Thursday, October 13, 2011

Superhero Pants and Cape Tutorial

At last!  I can finally say I am totally, 100% done with my son's Superman costume.  Now I just need to hide it away so it won't get trashed or lost before Halloween!  That is, if there is ever a time when he's not wearing it...

Now I just have to finish my costume and make a new shirt for my daughter (she had a growth spurt and now it's too small!).  Soon, very soon!

After that I can post about the dress and belt I made to wear to my 10 year high school reunion, which happened this past weekend.  I had such a good time, it was awesome.  I really liked how everything I made turned out, and think I looked pretty darn good. 

So, back to the superheroes.  One of you, my fabulous readers, asked for a tutorial on the pants, so I'll do that plus the cape since I had to make a new one anyway.  Click here to go back to the tutorial for the logo t-shirts.

When looking at lots of superheroes I've discovered that most of them have the same style of pants, which makes this pattern very versatile since you just need to customize with your particular hero's colors.

For the pants I started with an existing pattern for a pair of pants in my son's size.  I drew the shape of the contrasting colored brief and "boots" (just below knee level). My son was very insistent that he wanted the "pointy part in the front" on the boots, just like in his Superman coloring book.


I traced the shape of the brief on separate pieces of paper, without any seam allowance on the bottom where it transitions from the brief to the pant. Same thing with the boots, except no seam allowance on the top where it transitions from the boot to the pant.



You can either cut out a full pant and just lay the contrasting color pieces over the top and sew them on (I did that for the brief). Or you can just cut the part of the pant that shows, with seam allowance to overlap and sew together with the contrasting pieces, which is what I did for the boot area. [I really hope that sentence made sense to you!] Once I had the pieces cut out I laid the contrasting pieces on top of the pant and pinned it.


I also pinned a piece of tear-away stabilizer underneath and sewed an applique stitch over the edge of the contrasting pieces. NOTE: Be very careful about the direction of the "grainline" in the stabilizer. Make sure it is going in the same direction as the seam you need to sew. If it's going the opposite direction it will pull, stretch and pucker your seam when you try to tear it off.


Make sure it is going in the same direction as your seam and you'll end up with a nice finished look.



After I finished all those seams, sewed the front pants and back pants together at the center seam. Then I clipped the curves to make sure it fits well and doesn't pull.



Then I sewed the side seams and the inner leg seam.


I left the cuffs unfinished to make sure they were long enough, folded over the waistband, and stitched around it, leaving a space to insert the elastic. I inserted the elastic and finished the waistband in the same way that I did in this tutorial.

Now on to the cape! I started out with 1 1/2 yards of cotton broadcloth. I folded it in half with the selvedges on the top and bottom, then cut from 18" at the top to the corners at the bottom.


Of course after that I measured my son and discovered I needed to cut about 6" off of it (which I did at the top). Then I folded the edges over twice, to conceal the raw edge and keep it from fraying, on the sides and the top. The bottom was the selvedge so I just left it alone.


Then I measured on my son's shoulders to see what would be a good width of cape for him. In his case it was 12". Then I pleated the cape on one side to get it down to 6", then mirrored the same pleating to the other side. I didn't measure, but just played around with it until it was right and looked good.


[I apologize for the photos... I haven't quite figured out how to shoot red effectively!]

Next I added little squares of Velcro (okay, it was generic "hook and loop") to the corners of the cape, and the corresponding spots on the shirt. And then I could check one more thing off my never-ending list of things to make!



I cannot tell you how excited my son was to have another cape! He spent the next 30 minutes running up and down the hallway seeing how his cape would fly behind him as he ran. I think he likes it.



I'll be linking up to these fabulous link parties:

 Monday -  Craft o Maniac Monday -- Craftastic Monday -- Amaze Me Monday -- Polly Want 2 Party  --  Tuesday -  Get Your Craft On -- Sew Cute Tuesday -- Upcycled Awesome -- Tip Me Tuesday -- Tuesday Talent Show --  Wednesday -  Seven Thrity Three -- Wallet-Friendly Wednesday -- Create and Share -- Whatever Goes Wednesday --  Linkin’ with Lil’ Luna -- Thursday -  Strut your Stuff Thursday -- Transformation Thursday -- Thrilling Thursday -- House of Hepworths -- Friday -  Remodelaholic Friday -- Flaunt it Friday -- Frugal Friday -- Weekend Wander -- Show and Share Day -- It's Fun to Craft! -- Tickled Pink Fridays -- Weekend Wrap-up Party -- Catch as Catch Can -- Friday Flair -- Feature Yourself Friday -- Simply Link {Party} -- Pity Party -- Design Dazzle --  Saturday - Saturday Spotlight --  Sunday -  The DIY Showoff Project  Parade --  Sunday Showcase Party -- Creative Bloggers Party -- I Heart Naptime -- Think Pink Sundays


I love to read your comments, thank you for taking the time to visit my little corner of the world!

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