Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Bikinis, burlesque festivals and boxing outfits.. oh my!

The last five weeks have been unbelievably busy, and i'm looking forward to a couple of nice slow weeks so i can catch up on emails and paperwork.

Beginning with bikinis for the NZIFBB (New Zealand International Federation of Bodybuilding) regionals (as mentioned in my August Bikini Mayhem post) and finishing with the New Zealand Burlesque Festival, it was a non-stop whirlwind of sewing & rhinestoning!

Once the NZIFBB bikinis for the regional comp were out the way, it was time to create a rhinestone-covered Cstring and matching wire-frame showgirl style bra for Australian performer Silla Black.
The matching set was completely smothered in Swarovski rhinestones in shades of orange, yellow and blue.

These pieces were worn under a navy blue sheer robe made by Cathy Tree Harris, it was great collaborating with my costuming friend on an ensemble like this!
We finished the full outfit just in time to send it to Silla Black for rehearsals before she flew to New Zealand to feature at the NZ Burlesque Festival.

Next up was a white sheer full-length gown covered with Swarovski rhinestones (and matching rhinestone G strings, of course), to be worn by NZ adult performer Lisa Lewis at the opening of the new Penthouse Club in Auckland.  I was short on time, so I brought my lovely assistant Stacey back to help me rhinestone the gown.

With Lisa's gown safely on a plane to Auckland, it was time to make a mermaid-inspired skirt for burlesque songstress Gracie Hart.

Gracie already had a beautiful silk corset made for her by Jemma @ Purdy Corsetry so all i had to do was make a floor-length, high waisted skirt with a flamboyant fishtail.  The skirt was made from heavy satin in a lovely shade of aqua, and the fishtail was bolstered with layers of tulle and organza in shades of mint, aqua and turquoise.

  I finished the skirt with a scattering of Swarovski rhinestones in pretty oceanic colours.

Swarovski rhinestones on aqua satin

I had a few website orders to catch up on by now, so the next day was full of G strings and bikinis, ready to be shipped all over the world.
Next on the list was a custom-made underbust corset in the most beautiful shade of sapphire blue silk.   I made the corset for a lovely client who received it as a gift from a friend, and she wanted to wear it to one of the events at the NZBF.
Work in progress - silk underbust corset 

While i was making this corset, i received an urgent order from the non-stop ball of energy, Lisa Lewis.  She was attending a high profile boxing match the following week, and needed something amazing to wear. 
Lisa sent me pics of the exact outfit she wanted, and i raced around gathering supplies and ordering rhinestones.  With such a tight deadline and so much other work to be finished, i called the always wonderful Stacey in and gave her the task of covering a pair of boxing gloves in thousands of rhinestones.
It takes a LOT of Swarovski rhinestones to cover a pair of boxing gloves!
While Stacey worked on the gloves, I prepared for my booth at the NZ Burlesque Festival expo.  I needed something pretty to showcase my work at the booth, so the beautiful Leda Petit sent her navy lace costume back to me to display.  It's easily one of my favourite costumes, and it was lovely to see it again!
Lace corset with Swarovski crystal detail by Flo Foxworthy
Lace corset with Swarovski crystal detail by Flo Foxworthy
I was running short on time, so i decided to just make a few pieces for people to look at, rather than making lots of items to sell.  My previous post showed pictures of the rhinestone pasties i made, and in addition to them i also had some of my new Costume Spritz available for people to try.
Flo Foxworthy's booth st the NZ Burlesque Festival

The NZBF expo was fun, there were lots of great booths and plenty of people came through to have a look.
The 4-day event included shows, workshops, expo and a party to close the festivities.  I was so busy that I could only make it to one of the shows unfortunately, but i've heard wonderful reviews of all the other events!

