Suits, Sticks and Screen Prints

Posted by Steve on May 10, 2010 in Costumes, Production, Props | Subscribe

As all things puppet plummet towards the finish line, we’re tackling all the little leftovers, from whittling and screen printing to stringing together rave bracelets and peacock pendants.

A plain brown suit just wouldn’t do.  Once James’ suit was sewn I pinned the perimeter with olive green piping to accent his eyes and accentuate his schoolboy charm.

Meanwhile Andy shortened his tie and modified a pair of thrift store suspenders to match.

The overall effect makes the work worthwhile.  If you like this you should see it with his head attached.  The color pallet carries over perfectly from his hair and eyes.

Here Andy’s using a Swiss army knife to whittle down a child-sized walking stick we picked up on a hike through the Santa Cruz redwoods.

After stitching on a leather grip, tying on some feathers and wood burning in a few flourishes, Patrick’s got a walking stick that’s sure to be the envy of the Vacant Lot.

What would a runaway be without a bindle?  Shit out of luck, that’s what.  In traditional hobo fashion, Patrick carries his tinned beans in a rag on a stick.

Screen printing has long been a hobby of mine.  Though still thoroughly amateur, I’ve come a long way from hand painting silk screens with screen filler.  Now photo emulsion does all the work for me and produces infinitely finer results.  Andy drew up some first rate t-shirt graphics for Judy and Trey and printed them out on transparency film.  They’re used as photographic negatives to develop the screens and create our stencils.  Once the emulsion was cooked (all it takes is a couple hours under a desk lamp) we washed out the undeveloped sections and were set to print.

The metallic gold and silver fills came stock from Speedball printing supplies.  I had to mix up the outline colors.  Blue plus process magenta equals a stellar accent color for Trey’s purple coiffure.

Glitter Toilet.  It’s a band.  Have you heard of it?

Trey’s belt is half a tie we found at the Salvation Army in Santa Cruz.  The buckle came from the Alemany flea market down on Bayshore Boulevard in San Francisco.  Every Sunday.  Not to be missed.

I screwed up the registration on Judy’s shirt the first time round, so I had to print it all over again on a matching swatch of pink fabric and then sew it on with a sparkly blue border to make it look intentional.  It’s one of those happy accidents Bob Ross was always preaching about.  God rest his afro encrusted soul.

Andy’s just finished attaching her homebrew tutu and is now evening out the individual ruffles.  Note her super sparkly striped leggings on the table in the foreground.

Judy Swinehopper’s not the only kid who knows what to do with a necklace.  Above are the bits and pieces going into Trey’s necklace.  I’ll glue the feather to a leather backing to keep it from fraying.  See those gold beads?  They’re actually and unfortunately just fake gems, which means I have to drill my own holes.  Fortunately the hand drill heats up right well and melts through them in no time.  Judy’s braces were made from the same gear painted silver.

If Trey was’d an ambinal, he’d be a peacock.  Peacocks is pwertty.  Now I’m gonna go make some tiny band buttons for Geer’s hoodie, because these utterly insignificant affectations that will only ever appear on camera for half a blurry moment are important.  The devil’s in the details.  The antichrist’s in the accessories.

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