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Lilac Handmaiden
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2020 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooh! Your kimono fabric came out great! Very Happy I hope you'll get the chance to do more on this before the move, but otherwise we'll just have to wait for more updates in the new year.
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks like I forgot to update this thread since we arrived in Guam. Our stuff finally came and I have my very own sewing room now (yay!). I've been slowly working away at small aspects of this, but it finally feels like it might be a costume.

First, the undershirt. We can see very little of in the movie, but the comics suggest that it at least has sleeves of the same material as the collar and belt. I decided to go with a full shirt of the iridescent bubble organza, but the belt is not attached to the shirt at the top, so I could put a sleeveless velvet shirt over the top if I wanted to do the comic style.

I altered this off of the pattern I used for my battle handmaiden shirt, plus a neckline and collar borrowed from senatorial Leia.





I lined it with left-over fabric from Admiral Holdo v.1, which was a great call for how itchy and transparent this stuff is.



For the belt bit, I made a 10" high rectangle, folded it in half, and then sewed 5" elastic into the side seams. This wasn't quite enough to put scrunches in place around the whole belt, so I had to do some invisible tacking by hand to keep the whole thing 5" tall all around.





Looking at the references, the collar is going to need some scrunching down around the neck, but it has already been fray-checked to keep that nice raw edge looking sharp.


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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Next up is the capelet.

This is what one kimono worth of silk looks like:



Notice how there are several collar pieces that are already cut half-width, and that the main body pieces have a perpendicular cut about half-way down the piece, where the neck attachment was. This required some very careful piecing to get everything to fit. By the time I had cut everything I needed for the capelet, hood, yoke, and lining, this was all the fabric I had left:



I had to do some pretty aggressive piecing with the lining, since I was running out of large sections to cut from.





In hindsight, I made a mistake by not ironing the fabric before cutting. Given the jacquard texture, it had scrunched quite a bit during the dying process, and ironing made it relax quite a bit wider (after everything was cut). Had I ironed it first, I probably could have gotten some of the pieces lined up three across thereby minimizing waste and giving me larger lining pieces to work with.

Here's the lining all together, over the shirt.



I'm really pleased with the proportions here. Only a tiny bit of the shirt is peeking out.

The hood brim, lining, and capelet piping was cut out of left-over silk-cotton from Apailana's hakama, that I had dyed just a bit pinker. I think this will need about 18 yards of piping, but I may have gone a bit overboard here, with something like 29 yards of it:




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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 6:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, where I am now is hand stitching the Battenberg lace appliques to the front panels and hood of the capelet.

After their brief dip in Holdo dye, the lace still needed to be a bit darker and a bit bluer, so I dipped in a blue and pink dye bath to darken it a little bit more. This was done really unscientifically, so I don't have dye measurements for this particular color outcome.

It took several days of seam ripping, snipping, and arranging to get a set-up of lace pieces that I liked. The hood is still going to need some work and possibly more lace pieces, but I'm going to wait to fiddle with that until I've perfected my methods on the flatter panels.







Each panel has been backed with iron-on interfacing, but I'm also using stabilizer to give it some extra strength behind the lace. Each flower takes about 45 minutes to fully tack down, so this is going to be a long, though calming process.





I'm also really excited to have convinced my 501st friend Anna to come join the light side and make another one of these to match for Celebration. We've been accused of being related on several occasions, so I think we'll make fantastic decoys for the the queen.


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Summer Dreams Padmé, Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden, Saché, TOR Jedi

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naberrie ()
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It’s looking lovely as always Jenna!
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2021 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Omg, that is looking SO stunning and both the shirt fabric and cape fabric is to dye for! Very Happy Amadalia

Love the way the shirt turned out and the cape is looking great so far!
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2021 5:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks all! I'm really in love with all the textures and variations on lilac on this. Sewing the lace down takes a long time, but I don't mind it all. Handing this fabric is a dream. At this point, I'm on the 5th of 8 panels, with the yoke and hood still left too. It's going to be a while yet before I can put any of this together.

Meanwhile, here's some of my notes on how I was thinking about collecting and arranging the Battenberg lace.



And since my handwriting is awful, here's a bit more of my thoughts (exhibit photos from Kay_Dee):

There are five panels on each side of the front, but only the first four have lace on them. The right and left sides have mirrored lace arrangements on them, that are otherwise identical. This means, you will need lace pieces for the capelet that have at least two (mirrored) repetitions of the same designs.