On the Saturday night, after the expo, the 1st annual Golden Garter awards were held as part of the festival.  I was nominated for two awards, and on the night i received the award for Favourite Costumier!
NZ Burlesque Festival

On Sunday, after the fun of the Golden Garters, it was time to finish Lisa's boxing outfit - a full-length satin robe with flame applique, satin boxing shorts with matching flame applique and a rhinestone-covered bra.  I also rhinestoned a pair of hand wraps.

Two more full days work (with 4am finishes) and the costume was finished and ready to send.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

September sparkles

Over the past month I've been making lots of lovely sparkly pasties - some for clients and some just for the fun of it :)
I thought I'd share some of my favourites with you!
Rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Fuschia & gold (Aurum) Swarovski rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy

Rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Swarovski rhinestone pasties in icy shades of blue & clear by Flo Foxworthy

Rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Colourful Swarovski rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Heart-shaped Rose pink Swarovski rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy
Swarovski Rose water opal rhinestone pasties by Flo Foxworthy 
Autumn leaf pasties by Flo Foxworthy, using a combination of Swarovski & Preciosa rhinestones

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Non-stop bikinis & rhinestones in August!

Bikini Mayhem month!

After the big move out of my old workroom and into my new space, there was no time to waste and it was straight back to work the very next day.

The past couple of weeks have been a flurry of activity, first up was a round of bikinis for a group of Wellington competitive Figure and Bikini athletes.  I love making bikinis for bodybuilders, as i get to put all my bikini-making and rhinestone experience to use in creating a unique suit for each girl.
Altogether i made bikinis for twelve competitors, and was so happy to see the girls on stage at the NZIFBB competition here in Wellington on Saturday 7 September.

Gold metallic bikini with Swarovski rhinestones by Flo Foxworthy
All the girls looked amazing, and all their hard work really paid off!

Figure Division:

Tina Jeune-Smith    Gold - Senior Figure (wearing a violet rhinestone bikini)
Andrea Massignani - Bronze - Senior figure (wearing a silver sequin & rhinestone bikini)
Tina Jeune-Smith   Gold - Figure tall Open (wearing a violet rhinestone bikini)
Christiane Westerheide Vogt    Silver - Women's physique short (wearing a teal/violet/black sequin bikini)
Laura Pigou    Gold - Figure tall Novice (wearing a purple rhinestone bikini)
Sarah Walsh     Bronze - Novice figure tall (wearing a turquoise rhinestone bikini)
Click here to read Sarah's inspirational blog about her fitness journey!
Sarah Walsh, ready for the competition!

Bikini divison:

Becky Penn    Gold - Bikini short & Overall bikini champ (wearing a royal blue bikini with rhinestones)
Mariska Hall     Silver - Bikini short (wearing a lemon AB sequin bikini)
Georgia Choveaux     Bronze - Bikini short (wearing a pink hologram bikini with rhinestone "pink ribbon" detail)
Sarah Raynor    Bronze - Bikini tall (wearing a turquoise bikini with clear rhinestones)

Kim wyatt - Bikini division
Tania Grace - Bikini division
Jasmine Savage - Bikini division
Fitness bikini with Rhinestones by Flo Foxworthy
 Click here to order a bikini like this one!

And a special mention goes to my gorgeous Bikini model Lou Lander Macdonald, who won a bronze medal (Bikini division) at the IFBB South Pacific champs in Tahiti on 4 August, wearing a rhinestone-covered black bikini!
Lou Lander Macdonald wearing a black rhinestone bikini
Swarovski rhinestone bikini detail

Next up was a shimmering nude full-length sheer evening gown for Miss Roxi Dlite to wear at the Exotic Dancer awards in Las Vegas.  The gown was covered in over 1000 Swarovski rhinestones in various sizes (colour - Crystal Golden Shadow).
Roxi Dlite photographed by Ned Mansour, wearing a gown by Flo Foxworthy
After that came two outfits for Lisa Lewis, New Zealand's most infamous adult entertainer.
Lisa wanted something exciting for her comeback performances at the Erotica Expo in New Zealand, so I made her a long red evening gown covered in sparkling red Swarovski crystals, and a 4-piece red mesh stage costume that wrapped around her curvy figure.
I had a lovely assistant helping me with the rhinestones on Lisa's costume, thanks Stacey!
Red wrap-around top for Lisa Lewis

