Monday, December 7, 2015

Mother Ginger or as I like to call her Mother Beast!

Better photos of the costume in action, literally!
The 3 strings are taped to a PVC pipe wrapped in red electrical tape. A plastic candy cane is also there as a prop.

Dancers emerge.

Mother Ginger can move a lot!

More rock 'n rolling!

Here's the final reveal (well almost I want to put a bow above the buttons)! As you can see the frame did want to bow despite the hula hoops' support.

The dancer is standing on two stacked 18" boxes. I made a false petticoat and added striped tights to cover the front of the box since it can be seen by the audience.

The tights were sewn on both sides of the slit in the white fabric and then a gathered strip of fabric was sewn over it to make it look more like a petticoat. Given more time I would have ruffled the entire white piece.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Modifications to Mother Ginger

This Monday after school is tech where the performance is lighted, etc. I'll go in early to put the cover back on the frame. The cover is off now so I could bring it home to work on it over the weekend to add more ribbon (there was just too much white), bows to the top of the ribbons and most importantly add 2 more pulls to the front so the whole front will come up. The original string broke, I'll experiment with ribbon and a multi strand synthetic string.   Be certain when you thread the ribbons/ string through the rings that are being used to pull up the front that they do NOT go over the circular hoop orit  is much harder to pull up the front.

The new rows of ribbon are being hot glued to the white, it's quicker and in some places the ribbon that was adhered with iron on fusible is starting to come away from the white muslin. The bows will probably be sewn and glued.

The circular frame is taking a bit of a beating being on it's side so much. The PVC ends need more duct tape and the center square for the dancer is no longer a right angles. It's not much of an issue but unanticipated. The bolts might be loosening. The straps over the dancer's shoulders kept moving towards the center so we screwed the strapping right into the PVC pipe. A safety pin was still used on the straps as an added measure of safety.

A relative sent me a link to a Tacoma ballet school's production of the Nutcracker. it shows the frame work for their Mother Ginger is made of metal. She told me a friend who works with the group said it was made of airplane metal so it's sturdy but light.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

A Quick Peek and Mother Ginger

Here's a quick peek at the Mother Ginger costume, 1st fitting.
There are things which need to be altered but here's the basic look!

The dance teacher wants the front to lift more because the dancers do not come out one at a time but in rows (not like all the videos I watched on U-tube, of course!) And then go back in! Twice! The string I used through the roman curtain rings broke from all the rubbing on the rings. I'm going to sew plastic rings on the bottom, middle and top of the two strips of ribbon to either side of the buttons. Three cords going through them will join in the center on the top outside and the dancer will pull one bow that will bring up a larger area of the hoop. At least that's the new plan! I settled on a plan to use a candy stick (PVC with red tape)  to pull all three strings/ribbons up. It works better, but I don't think it will ever lift as high as the teacher wanted. The opening for the strings came through the top as far towards the front as possible. The length of the dancer's arms was the limiting factor.

There is way too much white but I think the only thing I will be able to do is add bows to the top since I had a project date moved up and the Nutcracker is next Thursday. This is also the same time as my husband's annual Nativity play at church for which I do all the alterations.
Storing it sideways to keep people from accidentally walking on it but it's not great for the fabric or the frame.
 The column is to keep it from falling forward. You can see the dancer's center position.