War Doctor: Gaiter aid

Cropped images of the half-gaiters from three different publicity shots of the War Doctor

My next project for this cosplay was to put together my pattern for the half-gaiters. I'd found the above image, which is a collection of clips from publicity stills of John Hurt in costume. I was prepared to take measurements and calculate ratios from the photos, and I went on-line to check for photos of other gaiters. But instead I found this amazing post by Sidney Eileen titled How to Draft a Pattern for Fitted Gaiters. I'd looked at other gaiter patterns, but they were always another style, where the part that fits over the front of the shoe is a separate piece sewn onto the leg. In the War Doctor pictures, however, the bill is part of the legging, just flared out over the boot. Luckily, Sidney's pattern is an exact match for the Doctor's gaiter. That made the whole thing much easier!

Measurements and calculations drawn out on construction paper, then cut out and transferred to muslin for a prototype build.

Muslin prototype made from the first pattern

I laid the pattern out on construction paper following her procedure and based on measurements from my own leg. I have a big roll of construction paper (cheap!) which I use when I'm experimenting with patterns. She has some standard allowances based on fitting the gaiter onto a bare leg and a shoe, but I'll be wearing mine over a pants leg and a boot. So I made a muslin prototype from the test pattern to see how it all fits.

The beast, my 1955 Necchi sewing machine 

Obligatory shot of me sewing a seam, proving that I do, in fact, sew.

Since I haven't shown my sewing station before, here's the sewing machine I use. It's a Necchi Automatic Supernova Ultra from 1955, and so it's a year older than I am. It was used by Harriet's mom and is a bit of a beast. It's not the most efficient thing and requires constant fiddling, but it's free and available and so far has done everything I've asked. It still has its manual, so I've been able to figure out all of the settings. I used it to sew the revolutionary war coat for the Headless Horseman, and there were times I was sewing through four layers of wool and two layers of muslin lining for that thing. It's also sewn vinyl to canvas, as well as spandex, so I can't really complain.

The Magnum Classics arrived, just in time for test fitting the gaiters.

New pattern made from adjustments to the old pattern

Test fitting the gaiters over my pants leg and the boot, indicating adjustments that needed to be made

Cutting out the suede pieces from the new pattern

When I received the boots for the costume (Magnum Classics that I found on sale), I used the muslin prototype to check the fit of the pattern. There were several dimensions that I wanted to change, so I made a new set of patterns, and then brought out the suede.

Turns out I have a lot more than I realized. It's almost a complete hide. For $20 it was a very good garage sale find. Only a portion of it will be used for the gaiters.

All the pieces for one leg

Stitched the first gaiter just enough to check the fit then cut the pieces for the second gaiter

I cut out one set, stitched the basic joins, and then checked the sizing again. It all looks good, so I cut out the second set for the opposite leg.

That's it for now. Next up is to finish the sewing including the hemming, add the buttons and buttonholes, and then ageing and weathering.