Sunday, March 25, 2012

Light Peas in a Pod!

You are probably saying "What kind of title is that???"  but I'll explain. 
My friend Miko said she needed a costume for a contest.  The costume had to represent Bethlehem's Veggie Fest, and would be voted on for mascot of the festival.  The costume needed to be green,  have lights, and be funny.  I decided to create Mr. Green Peas.  Then I realized it was a little Steampunk (that look from he beginning of the industrial revolution, Victorian, like "Wild Wild West" with Will Smith.) 

Um Steamed Peas???  lol.  Yes, I got a little giddy with this.  Oh, yeah, it had to have lights (Lite Craft and Off Grid technologies was the sponsor, lol.)  I've been putting lights in a variety of things, mostly quilts and home decor items, so needed to think long and hard about how I was going to incorporate strings of LED lights.  So, how does one do all this, when there are no patterns for pea pods in the regular market?  And something unique that may win a contest?  I adapted a Simplicity pattern (not my favorite brand, uggh, but the only one currently available that was similar to my idea)  I made it longer, with a curved front edge, to look like a pea pod.  Add peas to the body, and a stem and leaves to the hat.  So, when Lee tried it on, I also realized it needed a large bow tie. 

I put the strands of lights in a sheer green chiffon like fabric.  The lights show well, and the lighter green was a fun accent for the seams, and helped to make the back look like the seam of a pod.  I added a smaller pea to the large bow tie, and 3 large stuffed peas to the front.  The crushed panne looked really cool, but was horrible to work with.  It's too stretchy for this design, but it added to the fun, texture and richness of the costume.  Since the contest was during the Bethlehem St. Patrick's Day Parade, Miko added shamrock sunglasses and the shamrock hat.  Lee was a great sport and really showed off the costume well.  It was fun to think outside the box, and to work with him on making the lights work, be wearable, comfortable, and practical.  We came up with a few ideas and solutions for adding lights to clothes or costumes.  So, here are a few pictures. 

Photos are courtesy of Lite Craft and Miko Green.  We didn't win the contest, but it was really fun to do something so unusual.  I never know what I'll be doing next, and it's always a fun challenge. 

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