Sunday, March 29, 2015

Super Secret Project Revealed!

For the past couple of months, I've mentioned a super secret project to some of my friends. I was really excited to try something "new" and something I hadn't seen in person before. I made a yarn wig. I was heavily inspired by Rocking the Frock's Steampunk yarn wig. It involves elements I know how to do - mostly knitting, crocheting, and sewing with nice big yarn strands.

First, I created a knit cap. I cast on 64 stitches in the round on size 7 needles. The yarn I used was really stretchy. I tried to cast on 72 or even 80 and...way, way too big. I did 2x2 ribbing around the edge for an inch and then just did knit all the way around, increasing the stitch count to 70 to accommodate my own hair. Once it got to 7" in height, I decreased once in the middle of each needle and at the end of each needle. On the sides, I added "mini" side burns to cover up my hairline well. I tried on the hat, put pins where my ear started and where the hairline went back up under the hat. I basically put ten stitches to each needle and the knitted triangles - with the right angle towards the ear- before the ear.

I then put the hat down and wanted to wrap some yarn around one of those long hot dog balloons to make curls. My original plan was to wrap the yarn, pour a water glue mixture all over the yarn, and then pop the balloon once the glue dried. That ended up not happening because the hot dog balloons were one to a mixed bag at the dollar store and not a single bag I bought (all three!) had a usable hot dog balloon. Either the balloon had a hole or it just wouldn't blow up. It might have been me - I'm sick with pneumonia (medication for the win!)- but I could get the regular balloons to blow up just fine. Anyway, then plan went bust. So, instead, I took some cardstock, rolled it up tight, taped it, and then wrapped it in plastic wrap. This served to wrap the yarn around and make the curls.

Above is one of the curls after I cut it from the rest of the wrapped yarn (I just measured about 3 1/2" and cut the yarn at that point) and shimmied the curl off the cardstock.

While I was letting the glue dry, I started to cut a lot of yard long strands of yarn to add as "hair" all the way around the bottom of the hat. I also added a second line of hair around the original bottom of the hat where the triangles were and the back of the hat. This gave an added amount of thickness. I didn't have to add any hair to the top since my own hair - which is about a yard itself- would be adding the height and stability to the hat.

The hat after the round of strands were added.  It looked a bit ridiculous.

The above are pictures of all the strands pushed back and around. It's already starting to look!  However, I still needed to add some pieces.  First, I took about 30 strands that were slightly longer than the distance between my ears across my forehead.  I braided these and put the braid right at the edge of the hat, draping the strands over it.  This gave a bit of volume right at the front of the wig.   I then carefully sewed the front strands to the hat - and more to each other than the knit hat really- to help create an even look.  In the back, I sewed a few of them down but also sewed the curls to the back of the wig.  I also added a braid to the back to give it more of the look I was going for.   Because it looked plain, I added a little "cap" to the front with a pink bow.

The nice thing about this wig is you couldn't see my hair at all.  Also, it was warm -which was lovely considering it was snowing when I left for the event.  Just flurries but still, it wasn't exactly warm outside.

The wig has a lot more volume on me and I'll try to get some photos up of me wearing the wig soon.


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