Hey, look what I’m getting back to: this spencer, which I originally started mocking up in, wait for it … fall of 2009! Here is my first blog post on that mock up, which I left with no sleeves and no collar. The inspiration garment is a wool spencer in the book Moden 1790-1840 (photos are here).

I found the mock up in my scrap bin last December, and for some reason it spoke to me enough such that I decided to finish patterning the collar and sleeves. You can tell which parts of the mockup are from 2013 versus 2009 because this time around I only had off-white muslin.
Green Spencer

Here is the front of the mock up.
Green Spencer

Here I was patterning the upper collar. It is in two pieces cut on the bias, with a seam down the center back. (There is not a seam in the lower right corner; that is just my piecing of extra muslin because I ran out of room to draw the pattern.)
Green Spencer

Then I put the project down, again, because I got pulled into making other things. But now fall and winter are coming again, so it is time to get back to this. Especially since I’ve already done the hard part of making a pattern. This weekend I cut the pieces out. I’m using the same wool that I used for a short cloak earlier this year.
Green Spencer

Starting to sew now!
Green Spencer

Here is a write-up of how I made my Stephanie Brown Robin belt. You may have figured out some of this from my past posts, but here is all the detail.

Baltimore Comic-Con

I made the buckle and the dots on the belt using Sculpey clay. Sculpey III for the dots, and Sculpey Premo for the buckle. Premo is better for thinner shapes that might otherwise crack, since III is a little brittle.

I started out by dividing a block of Sculpey III into small sections (each block is formed by three logs, and I sectioned those logs into roughly three sections each).
Robin Belt Construction

Then I rolled each section into a ball, and pressed each into a 1 1/4 inch cabochon mold (specifically the Sculpey Cabochon Mold APM81).
Robin Belt Construction

I used an acrylic roller to smooth out the underside of the cabochon.
Robin Belt Construction

And carefully removed the cabochon from the mold.
Robin Belt Construction

I ended up making a lot of these dots (turned out I only needed 12 for my 27 inch belt, so I had extra).
Robin Belt Construction

I baked the dots on a toaster oven tray in my conventional oven. I find it’s good to cover the tray with foil to avoid the cooking clay smell and fumes. I cooked them for a little longer than recommended, just to make sure the clay was hardened.
Robin Belt Construction

Moving on to the buckle, I made this, as previously mentioned, using Sculpey Premo.
Robin Cosplay

For the middle part, I followed the same method I used for the dots, but I used a larger mold (1 7/8 inches). This was the PJ003 mold from Best Flexible Molds.
Robin Cosplay

For the base disk, I used a 2 1/2 inch flat circle mold from Mold Muse.
Robin Cosplay

Here is the finished disk. I baked the Premo pieces in a similar manner to how I baked the Sculpey III dots. I did let them bake longer, though, because Premo takes more time to cook.
Robin Cosplay

After the pieces were baked and cooled, I sanded them down. I used three grits of wet/dry sandpaper (400, 600, and 800) in progressive order to get a smoother finish. I wore a particle respirator mask and did the sanding in a bucket of water to avoid breathing in any polymer clay dust.
Robin IV

After that I applied a few layers of acrylic gesso to the sanded pieces, and then painted them with acrylic paint. I chose the yellow paint to match the fabric I was going to use for the belt itself.
Robin IV

Then I sewed a 1 1/2 x 26 1/2 inch tube of cotton sateen (plus seam allowances), encasing another layer of polar fleece (to give the belt some body). I made piping (using cotton 4.8mm cording that is often used for upholstery) and sewed it into the long edges of the tube (which I sewed wrong sides together first, and then turned). Turning the tube is hard to do with the piping, but a chopstick can help. After turning, I hand sewed the tube closed.
Robin Cosplay

I glued the two parts of the buckle (the domed piece and the disk) together using hot glue. I used Gem-Tac glue to attach the dots and the buckle to the fabric belt.
Robin Cosplay

I put a closure on the belt (a large snap) by sewing one part to the fabric end and gluing the other part to the belt. I used E6000 glue (always use proper ventilation–I open a window and wear a respirator when using E6000).
Robin Cosplay

Finished!
Robin Cosplay

To show scale:
Robin Cosplay

This was my first wearing of Stephanie Brown Robin. Overall, thumbs up. The dress and leggings were pretty comfortable, while the wig with the mask didn’t bother me too much. Mike wore another variation on Hawkeye, this time with a new broadhead arrow that he crafted from Worbla and a wooden dowel. Mike has been trying to make a convention-safe broadhead for quite a while, so it was great that he finally made one!

