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Unread 10-02-2012, 02:55 PM   #1
coius
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Using Fabric adhesive around curved edges.

Hello. I know I just registered (but am lurking on several other forums in the tech community) and am very new not only to the convention scene, but am attempting my first 100% cosplay on my own (meaning I am doing all the work).
Anime Nebraskon is coming up in about a month (Nov 2nd -th in Omaha) and I had a friend suggest I cosplay as Monkey D Luffy (I went as Gin Toki from Gin Tama at NerdKon in July this year).

While it's not hard, and I have the design (in fact, I have figured how to make the entire red vest out of one piece of fabric) I am having an issue. The area where the arms go through (call them the sleeve-less holes) is proving difficult. I am a perfectionist (call me OCD) but I am not wanting sew marks/tell-tale signs as I am trying to hit as close to the images as possible.

Anyways, I found a rather nice double-sided adhesive tape that will hold up in the wash and is durable.

The shoulders at the top where the vest meets will be sewn. Not an issue, but the edges where it will show will have the first inch folded back in itself (inside by the body, not visible) to make a nice clean edge. The adhesive tape will keep it tucked and held, and is permanent.

The main issue is that area where the arms go through. They are rounded, and as anyone knows, round corners and straight edges don't go together. While adhesive tape is very flexible, it's also not very forgiving if you mess up. This stuff is super sticky, and won't come undone if stuck.

I am trying to find a way to fold around corners and I will try to attach a picture later of what I am doing. Don't have the way to offload pics from my phone, but I will show what I need to do.
I want to fold it back but it's proving difficult when I have to fold on corners that bunch up or in general don't want to fold right.

Has anyone tried to do this method, and how did you conquer the obstacle?

Btw, I am using a McCall's pattern that was suggested (not sure the pattern but it matched) and I got the fabric right. I just want to get the area around the arms right. Do I need to cut the fabric to allow it to lie without bunching? I was thinking a knotch would allow me to fold sections, and use fray-check to keep it from pulling apart.

Ideas?
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Unread 10-04-2012, 03:23 AM   #2
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Knotching worked

I don't have the outfit on me, but I will post what I did. I have a friend that helped me with it. I was able to knotch at key areas that allowed me to do a clean fold-back to make it work well.

After sewing the shoulders, all I have to do is get the buttons in. I am hoping they arrive within the next few days. It's driving me nuts trying to figure out when they will arrive.

Unfortunately, I was not able to figure out a way to make the hat. I (shamefully) ordered one on ebay, as well as sandals. However, the jeans for the outfit are good to go. I rolled up the legs to right at the knee area. I gotta stitch so they don't move.

I saw the pre-made, and I am not quite sure with the versions I saw (which used some faux-fur on the rolls) if it would be accurate. From what I see, it looks more like Monkey D Luffy rolled his pants up.

Either way, I think this will turn out nice!
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Unread 10-04-2012, 12:37 PM   #3
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pictures will help tremendously. I think i know what you are talking about but not 100% sure, photos will make a difference.
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Unread 10-04-2012, 05:35 PM   #4
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Photos

This is what I did
Post 1
IMG_0217.JPG
IMG_0215.JPG
IMG_0216.JPG
IMG_0218.JPG
IMG_0219.JPG
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Unread 10-04-2012, 06:03 PM   #5
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Post 2

Sorry, my laptop decided to mess up and I had to get some stuff done before I could post the other pics. So post 2:
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Unread 10-04-2012, 06:04 PM   #6
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One last photo.
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Unread 10-05-2012, 07:41 AM   #7
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You figured out the technique (which is essentially the same even if it's actually being sewn), it's simply Cutting Notches.
: puts on teacher hat:
IRON IT. When you assemble wrinkled fabrics, you lend yourself to tucks & sewn in wrinkles you don't want. Press that fabric before cutting it. Press after each pair of pieces are assembled. press the whole thing when it's done.
:removes teacher hat:
: puts on therapist hat:
Why are you so afraid of sewing? While your product turned out reasonably well, it will never be as good as a sewn one. What is the hang up?
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Unread 10-05-2012, 12:29 PM   #8
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It was ironed before I did that. I had to take it with me after I did that and that wrinkled it. It was completely flat before doing that.

As far as sewing, I wanted a perfect edge and hate the idea of the sewing stitch showing. I thought it would be cooler if it was a straight edge that didn't have the tell-tales of being sewed.

Call me obsessive but I thought it would look a cleaner design and better if I did that than sew it back.

I also wanted the one piece cut out that allowed it to look seam-less to allow a cleaner design.

It's my first time making it, and I went through about 8 yards of fabric on trial & error before doing this.

