Ithilien Ranger with Fishsticks Designs

Today we have the truly incredible Bonnie from Fishsticks Designs sharing a Ranger outfit she made for her teenage son. Not 0nly is it boy sewing, it’s teen boy sewing! I seriously can’t wait til my boys are old enough to be this excited about what I’ve made them :) We have also decided to add in a sew along this season (you can keep up with us in the CraftingCon Facebook group). It’s very easy going this month – the only rule is that it needs to be Lord of the Rings/Hobbit inspired, and Bonnie has graciously offered CrafingCon readers a coupon to help! Use the code “CRAFTINGCON” to take 25% off of all of her PDF patterns through 12/31 in her main pattern shop. How cool is that?? It’s not a requirement to use a Fishsticks pattern for the SAL, but I have used many of Bonnie’s patterns and can absolutely vouch for them – you won’t regret adding a few to your collection! I think the Patrick Curved Raglan is one of my favorites.

Hi there, fellow sewing enthusiasts! I’m thrilled to get to visit Crafting Con today! If you’ve ever stopped in at my blog or even my pattern shop, then you probably know that I’m first and foremost a practical seamstress. It’s one of the reasons that I love following Crafting Con! Taking inspiration from your favorite books and movies and creating everyday wear? That is cool! I’m learning, though, that there is value in sometimes going all out and creating an actual costume. I have always avoided sewing costumes because they’re a lot of work, and they tend to not get a lot of wear. However, in the last few years, with plenty of influence from my husband, my teens have grown into self-proclaimed fantasy-crazed geeks. Really! My fifteen-year-old has been planning a Lord of the Rings/Hobbit live action role play for ages. He’s got this huge collection of stuff growing in his closet because, “I can use that for LARP!” (When does it stop being planning and turn into hoarding?)

Never. Just ask my craft room! – Amy

Part of his plan, of course, was a costume, and since his mom happens to sew for a living, why wouldn’t she make it for him? Well, because she’s always busy sewing something more practical! He asked me one day, “Remember a few months ago when you told me that you would sew my Ranger costume next month? When exactly is that month?” I knew then that I had to just make time to do it!

Because this is a costume, and not everyday clothing, I did things a bit differently than the way I would normally do them. I wanted a nice outfit for Allen, but I also wanted to save time and keep the cost under control, and I found a whole list of ways to do that!

I used a linen-look fabric from Joann for the vest instead of actual linen. It was less expensive, and I appreciate the fact that it’s easy-care. I chose a vinyl faux leather for the overlay for the same reason. After a lengthy discussion of what to use for the lace, we found an old boot and recycled the … um … lace. (Yeah. Sometimes the obvious choice just doesn’t come as quickly as you would think.)

Instead of installing grommets for the laces, I just used punches and a hammer to make the holes and left them otherwise unfinished.

The cloak would have been a huge fabric hog if I had lined it. Instead, I used one layer of fabric and made French seams so that you wouldn’t see raw edges when the cloak blew in the wind. I also seamed the hood down the top since it allowed me to use less fabric. (I sort of wish that I had reconsidered that choice, though. I really don’t care for the look of hoods with seams on top. Since it’s a costume, though, I’ll live with it.)

Allen is absolutely thrilled with this whole outfit, and I’m so glad that I finally made him a costume, regardless of it’s practicality! I just hope that I can convince him not to try and wear it as everyday clothing!

Bonnie Ferguson
Fishsticks Designs
Practical Sewing Patterns with Flair for the Modern Family

Come visit me online at Fishsticks Designs and find all of my patterns in my shop.

This totally blows me away for several reasons! 1 – it’s boy sewing, which you all know I’m a fan of. 2 – it’s for a teen boy! That’s amazing all by itself! You can tell he’s so into it, too :) I know I’ve found my ten year old nephew is more enthusiastic when I sew for him than my three year old is! 3 – My little brother’s name is Allen and even though he’s a Marine now, he’ll always be a 15-year-old, glasses-wearing geek to me ;) 4 – Faramir (Captain of the Southern, or Ithilien, Rangers, not to be confused with the Dunedain who are the Northern Rangers. Oh what, you didn’t know how big of a geek I am? Now you do) was always one of my favorite characters from the books – he was smart, a warrior, and he got the girl in the end!

Be sure to hop over to Mae&K to see the first of our competition looks for this month!

Amy Signature


  1. Bonnie @ Fishsticks says:

    Oh, my goodness, Amy! I just laughed so hard that I cried when I saw that you answered my question about hoarding vs. planning! LOLOLOL!

    Thank you so much for inviting me to join in the Crafting Con LOTR fun this month! I’m so excited to see what everyone sews!

  2. Amy and Tasha says:

    How could I not answer that?? I’m constantly trying to make sure my husband knows the difference ;) Thank YOU for playing with us and for your generosity – you rock!

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