Learning to Sew – May the Force be with me

Whenever I go to a convention, or some kind of fan event, or even when I see people posting about them on social media, I always admire the cosplay.

My approach to cosplay as usually been a little more “free-form”, rather than screen-accurate. Take, for example my “Hogwarts Student”, which I love wearing whenever I can

I can’t remember what exactly motivated me to step it up from this to something alittle more screen-accurate (and a lot more labour intensive). But this past summer, I bought myself a vest pattern so I could make Rey’s Ach-To outfit from The Last Jedi for Halloween.

There was just one problem. I had no idea where to start. I had never used a pattern, I had a vague idea how sewing machines worked, I didn’t know what a bobbin or interfacing was. My biggest rookie mistake was buying my pattern based on dress size rather than measurements. It wasn’t until I got back to Canada, where they no longer carry Simplicity patterns that I realized I needed the next size up. One online order later, I now had 2 versions of the same pattern, only one of which was usable, but as least I was ready to go! Or was I?

The cutting directions made a little sense, but not enough that I felt confident enough to start. And what are all these words they’re using in the instructions? Baste? Slip-stitch? I could probably just Google it but I had now left this so long that if I didn’t get it together soon I was going to find myself celebrating Halloween with no costume to speak of.

Lost and confused, I called in the big guns: my cousins grandmother.

Over 4 days, in sessions from 2-8 hours she helped me take an indecipherable pattern and make something wearable out of it, making sure I did most of the work myself. By the time she sent me away, 2 days before the Halloween party, I was pretty confident in my new skills, and feeling ready to take on a new challenge.

When buying my vest pattern, I remembered that before the release of The Force Awakens my brother and I had talked about going to the movie dressed in full Jedi robes.

It didn’t happen then, nor did it happen at any subsequent Star Wars movie.

But with the Skywalker Saga coming to an end this December, I figured if we were ever going to do that, now is definitely the time. So I bought the entire bolt of Coffee Brown wool from Fabricland, dug out the other pattern I bought on my trip to the States, and set out to make not one but two robes in time for the Rise of Skywalker premiere.

My initial thought was to include that process in this post. But as I took notes on what I wanted to include, the list started to get longer and longer. So stay tuned for this weekend for a more detailed look at that particular adventure. May the Force Be With You!

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