I am not experienced at sewing, and have a friend that helped me, but I am still learning. This however is my first time at even sewing. It worked out well. Once i have the buttons on and the holes made (using a sewing machine that will sew the areas for the button holes and then cut in the middle) and it will be fully assembled/pressed, I will post the final work.

The pants will need a few stitches to hold the rolled-up areas in place. That way it will stay that way without flopping down. I have all that.


I am no-where experienced enough, nor do I have the skills to pull off better at the moment, but you should see the other pieces. They were a complete disaster. I have been working on this for a few weeks before getting the techniques right. I looked to see if anyone has done an outfit this way before on the net, but all I found were people who did three pieces (left front, right front, and back sewn at sides) and didn't find a single one. A lot of people put a lining in, and I didn't want that. It should pretty much all be hidden.
There are some areas that need to be tacked down. I looked and with the suggestion of a friend I am gonna use a fabric glue just on those areas. but only for those areas.
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Unread 10-05-2012, 05:11 PM   #9
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Ah, I see, Perfectionist Syndrome.

Taking short cuts because you don't like the look of your first efforts won't teach you anything. I would be happy to guide you in really learning to sew. What is the next item you want to make?
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Unread 10-05-2012, 07:54 PM   #10
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Actually, let me applaud your wish not to have visible stitch lines, but then turn around and say that doing so is not inaccurate. Also, in the end, it doesn't give you as clean an edge as you would think.

Even with an inch hem allowance and cutting notches, the fabric will still pull and pucker. As a professional, even I have a hard time hemming curved edges cleanly, even with rolled hems and notches and every last technique. The way to get REALLY SUPER clean edges on a vest - as well as not have visible stitching? Line it. Make a complete lined vest. It's a little more challenging for a beginner, but if you follow a pattern for a lined vest exactly, it will give you the look you want and be very clean without any notch-puckering.

But in the end, don't be afraid of visible stitch lines on hems. Most artists just don't draw them in because it's somewhat expected of clothing that it has hems. It's also a pain the butt to have to draw such universally-accepted lines into a design over and over again for manga panels or animation. Very little clothing has invisible or blind hems, and a lot of garments you might think has no hem or an invisible hem is actually lined - and that's why you don't see stitches.

For Luffy's vest, which I have done for myself, you can either line it or face it. Facings, for a beginner, might be a little harder than lining because making arm-hole facings and neck facings on a vest require some tricky geometry. But that's how my vest is put together, since I didn't need a lining. Mine has armhole facings, and a front-and-neck facing. Either method gives you really clean edges on curves, and has the added bonus of giving you a reinforced layer at the front edge for putting buttons and buttonholes in safely.
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Unread 10-07-2012, 09:54 PM   #11
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While I was going for the whole "non-sticked/one piece vest" look, I am also limited on tools. The only real sewing machine I have access to (and I can't afford a half-decent one with my income) I don't have much of an advantage. It is an older singer, but it has a lot off issues. While working (and trying to sew, the result was a disaster from the machine) the bobin mechanism at the bottom went wonky and has already snapped 4 needles in half in the process. It's an older electric one (60? 50's?) that is portable, but it has run it's course. Unfortunately, the only person I technically know as a friend has one is sorta difficult to work with. She herself is new in anything sewing, but she acts as an expert (despite me seeing some of her work) and only work with her as long as I can bare the put-downs she does about "her way is best/ etc.." so when I have an idea I want to try, instead of letting me try it, she automatically shoots it down and belittles how bad an idea it is.

That's pretty much the only access I have to for sewing machines. I need to save some money first, but finances come first, and with Anime Nebraskon coming up, I still need to make sure I have money when I walk in that door, and on my limited income while going to school, it's gonna be an issue to just run out and buy one. Even locally they start at $300 for a decent one low-end. Not that I am in the middle of nowhere, but the only people who sell them here are fabric shops (Hancock, walmart doesnt' carry them here) and ones that I see for less than $70 online are going for well over $500 at the local hancock.

Ordering online will be an issue since timing till the convention is getting closer.

I will be able to get one some day so I can learn the techniques, but I work with what I got. Unfortunately, this is what I got.

I did the area around the arms great. I was suggested a sewing glue adhesive for tucking the corners. I have not been able to run out and get that yet, but I will. And it will be a small dab just to keep it down.

The adhesive itself can be ironed over. The look of the unironed treatment was after it was done. I had to leave where I was making it quickly and had a lot of stuff to carry, so I sorta (and I know, bad!) stuffed it in my carrying bag and left. That caused the wrinkles. It was pre-washed and ironed before I started.

