Sunday, April 14, 2013

Green Medieval Gown

So, this was the first costume I ever made. It was for my friend’s birthday party themed ‘History’. At this point in time (3 years ago?) I hadn’t sewn anything since year 8 textiles which was about 4 years earlier. So needless to say I pretty much had no idea what I was doing!

I wanted something relatively simple to construct and sew that would ease me into it. I found the Butterick pattern #4827 and decided to use it as it was a) one of the most historically accurately looking commercial costume patterns out there, b) it looked relatively easy to use.

From memory I don’t think I had any trouble using this pattern at all. Even with my inexperience I found the instructions easy to follow and the sizes generally true to what the packet said.

I decided to make it in a plain forest green cotton as it was cheap and somewhat accurate to the historical period. I’m fairly certain that I also took inspiration in the colour palette from one of Eowyn’s costumes from The Lord of the Rings.

The only alterations I made to the pattern were changing the shape of the neckline to more of a v shape (I think this was actually an accident, I have a feeling that I stuffed something up and had to do this to hide it), and adding some draped sleeves that hang from the elbows. The inside of these sleeves is lined with green velvet and the seam where they attach to the gown is covered by gold braiding. Inspiration for the sleeves was taken from Edmund Blair’s famous painting ‘The Godspeed’ shown below.

Here is the finished product:

I think all in all it took me about 2-3 solid days of work to finish it. I had this brown belt laying around so I also used that (and a round metal thing) for a girdle.

As you can tell I don’t have any nice photos of it (or many of my other costumes for that matter) which will have to be rectified as soon as I can get my sister to bring her fancy camera down one day.

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