Finally, I went nuts on a costume I made for New Zealand burlesque & circus performer Venus Starr, adding even more Swarovski rhinestones to her new Nurse costume.
Venus Starr wearing Nurse costume by Flo Foxworthy
Whew, what a month!
No rest for the wicked, I had a day off yesterday to plant some Veges and welcome our new cat to the house, and now it's back to work again  ;)

Saturday, 22 June 2013

It's time for a change of scenery, Flo Foxworthy HQ is moving!

Inside Flo Foxworthy HQ
For the last 4 years I've been lucky enough to have an enormous workroom in the middle of Wellington city, located above a coffee roaster/cafe (mmm... warm and delicious smelling), but the time has come to pack up my machines and move out of my beloved inner city space.

For those of you who come to visit me in person, you'll still be able to - i'll just be on the other side of town :)

From August onwards, I'll be working from my house in Miramar (ground zero for New Zealand's film industry) where I overlook Weta Workshop, Weta Digital and Park Road Post. 

Sewing machines at Flo Foxworthy HQ
Both my husband and I work at Weta Workshop (He's there full time and i'm there only for occasional jobs these days) so i'm looking forward to being closer to the action again.

The move will affect my clients a little, in that orders may take slightly longer to make and send over the next month.. but once i've finished moving and have settled in to my new workroom then it'll be business as usual.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Making ostrich feather fans with acrylic staves

Tutorial - How to make ostrich feather fans
I often receive emails from people wanting to know how to make their own ostrich fans, so I thought I'd post this tutorial showing how I construct fans using the acrylic staves I design and sell here.

Instructions for constructing Ostrich feather Fans using Flo Foxworthy acrylic staves.

Please note that this page is very image-heavy.

Step 1:

Prepare your fans by selecting 12 ostrich feathers (per fan) and ensuring they are the same length. Trim the end of the quill if necessary using heavy scissors or side cutters/bolt cutters.
Your fan staves come with all the necessary nuts, bolts, washers, cable ties and nylon thread.

Step 2:

Clean the rhinestone inlay holes with isopropyl alcohol or a similar product (rubbing alcohol or vodka will do the trick!). Be sure to wipe the stave thoroughly with a clean rag after cleaning to remove any residue.  This is to ensure the glue has a clean surface to adhere to, to prevent the rhinestones from falling off.

Step 3:

Use a toothpick or chopstick to apply rhinestone glue to the back of each stone, and place rhinestone on the stave.  It helps if you hold the stone with a pair of tweezers while you apply the glue.
The best glue for the job is 5-minute epoxy (available at any hardware store). Follow the glue manufacturer's instructions and wait till the glue is completely dry before proceeding to the next step. If you don't have 5-minute epoxy then E6000 is also a good choice.

Step 4:

Repeat Step 3 for each stave. There are 12 staves per fan, with six rhinestones on each stave, so you'll need 144 rhinestones (1 gross) size ss30.

Step 5:

Use a yard stick or metre ruler to ensure each feather and stave are equal in length. The measurement from the tip of the feather to the end of the stave should be the same for each piece.
Hold the feather in place, with the stave on top (feather curling downwards) and proceed to step 6.


Step 6:

Use a small cable tie (in a colour to match your staves) and loop it through the holes on either side of the feather. Close the cable tie on the feather side and pull tightly, so the feather can't slip out.  Cable ties can be purchased from any electrical supply, hardware or computer store.  You can also use thin wire if you prefer.

Step 7:

Loop a second cable tie through the top holes and fasten it as for step 6.  Repeat for each stave.


Step 8:

Clip the ends off all the cable ties using scissors or side cutters.


