it’s film petit time! it’s also October, the spooky month of Halloween. this month, my partner Jessica, our guest Jessica, and i were in the mood to sew something a little creepier than our normal fare. today we present to you outfits inspired by the Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock. we each picked a Hitchcock movie that inspired us, and i chose 1960’s Psycho.
as with all of our film petit choices so far, Hitchcock films hold special meaning for me. my husband and i met in high school, and one of the first things i learned about him was that he is a major movie buff. our school offered Film as an “English” class senior year, and he was one of two students that the teacher actually created a Film 2 class for because he was so into it! his semester-long Film 2 project was an in-depth analysis of the films of Alfred Hitchcock. i went ahead and piggy backed on that when i took Film as a senior the next year, while he was off at college taking “music in film and television” class. movie buff? more like movie fanatic.
so many things make Hitchcock movies great. they’re spooky as heck but not typically gory. the plots have twists and turns, they can scare the pants off you but make you laugh too, and a lot of the creepiness is created through music and camera angles and what you don’t see. the soundtrack of Psycho is one of the greatest soundtracks of all time, and the shower scene is probably one of the most recognizable (and freakiest) scenes in film history (never seen it? well here you go). trust me, it never gets easier to watch! i got all jumpy just putting together this collage!
it was actually my husband’s idea to recreate that iconic scene at the bates motel, showing a mini norman bates transformed into “mother” and then back to clean up the mess she made. the original plan was to have O model the looks, but he refused to wear the wig so I switched my model to Em and retooled a bit.
for mother’s nightgown, i sewed a made by rae pierrot tunic with shirred neckline and sleeves, in 18-24 months extended to 3T. that would’ve fit O just fine but was much too short on Em, so i added a 6″ ruffle and vintage lace trim inherited from my grandma to make it long enough for her to wear as a nightgown. the yarn wig is based on this tutorial from this mama makes stuff (hers is for rapunzel, but i made it the same way).
the felt knife i made up on my own, quilting together three layers of gray felt with metallic silver thread, then wrapping brown felt around it for a handle. i had to starch the heck out of it so it wasn’t too floppy and i’d probably use better reinforcement next time…not that i plan to make too many felt knives in the future!
of course Em has never seen any part of the movie, but when i asked her to act like a “mean old lady” and handed her the felt knife, i was shocked to see her get SO into character!
she called the knife a “sword” and had a grand old time recreating the shower scene.
we all go a little mad sometimes. haven’t you?
this one’s downright GLEEFUL. not sure whether to worry about her or sign her up for acting classes. ;)
for the norman bates outfit, she’s just wearing store-bought jeans and a button down shirt, plus O’s fantastic mr. fox jacket (pattern is the basic blazer by blank slate patterns). it actually looked so good on her i might need to make her a blazer of her own!
here are a few more of the creepy “mother” scenes from Psycho…an attack on the staircase, her spot in bed, and the final reveal, plus one of our favorite lines.
little mrs. bates has grown tired from her murderous rampage.
while she waits for new victims to arrive at the motel, you should head over to check out what the jessicas made – they both sewed outfits from The Birds but had very different takes on it! their photos are also in color, if you’re currently feeling color-deprived.
our guest jessica from running with scissors sewed an outfit for her son, another four year old that got WAAAAY into his role fleeing from flocks of crows! check out her post right here…if you dare! her photos are a crack up.
my partner jessica over at a little gray made a tiny tippi hedren suit, and it’s SO great – her little gal is far too sweet to be scary, but her outfit is totally spot on!
here are the guidelines for film petit: