Making a Blue Taffeta Dress

This is a post is over eight months in the making, how crazy is that? I started on this project in August and eventually lost interest. When I pulled it out two months ago to resume progress I was horrified by the construction, messy topstitching, and mismatched seams. Some seams were an inch off from lining up – an inch! I guess my standards have changed a lot in the past months.

I wasn’t really sure what to do, I liked the design but I wasn’t sure I liked it enough to rip out all the seams and remake it. And I definitely didn’t want to finish it in it’s current condition….so I put it away and hoped I’d never see it again. But a few weeks ago it was calling to me, so I decided it was time for it to have a makeover.

This post will be a little odd because of that – a mix of old and new progress pictures, explanations of what was done wrong, how I should have done it better, and stuff like that.

This project was inspired by some Lucas Cranach paintings – after flipping through a gallery I wanted to make something “With a lot of sleeve puffs”. Then after seeing “The Three Musketeers” I had a very strong desire to make something with a fantastic hood like this.

I wanted to make it off of materials I had around, so I decided on off white chiffon (lined with satin), and six yards of blue stretch taffeta.

My basic design looked like this:

DSC_1611I’ll start with making the skirt, because that was the first thing I did.

These pieces are cut out so wobbly, it kills me, ahh!




And once those are sewn together and gathered…

DSC_9562As lovely as that is, i’m placing it aside for now and moving on to the terrors of the bodice.

The bodice pattern is really, really weird since there is a puff embedded in the strap. It took me several mock ups and a lot of playing around to get the shape I wanted. Once I did I turned my mock up into a paper pattern which was used to cut out the stretch taffeta and blue cotton (for lining).


The front section was supposed to be gathered chiffon, I used white cotton as a base and gathered the chiffon over top, then I sealed the edges with brightly colored bias tape.


I sewed boning into the lining of the bodice, then pinned the lining and top layers together.


Once everything was turned right side out I top stitched very poorly around everything – this was right when I got my industrial machine and hadn’t quite figured out the proper settings for everything, because of this I was using a 1.7 mm stitch – now for top stitching I use a 3.5.

Because the stitches were so tight I had no hope of ripping this part of and redoing it.

I sewed the shoulder straps together and pinned the first of the puffs into place.


Que more terrible top stitching.

I pinned the side seams and tried it on – it was pretty vulgar so I added a ruffle for modesty. Which required even more awful top stitching.


Back to work on the sleeves! Lot’s mot puffs and bad top stitching. Yay.


DSC_1545Then they were sewn on to the bodice and the side seams were done up. I must have done this without pins since they were so uneven. The seam attaching them to the bodice wavered from 1″ to .25″ depending on the spot, and the side seams were almost an inch off in some places. None of the white puffs lined up properly, it was pretty awful.

I also ripped out four unnecessary layers of topstitching at the wrists – i’m not sure what they were there for, but they weren’t doing any good.


In addition to ripping off the sleeves, my bodice repairs included adding embroidered eyelets to the back (instead of a zipper) and hundreds of tiny 2mm decorative pearls. I sewed the pearls around the neckline and used them to create the look of lacing on the front of the bodice.


I also added elastic to the edges of the neckline so the ruffles would cling to my body and offer a little more modesty.


Now lets go back to the skirt! The first time I made the skirt I attempted to sew the chiffon panels and the taffeta e panels onto the bodice, then sew them together…which is really dumb and i’m not sure why I chose to do that, but that’s why I have this photo.

I also chose to sew the taffeta and chiffon panels together by machine, not realizing that stretch taffeta, you know, stretches. The taffeta panels ended up several inches longer then the chiffon one.


I also had no friggen clue how to gather taffeta. I tried doing it by hand, with a machine, using elastic, nothing worked and this was my end result.


And at the time I said, “Yup, that’s fine” and sewed it on to the bodice.

On take two I ripped out the cringe worthy gathering and uneven panels. I laid them out flat, pinned them, and hand stitched them together from underneath, so the thread was invisible on top. Then I did two rows of gathering – the proper way to gather taffeta.


