Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Gold handmaiden sash

I still have a post or two to sum up my gold handmaiden.

One of the parts of it that I wondered about for a very long time was the sash around the waist. This is one example where I'm very happy that I waited to make it until I was good enough to be able to come up with what was going on.

At first I thought that all the vertical lines came from ribbons that were sewn together. I had no idea on how I would find those kinds of ribbons. Well a couple of years later I've gotten better with identifying fabrics manipulation. Looking at my reference pictures I got convinced that the sash has been smocked. The lines comes from the smocking threads. After the smocking the sash has been folder time and time again when it's been wrapped.

Another thing is that this costume is obviously worn by columnshaped models, while I'm not. If figured that the sash would be very important to creat an illusion of a body without many curves. The answer was to make an underbust corset, that I would then attach an outer layer of fabric to.
This is a bad photo of the inside. The pattern was a very old underbust pattern that I dug up from my pattern archive. I actually think it started out as a pattern for an underbust Drndl bodice from a Burda magazine. I boned it with what pieces of boning I had in my stash, reused from old corsets. The important thing was to make a busk of several bones in the middle, to keep the tummy in check. The fabric was my last remnant of coutil from last summer's corsets.

For the outer fabric I used a silk charmeuse that I dyed with the same dye as the rest of the undergown. In fact this piece of fabric was actually my first test of dying in this project. I then sewed long gathering stitches all over the fabric. When I gathered the fabric I did make a mistake though, I simply gathered it too much. This made the fabric quite bulky when I tried to fold it, and the horizontal lines were hardly visible. Still this was the last thing I had to do before leaving for Anaheim, so I wore it like this at Celebration.
When I came home, and after some discussion with the RL costuming judges who didn't know about the smocking, I eased the tension a lot. In fact I could remove around 50 cm of fabric and it still covered the whole underbust.
I then simply folded the excess fabric and in order for the fabric to lie as flat as possible I also sewed down the folds to the foundation layer.

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