DIY Costuming: Sew Sexy

21 Jul

Hi Ho, Hi Ho!

Today I’ll be playing the role of my own fairy godmother and am crafting the finishings for my Cinderella costume.

I’m just thrilled. This is going to be a gorgeous costume and is the result of shared talents and lots of love.

When it comes to costuming I fully agree with

Jo Boob’s sentiment that:

“Your underwear is Not a Costume.”

We all have to start somewhere and usually that starts off the rack.

A bra and panty set from Target can be blinged to the nines and read from the stage as or more beautifully than a completely custom job….because it’s been turned into a costume.

Even fancy pants items from Victoria’s Secret or high-end lingerie companies like *swoon* Agent Provocateur will still look like beautiful lingerie on stage. …not a costume.

Let’s say it all together:

“My underwear is not a costume.”

You may own the most beautiful lingerie or prettiest underwear ever created – it’s still not a costume till you’ve made it so.

Lingerie and underwear are for our bedrooms and under our clothes.

Costumes are for the STAGE.

…and perhaps our bedrooms.


This costume started with inspiration from the Cinderella story:

“Then the bird threw a gold and silver dress down to her, and slippers embroidered with silk and silver. She put on the dress with all speed, and went to the festival.”

Here is a preliminary sketch of the whole get up with a few of the flowers I’ve been building.

Most of the under pieces I already own and am modifying and putting finishing touches on. The over dress is being built and I’ll be covering it in blossoms.

A great part of the fun in burlesque for me is creating just the right costume for my number. Reaching out to friends who have skillz I do not possess  has been a major boon.

New costuming for me usually goes like this:

  1. Do I have something I can use already?
  2. Could I modify something I already have?
  3. Can I make it myself? (all hail youtube for how to videos)
  4. Do I have time and funds for it to be made for me?
  5. Could I find a custom version of this online? Etsy is fabulous for this. Custom, handmade pieces and by buying through etsy you are supporting the home business owners of the world. Here’s a search forHandmade burlesque“.

If your friends have crafty skills you don’t possesses why not commission for cash or trade something that they do fabulously? 

Don’t know how to sew?

  • Hot glue it. Warning – hot glue is hot.
  • E600 is handy for hefty stuff. Liquid Thread for lighter trims etc.
  • Heck  – safety pin it.
  • If you “don’t sew”. I bet you can handle a needle and thread.

Choose your weapon carefully!

Keep in mind that glue ads WEIGHT. Pins may pop and poke and some things that are glued fall off. Sewing doesn’t add weight, is more specific and may last you longer. Sewing and pinning things also means you can change your mind later.

Custom Goodness

Cinderella will be sporting an incredible new custom necklace by my friend at Bauble & Fripp. (a new offshoot of the often steampunky shop Gnomeworks)

I was over at her house a while back and she had her beads out for some beautiful daily wear jewelry. I don’t know who said it first but in no time we were talking custom work for Sweet Louise. I sent her a few inspiration pictures and we were off and running. Now it’s done….wait till you SEE THIS NECKLACE. *flailsquee*

Share the Inspiration!

Tell me about your favorite costumes your most inspired creations!

Who’s costumes do you most admire? Links are fabulous!

Keeping Track of Your Inspiration

Some days, when there isn’t enough coffee – my brain is less clever. Beyond lapses in cleverness there is NO reason to reinvent the wheel. Now, how one decorates the wheel now that’s another story entirely.

So, I’ve started keeping a collection of burlesque costume inspiration on It’s a handy tool for photo collections! You can find my budding burlesque inspiration board here!

Now… back to the Bippity Bopity Boo!

Want to see what all the fuss is about?

Tickets are on sale now!

Grimm & Bare it: Once Upon a Time in the Land of Bump and Grind

2 Responses to “DIY Costuming: Sew Sexy”

  1. Kimberly Reynolds-Gier July 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm #

    Oh, man what. Those fat tie-on anklets, “ankle corsets” on your Pinterest board. I AM MAKING THOSE AS SOON AS FRINGE IS OVER, I am not even kidding a little bit. I always want to make that sort of thing for wrists, a kind of glam bracer, but had not thought about ankle things. It’s happening.

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