On Pins and Broken Needles

Green Arrow (Asterous Fashion)

Character Name:
Green Arrow
Source:
DC Comics
Costume Variation:
Asterous Fashion/Kat
Debuted At:
Winder 2015 / Ad Astra 2015

Reference / Design Sketches

  • © Green Arrow (© Asterous Fashion / DC Comics)

Costumes Notes

Asterous fashion came to my attention back in 2011 with her various fashion variation on comic designs. Two designs that immediately grabbed me were her Robin and the Green Arrow women’s coat. Robin was made almost immediately, but Green Arrow went onto my Maybe, Someday list.

Flash forward to late summer 2013 when I discovered not just a lovely wool-blend fabric, but McCall’s pattern M6800. Not only did I now have the perfect fabric (such a lovely drape and colour, and on sale!), but a pattern that would serve as a perfect base. The coat was meant to be. I also picked up some interlining so that the jacket could be worn deeper into the winter months and not just the two weeks in Ottawa between Lovely Fall and F*cking Cold Winter.

Knowing that wool really really, really, really needs to be steam pressed before use (wool can shrink a few inches between the salvages after first cleaning, so get this done BEFORE you start working on the final product or risk never being able to clean your garment without possibly destroying it), I sent it off to the dry cleaners. Apparently, four meters of uncut wool cloth gets processed as an oversized tablecloth, who knew? While it was there, I started in on the mock-up of the coat. And that’s where I started overthinking things.

I tend to make very fitted and tailored dresses and costumes—things that fit close to the body and are quite structured. Outwear is something that I have no experience with. So when I made the first mock-up, it seemed to me that everything was fitting wrong. The arms were too wide, and the waist to armscyes section felt like flying-squirrel wings to me and I wasn’t entirely sure how to fix either issue well. I attempted a second mock-up with some variations, but it wasn’t sitting properly either. So the whole project got banished to the closet in frustration, where it sat for just over a year.

Early 2015, I decided to start tackling The Coat again. Mainly because I had invested a good chunk of cash into the project and there’s not a lot I could do with 4m of dark green wool, interlining, and lining except make this damned coat. I showed off the various mock-ups to friends on Hangouts and it was determined that I should just throw out my mods and go from the pattern: the final result might not be perfectly tailored to me, but it’d be better than what I was attempting. So that’s what I did.

The original plan was to get this done for G-Anime 2015. That really didn’t happen. I once again completely underestimated just how long this would take to make. Technically, it’s a really simple coat: just a whole lot of straight lines. But then complicated things slightly by adding the interlining layer: each piece of the interlining and lining we sewn together to create a single piece. Except there were a couple place that the interlining had to be sewn to the wool layer. And other’s where it had to be omitted. And then everything had to be sewn together, and the interlined trimmed down at the seams to reduce bulk. So a lot of added work.

But the end results were worth it. So worth it.

This coat, while technically a piece of a costume, was made for everyday wear and it is doing just that. I wore the coat almost daily from mid-March to the end of April when it became too warm to wear. I’m actually looking forward to the temperature drop in late October and November so I can pull it back out of the closet and spin and twirl my way to work.

Also, this skirt on the coat is wider than my hallway by the mirror, so whenever I spun to show off the coat on Hangouts, it may best fwap-fwap-fwap noise at it hit the doorframe.

WIP Photos

  • Pattern pieces cut out. It was at this point I started realizing just how full this skirt was going to be.
  • Lining pieces pinned and ready for cutting
  • Wool ready pinned and ready for cutting. Just barely fit in my space.
  • Lining and outer shell are now one pieces. Just have hours and hours of hemming to do.
  • Getting the bottom hem ready to hem. Coat is confirmed to be a full circle skirt.

Photos

  • © 2015 Elemental Photography
  • © 2015 Elemental Photography
  • © 2015 Elemental Photography
  • © 2015 Elemental Photography
  • © 2015 Elemental Photography

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