The Family of Ithilien
Faramir, Rangers and a pink Eowyn (Possibly this is Faramir taking his family out to the woods to relive the perilous old days, before the king returned): Somehow my husband's Faramir costume mushroomed into the family of Ithilien. So far, we have Faramir, two rangers, and a very pink Eowyn. We all went contra dancing at a science fiction symposium together and made quite a splash!
All the ranger cloaks are made from a set of olive green flannel sheets from the second-hand store. Second-hand sheets figure prominently in several other layers, as well.
Faramir's doublet and jerkin started out as Simplicity 5574, but they morphed beyond recognition. The shirt came from a very old men's shirt pattern which turned out to be tighter-fitting than it should have been for this use--it was originally a kind of western, button-up shirt. The jerkin is a green sheet, overdyed brown. The shirt is muslin and quilted muslin from Wal-Mart, dyed just a little darker than unbleached muslin.
The leather parts on the doublet came from the world's ugliest leather jacket--beautiful reddish-brown leather from Uruguay, but with 5 or 6 great big zippers placed randomly all over the front, 1980s Michael Jackson style. My husband was happy to donate it for a higher cause. I used the whole back of the jacket for the front of the doublet then cut up the rest for the trim. Using the ACS tree pattern and following someone else's lead from the ACS scrapbook, I used a wood burner then enamel silver paint to make the tree. The lacing rings are key chain rings. I think I can make the gauntlets out of the jacket sleeves (after cutting off some more big, ugly zippers, of course).
The boys' costumes both come from the "Legolas" version of Simplicity 4942, which has the contrasting sleeves attached to the jerkin. They both need a couple more layers to be "true" rangers, but with the black masks, canteens, and a bunch of belts, they were both happy enough with their costumes. Someday we'll have a more formidable armory than just the one foam Lego sword...
Created from Simplicity 0503. The sleeve lining is a kind of metallic broadcloth--sturdier than lame' would be, and a more interesting color. It came from Wal-Mart. We may put some trim on eventually, but she may grow out of it before then.
The making of hand-worked eyelets, from this site. Sighed briefly at antique ivory embroidery awls on ebay, then substituted a thumb-tack, a meat skewer, and a chopstick, in that order for each eyelet, to make holes that didn't actually rip the fabric.
The substitution of very short machine buttonholes for hand-worked eyelets, on the boys' costumes. Not as cool-looking, but much faster! If you can find the right fabric, it doesn't need to be the right color! This was my first foray into dying, and it was a lot of fun to tweak the colors with different dye baths until they were EXACTLY right.
Just because Ngila didn't use any hot pink for the ladies in the movie, doesn't mean that Eowyn, or her daughter, didn't own a hot pink dress when she was 5 years old--does it?
If the person you're sewing for has the soul of Faramir, it doesn't matter if he has more of a hobbit-esque physique. Alter the pattern to fit the soul, rather than trying to fit the soul into the costume that might be most "suitable" (otherwise, we'd never get to be anyone but hobbits, in this family).
The kids and I had a lot of fun "distressing" the leather for Faramir's doublet, but I was a little distressed when we were done. I'll monitor the progress of the distressing a little more closely next time.
Making costumes recently has liberated me quite a bit from the boundaries that patterns impose. Nowadays, I look at a pattern and think, "Not bad--we'll just move the zipper, change the sleeves, redesign the neckline, draft out the darts, and use a skirt from a different pattern." There doesn't tend to be much left of the original pattern when I get done.
Having sewn everyone ELSE's costume, it's now time to get started on my own!
This dress started life as an "ugly" orange 70s sheet from the second-hand store. It was supposed to be a muslin for the white wool dress, so we wrote notes all over it with purple magic marker. But then we discovered that it's a gorgeous color on Heidi, and it needed to be made into a "real" dress. The original pattern is McCalls 9313, though you'd never know it to look at it.
Step one was to scrub out the purple magic marker! An ink remover called, I think, Amodyne, was very helpful. We didn't have enough fabric to make the huge sleeves on the WW dress, so we made narrow ones, except they turned out TOO narrow, so we learned how to make a gore in the sleeve, and Heidi braided loops, and we laced the sleeves up for a custom fit. The embroidery pattern for the neckline came off ACS.
This page was last updated 11/21/09