DIY Pasties with Vivienne Vermuth
Photos: Courtesy of Miss Vermuth
One of the most fun things about being in burlesque has to be making pasties! These little circles of delight can really bring out your creativity, and lets you express your personality on your…well, personalities! 🙂 Once you get the basics down, you’ll be a pasty making princess in no time!
As far as materials for pasties, I tend to use buckram, which is a stiff mesh-like fabric that’s used commonly use for millinery (hat-making.) Other materials that are good to use are vinyl and stiff felt. I tend to use Aleene’s Fabric Fusion or E 6000 as my glues of choice. If you choose to attach tassels to your pasties, you will also want to grab some metal grommets to ensure a smooth twirl. I’ll go over tassels more at the end.
Measure how big you want your pasty to be, by measuring the dark part around your nips. That should be the size of your pasty. Then use a protractor, set it at 1/4 of an inch more than your size, and draw 2 circles on your fabric. Cut them out, and cut out a small “pie slice” from the edge to the center. Your circles should look like a PAC MAN.
Take your glue and run a small line of glue down one edge of the pie slice, then bring the other edge of the pie slice to the glue side. You’ll find that your pasty now has a prominent upside down “V”, or tent shape. Take your finger or Popsicle stick and smooth the glue down over the edge so its seamless, and it will get rid of the edge a bit. If you are attaching tassels, snip a TINY hole in the tip, and place the grommet into the hole, and glue the edge, leaving the hole clear.
DECORATE!!! This is the fun part! You can use sequins, rhinestones, glitter, fabric- whatever your heart desires! Keep in mind the weight of the pasty – the heavier it is, the harder it will be to keep on! Also, if you attach pasties, make sure everything is smooth and laying flat – you don’t want to catch your tassel on an edge!
STEP FOUR (ATTACHING TASSELS)
Starting from the outside of the pasty, take the non business end of the tassel and thread it through your grommet, just enough to poke through the inside of the pasty. Then take your glue (I prefer hot glue for this because it’s waterproof when dry) and drop a bead big enough to cover the back of the grommet and the tassel, then place s small circle of fabric over it to protect your nip. Once dry, your tassels should swing freely! You can also experiment with using necklace chains as your tassels, because then you can change out your tassels!
USING YOUR PASTIES
My favorite adhesive is toupee tape made for wigs and hairpieces, but you can also use eyelash adhesive, double sided tape, spirit gum, etc. Keep in mind how you will use them, i.e. if you are a performer, you may want to use tape to ensure that they stay on. If you want to use liquid adhesives, I would advise putting a small layer of hot glue on the back of your pasties, because once it’s dry it will be waterproof and then whatever adhesive you use won’t stain or damage your pasties. Take the adhesive, and line around the edge of the pasty, then press onto the nip. You are set to go!
Enjoy your new pasties!
Cheers! Vivienne Vermuth