Is that not a million times better? Then I sewed it onto the bodice.


On the left is what it looked like before, on right is the much improved after.


The final thing to work on was the hood! My first hood was a tragic terrible mistake and needed the most improvements out of everything.

This is the hood pattern – it took me ages to draft and i’m still quite proud of it.


In my first hood I used plastic boning in the brim as a support, and free handed the gathers in the chiffon. Which meant the whole thing ended up horribly uneven. On top of that the thing was really heavy – it had almost two yards of taffeta and double that amount of chiffon in it. Way too much for a flimsy piece of plastic boning to support.

Speaking of the uneven hood – look at this pathetic piece of gathered lining.


The lining wasn’t salvageable. I ended up taking apart a petticoat made from the same fabric, just so I could remake this hood. Then I dissembled the taffeta layer and used that as a pattern for the lining.

I cut a strip of buckram and then sewed the chiffon onto it by hand – this way there was no chance for anything to be even slightly uneven!


The hood was reassembled – this time taking great care to get everything perfect. All the topstitching was done by hand, and I made matching bias tape to finish the edges. Instead of gathering the edges, I pleated them, which looked much nicer and did a better job of getting the shape I wanted. The bottom edges of the hood have little loops made from bias tape – these are what attach the hood to the dress. The dress has button sewn just inside the neckline.

Then I inserted a strip of hooping wire that I pre bend to the required shape. There was no was this hood was going to be unsupported.

I really wish I had a better photo of how awful this hood was. In most photos I very carefully placed it on my head and took dozens of pictures to get it to look right – if I moved the whole thing would collapse, but you can’t tell that from these staged images.

Anyway, before (take a look at that skirt gathering, too!)




All the dress needed was a hem to finish it off, so I did that, and it’s done! I wasn’t wearing heels in these pictures so the hem looks a little wonky.





So that’s that! I’m not sure if it was worth all the effort I put into it, but I’m happy I did. There are still problems I can’t change, a lot of ugly top stitching, uneven ruffles, and puckery sleeves. But I did the best I could with what I had.

Now I just have to find a place to photograph it!

Do you have any projects you’ve saved from wreckage? Is this a common thing?

Thanks for reading!

Maroon Dress Photos

This past weekend I put on my Maroon dress and went out in hopes of photographing it in a pumpkin patch near my house. Sadly it was too crowded to get pictures there, so my dad and I went on a little adventure and ended up taking pictures in front of the woods. A bit disappointing, but i’m still happy to finally have photos of this!







The Making of A Maroon Dress

Note: I may be changing my blog name this week (thinking about ‘Angela Clayton’s Cosplay & Costumery) so please don’t get confused if you see a switch in the email titles! The blog URL, layout, and content will all remain the same. 

I’ve nicknamed this dress my productive-procrastination-progress, which is a sewing method I like to think I invented. It’s basically when you avoid working on what you should, and instead make something entirely different.

That’s how this dress came into existence. I was supposed to be working on my costumes for Otakon – a convention that I am leaving for in a mere twenty days, and still have two costumes to make for. Instead of working towards crossing some items off my endless to-do list, I made this.


 One upon a time I attempted to cosplay Marika from Mouretsu Pirates. I got about half way through when I realized it was really bad and that I didn’t have a chance in hell to finish it on time. The costume was abandoned and the pathetic half pleated skirt, wrinkled jacket, and cape have been taking up space in my sewing room for almost a year.

Sadly, not much can be done for the jacket and skirt, but the cape was usable! At the time I put a silly amount of material into this cape, just about 5 yards or so and I also had 1.5 yards of matching fabric folded away for a coordinated  vest.


I found some dark green cotton sateen which I set aside for lining, and a few ivory lace remnants and chiffon scraps that could work for trims. I had all I needed so I went ahead and started drafting. I didn’t have a particular idea in mind, but I knew I wanted it to be fairly low cut with a square neckline.