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Mike wanted this photo to show off my gloves:
Baltimore Comic-Con

I told him it made me feel like I was in The Sound of Music:
Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Mike and I went to this year’s installment of Baltimore Comic-Con today. Wow, this con just keeps on growing! This year they took over more of the convention center, including moving the exhibit hall to a larger space. It took us a couple hours to walk through the hall, and we didn’t even get to see a couple rows. The costume contest was super popular (which unfortunately meant they moved the waiting area to a place less conducive to photos and very backlit, so I have less than last year). That being said, the crowds were manageable. We arrived a couple hours after opening, and did not have to wait in line to grab our wristbands from Will Call. Parking in the area was a bit high for Baltimore ($15), but since we ordered ahead we were able to get a spot in a very close-by garage even with a Ravens game going on (although the garage was turning away people who had not reserved online).

As for swag and shopping, we got a comic signed by Alex Maleev and another by Adam Hughes, two of our favorite artists. Mike bought a 2013 convention shirt that had Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo on it. I saw that they were selling shirts from last year, which we had also attended, but did not buy any show merch at. Mike really likes Usagi, and the only size they had left was also Mike’s size. That sounds like fate, right? So he bought it. Meanwhile, I bought a few prints in Artists’ Alley by Bill Walko.

Here are our photos of other cosplayers.

Marvel group in the costume contest
Baltimore Comic-Con

I love this Silk Spectre and Nite Owl
Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

A really cute Arrow couple!
Baltimore Comic-Con

Blue uniform Nightwing! (I don’t acknowledge the red costume with the current continuity)
Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Crazy elaborate Jurassic Park group
Baltimore Comic-Con

A unique Superman and Wonder Woman pair
Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

I liked this Poison Ivy’s parasol
Baltimore Comic-Con

Baltimore Comic-Con

Very impressive armored Nightwing
Baltimore Comic-Con

New products are up in the store! https://www.etsy.com/shop/inthelongrun

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

Jewelry by In the Long Run Designs

My Stephanie Brown Robin cosplay is almost finished, which is great, since I need it this coming Sunday.

Here you can see my first try-on of the dress and cape.
Robin Cosplay

Re-winding a bit, last time I posted, I left off with a dress that had no sleeves. I started on the sleeves by constructing the little arm pads that Robin usually has. These are probably one of the stupider parts of Robin’s costume. They protect such a little area of the arm, but are a pain to sew. Grr…

Sewing the pad.
Robin Cosplay

Attaching piping to the pad.
Robin Cosplay

The first sleeve after being set in with the arm pad attached.
Robin Cosplay

Moving on to the cape, here I was draping the cape body.
Robin Cosplay

Drafting the collar for the cape.
Robin Cosplay

The collar in the fashion fabric.
Robin Cosplay

The finished cape.
Robin Cosplay

The dress with the second sleeve and the mock turtle neck attached.
Robin Cosplay

Embellishing the belt. I sewed a strip of cotton sateen edged with piping for the belt itself.
Robin Cosplay

The finished belt.
Robin Cosplay

The last sewing part is the gloves. I have one glove finished, just need one more! I also need to style the wig, and that’s it.
Robin Cosplay

https://www.etsy.com/shop/inthelongrun

The Labor Day sale is on! Check out the store for deals on select jewelry!

In the Long Run Designs

I listed several pairs of earrings, after finally finding time to take photographs. Available at https://www.etsy.com/shop/inthelongrun

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Rhinestone Cluster Earrings

Georgian Earrings

Georgian Earrings

I like the bright fabric used for this piece.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

I love the plaid waistcoat in this ensemble. And the silk braid decorations on the chest.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

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