Fairy Godmother Varsity Costume

by | May 1, 2024

What was the idea behind this project?

I was performing in Pole varsity and I decided that I was going to dance to the song, I need a hero. Naturally I immediately wanted to dress up as the fairy godmother from that one iconic scene in Shrek. I knew the costume had to be functional to be able to do pole in so I thought making it would be the best thing to do.

How did you make it?

Wand: The wand was very simple. I laser cut 2 stars out of about 6mm Plywood scrap. I glued these together to make a thicker star. Once it was dry, I drilled a hole large enough for a 5mm dowel to fit in snugly, and then glued it into place. I used a mixture of files, the Dremel and sandpaper to round the edges of the star to that the tips came to rounded points. I then painted the entire thing with acrylic paint. Later on a sewed a piece of velcro around the handle so I could stick it to my leg harness.

Glasses: I spent ages trying to prototype the glasses by dimensioning off of reading glasses and then drawing them in Fusion 360. After multiple try’s, I got them to the exact size and shape I wanted. I laser cut the frames in 6mm acrylic, the arms in 3mm acrylic and the lenses in 3mm clear acrylic. I sanded the lenses down so they would snugly fit in the frames, and then glued them into place with superglue. After this was dry, I drilled 2 holes in the outer parts of the frames for the arms to fit into. Once they were glued in place and dry, I braided some thread elastic to increase its strength and then threaded these through the holes at the back of the arms. I then put the glasses on and tied that elastic so they felt secure on my head as I didn’t want them falling off during the performance.

Top and Skirts: As I couldn’t find the fabric that I wanted to make my outfit from scratch, I searched Vinted for an inexpensive dress that I could modify. I measured the length of the dress and realised that if I proportioned everything correctly, I could get a top, a short skirt for pole and a longer one for the awards at the end. As I would be wearing shorts during the performance, the pole skirt was to fit the colour scheme rather than be practical. This helped to inform the length of the other garments.

I chopped the dress at the waist, using a dress form to help. Below the waist was pinned to the dress form so that it didn’t pull the fabric out of shape whilst I cut it. I then immediately took the top off the mannequin and sewed a double turned hem using a zigzag stitch because my fabric was stretchy. Once I tried it on and was satisfied with it, I moved onto the longer skirt.

As there was a slit in my dress, I decided that the longer skirt was gonna have a slit in it too. As I didn’t want to re-sew the slit, I measured how far above it I wanted my waistband. I then in a similar fashion to the top, cut it at that point. The dress came with a sequinned fabric belt to tie it to the correct size. I used this to cover my elastic as it was already a tube. I sewed this tube of fabric with the elastic in it into a circle and then carefully pinned it around the circumference of the top of the skirt. Once this was sewn on, the long skirt was complete.

I removed the fabric I had left from the mannequin and sewed a very thin double turn hem, so to take as little length off the garment as possible. I then got some wide elastic and sewed around the circumference of the opening at the top. Once the waistband was flipped up, I top stitched around it, so it would not flip under and would lie flat.

Leg Harness: This leg harness was designed so I had somewhere to put my wand when it was used as a prop. Using the leather working tools from the heartspace I cut a large rectangular piece of leather and used and Awl to punch holes along the length of each edge to make it easier to sew. I then took the scraps of the sequenced tie belt and used them to make 2 round the leg straps, and 2 straps connecting the leg harness to the pole skirt. I sewed 1 end of each of the 2 leg straps to the rectangle of leather. All other ends of all pieces, I sewed a bit of Velcro. This was it was easy to put on. I then sewed a strip of Velcro down the leather front of the harness. This was so I could stick my wand directly to it when I was in a hurry.

Shirt: I needed to do a fun transformation costume reveal, so I sewed some Velcro down the button placket of an oversized white shirt, that way I could remove it quickly without fiddling with the buttons.

Looking back, would you have done anything differently?

I would have found a better attachment method for my wand so I could have used it in performance easier. I also would have laser cut some holes on the glasses frames to thread the arms through.

How did the iForge help you in this project?

I didn’t need any help during the construction of the garment or props but without the iForge heartspace or mainspace, I wouldn’t have been able to make any of it.
In my performance we were partially marked on costume. I received full marks from multiple judges thanks to the time and effort I put into the costume.