The biggest project of 2011 was a Sleepy Hollow themed wedding party I designed/constructed based on costumes from the 1999 movie version. It included the Bride’s dress, underpinnings and cloak, Maid of Honour dress with underpinnings, Mother of the Bride dress, Father of the Bride waistcoat and ascot, and a period shirt, waistcoat and ascot for the Maid of Honour’s husband. All except the Mother of the Bride dress were made from patterns I drafted myself based on photos of the movie costumes, and historical garment research.
The Bride’s dress was based on the peach gown worn by Christina Ricci in an early scene in the film. It is constructed in the 18th century style of the movie – this was just prior to the French Revolution and the Regency period, so the gowns are 2 piece (skirt and bodice), with a conical shape to the bodice that is laced up the back. The gown is fairly full and lays flat across the front with fullness at the sides and back – though not nearly as extreme as the ‘Marie Antoinette’ look. This was the end of that period and the wide panniers had begun to soften. The fact that the story takes place in rural America also means the fashions would be less influenced by the look fashionable in Europe. The distinctive silhouette is achieved by an 18th century style corset (although these were quite lightly boned), a lightweight version of panniers (traditionally made of cane and fabric – cages that hung over the hips to hold the skirt out), and a petticoat with a wide ruffle at the bottom edge.
I had previously made dresses for the three ladies in 2010 for the Maid of honour’s wedding.
The Maid of Honour’s Dress was based on the costume worn by the Midwife in the movie. It is a 2 piece gown in contrasting colours. The bodice is green linen lined with muslin and features appliqué leaves across the neckline and a ruffled peplum. The buttons are self covered with elastic loops for ease of movement and to keep the buttons on centre. The skirt is a wide pinstripe suiting with appliqué leaves on the front panel.
The Mother of the Bride dress was made from a purchased pattern (Simplicity 4092) with design modifications, and a self drafted lightweight pannier. Since the pattern already had an underskirt and the client’s wish to stay cool, there was no need for a petticoat.
The centre bodice panel (what would have been a stomacher) was made with a lace overlay over a mottled print cotton. Small ribbon bows were tacked to the bodice and sleeve backs.
The Father of the Bride’s Waistcoat - Brocade lined with grey broadcloth. The buttonholer attachment for my sewing machine came in handy!
Here are some ‘poodle’ skirts I made up for a local costume rental house. They had a good collection of the iconic circle skirts, but were lacking a selection of larger sizes. These were all made from lightweight twill (not as heavy or warm as the traditional felt) with felt appliqués of a poodle, scottie dog and vinyl record. The dog leashes are black sequin trim.
MORE PROJECTS COMING SOON!