Still waiting on the buttons to come in. I already got the sandals/shoes. The jeans are already ready to go. I will do a bit more combing over and seeing through research what I can do to work with the vest better, but it does look good. It looks like a clean edge, I took my time. I just apologize that I didn't have the best light and/or area to take the pics.
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Unread 10-08-2012, 08:34 AM   #12
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Try getting that machine serviced first. Should be under $100. That is a steel geared machine, possibly a Slant-O-Matic (one of the most popular designs Singer made). Trust me on this, unless the gears are broken or the drive arm bent (which pretty much takes the Incredible Hulk to do) it's fixable and will be a good machine with proper servicing.
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Unread 10-08-2012, 11:58 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coius View Post
While I was going for the whole "non-sticked/one piece vest" look, I am also limited on tools. The only real sewing machine I have access to (and I can't afford a half-decent one with my income) I don't have much of an advantage. It is an older singer, but it has a lot off issues. While working (and trying to sew, the result was a disaster from the machine) the bobin mechanism at the bottom went wonky and has already snapped 4 needles in half in the process. It's an older electric one (60? 50's?) that is portable, but it has run it's course. Unfortunately, the only person I technically know as a friend has one is sorta difficult to work with. She herself is new in anything sewing, but she acts as an expert (despite me seeing some of her work) and only work with her as long as I can bare the put-downs she does about "her way is best/ etc.." so when I have an idea I want to try, instead of letting me try it, she automatically shoots it down and belittles how bad an idea it is.

That's pretty much the only access I have to for sewing machines. I need to save some money first, but finances come first, and with Anime Nebraskon coming up, I still need to make sure I have money when I walk in that door, and on my limited income while going to school, it's gonna be an issue to just run out and buy one. Even locally they start at $300 for a decent one low-end. Not that I am in the middle of nowhere, but the only people who sell them here are fabric shops (Hancock, walmart doesnt' carry them here) and ones that I see for less than $70 online are going for well over $500 at the local hancock.

Ordering online will be an issue since timing till the convention is getting closer.

I will be able to get one some day so I can learn the techniques, but I work with what I got. Unfortunately, this is what I got.

I did the area around the arms great. I was suggested a sewing glue adhesive for tucking the corners. I have not been able to run out and get that yet, but I will. And it will be a small dab just to keep it down.

The adhesive itself can be ironed over. The look of the unironed treatment was after it was done. I had to leave where I was making it quickly and had a lot of stuff to carry, so I sorta (and I know, bad!) stuffed it in my carrying bag and left. That caused the wrinkles. It was pre-washed and ironed before I started.

Still waiting on the buttons to come in. I already got the sandals/shoes. The jeans are already ready to go. I will do a bit more combing over and seeing through research what I can do to work with the vest better, but it does look good. It looks like a clean edge, I took my time. I just apologize that I didn't have the best light and/or area to take the pics.
I saw some at Wal Mart in Papillion Saturday night. They are kind of tucked in a weird aisle near the fabrics, but not visible when you are perusing the fabric, you have to go kind of around and further than the fabric aisle.

Be careful with the tape--I know a lot of stuff will say "permanant" but won't necessarily be. If nothing else, bring some extra duct tape or something with you to con for emergency oopses.

If you ever do sew this, just do the notches the same way.
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Unread 10-08-2012, 11:59 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penlowe View Post
Try getting that machine serviced first. Should be under $100. That is a steel geared machine, possibly a Slant-O-Matic (one of the most popular designs Singer made). Trust me on this, unless the gears are broken or the drive arm bent (which pretty much takes the Incredible Hulk to do) it's fixable and will be a good machine with proper servicing.
I agree--he's almost better off with the older machine. Steel parts are hard to find on new machines, and plastic parts break down much much more quickly.
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Unread 10-08-2012, 02:15 PM   #15
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Yep, so-called permanent fabric adhesives are never permanent. I often see surprise on people's faces whenever they use "industrial strength adhesive velcro" and then it falls off within a day of sticking it to their costume.

Those turned under hems will very likely come out after a few wears and washes. Sewing is the only true permanent way to keep them turned in. Also, that adhesive tape will do nothing to prevent the fabric from fraying.

Fray Block can help prevent fraying, but I wouldn't even try it on that vest, to be honest. Everything's already turned under with the tape, so there's a very high chance that the Fray Block would spill over or bleed through the "hem" allowance and into the garment surface area. In my experience, Fray Block leaves a stain mark on most fabrics, so a messy application would be really obvious and ruin the garment.

If the fabric is thick enough, you might be able to get away with applying Fray Block with a throw-away paintbrush for more control. Otherwise, bring a small pair of scissors to snip off the loose fibers as they pull out.
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