Monday, August 8, 2011

Tails o' the Sea

After having been side tracked for most of the summer with other things (mainly a grueling schedule at work, and my 30th class reunion), I am back on track with the mermaid tail. In my first post I mentioned that I hadn't taken into account how long my tail would actually have to be with the fluke included, and therefore hadn't bought enough neoprene - but wait! I had a brainstorm and solved my problem, thereby saving myself a trip and some cash. I just used a little thing called - flat-locking. It's a way to join two pieces of fabric (or in this case neoprene) together, and since it was going to be covered with latex caulking anyway, it would never be seen.
I made the join in the fluke, because it would be less noticeable and it wouldn't matter if it was watertight, as you don't want your fluke filling up with water anyway. It worked like a charm! My fabulous Husqvarna Viking Sapphire 835 sewing machine handled the neoprene with ease!
Now for the latex part - I bought a buttload (yes, that is a technical term) of Alex silicone latex caulking at Walmart (Caulking -it's not just for bathrooms anymore!), the kind that dries clear and some cheap sponge paint brushes, as I'm sure I'll go through quite a few of those...
I laid out one side of the tail on my work table and squeezed the caulk onto it, using the sponge paint brush to smooth it out and "paint" the caulking over the tail. I left the very edges as bare as possible so the two sides can be sewn together later. The first layer doesn't need to be very thick, so I spread it out as thin as possible but still making sure I had coverage.
LOL! Note the "Pirates of the Caribbean - White Cap Bay" Lego box
It was a bit hard to spread thinly, but I think I managed to do it correctly (how would I know, I've never done it before!) So, now to let it dry. I'm not sure how long it is supposed to take, but I would imagine at least a couple of hours. I'll do the other side tomorrow after this dries, as my work table wasn't big enough to do both sides at the same time (I had to duct tape that Lego box to the end of the table to make it just long enough to lay the tail out without any hanging over the edge)


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