I pondered how to go about drafting this and then decided to attempt something a little silly to get the shape. What was this idea, you ask? Tracing a tank top.

DSC_0551To be honest this didn’t go so well. It was several inches too small and the neck wasn’t deep enough, in the end flat drafting it would have been easier and probably faster, but oh well…

Mock up one looked like so


It needed a few alterations. I made it bigger, longer, and deepened the neck line.


And this was used as my pattern! I added seam allowances and cut two layers – one of the maroon material, and another from my sateen (lining)

I also drew out the boning placements.


The boning was all sewn directly onto the (wrong) side of my lining


So that when pinned (right sides together) the boning ended up hidden.


Then I sewed around each edge (aside from the side seams) and made sure to clip my corners.


Each piece was turned rightside out and pinned for topstitching.


I ironed around each panel and then each edge was top stitched with matching (matte) thread.

DSC_0561 And each seam was basted for fitting!

DSC_0562Before trying it on I  made up a two inch chiffon ruffle which was sewn to the neckline.

DSC_1261 Once that was settled I moved onto the sleeves. I decided puffed sleeves with fitted arms and chiffon accents would suit the bodice, so I went ahead and made that up.

I altered the sleeve pattern I used for my glass angel costume to create a smaller, less bell shaped version.


For the bottom portion of the sleeve I marked out my measurements and cut out notch where a puff could show through. I made a mock up from muslin to ensure it fit, and when it did I traced it onto my proper fabrics and cut it out.


I lined each sleeve to hide the raw edges.


Then I moved on to the most complicated (but still simple) part of the whole costume. Sleeve puffs. These are quite basic and get easier the more you do them.

I had to do these on Merida and got a lot of questions about them, so i’ll go into a bit of detail.

You start off by drafting a pattern and cutting it from a (lightweight) base material that will match the color of the overlay. In this case I just used a neutral quilters cotton .


Then cut out an overlay, which should be twice the height and *at least* three times the width of your base piece. It will work better from a (see through) flimsy fabric like lace, or organza. In this case i’m using chiffon.

Mark out the middle of one edge (if it’s 20 inches long, mark at the 10 inch point) and pin that to the center of your base.


Flip it so the overlay is facing downward, set your needle down and lift the foot. Make sure your foot is off the pedal, then push some of the overlay beneath the base so it bunches up and sew over it. This doesn’t really make sense so photo time.




It takes me 5 minutes or so to do a yard of ruffles this way, which is slower then the string method, but it allows me to really control how much fabric i’m pushing in, and create smaller ruffles.

Anyway – eventually you will end up with this!


Once the top is gathered, pin the bottom down. You should be able to pull and manipulate the material enough to make it poof however much you like.


Sew across the other edge


And chop off the extra material.


I went ahead and sewed the poofy part of my sleeve, onto the fitted portion. Then the tops were gathered and sewn onto my chiffon puffs.


Then I cut 8 inch strips of chiffon, flipped them in half (so they were four inches) and sewed these across the bottoms of my sleeves.


Then the sleeve was sewn onto the bodice and done up the side!


I did up the other sleeve and moved onto the skirt.

The skirt was the easiest part of this whole thing, as it is made from one giant rectangle of material. A pre-hemmed rectangle. Originally this rectangle had been made into one very voluminous cape, as seen below


I cut out a 2 inch wide band the same width as the bottom of my bodice (28 inches)


Then I removed the gathering from the cape, which left me with a huge rectangle, which I regathered down to the proper width. Then the gathered length was sewn onto the band.


Which was sewn onto the bodice, and voila!



Earlier today I went though and added in a zipper, removed basting stitches, sewed down some lining, fray checked seams, and replaced the stand-in binder clips with four hooks.

I do believe that is all. I probably won’t have a follow up post on this project, since the details are so boring. But if I ever manage a photoshoot with this, I shall post those!

Thanks for reading!

The making of a Red and Silver Renaissance Gown

Part One : June 13, 2013

Today seems like a good day for a double post, doesn’t it?

