Inspiration flashed in my mind faster than Jaime Lannister’s sword the other night. With the heavy emphasis on originality and creativity when it comes to casual cosplay and styling outfits, I drew inspiration from summer festival style as well as one of my favorite nerdy t-shirt designers to pluck up the courage to make my own, unique shirt for MegaCon. There could be POTENTIAL SPOILERS as I will discuss how I pulled inspiration from the books/TV series in creating this design. Pull up a patio chair and pour a cold beverage, because we’re going paint up a storm in a well ventilated area!
The Fashion Slayer
When I talked about gearing up for MegaCon earlier in the week, I put together an outfit inspired by the beautifully terrifying Lannister Twins, Cersei & Jaime. Those familiar with the rather intimate backstory of this brother and sister will note they have a rather desperate situation. Both have their respective fall from grace as well as a loss of identity. While I do have an wonderful collection of nerdy shirts, I wanted to make something special for my first convention in thirteen years. At any convention, comic book shop, or theme park, you’ll find plenty of versions of “Talk Nerdy to Me” shirts. It’s a nerd word play on phrase “Talk Dirty to Me,” and I do love a great play on words.
Signing up for a photo op with Lena Headey inspired my “Talk CERSEI to Me” shirt. Even though she was called off to another part of the Seven Kingdoms (last minute cancellation), I didn’t want to scrap the idea at all. Here’s how I transformed a lightweight, summer festival-inspired sleeveless top1 into a comic convention ready fan shirt.
I am a low budget DIY/Crafter. I do not have any fancy machines which can create iron-on transfers or digitally cut patterns. I found a Game of Thrones-inspired free font generator which didn’t require any installation or software. I inserted the text I wanted and selected different sizes. I copied, pasted, and resized some of the images using Microsoft Word before printing. Without a cutting mat and exacto knife, I simply used a small pair of scissors to cut out the letters and make disposable templates. Scotch tape was used in lieu of fabric pins.
When cutting the A and R, I left a small tab to connect the center of the letter in place. The O while originally printed in the famed, three-lined GoT fashion, wouldn’t cut easily. I may try to use the paint pen to draw the lines faintly. Using copy paper instead of plastic or a stiff card stock was economical, but prevented clean lines and finer detailing. However, I love how it reminds me of graffiti and the logo for one of my favorite musicals, RENT.
The paint markers were intended for glass, so it didn’t take well to the polyester/rayon combination fabric. It might have been brighter on pure cotton, but I needed a contingency plan after three coats and the lettering still being transparent. I hit up the craft store and got Tulip ColorShot Instant Fabric Color in Gold Shimmer (with a coupon, of course). I should have put additional parchment paper around the templates to catch the additional paint, but I thought it would look too neat. I forgot about the tape, too, so I just started putting accept spritzes all over the place. The tank also has an asymmetrical hemline which is longer in the back which I really love!
I unwittingly pulled a Tywin Lannister and gave myself a golden hand courtesy of my spray painting enthusiasm. While Papa Lannister isn’t the one who possesses the golden hand, the Hand of the King is responsible for its fashioning for Jaime. Though Jaime’s golden hand was his sword hand, my sword hand was wilding wielding the spray paint way too close to the stencils. I did two coats of paint, waiting ten minutes between each spray. After letting the paint dry, I pulled up the stencils and loved the outcome. I loved it so much I just started adding accent sprays all over the darned thing! I later flipped it over and made sure that I didn’t forget the back (in case I take off the jacket.)
As Wednesday was not only Geek Pride Day, but also National Wine Day, I had zero qualms about drinking some Apothic Red while I finished up my masterpiece. In order to keep Zelda from helping (and getting paint all over the place), I worked outside on my back patio. I laid plenty of newsprint and cardboard down on my patio table and went to work. It was relaxing to work outside and not suffocate in my garage.
I’m not a big crafter and my art supplies are limited, but slowly, I am gaining confidence in my ability to fashion my own pieces to add to my personal, nerd style. It’s not polished or perfect, but I have the satisfaction of knowing that I truly did this all by myself. Had I had more time and better resources this top may have turned out very differently, but I love that it sort of has a summer rock festival vibe. I doubt the Lannisters would be holding any music festivals for the folks of Casterly Rock or at Kings Landing, but I would hope GRRM would approve of this modern take on his Golden Lioness.
Answer Me, These Questions Three
- What tips do you have for making your own nerdy shirts on your own?
- Where did you purchase your favorite nerdy/geeky tee?
- How much do you budget for your DIY/Upcycle Projects?
- I purchased this sleeveless geometric graphic tank top by Fifth Sun at Target. (not an affiliate link)
- The salon I go to now have the SNS nail system which is the best! I think the color is either #40 Pixie Dust or #59, Barely There Pink. I’ll ask when I go back to the salon for my fills in a few weeks.