My Handmade Grease Costume

As soon as I knew that we were doing Grease, I knew that I wanted to make my own costume. My original idea was to make a burgundy felt circle skirt to wear with a pale pink blouse, but when I found out that I would be playing a geek, I changed my mind a little and went for slightly darker colours.

The pattern that I used was Simplicity 3847, which is a pattern for a blouse, circle skirt, apron, hat and petticoat.

Each ensemble member needed two costumes (one each for Act 1 and 2) and one High School Hop costume. I had a dress which I knew that I wanted to wear for the High School Hop, which meant that I just needed to make costumes for Act 1 and 2.

Act 1
For this costume, I made a skirt to be worn with a purchased white blouse. The skirt is dark green and burgundy tartan and is a full circle (but will be worn without a petticoat so that it hangs a little straighter).

I had originally planned to make braces to button onto this skirt, but when I came to try them on, I found that I had made one of them a bit too long and I didn't like the way that they sat on my chest, so I decided to just wear the skirt without braces.
The length of the skirt when made to the pattern came down to my ankles so I gave it a very wide hem, which adds a little weight to the skirt making it hang (and spin) quite nicely.

Act 2
For this costume I had originally intended to make a shirtwaister dress by sewing the blouse and skirt pieces together at the waist and extending the zip up the side of the bodice to enable me to get in and out of the dress easily. When it came to trying to attach the two pieces, I found it difficult to do on my own body as I don not own a dress form, so I decided to just leave them as separate pieces and wear a belt around the waist to give the illusion of a dress.

Having learnt from my experience making the tartan skirt, I shortened this skirt before I cut it out - meaning that I didn't have to fight with the hem when I came to sew it up.

The blouse was an interesting project for me, as I have never made anything like this before. I have never sewn a collar or buttonholes so it was a bit of a learning curve.

The collar is a little wonky at the edges but I am happy with how it looks overall. I never knew how simple sewing buttonholes on a sewing machine was! After reading the manual and having a little practice on some scrap fabric, I was ready to go and I am pleased with how they turned out. They are in line with each other and the buttons fit through them - that's a win in my book!

These costumes match my shoes that I dyed a while ago and I am really happy with how they turned out.

I am hoping to get some pictures of me wearing each of my costumes whilst I am at the theatre this week, so keep an eye out for those!


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