Amanda's Examples

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Padme Amanda  -  Washington, USA

Patterns I used: A Simplicity pattern for the sleeves - (Simplicity 9891). I used a T-shirt for the front and just drew lines down the length that it needed to be and then made it a v-neck, all estimating without a pattern. For the train, I used a McCall's wedding dress pattern (McCall 3861). The back of the dress isn't correct, but it looks fine, you really wouldn't notice unless you're a detail freak and you're seeing it in person because you can't see the back of the dress in pictures anyway! Hehe.
Fabric I used: Okay, I went cheap and used polyester. There, I admitted it. Hey, I'm a college student and can't afford 8-9 yards of wool! I found the perfect wool material at Hancock Fabrics, but they only had 3-4 yards of it, so I found this nice slightly off-white polyester for $2/yard at Walmart... it drapes really well, it's the perfect thickness and weave, so I went for it. I used a polyester lining, too, of a cream color (you can tell the lining is darker from the pictures of it billowing in the wind). I found an awesome gold and white braid for all of the lining details around the neck and sleeves... and when I saw the movie again it looked like I used the EXACT same braid that they used! It's thin and flat, with a white squiggle over gold. The embroidered ribbon at the neck isn't the same embroidery as the original, but I came as close as I could... I don't have an embroidery machine, just a really old sewing machine that doesn't work very well. For the sleeve lining I actually didn't find a good brocade or silky goldish-cream fabric, so I just used a gold toole and it actually looks good! It was hard to sew though. However, the awsome thing about this dress is that even though the bottom hem gets really dirty whenever I where it, I can just throw it in the wash and it comes out perfectly clean and I don't even have to iron it! No trips to the drycleaners!
And now the part I'm the proudest of... the belt! The notes on your site were awsome and I'm happy with how my belt turned out. It's not perfect, mostly because I couldn't fit in all 21 of the round pieces so they're a little spread apart, but it took forever and I get tons of compliments on it.

For the belt, I started with cross-stitch canvas, which made it easy to place the beads. I sewed on a string of gold beads (from JoAnn's) with gold thread... by hand, counting the squares like cross-stitch. This was for the basic part of the belt that hangs down and on the wrap-around part underneath the rounds.

For the rounds, I used wooden disks, painted with silver acrylic paint, then a star of craft foam, painted silver, then I used silver wire in a circle around that and gold wire for the petal shapes, and gold beads attached with beading wire. The center piece is similar, except I used an orange juice can lid instead of the wooden rounds and foam stars, since the center round is bigger and a bit different. I made that one first. The center one is attached to the top of the vertical drape piece, which loops over the around-the-waist belt piece and attaches to itself with velcro on the back. The around-the-waist belt piece is separate, fastening with a wide buckle in front, which is hidden by the hanging piece where it wraps over it.

I've wore this to three events now, WesterCon, Comic-Con, and a local movie viewing, and it's holding up well! I tightened the belt after the first two wearings because it was too loose, but now it's fine.

Oh, and for the boots, I already had some that are probably as close as I'll ever find for this costume, so I didn't have to spend any money in that department (which is a good thing... it's so hard to find size womens size 11 boots in any specific style).

I'd add a blonde wig to this costume, but I'm afraid it would look horrible on me because I have black eyebrows. *L*


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This page was last updated 11/21/09