I love Halloween, specifically, I love costumes. I’m pretty sure I like the planning even more than the making, which I like even more than the wearing, so plan with me, GT! I’m working on a Fairy Queen costume, more Fae than Tinkerbell, KWIM? I want it to be elegant and beautiful with a side of DGAF.
I’d like to share my storyboard, so to speak; I’d love to be able to bounce things off of people who aren’t Mr. Misfit, who thinks pretty much everything is a great idea.
Here’s my inspiration image, it’s one of Michelle Pfeiffer’s costumes from 1999 A Midsummer Night’s Dream. That’s what Pinterest says, anyway. I haven’t seen it. I tried to watch it, but it’s not streaming anywhere and YouTube’s Google Overlords took it down. I feel like my due diligence has been done.
Pretty, right? I’m going in a more berry/purple direction and I don’t think I’m going to wrap myself in ropes, but it’s a start! Here’s my sketch:
I don’t think I’m going to do a smooth ombre like that, I’m going to use a spray bottle technique to make it more irregular. Ideally, I’d like it to look like it got stained while fucking in a berry field. That seems like a fairy thing to do. I’ve already made a corset, it came out great and looks exactly like the sketch, but I may end up editing it out. We’ll see!
I found a really basic pattern over at Burdastyle. It’s actually a really crappy pattern, I had to make a lot of tweaks, like changing the grainline so the dress falls nicely, fixing the armscye that drooped down to the waist, adding waist shaping at the side seam, and making the back and front pieces different by removing some volume at the center front (the original pattern is four identical pattern pieces sewn together) and lowering the neckline. I changed the hem to a handkerchief hem, which is very “fairy” in my book. It also calls for the neckline and armscyes to be finished by turning under and topstitching, but that’s ridiculous and low rent, so I’m also drafting a lining. Here’s the line drawing of the pattern:
I finally got my fabric yesterday from Dharma Trading, I opted for silk noil. Silk noil isn’t like typical silk, it’s very textured... kinda a little like finely woven silk burlap, actually, lol. It does have a beautiful silk drape, though, and I think it’s a great fabric for costuming. It has a very natural feel to it, which I think is very suitable for this project. The description suggests using it for Tatooine costumes, which may be the most accurate fabric description I’ve ever seen. I mean, right?
It makes pretty rosettes, too. I think my serger makes an excellent light source, don’t you?
I need to up my rosette game.
I’ve already cut and sewn up the basic dress after immediately prewashing the fabric (I can’t bring myself to do laundry, but I’ll toss in fabric as soon as I get it ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ), now I need to draft and construct the lining and play with the shoulder detail. I overpaid tremendously for some lace at Joanns so I’m using that out of pure principle. There’ll be rosettes involved, too. Here it is on my dress form. (Side bar: I’ve been calling her “She” or “Her” and I really feel like She needs a name [saying “the dress form” is a mouthful]. I’ve never really been the type to name inanimate objects, though, so nothing springs to mind. Name my dress form, GT!) It looks better on me, but it’s a no-bra type situation and the current single layer of silk leaves me a bit... indecent! More reason for the lining.
The shoulder seams aren’t sewn and the tacks below the bust are just basted. My dress form is wearing a slip, ignore the black at the neckline.
I just have the elastic pinned roughly in place, I think I’m going to ruche the back for some shaping.
I’m also going to make a cloak, I’m not sure if I’m going to go hood or no hood. The cloak is a bit foggy in the details... anyone have any experience making fairy tale cloaks? This is the fabric, I do know that much. It’s brocade and was on sale for $3.50/yd, not a bad buy, so I snagged up five yards:
This fabric is SHINY, the places that look green are actually shiny as fuck gold.
I also want to make a crown, but I’m having a creative block on that. And this is why I start early!
In my last post, I asked about wings. Not surprisingly, the overwhelming response was pro-wing, thanks for your input on that, everyone. I got some amazing suggestions and dyeing directions, you are all so full of amazing ideas!
So, what should I name my dress form?
Hood or no hood on the cloak? A hood adds bulk, but I’ll miss it if it’s rainy.
Any idea, suggestions, techniques, or criticisms to share? Please do, and I prefer it unvarnished!
What are you going to be for Halloween?