04 June 2013

Make a ZOMBIE!

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DIY Mixed Textile Zombie Applique!

One rainy day I felt like using my fabric scraps to make a zombie something to wear to Comic Con since The Walking Dead was going to be our main attraction. I originally thought I'd make it to wear clipped in my hair but when I got dressed on Sunday I worked some quick magic to turn it into a brooch, too (so now it has a claw clip for hair or a pin for clothing on the back). Dual purpose zombie!

Everything was done free-hand so this is really just an inspirational post because each zombie will be unique.

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Laying together my scraps: this makes me want to make a mustachioed zombie!

Here is what I started with: I cut a head-shape from some felt. The color doesn't matter - I have an off-white one in the works currently, but brown, black, red, whatever...you can make it all work, I think. This is more about using what you have.

In my fabric stash I have a bolt of sun-damaged Japanese parasol print (it's so pretty!) and when I got it for a couple dollars I thought: I can work around the damage. Well, here is one of the ways I have: I cut around the inside edge of the parasol to get the eyes. The dots would have worked on their own and I could have mounted them on slightly larger circles of felt or stitched them on. So many variables! Let your creativity shine even if you claim you aren't creative. Just start laying pieces together. Zombies aren't pretty, folks.

Play around. For the mouth I tore a small scrap into a smaller scrap and left it all raggedy. The piece you see behind the head came from couch fabric samples so it has extra texture (and a cool sheen!). I gave the brains a few layers for that ripple effect (oh, and the one I'm working on I'm using layered ric-rac! great for brains!).

When I was happy with my template I used fabric glue to stick it all together then started on the embellishments. Mismatched pupils for the eyes, a mix of yellowed nubs for teeth, and a slice of bright red shiny polyester for that decapitated flair! I hot glued another piece of felt to the back to make it sturdier.

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How I wore my zombie applique.

While I was at H&M a couple months ago I found a fitted and simple military-style dress which I styled with neon yellow fishnets over taupe pantyhose. I did my hair up, put the zombie in, and realized all the zombie details were lost in my nest of hair. Boo. But since my dress was plain it was crying for that applique so I quickly hot glued a "borrowed" pin backing from another something I made in the past and then it was all yayyyy!

It was a simple project and didn't cost a thing. The only things you'd need to buy if you don't already have them are hair clip claws and/or pin backings and fabric glue (hot glue works, too, but for the tiny bits I wind up burning myself so prefer something less painful).

Have fun and if you make one I'd LOVE to see what you come up with!

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