Each of the four lace panels has lace decorations that are about 2/3 the height of the one before it.



The yoke and both sides of the hood have the same lace pattern. This means you'll need at least three of the same triangular repetition. I had four of the same lace collars, so I used three here and cut up the fourth for the capelet panels.



The top bit of the centermost panels and down the back of the hood have a similar (same?) vine-like piece. The back of the hood has an extra flower at the end, and it looks like it has different stuff going on at the base of the vine, near the top of the hood than the front panels do.



The lace on the brim hood is a separate piece than the rest of the hood (you can see the different style of petal fillers) and it uses that straight edge to cover the raw edge of whatever is on the main part of the hood.



Interestingly, it looks like the leaves/petals on the hood are only up the sides, not on the bottom (under the chin) or over the top.

Also note that the fabric on the brim is bias-cut.

The other thing to look for when you are buying lace bits is that the lace here has lots of eyelets. Not all Battenberg lace uses eyelets, even when it has flowers. For a couple of places, I just cut off some spare eyelets from a non-floral doily and stitched them to the center of flowers without eyelets. It's a rough fix but looks decent from a distance.
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Summer Dreams Padmé, Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden, Saché, TOR Jedi

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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2021 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! Thanks for the detailed write up! Very Happy
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naberrie ()
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PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for all the detail Jenna! Beautiful
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Beth Mitchell (Naberrie)
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks all for the cheering along. It's a slow process.

Thanks to Rebelthon this weekend, I finished the last of the front panels!



Now I'm working my way across the yoke, which is looking like it's going to be a pretty long process.



I think I will take a break from hand-sewing when I finish this to assemble the caplet before diving back into the hood.
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Summer Dreams Padmé, Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden, Saché, TOR Jedi

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naberrie ()
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ahhhh beautiful Jenna! so lovely and neat
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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gorgeous! Amadalia I'm loving following this costume build.
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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2021 3:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More progress! The yoke is done and I'm about half way through the hood.

The yoke took one large and one medium hoop to stitch it all down. Most of the pieces were from a single lace collar, but I clipped off the outline and loosened up some of the connections so that it would lay flatter. I filled in the far ends with a few extra bits.



And here it is finished!





To give an idea of how much stitching it takes to get it to all lay flat and look cohesive, here's the back of the main hoop while I was working on the yoke.



I cut the stabilizer large enough to fill the whole hoop, to keep a good tension, but then I cut it down to just smaller than the yoke itself once I was done.
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In planning and progress:
Summer Dreams Padmé, Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden, Saché, TOR Jedi

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SongofAmazon (Jenna)
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2021 3:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The last piece is the hood, and it's taking me as much time as all of the rest of the lace combined. I've finished the left side and am about 2/3 done with the top, but it's easily taken 70+ hours so far. I'm catching up on a lot of movies in the process. dizzy

Here's it all laid out flat when I was rearranging my pieces.





The main triangle shape on the side will look familiar, as it is primarily built out of another of the same lace collar as the yoke, just more snipped apart and rearranged.

The border piece between the hood and the brim fabric was a bit tricky, because I didn't have any straight pieces long enough to go around the entire hood. Instead, I used three pieces, where the ends are hidden under that little three-leafed bit on the center of the brim on each side.



Because the big hoop didn't quite fit all of the left side, I had to do a couple small hoops on each end to wrap it up, like this one:



Here's what it all looked like done:





The huge piece of facing was causing more stiffness than I wanted in the shape of the hood, so I trimmed it down to the shape of the lace.





Though even that still provides quite a bit of shape, to the hood, which explains some of the square silhouette when it's on the handmaidens' heads.

So now, onward to the top bit that curves over the center seam. Because of the curve of the hood, I have to use much smaller hoops. It is kind of refreshing to feel like I'm making progress faster though. Here's a small example of the difference stitching things down can make.





I just finished this hoop last night, but I probably have 2 more little hoops left over the center back.


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Summer Dreams Padmé, Riyo Chuchi, Havoc Trooper, Amilyn Holdo, Lilac Handmaiden, Saché, TOR Jedi

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Lora Skywalker ()
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 08, 2021 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's so beautiful! Amadalia
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