For my birthday I ended up spending the majority of my money on fabric and pretty trims from the fashion district and on etsy. The fabrics were all brocade with satin, or sateen in coordinating colors. I ended up being really, really happy with my haul and loved every single item I bought.

In the same trip I purchased fabric for Merida, and that costume has already been made – so it’s time to put the other fabric to use! Starting with this little design I drew up.

The fabrics pictured here are from the lovely shop Diana Fabrics who gave me an amazing deal on the material and even threw in a few yards as a gift! The silver trim is from LaceFun on etsy who are also really awesome and always give you extra goodies. The pearls are from DeezTreasures.


I began with the bodice, since it’s the most detailed bit aside from the sleeves.

I draped the pattern in the usual way. I’ve explained this method a lot before, but still get questions all the time, so I created a more thorough write up on tumblr. If you are interested you can read that here!




Once that was done it got unpinned, and ironed!


And after adding seam allowances it became a mock up, which fit surprisingly well.


I took in the side seams a bit, and made the entire thing an inch longer before drawing out my pattern on paper.


Since this is historical fashion I decided to add a whole bunch of boning.


Some of it was metal, but the majority was plastic. Cutting it all took longer then making the mock up.


When I cut my pattern out, it was for the lining. Which is made from this really lovely red velvet i’ve had around or a long while.


When it was all sewn together, with the boning it looked like this! I attempted to try it on and it didn’t go as I’d hoped..somehow it had become too big in the bust and I had to add darts and remove a lot of material. Because of this my paper pattern became of little use…


So instead, I traces out my finished lining piece and turned that into my new pattern for the front facing. I wanted the front to be more fiddly then the lining, so it went from seven pieces to 13!


Once it was assembled I sewed the neckline with the right-sides-together-pillowcase method to get a finished edge. I went through and did some top stitching by hand, since I needed to stitch around the boning.



Then I drafted the collar piece by tracing the neckline of the bodice and sketching out the shape I wanted. I cut it out of newsprint as a test to see if I liked it, and it later became my pattern.


The collar was cut from fusible felt interfacing, which is a really stiff interfacing usually used for purses, or hat making. I fused the maroon colored satin onto it and hand sewed the edges onto the other side so no stitching was visible.

I ended up decorating the collar with some 4mm silver pearls and a bit of lace! It took a long while to sew together but i’m really very pleased with it. I entertained myself by watching Man Lab on BBC throughout hand sewing this – I ended up spending more time laughing then sewing, but I have nor regrets.


I had to do the back too…I like this picture because it shows what a difference a little lace can make!


I ended up making a sash that I despise (that will be talked about it a separate post)I tried to save it which rhinestones, but they got pulled off pretty quick since they didn’t actually match. I shall remake this at a later date!


Here are a few close ups of the bodice in it’s “complete-aside-from-sleeves” stage



Next step was sewing on the hidden sash. This is what the top gets sewn to, and also what the skirt will be sewn onto. Then the sash can be hand stitched (or fused) on and won’t hold any weight. This was a problem I had with the last dress I made, the sash really pulled and didn’t fully support all the wight of the skirt, so it stretched.

Look at me learning from my mistakes for once


Then it came time to make the skirt. It hurt so much cutting this fabric because I absolutely adore it.



Then things got sewn together



When it came time to sewn on the trim, I ran into a bit of a roadblock. I wasn’t sure whether I wanted it pointing inwards, or outwards. I ended up going with inwards, even though it’s less “obvious” I think it looks much nicer and less messy then the outward facing.


Earlier today I went through with 1″ lace that is cheap, and scratchy, and awful, and I used it to seal the hem. This way it won’t fray anymore. However it looks bad, so it needs to be hemmed again (by hand) but that was something I had planned on doing, anyway!

I pinned everything all together for your viewing pleasure.



A lot more is complete now, I have the sleeves almost finished, and it resembles a dress even when removed from the form. But those changes shall be reviled in a later post!

Part Two : June 25, 2013

Here is the second installment of making this pretty little dress I dreamed up! If you haven’t already, you can read part one right here.