Step 9:

Slide one washer onto a bolt, then slide a stave on (with the rhinestones facing down).
Now alternate each stave with two washers till you have used twelve Staves.  If there is still space at the end of the bolt, then you can add a few extra washers between the staves at either end.
Place one final washer on the end of the bolt after the last stave, and attach the nut.
To finish, screw on the locking nut (with the nylon centre), and tighten the locking nut on each bolt as tightly as you like. It may help to use a pair of pliers to hold the nut while you use a screwdriver to tighten the bolt.
The tighter the nut, the more firmly your fan will stay open. The looser the nut, the more easily your fan will open and close.


Step 10:

Lay out each fan, ensuring that the staves are spaced equally – anywhere between 90 - 180 degrees ( semi-circle) depending on your preference.
For left and right hand fans, lay out each fan side by side, so the top staves are pointing to each other.

Step 11:

Thread the nylon fishing line through the hole in one side of the first stave, where the lower cable tie is attached. Tie the fishing line in a secure knot, then thread it through the matching hole on the next stave.
Tie securely and repeat this step till you've tied the fishing line through each stave and your fan is strung together.
It's a good idea to put a drop of superglue on the knot at the beginning and end of your fan string, to prevent the knot from coming undone.  Try not to get any superglue on the fan stave, as it can leave a cloudy mark.

Make sure that you tie each stave together at an equal distance.
Test your fan by closing it – does it fold up correctly? If your fan doesn't close fully, then you may need to remove the fishing line and tie it again, leaving a slightly wider gap.

Your Ostrich feather fans are now ready to use!
Baby pink ostrich feathers, white staves & Swarovski rose ab rhinestones

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Looking back on 2012 - the competition was fierce!

Imogen Kelly (Australia)

Congratulations Ladies!

In 2012 I had so much fun seeing some of my beautiful clients winning various titles while wearing costumes I'd made for them.

Burlesque Grand titles:

Imogen Kelly - Miss Exotic World & Reigning Queen of Burlesque 2012

Briana Bluebell - Miss Burlesque Australia 2012
(Corsets made by Flo and embellished by Briana)

Briana Bluebell (Australia)

Alethea Austin (USA)

Fitness titles:

Alethea Austin - 1st runner-up US Pole Dance Federation championships 2012
(Bra & Shorts made by Flo, then embellished by Crystal Dancewear)

Lou Macdonald - NZ International Federation of BodyBuilding 2012 1st Short Bikini and 1st Over-all Bikini

Lou Macdonald (New Zealand)

I've already begun work on costumes for some of 2013's competition entrants, and I can't wait to see what the year brings for them!


Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Looking back at 2012 - What a crazy year!

The year went past so quickly!

Alyssa Kitt (Australia)
It's now just over 12 months since i left my position as a special-effects costume technician at Weta Workshop to focus all of my time on my showgirl clients, and it's been an absolutely amazing year.

I've collaborated with some amazing photographers and models

Photos (from top of this post):

Alyssa Kitt - photographed by Roxi Dlite
Amelie - photographed by Matchless Snapshots
Lindsey Lou - photographed by Richard Marz / MUA Paradigm Beauty
Venus Starr - photographed by Kat Attack Photography
Lou Macdonald - photographed by Brett Stanley Photography / MUA Claudine Stace
And more!

Amelie (Australia)

I got a little more organised..  

I enlisted the help of a business mentor who gave me some amazing advice.
I started this blog (yay!), and put a lot of photos online via Instagram, Twitter, Facebook etc.  Hooray for social media ;) 

I updated my website, and am in the process or photographing more products so i can finally offer my entire range online.

Hell, I even spent most of New Year's day catching up on my taxes haha!

I got a little more sleep.. 

For the previous few years I was working between 50 - 90 hours a week on film projects, then spending any remaining waking hours making costumes for my own clients (and then occasionally sleeping). 

