Aicelina's Examples

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Aicelina Examples -  Illinois, USA

I made the Arwen's BR Gown for a fairy tale themed ball.  Time was short so this was a quickie version limited not only on time, but to what I could locate in materials at the local Super Walmart.  I had amazing luck so never count them out!
bulletThe overdress is black stretch velour for $4.97 per yard.
bulletThe underdress is a rosy red, polyester crepe for $1.00 per yard.
bulletThe trim was tough part.  Nothing in the regular Walmart stock had the rich look of real Arwen gowns...not even close.  I was disgusted and pouting, ready to scrap the project temporarily then while I was in the Christmas dept, I found a 2" old gold/cranberry nylon woven gift trim.  It worked!  It probably won't stand up to vigorous wear and tear but for a costume I may only don a few times a year, it works.  I also used organza in an old gold color.
     I made my pattern using a basic t-tunic as a starting point.  It's very simple and can be adapted to many things.  Just type in "t-tunic pattern" on any search engine and it will pull up various sites with instructions.  It's not hard at all so don't be afraid to try a t-tunic.
     Since I'm just under 6' tall I bought 4 yards of the black velour.  There was a little bit left over even though I made the gown long enough to have a decent puddle of fabric trailing on the floor which was beautiful for the overall look, but I'll confess not too great for dancing  in!  The neckline was edged in a bias cut of the underdress fabric.
     For the underdress I again used the t-tunic pattern but made it with an elbow length sleeve.  The dress itself is only knee length since I had only 5 yards of fabric and I knew the lower portion of the sleeves would require a lot of fabric. 
     I have a diagram of the shape I cut for the lower sleeve.  I used almost a full yard for each sleeve.  The open part on the diagram is where I attached the lower sleeve to the upper sleeve.
     The time consuming part was cutting the two necklines to lay similar to what the pictures of Arwen show.  It took about 1 1/2 hours of trying the gowns on, marking with a pencil/straight pins, whipping the gowns off then gradually cutting them until I had the look I wanted.  There must be an easier way....     
     I edged the under dress neckline and elbow with a 2" strip of the organza then over that sewed on the woven trim.  After that I attached the lower sleeve then sewed all the side seams and hems.  Total work time into was around 4.5 hours....that's not counting the time I obsessed over which dress to make!   I'm not going to admit how long that was.
      What I learned was that I will probably not use craft trim again even though it looks great because it's stiff and a bit scratchy.  It's good for a last minute fix if you have to though.  I would make the lower sleeves longer on the bottom too.  I liked how they turned out but due to the lack of fabric I couldn't make them as long as they needed to be.  

Sleeve pattern

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This page was last updated 11/21/09