For once I was very diligent in my photo documentation, so this shall be more of a photoblog then a…erm, blog!

The next major step was creating the sleeves. In the last dress I made, which was somewhat similar to this, I left the sleeves for last and ended up regretting it. So I dove right in!

I started with a sketch, and some measurements.


And then It got turned into a pattern


Once they were cut out the edges were folded to create a finished edge. Between each piece I sewed on a 1/2 strip of my white brocade material. Each of these were originally two inches wide, then folded over, ironed, and sewn into place.


I ended up sewing them all onto a base of red velvet. This required a lot of yelling at my machine and ripping out, since getting the white right against eachother without any gaps was very tricky!


I trimmed the velvet on the sides, and pinned it for a fit test which looked like so:

DSC_0493Next up was the silver “poof” portion which was created by pinning trim over an interfaced strip of the white brocade.


I sewed (carefully) around the edges of the white, and cut away the extra trim. Then It got sewn, and topstitched down onto the velvet.


After that the final piece was sewn into place, and I was ready to move onto the largest, and most complicated bit…


The poofy sleeves of doom….

I really despise making poofy sleeves, so i’m not sure why I continuously put myself through this. But I do, and I will probably continue to do so.

Damn pretty sleeves….

I went ahead and drafted a ginormous poofy sleeve pattern, then I cut it from my maroon satin and fused interfacing onto the back. (The larger the sleeve, the more support it needs.)


Then I went about creating the tricky part. I called these “sleeve doohickeys” throughout making them but ended up googling the proper term for this post and have discovered they are called “Paned sleeves”…I think.

(I also learned about a sleeve nicknamed “imbecile sleeve” which I might have to make next just for the hell of it)

I started out with 2.5″ interfaced strips!


Which were cut to the proper-ish length…


The edges were turned over and sewn down, giving me 1.5″ strips.


Then I cut out 2 inch wide strips of my brocade, which were folded and ironed into 1″ strips.

DSC_0485These got sewn onto the 1.5″ strips of satin, leaving me with strips (doohickeys) that were each 2.5″ wide.

DSC_0486But as you can see, the backs look really crappy, and frayed like crazy. So I cut out 1″ strips of double sided fusible web and ironed that onto the backs.


When the paper was pealed off, I ironed silver ribbon atop it, which sealed the edges up nice and pretty!


These were then pinned onto the base sleeve I created earlier, and were trimmed again, this time more precisely.


I sewed around the edges and then gathered it down by hand, I had to use pliers since there were so many layers of material to stitch through!


This was sewn onto the fitted portion I created earlier, and voila!


Then I had to make another one…


All they needed were side seams done up, but being impatient, I pinned them on for a few photos.



That’s that! Not to shabby, if I do say so myself. Working on this makes I feel like i’ve progressed a lot, even just in the last few months from when I made my red/gold gown. I’m really proud of it so far, and hopefully it will continue on that way!

Thanks for reading! x

The Making of a Sakizo Inspired Historical Gown [Part 2]



jeff potoSo, two things about this costume, the first being that the titles have changed! I originally thought it this some French inspired design, but peoples insisted upon Italian Renaissance, and then others were saying it looks Russian so now i’m not even sure. I give up on attempting to label this dress.

The second thing is that this dress is technically unfinished. It isn’t accurate to the artwork I based it off of at all, but I like how it looks now and there isn’t much I want to change. Some might view this as lazyness…but honestly i’m just pleased with it. I feel like adding more stuff will take away from it and I don’t want that. So I suppose this is a Sakizo illustration INSPIRED design instead of an actual cosplay of her work.

Check out the previous the-making-of post relating to this costume!

[Part 1]

With that said….Moving on. 

Sleeves! These were by far the most difficult and time consuming part of this costume. The sleeves are made up of five main pieces, two small ones that lay over the shoulder, two puffy sleeve portions, and the elbow-to-wrist piece.

