Monday, March 23, 2015

Cinderella Completed - Part I of III

I've been working on this blog post for an entire week now and it has become so big that it will take too long to finish before I can share any of it with you.  That lead me to the conclusion that I should break it into parts.  At first I thought I'd break it into two parts, construction & events.  However, the two events that I've worn this to each have their own story and have become large posts on their own.  That is why I have determined to break it into three parts.  I will release them on separate dates, so please stick with me, because the third one is the biggest and the bestest.

Happy Reading!

Cinderella Completed - Part I


Well now is the time that I have the honor of sharing this project's completion with you.  First, I'd like to recap. I had inspiration, sometime in January, to make a gown for the new Cinderella movie.  At the same time, I was wondering what I was going to make for the upcoming Spring Dapper Day at Disneyland.  I like going in 1950's attire when I "step out in style" at this event.  The combination of these two thought processes lead me to combine my efforts.  The design became decided, that my Cinderella would be a 1950's rendition of the gown, to be worn at the ball in the new live action movie, as pictured above.

I went to my favorite local thrift store for my first stop to shop for fabric.  Amazingly there was a shower curtain in the linen department.  It was a sheer blue, with a bit of a shimmer to it, in the right color range.  It cost me a few dollars, along with some closely matching bedsheets for the solid fabric for the bodice and slip in the skirt.

My next thrift store stop, while shopping for something completely different, is where I found the shoes.  $7 silver high heels with gem stones secured to it, completely covering the shoes surface.

I found butterflies and seed beads at JoAnn fabric store, along with notions.  Then I shuffled through my pattern box(es) to find ones that would work for the vision I had of the complete gown.  I found Simplicity's "Mirror Mirror" pattern #1728.  It would work for the bodice, minus the puff sleeves. Then I pulled out a basic skirt pattern, any full skirt pattern would do, once it was adjusted to the proper length.  Then I was off and running, (with scissors), lol.

The process of putting this costume together went fairly well. The bodice came together quickly as you can see in the production photo below that shows it in a partial state of progress.  I wanted a "v" in the front but not the back, so this pattern would work well for my design. I modified the white wedding dress pattern at the top right of the pattern cover photo to not have the puff sleeves.  With this modification I had to decide how to finish off my armholes.  The single fold bias tape method seemed the best option, but I ran into an issue.  It was extremely difficult to find a color of tape that I liked.  I forgot my swatch of fabric the first time I went and now have a package of light blue single fold bias tape in my notions box that didn't match at all.  Then with a second trip came the process to the final choice.  I was thinking white at this point, like the butterflies I had found to add to the poof on the bodice (as seen and explained below). However I knew that would make it very obvious and I wanted it to be more subtle.  I came upon a darker blue at this point, rather a medium blue tone that I decided would work very well for the subtle, yet finished look that I desired.

So I finished up the bodice with the bias tape. Then made a basic, yet full skirt with the shower curtain organza fabric.  Gathering organza is a pain in the neck, to get it to lay still, but it came together fairly quick.  I made sure to save a bit of it for the poof at the top of the bodice, before sewing up the skirt.

After it was sewn together, then came the fun part.  Every night of the next two weeks was dedicated to hand sewing on little itty bitty seed beads for the little teeny tiny bit of sparkle I desired. I wanted it to catch the light, but I didn't want it to be obvious that it was beading that caused it.  It was supposed to be magic causing it to sparkle, not a trick of the light thrown off of beads.  I did at one point try to add small clear sequins, but they were too big.  So little itty bitty seed beads were sewn on in as random a fashion as I could.  Around and around the skirt until it was the fullness of sparkle that I desired.

After the skirt & bodice were done being sewn, it was time to add the poof around the shoulders. I had intended to incorporate the tube of sheer fabric into the the bodice as I put in the zipper and spaced, missing that step.  It ended up working itself out because my zipper application was sub-par. The two sides didn't line up with each other and there was a 3/8" difference.  The poof tube being separately installed helped me mask the mistake.

Once I'd sewn it onto the back, I hand tacked it around the top edge of the bodice, playing the divide, divide, divide game. Not whip stitching it completely down, only at strategic points helped it maintain it's poofy look.  Then for the butterflies.  They also helped with the final outcome of the structure of the poof.  Wherever one was placed and tacked in, it created another bit of definition until it was finally the desired, even randomness.

I made a headband like the one that was in the original movie and loved it, but I have a hard time wearing them.  I tried to wear it at the first event, putting my hair up like the original movie, adding in the head band, but it just didn't fit the design I had in mind.  So I changed to leaving my hair down as it is in the new live action version.  You'll see also that I wore the black ribbon necklace, like the original movie, at my first event.  But at the second event it wasn't worn.  It just didn't work either.  These things work themselves out the more the outfits are worn.  The second event was perfect in accessories, hair, and gown.

That is it for construction, hopefully you enjoyed walking through that process with me.  The next post will be in a day or two and it covers the Disneyland trip for Dapper Day!  Thanks for joining me. Until next time, happy sewing, dreaming and as Ella says, "Have courage and be kind."

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