This is my entry for the instructables string competition. It is a hula hoop and string skirt, inspired by this lovely warm Welsh springtime.
It is also the first set of photos with my fabulous new model Sam.
You will need:
Several cheap plastic hula hoops
A wide leather belt
Hot glue and a hot glue gun
Sticky-back floral fabric
Fake flowers, birds, butterflies
This project is easiest when you have a tailors dummy or a friend to wear it as you make it.
Step 1: Resizing the Hoops
As this is just a fun project I am not concerned with being overly accurate. So I have thrown away my tape measure and gauged everything by eye.
i started by cutting through the hoop as close to the stapled join as possible. Ideally I would have liked to remove the staples but this proved impossible. Be careful not to cut through the plastic joining insert as you will need this to rejoin your hoop. Decreasing is simple. Just work out what size you want your first hoop to be by holding it in position on your model and marking where to cut. Remove the excess and rejoin the two ends with some hot glue.
To extend your hoop you will need to cut up another hoop. Work out how much more you need to put into your hoop and cut the appropriate sized piece from your other hoop remembering to use the piece with the connecting insert and join them with hot glue.
I ended up with an ascending set of six hoops three of which I didn't have to resize as the original hoops came in three sizes.
Step 2: Covering the Hoops
For my springtime theme I decided to cover the hoops in some sticky back floral fabric from 'The Works' which comes in A4 sheets. I cut these into strips and wound the strips around the hoops.
Step 3: Starting With the Waistband.
Ail of this skirt hangs from the belt so it is best to get a strong, wide leather one. I found a nice glossy white one with a tacky River Island buckle on it which I covered in pretty sticky fabric (although later on I hot glued flowers all over it so it was a bit of a pointless exercise). From the belt I tied long pieces of string. You need the string to be longer than your skirt as you need to accommodate several knots. Don't worry if you get it wrong as you can always tie more on if you need to. I tied the strings to the belt at about one inch apart.
Step 4: Adding the Hoops
Adding the hoops was a piece of cake. First I worked out the size of gap I wanted between the hoops and cut a piece of card to that size. With my piece of card I could measure each string and tie the hoop on at the correct distance from the waistband/last hoop.
Step 5: Finishing With Springtime Flowers
To complete my celebration of Spring skirt, I got out my bag of flowers and decorations and hot glued flowers and leaves over nearly every knot on the hoops. The birds and butterflies arrived after I found them in the bottom of the bag. I could have put more stuff on it but I was worried it might look too busy. I may well go back to it later and add more (definitely!). The whole skirt is amazingly sturdy. The hot glue is a brilliant bond and even with rigorous swishing and much vigorous posing about it only lost one bird which we quickly glued back more thoroughly. Then off we all went following Sam through town passing many surprised and admiring looks on the way to take photos outside the castle.
Hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Look out for many new no-sew costumes in the near future and more of my lovely model Sam. We are also on facebook group - Bizaar Bazaar