I put on the bodice and measured over my shoulder to find the length the top two sleeve pieces needed to be.  Then a drafted out how I thought they might look and hoped for the best. I made a mock up and altered it a little bit, but for the most part it was good!


The top most piece is actually a base that piped strips get sewn onto. It looked like this when cut out.


I cut out 2.75″ strips of my red sateen and folded over 1/2″ on each side giving me a 1.75 inch strip. Then I sewed piping onto each side. This part killed me since I actually had to use pins (so many), which I try to avoid as much as possible.


Each strip was cut to the proper size, and eventually, sewn into place by stitching across each end.


I machine stitched lace onto one side. The other side was folded over and hand sewn down, so no stitching actually shows.


The second piece was much easier to deal with, as it was quite simple. It’s made from interfaced silk with an overlay of the same gold lace I used on the skirt. It was hand sewed to the other pieces lining so once again, no stitching is visible.



Piece three and four were the most challenging, and took many frustrating hours to create. The actual pattern for these is a very simple one, and was drafted quite quickly and easily. I once again kind of lucked out on the pattern I drafted, I had to make it a little smaller, but for the most part I was happy with it.

Each sleeve was cut from red sateen and has two darts added to remove a bit of volume. Lines were marked out  four inches from eachother to create seven even rows. A gold x ivory twisted cording was hand sewn over each line.


Then it came time to add poofs! Puffed trim, although quite simple in theory is one of my least favorite things to make. Here is a tutorial sheet describing how they can be made.


For the sleeve puffs I used seven inch wide strips of silk that were double iron-folded on each side, creating a five inch wide strip with finished edges.

Then I hand gathered the strip every four inches to create very circular puffs. It took a lot, and I mean A LOT of testing to get a size that looked okay, but in the end I’m pretty pleased with it.


The puffs get pinned in place



And then sewn down. Once they are sewn into place I lightly press my iron over them, this way they stay more orderly.


Each side of these were gathered with the zig zag method, and eventually stuffed with “doughnuts” made of quilt batting. They are like pillows which is kind of awesome.

The final, and easiest piece of the sleeve was patterned via draping. I took a piece of muslin and laid it over my arm, then pinned it until it was tight.


Super pro patterning method right there.


I cut that out of my red sateen and added cute little organza ruffles, trim, and piping to the point that lays over my hand. I also hand sewed a six inch zipper into the wrist so it fits tightly.

This is how one of the sleeves looked all sewn together



The bodice of my dress finally got fancied up, I added three mm rhinestones down the center of each red stripe and sewed on a pretty organza ruffle.


Then I created MORE puffed trim and sewed that on, with pearl trim covering the gathers. I also created a properly sized flower trim, made of fake flowers that I cut apart and re-glued together. Flat backed pearls were glued down in the centers, and between the petals to make it look fancy.


And how they looked sewn together.


Once the bodice was finished I created a “roll” to go beneath it. This was made the same way as tier one of the sleeves. Strips of sateen with folded edges and piping machine stitched on each side.


After each edge was secured, the 30″ strip was stuffed with a bit of quilt batting encased in sateen to make it poof out.

This was then sewn onto the skirt.


Meanwhile, the skirt got a bit of fancy lace and cording sewn onto each front most red section. Both of these were hand sewed into place.  In addition to holding the trim on, the same stitches also secure the ivory portion of the skirt to the red ones.

The gorgeous lace was purchased here and the cording from here.


The bodice was hand sewn on to roll/skirt, since there was so much boning I couldn’t do it by machine without breaking needles every two seconds. (trust me, I tried)

Eventually the sleeves were hand sewn onto the dress too. So much hand sewing.

.I also added a heavy duty zipper to serve as closure (not the one seen above, one that actually matched).  I had to hand baste it in place, then sew it down, which was kind of hellish but worked wonderfully.


Once that was done I made the headdress super quickly. It has a structure of plastic boning, which was covered in quilt batting and a layer of red sateen.



Then tiny puffed trim was made and sewn onto the front. And 8mm pearsl were sewn into the center of each poof.


