Birthday Shenanigans


Duck tape. You may be wondering what a picture of duck tape has to do with either sewing or birthday shenanigans. I’ll put you out of your nail biting suspense. I spent a large part of my birthday covered in it. To be exact, G. spent several days planning and then implementing a careful plan to tape me all up, well my torso at least.

See he had the great idea to make me a sewing dummy (which I’ve been dying to have for ages) and researched all the various techniques and had assembled a nice little pile of tools. Imagine my confusion at unwrapping several roles of duck tape (err honey?).

Now there are loads of tutorials out there and I don’t plan on replicating them here. I just thought I’d summarise what the hell we got up to and what we’d do differently next time.

First up, G. had me put on a bin liner. Yep, he cut a hole for my head and arms and suck it over me. Standing in living room, wearing a bin liner, pants and some socks so I don’t get cold, I can’t help but feel this is an interesting way to spend ones birthday. For my upper arms, neck and bum (essentially areas that were not covered by the bin bag), he wrapped saran wrap.

*Suggestion: DO NOT USE SARAN WRAP. When you get warm, which you will if you’re being covered in a bin bag and saran wrap, it kinda suctions onto your skin. Making it very difficult to get off. Next time I’d wear a skin tight, turtle neck, long sleeve body suit (if such a thing exists).

That aside, it wasn’t terribly uncomfortable (at first) just a bit peculiar feeling. The then he started to tape me up. Most tutorials recommend between 3-4 layers. Somewhere prior to finishing the first layer, I realised this would not be a good project to do if one was claustrophobic and that claustrophobia could be a latent phobia, that you are unaware of until your torso is very effectively covered in duck tape. G. agreed that should I suffer a panic attack he was just to start cutting and not to worry about cutting of my pants or bra (scissors were at the ready) – I suspect he was intrigue by the idea.

*Suggestion: Don’t try and wrap tape all the way around the body in one go, better off using smaller pieces of tape to avoid lumps and bumps.

Before we started I imagined that we would chatter away the whole time. But G. was pretty focused on the taping, and well, being covered in tape apparently is one way to shut me up. After a little while, I was bored. Reading was out of the question, because pretty soon my arms weren’t moving much, and besides I needed something passive. So I watched most of the Hobbit.

*Suggestion: Have a movie on hand, it really helps distract you from the discomfort and makes time pass faster! Something that doesn’t require a great deal of attention!

Near the end I’ll admit my back was sore and my legs were tired. It was nearly two hours of standing still in the same position.

*Suggestion: Make sure you have a good position/posture, as you won’t be able to move later on! I know that sounds like common sense, but I think to begin with its easy just to stand is your every day way without paying much attention to posture.

Finally we were done, and G. began cutting my out. Pheeewww I’m freeeeeeeeeeee!

Several months ago, G. picked up some metal speaker stands at the IJ-Hallen and they have been a toe stubbing, point of contention ever since. Well, I am going to comply eat my words and say now, in public, what a wonderful purchase they were. Because they now make up my dress dummy stand. We put a coat hanger in the dummy before stuffing it, and severely duck taped it to the top of the pole.

*Suggestion: Make sure to put the coat hanger in before taping up the back or side (depending on where you cut) of your dummy – it’s a lot easier! Use a padded coat hanger if possible or pad it yourself.

We stuffed the bejeezers out of it using shredded paper G. got from work. This is a frustrating process and required quite a bit of time and attention. Finally we secured the bottom  and it was good to go. Now we just wanted to put it to the test so we threw on my new ‘It tastes like summer’ dress.

Hmmm … shit-f*ck-damn … somehow the upper back doesnt fit quite right. Hmmm – we think its my stumpy arms. Off with her head! Err her arms actually … what little of them there was. G. is enjoying this part a little too much.

*Suggestion: Avoid making stumpy arms – it is virtually impossible to get the tape close enough under the armpits.

Ok, take two.

Hmm … well … its better. But something is just not quite right with the shoulders. They just don’t sit quite right. Bugger it. Seeing the importance of good shoulders for dresses and blouses I can’t decide if they are good enough or if we should start from scratch again. Grrrr.


Its quite interesting to look at something that is essentially an exact replica of your body. G says I’m being vain, but I am just so intrigued –  I’m bigger than I thought. And I don’t mean fat, I mean generally there is just more to me, than I see when I look down or in the mirror. Also my right boob is considerably bigger than the left, how have I never noticed this before?

Have you made yourself a model? Got any tricks up your sleeve or suggestions for shoulders?


One thought on “Birthday Shenanigans

Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑

english girl at home

A Sewing & Knitting Blog, Made in Birmingham, England


Wat maakt Inge?

~E Made This!

Upping my sewing skills one seam at a time

Redhead Thread

Adventures in sewing

Sew Sarah Smith

Sewing! Liberating the mind & body and soothing the soul one garment at a time


Sewing Patterns, helping you create a wardrobe of clothes you will cherish forever!


A record of some of my sewing projects since 2016

Sew sleep deprived

Lesley blogging about her sewing projects

Wendy Ward

designer | writer | teacher | maker

zoubi zoubisou

Sewing a handmade wardrobe

wasted weekends

misadventures in crafting.

Self Assembly Required

DIY Dressmaking with Emily ❤️


One mans adventures in sewing...

swarm of chickadees

a sewing blog with a nonsense title

dreaming of avonlea

We'll begin with a spin, travelling in the world of my creation - Willy Wonka

Pigeon Wishes

Learning to sew and delearning compulsive shopping habits


From one stitch to another!

Emma and her Machine

Adventures in Sewing

%d bloggers like this: