I was sat writing my next blog entry (SPOILER ALERT! A summary of our first year) and tried to summarise the making of The Mad Hatter costume. This was impossible as it was created so recently that every little detail is fresh in my mind and I realise they needed to be recorded and shared…. Perfect blogging material!!
So here we go…
This is something I’d wanted to do for a while (I’d love to add the white rabbit on spring loaded stilts soon!!!), so I popped along to The Wealden Fair at the end of November and came home with a few bits to start me off.
The most important part of the costume was bought from Nikki Page Antiques’ stall at The Wealden Fair. It was being sold as a Christmas decoration (I was sorely tempted to keep it and add it to the christmas decorations!), with holy and ivy decoration on the front. Now stupidly I didn’t take a ‘before’ photo as I didn’t realise I would blog about it. The changes I have made have been very minimal though so it won’t be hard to imagine the before shot!
Firstly I had to add the elastic as the hole was no where near big enough for a head as it was not meant to be worn. This was bought from Ashford fabric warehouse and I decided to go for sparkly elastic to ‘jazz it up’! I then added the gold silky material, again this was from Ashford fabric warehouse. The material is detachable so can be adapted. I then added the 10/6 sign associated with The Mad Hatter made from paper and marker.
Then next part is the jacket. The buttons are from the Cool Crafting stall at The Wealden Fair. The original jacket was a man’s dinner jacket, kindly donated from The Hampshire Wardrobe with some other costume pieces they wanted to get rid of over a year ago. I cut off the sleeves and then cut a section away from each side to tailor the fit (most of my stilt walkers are slim young women so I wanted the fit to be better for them!). The shirt was a fab find from a vintage store called Cow in Birmingham and is a perfect match with the rest of the costume.
The scarf is also from the same vintage store, gloves from the bargain bucket at H&M (in warmer weather or indoor events they could be swapped with blacklace fingerless gloves) and the cravat and cuffs are from ebay.
The stilt trousers were already in our wardrobe as they were made for The Ringleader. I followed a pattern I found on google, I just searched ‘how to make stilt trousers’, and used fabric from Ashford Fabric Warehouse. The line down the side is trimming from a little haberdashery in Cranbrook (Stoneydale). The trousers can be turned up and let down easily enough depending on the height of the performers stilts.
I had tremendous fun making and designing this costume and it was probably the quickest to make to date! The character is perfect for any Mad Hatter’s Tea Party themed event or party, quirky tea parties, promotional work and I am open to suggestions for any other events The Mad Hatter may fit into….! Look out for an appearance at the next Eclectic Wedding Extravaganza where we will be exhibiting at on 24th March 2013
Thanks for taking the time for reading and I hope you’ve enjoyed it, feel free to drop me an email if you have any questions about making costume, having the Mad Hatter at your event or just to chat about any crazy ideas!