I call this a Kinda-Commission because a friend of mine (The oh-so-talented Chris Haley) was wanting a hoodie similar to Cyclops’ jacket in New X-Men.
We’d talked about design, color, functionality changes that occur when you are essentially taking a leather biker-jacket and combining it with a letterman jacket and turning it into a different kind of jacket, in a different material. We’d priced out the cost, and then I realize that Chris’ birthday is coming up, and I could surprise him with the hoodie. The challenge being I didn’t have his measurements and had to go about guessing his size (a wonderful thank you to his lovely girlfriend, and an old Mister Miracle t-shirt he gave me two years ago).
Hoodies are longer than a jacket and Chris also has a longer torso so alterations needed to me made. And with making a jacket-of-sorts longer, you also need to redraft the “X” to have proportionate angles. I did quite a bit of research for this, pulling out my husband’s New X-Men books to try to figure out all the angles on the jacket to make sure I got what I could correct.
Side note: I’ve boycotted X-Men and specifically this series because of my unnatural attachment and devotion to Jean Grey. While researching this stuff I caught a few panels and cried like crazy. Afterwards I asked my husband if I should break down and read it. He responded with “It’s such a good series, but no. It wouldn’t good for you emotionally.”
Well, went I went to one of local chain fabric stores they didn’t exactly have the colors I needed (they didn’t have black. But they did have dark grey), so RIT dye to the rescue! I started out with a dark grey and a white fabric, pre-shrunk in the washer.
I learned a lot while dying my fabric for my Captain America costume, one major point being if you want vibrant colors, it doesn’t matter how much dye you put in, you need very hot water to keep the fabric fibers open. I now achieve this with constant heat and a large 3 gallon pot on the stove. This has other limitations, like not being as large I need. For this, I cut the pieces out first, then dyed them individually. I find I can get a more consistent dye on the pieces than dying a large piece of fabric, and I don’t stain my washing machine. (I’m hoping in the future my husband and I can figure out a way to get me my own personal washing machine just for dying, but until then I make do).
The X-Men school logo patches I made the good ol fashioned “Freezer paper” method. I still owe him an “x” zipper pull, since the one I sculpted split in half when trying to insert the jump ring. I was so afraid it wouldn’t fit, but it does. Pretty perfectly. Lookin’ sharp, Chris.
If he asks nicely, I might try to make him a Cyclops visor to go with it.