Saturday, December 12, 2015

Commission for R.P. 1/6 Action Figure Military One-Zero Vest

Post Moved Up to On Work Table.

This is going to be an interesting one for me, because of the realism factor involved.  This is for a military recreation figure and I'm going for as accurate a detailed garment as possible, to the point where we are stripping other miniature items for the zippers and so forth. R.P. has already done this in advance.  This is exciting to me, to learn the history behind this particular garment as well as see the final result of the over all project.  Deposit paid, now I just need to match fabric, etc.  Project time, undetermined due to the logistics and detail factors.

Customer provided photo of real garment

Customer provided photo
The patterning is the easy part.

August 1, 2015

More example photos provided by East Asia Supply Co.

August 12, 2015

I was planning on opening the box Monday but things got hectic, so here it is finally Wednesday.  I was really surprised to see how large the figure is. More like 1/5 than 1/6.  Compared to my scrawny little guys, yes, I'm quite grateful for the loan of the figure.  
I can't get over how small the zippers are, the company that makes the military items they were removed from must have a special manufacturer, because I haven't been able to find such small ones anywhere.  So, now I'm going to sit down and pattern, then find fabric and do a line by line list of how to handle this project.  With the pouches that were sent, I can try and match the fabric and the thread as closely as possible, and I already have an idea of how to put the little button rivets in.  A dull tapestry needle, wiggle a hole, pop them in and warp the fabric grain to make it close up on them again.  Most of the work on this project will be hand sewn, rather than machine so it will take a while longer, but I want to make it as exact in detail as possible. This is going to be like a 5,000 piece jigsaw puzzle, I'm stoked for this challenge!  

Aug 29, 2015

So the Customer's doll is an ACE doll.  I put it next to the Very Cool 27 cm girl doll today when I was patterning and they make a good proportion match if you're making a 'team' or a group with both genders. the very muscular look of the male ACE was actually well balanced out next to the sturdy figure of the Very Cool girl. Both bodies are very articulate and while they look whack nekkid, look good in paper towel fitting muslins, so yeah, clothing much!  With these types of dolls, you really can't judge by looks if they are butt nekkid.  So right now I'm working on the muslin test and will be showing more of that in the coming week. 

September 27, 2015

Slowly making way with this.  I've got the basic fitting muslin done, now I have to go at it with a marker and figure out the pockets.

Dec 12, 2015

I have practied as much as I can with the theory part of this project and am finally working on putting it together. I have sewn the back zipper in and cut out the muslin faux leather bits and dipped them in glue to let them set over night for hand sewing on. The little plastic grommets are still a puzzle, but I am saving them for last, because, again, in theory, an awl and some Gorilla glue should do it.  I have a tendency to over think and worry a project to death when I haven't done something before.  But it's really off and running now.  

Dec 13, 2015  Oh yeah, put the photo up, duh.  >.<;;   The muslin bits are working quite nicely, but I have to get the vest together before I trim the strips down any further and then there is still the question of how the snaps will work.  I'm trying to get the pocket boxes made today.  Craft irons with adjustable heat settings really come in handy on projects like this.  I would not have been able to do such a good job on the back zipper without one.

January 01, 2016

After recieving a new sewing machine which does a much better job of sewing fine details, I have been spending some time getting to know how to use the thing. Then I went back and picked off the pockets and have basted them back on to do a better job of sewing.  Now it appears my pocket flaps do not match the new pockets.  I will deal with it this week.  Everything else looks to be a slide now with the new machine, more detail control, etc.  That still leaves the snaps, and I do hope to have the vest done in the coming week.

I have ordered a book on making tiny clothing for reference after all, but I am still debating the issue of making other items this small.  It really is a matter of how the machine makes things much easier to deal with on this scale.  

January 03. 2016  I give up.

I have tried to get this project in scale and came up short of the little tiny buttons.  Plus I was not happy with the over all effect it was having. The customer agreed to accept what was done, and I only asked for shipping rather than the balance, which was only due if the item left here reaching my standards.  As is before a good pressing with my tiny craft iron.

One of the main things that irked me was the size of the zippers. While the teeth are tiny, the pulls were a bit too big.  Where are we in the doll clothing making business supposed to get these things!  And the fact that the customer had to take items apart to get the zippers that were supplied for this.  It is exceptionally frustrating to not have things in the correct proportions. I suspect that the 1/6 military clothing industry keeps this stuff to themselves, and well they should, but yeah.  Sort of heart broken, because I did want it to be perfect and failed.  I did learn a hell of a lot on this project that will be used in later projects, but for now, I will sink into a depression and pick it apart in my brain for days until my inner critic shuts the hell up.  

The new machine, however did make a huge difference in ability to control the stitching to perfection  I even went back and picked out the first back zipper and redid the pocket flaps much faster and with more precision   The Brother SE400 is an excellent doll sewing machine.

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