Today I had a 3 hour tutorial session with Sally Hepple at Makeplace in Norwich to start to make the main construction of the Magician’s coat from the original drawing I did of the character.
The checkerboard material I used was designed on the computer using illustrator. I could not find the right size for a puppet of that scale so I ended up doing it myself. I found a company on the internet who could print your designs onto material. I found that having 3 tea towels made up was cheaper than having some material done and its the right thickness. So the Magicians coat has been made from a tea towel.
Sally and I discussed the design for the coat based on my drawing. I wanted a fitted coat which had a good shape to it. We decided to put a back vent pleat at the back of the coat to make movement easier. The sleeves I had designed have a sort of raised vein effect which would be hard to make. We decided to make the sleeves using a black strong cotton material which Sally provided. Sally suggested using the sewing machine to create random zigzag patterns which I liked. Sally showed me how to use the sewing machine which was fantastic and I would recommend if anyone wants to buy one to contact Sally at Makeplace. It was so easy to use and has so many functions. I created a random pattern on a piece of cloth altering the width of the random patterns and the colour of the thread. This took quite a long time to do but I found it really therapeutic to do.
Sally made the pattern for the coat and got the back and front panels, sleeves sewn together. She also made the collar separate so all I need to do is sew it on. The time went so quickly so we did not have time to finish but the hardest bit is now done. I just need to finish it off at home – attach collar, hem, cuffs, buttons and back belt. I also need to make the trousers and another coat for the Magician. Sally gave me the pattern so it should be easy for me to follow hopefully.
The coat looks great and I was really pleased with it. Thank you to Sally for doing such a great job, it is not easy making clothes that small and she has helped me a lot with all the bits I find hard to do.