wind wizardry (zephie), skirting the issue

Even though the pattern for this costume is by far 1230808230958x more difficult than my Xianghua costume, I was very lucky to have my first sample FIT, with only some minor corrections.

All the times I rushed to the fabric stores to pick up materials for Xianghua, I kept my eyes peeled for materials I could possibly use for this costume, since I knew I wouldn't have very much time at all.

Among the main fabrics I've decided to use for Zephie's outfit, I purchased a semi-stretchy active-wear fabric with a good amount of spandex (similar to an interlock jersey, or a doubleknit) for the side panels (I'll have to stiffen the collar with a thick fusible); a stretch twill for the center front, and a printed cotton fabric for the skirt.

The easiest part was the skirt...or so I thought. I wanted to speed through it and cut the entire skirt in a circle, thinking there would be enough flounce. Unfortunately there wasn't enough, so I ended up cutting 4 pieces total for each of the skirt's layers, 2 layers total, then cutting corresponding pieces of tulle (still leftover from the Bjork costume) to give more pouf underneath. I pleated the entire skirt as it was pinned on the dressform to make sure the look was similar to the illustration.

The drawback to my fabric was that the rose print was so faint the details wouldn't stand out as they should, so I had to paint, again. I used my favorite Jacquard Lumiere textile paint, in Pearlescent White, let it dry 24 hours, heat-set the paint, then painted some outlines in Metallic Gold.

The picture above this one shows the completely painted flounce.

The skirt edges were bound off with 1/4" self-binding, meticulously cut and pressed.
One round took me one hour to sew.

The extra 2 hours it takes to add the binding to the edge makes a big difference in
the overall quality of the garment. Look how clean the 2nd layer looks with the binding
as opposed to the top layer which has not been bound off.

Now, the lace I found for the 3rd layer of the skirt was the most expensive part of this project. It was $30/yard. That cost MORE than my entire 5.2 square feet of LEATHER! I had to buy 2 yards of this lace. And then I had to dye it. It did not absorb the dark brown dye very well--I stirred it for 40 minutes.

The 1st attempt: why isn't it dark brown!?! :(

Dyeing the 2nd time. Looks nasty! Like brains?!

I left the lace to dye longer the 2nd time and did not wash it out as thoroughly as I did the first time. If I were to be wearing this costume everyday, I'd have to wash it out completely, but since I'm wearing this for a mere 2 days (barely), I don't need to.

The 3rd layer skirt's base fabric was a slinky lining fabric called "Ambience" that is not super cheap ($7/yard. I only used half a yard, though) but has a beautiful drape and will not bulk up the rest of the skirt.

Each piece of the skirt was cut circular.

I overlocked the edges of the lining to make my life easier..

My noisy, part-time best-friend.

Here's the completed skirt portion in all its semi-glory...

There's a top piece that connects to the bodice (not shown). The skirt also does not fit over the shoulders of my dressform :(


Hanako66 said...

you are a wizard

Anonymous said...

Ouf... Zephie looks like a pain in the butt. :[


Siera/ClamWings said...

There are no words for how excited I am to see you doing a Magna Carta character!

I'm such a fan of Hyung-tae Kim's designs, and the materials that you're working with look positively gorgeous! I'm really looking forward to seeing more of your progress on this <3