I also sewed on two organza ruffles, because ruffles are awesome. The gold trim was made from lace, which I cut apart and spray painted gold. Each circle of lace was threaded onto a piece of wire and glued from behind. The pearls are fake, flat backed, and glued down.


And finished!


I had several photoshoots with this costume, and the previews look amazing, but none of the actual photos have been posted. So here is a hall shot from yesterday to give you an idea of how it looked all finished. I seriously cannot wait to see photos of this from my shoots.


Thanks for reading! I’ll have the final post on Royal Milk Tea up soon.

The Making of a Sakizo Inspired Historical Gown [Part 1]


Since I am apparently insane, I’ve decided to make another costume before Katsucon, which is less than three weeks away. It’s not even a simple costume – it’s actually pretty difficult and elaborate.

But it is also very, very pretty! 

This costume is of a Sakizo design…but it’s a very detailed oriented one so what I have sewn so far doesn’t look much like it (at least not yet). Because of this, I’ll post the reference picture i’m using in the next post relating to this costume.

I will probably have one or two more posts about this. It shouldn’t take me long to finish since everything is just detail work. The next post I made will talk about sleeves and beading so make sure to check back for updates!

I had draped a sweetheart neckline princess seamed bodice pattern a few weeks ago, which I decided would work well enough for this project. I actually took photos throughout the draping process since I get asked about pattern drafting a lot and plan to make a tutorial later.

Here are a few pictures, all you really do is pull, pin, draw, and cut the fabric until it’s the shape you want.





When removed from the form the pieces looked like this.


Once seam allowances were added I had a pattern!


I know that seems like a lot of work, but it only takes twenty minutes or so.

I cut the pattern I had made out of muslin and measured out 1.5 inch stripes onto the pieces. I also sewed a mixture of metal and plastic boning into the bodice. Then I drew out the neckline I wanted.


This is how the boning placement looked when flat. Most of it’s plastic but I did add a few metal stays.



Once the boning was removed everything got labeled to make reassembly easier.


And then each stripe was cut apart.



And then I used those as a pattern for cutting out my fabric! I choose red cotton sateen, gold spandex, and an ivory silk satin for this project. All the materials have really nice textures and drape beautifully, plus I had them laying around. The spandex was reinforced so it doesn’t stretch.


Once assembled it looks like so!




I cut out the same pattern for lining and drew out the boning placement.


With boning sewn in~



Then it was attached to the bodice.


And here it is just pinned, also ignore the flowers, they were a stand in.


I had to go through and hand sew each seam down. This was made slightly less tedious by the fact I watched disney movies throughout working on it. And then pearls were sewn over each seam.


At this point I cut out my skirt, the front consists of two 30×56″ panels of cotton sateen and a 40″x56″ panel of silk satin. I made the panels longer than they needed to be so I could add a large hem later on. I didn’t want any stiffening in the hem so this is a substitute to make it heavier.

I’m not sure why the stripes look uneven on the form…they are fine when worn.


Then I cut out the train! I have never made a dress with a train before this so it was quite the experiment. I sort of marked out various measurements and then cut out what I thought looked okay, it wasn’t a very technical process.


In the end I’m really happy with it, I think the shape is quite pretty!

[Please ignore how the top looks here]

UntitledNow that the base is done I can start on details mwaha. I got a bunch of trims on etsy which I’m super excited to add to this costume!


One of the ones I bought was this cute flower trim, which I took my sewing shears to right away and separated the flowers from the main trim.

Also shout out to The Store, who sells all these gorgeous hand dyed gold venice lace.




I took the flowers and pinned them onto the upper portion of the skirt in a randomized pattern that faded down

I didn’t like how it looked at first, but it grew on me. I ended up [i’m embarrassed to admit this] hot gluing them all into place. Hand sewing 100 tiny flowers on didn’t seem appealing at all, and I didn’t think it would look that great. The glue ended up working really well.

Then I pinned the hem and pinned on this gorgeous lace that I ordered from here.


Sooo that’s everything for now.

Thank you for reading!