Back to school and the Redsuit

Well it’s back to uni for the boys, which is exciting for them and for me. The one son got accepted into the redsuits – an engineering group or fraturnity I guess you’d call it. The various faculties around campus have them and engineering’s colours are bright red. The symbol is the fireball lol, and the drink some type of fireball whisky etc, you get the picture. Part of Dan’s duties this saturday is to help welcome the new frosh to campus and help them move into residence so he left last night.

Part of the redsuit is to decorate it as the various members see fit so since his nickname given by the fraturnity or group (still not sure what it is) had something to do with pockets (not sure I’m supposed to put it out there what the whole name is) I thought it might be neat to come up with some extra pockets for the suit.

As it turned out I ran out of time since I didn’t realise I was going to end up doing this until a couple days before and I was bound and bent I was going to finish off the last of the beaded scarves and I underestimated the time needed to work on the suit. I did start the day before but that was tie-dyeing and fabric dyeing the materials for the suit. I didn’t end up taking pictures of all the stuff I did but here are pictures of the two fabrics I did end up using.

Redsuit with tie-dyed swirl.

There were so many pockets already on the suit I figured it would look too busy to put on additional pockets except for the arms and legs. I decided to start off with the red and white swirl because I noticed that it reflected the red and white swirl in the design on the back. There really wasn’t anywhere to put it except over the back pocket so that’s what I did.

By this time the last of my pieces had dried and where waiting to be ironed and as I’m coming up the stairs my son informs me that the one piece of fabric is “sick”. It took a second or two for this to register that that was a good thing.

Fire fabric

Fire fabric

I created this piece of fabric by sewing it into a tube and placing it over a piece of plastic pvc pipe. The original white fabric was first dyed lemon yellow and then after scrunching the material tightly onto the tube the main area was overdyed red and the loose edges black.

Instead of making pockets I ended up sewing a piece down each leg. I’d run out of time at that point and this seemed the easiest solution – keeping in mind that I had to open up the seam on each leg and resew the seams after applying the fabric.

Dan's redsuit front view

Dan's redsuit front view

Redsuit back view

Redsuit back view

Of course while I’m doing all of this and slowly realising that I’m not going to get as much done on the suit as I’d thought, I’m also informed that the students usually put their faculty letters on the legs. So I’m thinking “Oh yeah, black letters saying Mech Eng would be great – not a prayer”. I guess people who don’t sew don’t realise the time it takes. Anyhow I sent him off with a piece of black Kona that I’d fused to “Misty Fuse” and told him he could iron the letters on himself. I was also told that the suit looked a little barren but he’s going to have to come up with some stuff himself besides which there was only so much tie-dye you could put on the suit before over-whelming it. I did get a very nice “thanks mom” and hug so I guess “at the end of the day that’s all that counts”.

Karen (who is now done with crafty stuff on a deadline and can cook, clean and craft to her hearts content…or not)

5 responses to “Back to school and the Redsuit

  1. LOVE that “sick” piece!!! What fun you are having!

  2. Great suit. I also love that SICK never heard that expression before.

    I’m glad you got the scarves finished.

  3. Very nice Karen! I need to do the fire fabric like you done, wow , that would be great background for the fire section on the elements in fabric class I’m taking with Linda Schmidt. Awesome!
    I wouldn’t have known what sick meant either. lol

  4. I love the fire pattern you did. Could you post some pictures of how you did it and what you used?

    • Thanks, I did this about four years ago and I can’t remember if I took pictures or not, probably not if I didn’t blog it. I used 100% cotton and dyed it with MX procion dyes, black red and yellow. The size of the fabric was just a rectangle and the width of that was the diameter of the tubing plus extra for a seam allowance. Length is however long you want it.

      I first dyed the fabric my base colour (yellow), washed and dryed it then sewed the seam. I placed the fabric sleeve over the tube with the seam on the outside. I then tightly scrunched the fabric, secured with with string so it’d stay scrunched then overdyed the yellow with red. I dyed the outside seam black. Basically you end up with a piece of fabric that has the black on the outside and the yellow/red in the middle. I cut the fabric in two to make the panels for the two legs of the redsuit.

      Hope this helps.

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