples and using sharpie, grey/blue markers and acrylic paints.  I felt this was a very important step in capturing the “essence” of Yoshi’s oddly cheery face.

After the eys were dry, I took a long length of white fabric and simply began to wrap and glue the fabric over the balloon cheek, running it underneith the head and securing with masking tape while it dried.  I also cut out and painted red an elongated half circle and glued it into place on the bottom as the flap of the mouth, so it can open and close.  This really just adds that final touch that makes the mind recognize the face as being authetically Yoshi. 

And the Yoshi head is complete!  (Minus the orange spines on the back…)

We are nearing completion on the costume, Please see the next post for the Yoshi Body instructions.

Thanks!

-Tabitha

Shiny Spot on the Internet!

Aside from the joy I truly derive from being a parent to two astonishingly wonderful kids, I’m most alive when I’m happily immersed in creating something…  Meals and desserts, a personalized gift, crafting a new “project” of some kind, drawing, inventing, writing, organizing events, cutting, gluing, sewing, scribbling and sketching, tinkering and dabbling.  For several years, I have even been taking pictures and videos (generally even in-progress through completion style) of my various artworks/crafts/foods, etc.  I have been doodling instructions and How-To’s in notebooks, and scrawling down healthy home-made  recipes on stationary/napkins/scrap paper… the latter usually following a “Write it down!” chant of Approval at the dinner table.  I have hundreds of photographs of pictures of my meals I’ve posted for friends and family on social networking sites, all with the intention of merely sharing my life with those known to me. 

I will now be compiling all of my How-To’s, Art, Food Photos/Recipes, Crafts (and more) in one shiny little spot on the internet… please come back for inspiration and tips, and to share yours!  I am working on a couple of fun things right now that I would like to post about “In-Progress”, and will also be continuously adding posts and videos about previously completed “Tabulated and Created” works. 

 Thanks for looking- I’m excited and honored to share it all with you!

-Tabitha