Sunday, August 12, 2012

Swampy Outfit

This was a costume for my husband for a dystopian zombie LARP. If you don't know what a LARP is, read on.

Backstory: First, LARP. It stands for Live Action Role Playing, and the easiest way to describe it is organized chaos group improv interactive theater. Players take on characters and there are rules for various interactions including combat, magic (if it is present), and some special effects. Once you enter game space you are the character, and everything you do and say is reacted to by the other players as their characters. It can be a lot of fun.

Swampy is a kinda hippie character who worships nature in a world overrun by zombies and populated by the descendants of the original zombie apocalypse survivors.

How I did it: My husband wanted some cool weather wear, and we had acquired this striped woven hippie hoodie that was too small for him. One shopping trip to Goodwill later, we had two super ugly sweaters begging to be dismantled. I removed the sleeves from both sweaters and separated the front and back at the sides. I split the hoodie down the underside of the arms and down the sides. The front and back pieces of the sweaters were sewn along the open sleeve seams and side seams to form the uber-poncho.

The pants he is wearing were inspired by various types of wrap pants, including Thai fisherman pants often marketed toward yoga and martial arts enthusiasts. They are super wide legs that are gripped at the sides and folded in to the center front, tied with attached ties, with the top waistband folded down over the ties. I used this tutorial as a guide and a combination of my husband's measurements and looking at existing pants that fit him to sort out the inside leg and crotch areas, and used the full width of the fabric on the legs then adjusted for fit on my husband to get the best combination of leg fullness and wrap styling.

What I learned: I am pretty good at improvising. I'd do just fine in a zombie apocalypse making clothing provided I had a sewing machine and thread available (and to be honest, I'd prolly do okay with a hand needle and thread, I'd just have to run away and sew at the same time, lol). My visions don't always pan out exactly the way I thought, but they are still usually pretty cool.

What I might try next time: Um, I think I did it pretty well the first go round. Maybe make slightly smaller crazy wrap pants? They are a bit difficult to do up yourself if you aren't sure how they work and don't have the flexibility to grab the ties... maybe add belt/tie loops to the pants?

Final Thoughts: Quick and dirty costuming can be exhilarating. Also, my husband makes a great hippie. =D

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