So this year I've definitely had more sleep - although I have still done my share of all-nighters to meet costume deadlines haha

Venus Starr



I saw a couple of film projects finally make it to the big screen

The biggest one being the first installment of The Hobbit trilogy.  I spent a few years working on the Hobbit films, so it was nice to go and see it with the rest of the crew.

It's interesting when you realise how long it actually takes to go from manufacturing costumes & props for a film to actually seeing the film on the big screen - there are still a number of projects i worked on over the past few years that won't even be completed till next year (or later!).
Lou Macdonald




And finally, I want to thank all my lovely clients from this year.  It's been lots of fun making sparkly pretty things for you!

Lila Luxx (australia), Pineapple productions (New Zealand), Diamond Dance Entertainment (New Zealand), Dolly Cakes (Australia), Velvet Sway (Australia), Allison Pezutti (Australia), MisRed (New Zealand), Mimi Le Meaux (USA), DinahMight (UK/Canada), Jeniffer Starrdust(New Zealand), Leda Petit (New Zealand), Lucy Sky Diamond (Australia), Indigo Blue (USA), Alice Cade (New Zealand), Virtue Van Tassel (Australia), Silla Black (Australia), Sarah J (Australia), Miss La Vida (New Zealand), Bunni Lambada (Australia), Pinky DeVille (United Kingdom), Lou Macdonald (New Zealand), Roxi Dlite (Canada), La Maia (United States), Holly J'Adoll (Australia), Racheal Rae (Australia), Dolores Daiquiri (Australia), Magenta Diamond (New Zealand), Venus Starr (New Zealand), Grace LaBelle (New Zealand), Luna Eclipse (Australia), Tamara W (Australia), Tanya H (New Zealand), Carria-Ann O'Dell (United Kingdom), Sarah M (New Zealand) Phoenix (New Zealand), Sapphire (New Zealand), Briana Bluebell (Australia), Renae G (USA), Alyssa Kitt (Australia), Jacqui Le Prou Samson (New Zealand), Eszter V (Australia), Amelie (Australia), Rebecca Grace (New Zealand), Tessa Von Twinkle (USA), Alethea Austin (USA), Catriona W (New Zealand), Dezzie Damned (Australia), Rosie Rivette (Australia), Angie Pontani (USA), Ruby Ruin (New Zealand), R Smith (New Zealand), Michelle P (New Zealand), Michele S (New Zealand), Julainne S (New Zealand), Etoile Marley (Australia), Sarah Houbolt (New Zealand), Dita Von Teese (USA), Amelia T (New Zealand), Lindsey Lou (USA), Amanda T (New Zealand), Melanie F (New Zealand), Burlesque Hall of Fame (prizes), Jessamae St James (Australia), Amy J-L (New Zealand), Imogen Kelly (Australia), Olatsa Assin (USA), Lilly Loca (New Zealand), Miss Anthropy (New Zealand), Kadi K (Australia), Blaze (USA), Jemma M (New Zealand), Lauren C (Australia), Kate H (Australia), Chiara H (Australia), Juzz S (New Zealand), Sapphire Snow (Australia), Caroline E (Sweden), Rosie Rose (USA), Amanda C (USA), Sandra T (USA), Perrie T (Australia), Lisa H (Australia), Aly Hellcat (USA), George K (Australia), Lytoyah (New Zealand), Heather S (USA), Julie D (Switzerland), Jane H (Australia), Kevin A (Australia), Alex S (USA), Bonita Danger Doll (New Zealand), Willow Noir (New Zealand), Lola Cherry Cola (New Zealand), Michele C (New Zealand), Ceara L (New Zealand), Kim B (New Zealand), Amanda M (New Zealand), Mimoza I (New Zealand), Princess (New Zealand), Ellen B (New Zealand), Jay B (New Zealand), Tali W (New Zealand)
I think i got you all - but if there's anyone I've missed, please let me know!  

Happy 2013, love Flo xx