I had a bit of a sparkle attack today in the Garment District while shopping for mother-daughter mermaid costume fabric. (For Saturday's 30th Anniversary Coney Island Mermaid Parade, and Z's upcoming mermaid-themed 2nd birthday party).
I didn't really have a firm idea for the costumes, only that the skirts should be scaly looking, and the tops should be more floaty/meshy/gauzy. So went to Spandex House and, was totally confused and overwhelmed by all the hologrammy sparkly sequiny spandex-ness of the place, and finally ended up with what you see above. The shell trims are from Pacific Trimming.
Anyone have any tips on sewing with really heavy-duty hologram spandex fabric? This stuff is THICK, and every time I stretch it, the sequiny sparkly bits crack! I'm guessing serging with wooly nylon will be the way to go here once I have the skirts basted together and fitted.
I think the skirts can just be elastic-waist tubes to the knee (or maybe a bit above for Z--I want her to be able to run around and have fun) with big gauzy/meshy flounces at the bottom. Kinda like the girl in the middle here with the pink top:
For the tops, I'm not so sure--the other fabrics I got are really sheer, so maybe I'll have to do a two-layer thing or put tank tops underneath for bra coverage (for me) and sun protection (for Z). Shell bras are not my thing. Here's my illustration of Z as a mermaid:
Once again, I think I'm just going to wing it, pattern-free! At least for the skirt--I might use one of her knit summer shirts as a rough guide for the top.
So why mermaids? Z has been obsessed with the parade and mermaids ever since she went to a live reading by Melanie Hope Greenberg of her picture book Mermaids On Parade.
I swear I'll get back to sewing something actually wearable in real life at some point, but whatever. Costumes are fun!
P.S. A few of the mermaid inspiration images I collected on Pinterest:
And randomly (for my costume idea, not Z's, of course): Bettie Page Mermaid...