Tutorial #1: Padme Amidala's White Tatooine Costume

This is my second true Star Wars costume. I'm still in the process of finishing it, but I will post a tutorial of what I've done so far so that anybody interested can use some of my ideas.

Note: Click on pictures for a larger version. Especially this high-res picture on the left, it's a great reference photo.

Parts I still need to complete:

1. Headpiece (please email me if you've made this before and can help me)

2. Shoes

Part One: The Skirt

For me, the skirt was the easiest part to make. I believe I used only about two or two and a half yards of fabric for this. I used my sister as model/mannequin (she's pretty much the same height as me), and bunched the fabric up around her waist. Then I pinned along the line that I wanted to sew and sewed it. See the diagram below for a visual explanation, though my artistic skills aren't that good, he he. I used two sets of hook and eye clasps to hold the skirt together. See the picture below for the hook and eye clasps, I think I got four of them for $1.49 or something like that. In the picture below, it has a diagram of how to sew them on, if you're wondering.

     

As far as hemming goes, I only hemmed along the bottom of the skirt. I pinned a hem along the folds that come down from the center of the waist and tried it on, but it doesn't look good. Just make sure that the edge is as straight as possible, and it should look fine. More experienced seamstresses may be able to find a way around this to hem it and make it look good, but I'm not that good yet, he he.

For the decoration, I am fortunate enough to have a mother who is really into beading and making jewelry. She let me use some of her seed beads to make the beaded decoration on the skirt. For those not familiar with the term, seed beads are tiny tubular beads. The picture to the left is of seed beads, and just so you know what you're looking at, this picture shows the seed beads threaded onto wire and lined up next to each other.  Here's a picture of the beaded part of the decoration that I made:

 

Now, I attached this to the dress really oddly, I'm pretty sure I'm the only person who's doing this on TheForce.net's Costuming board. I had some extra presentation board lying around the house. Presentation board is like poster board, but it's sturdier and a little thicker. I cut a  6 1/2 in. by 3 3/8 in. piece. I took some scrap pieces of the fabric I used for the dress and layered them, I think I used four pieces. (I originally used just one piece, and it looked like crap, so I decided to layer it to give it a more padded look.) Lay out the fabric pieces on top of each other and put the presentation board on top. Then fold the fabric over onto the back of the presentation board so it's nice and snug and staple it into place. Make sure there aren't any staples poking out anywhere, or on the front side. I haven't finished the decor piece yet because I still need to sew the beads onto the presentation board piece. To finish this piece, you just curl the end of the presentation board in a loop so it looks like this from the side:

After you sew on the beads, you're done. To wear this, put the skirt on, and then slip the beaded decoration into the skirt in the front, so the beads are showing, like this: 

That won't make sense to anyone because I can't draw. But if you can understand that diagram, it should help. That's all for the skirt!

Part 2: The Wrap Top and Hood

For me, this was the most difficult part, even though everyone else on TheForce.net found it easy! I did it in two parts, and made my own pattern: the hood and the wrap top. To make the pattern, I took a wrap top that I already had, pinned the sleeves inside so they weren't included when I made the pattern, and folded the bottom of the top up a little bit so the pattern would be for a shirt that shows the midriff. Here's a rough drawing of the pattern I made, scaled down of course:

Oh my goodness, what a hideous drawing. Anyways, to cut the fabric for the two front panels, fold along the line in the middle, from the top of the shoulder to the opposite bottom corner of the shirt. Make two of those. Then you just sew it together like a regular shirt. You can hem the bottom if you want to, but I didn't, and this is why: to make it look more like it does in the movie, tuck the bottom of the shirt underneath your bra. That way you don't have to hem it, and it gives it the same look as it is in the movie. Of course, that means it's a bit shorter than the top in the movie, but I'm just telling you guys the way I did it.

For the hood, I used this reference picture off of The Jedi-Temple Guide to Costuming:

I made two hoods. One I made using the above reference picture, and the other I made the same way only the I made it so the seam was along the top of the hood, not the back. Then I sewed them together wrong-side out and left the bottom not sewed so you could turn it right side out. The reason I made one hood with the seam on the top instead of the back of the hood is because the hood is left down most of the time in the movie, and this is one way to avoid having an awful seam showing down the back of the hood.

To sew the hood onto the wrap top, would be really really hard to explain, so here is a reference picture. If you're still having trouble trying to decipher what the hell I'm talking about in this picture, just email me and I'll try to explain it better:

Part Three: The Cape

The cape was the third part of my costume. I made my own pattern similar to this pattern below out of newspaper:

I hemmed all the edges, but have yet to put the design on the cape. I used a hook and eye clasp on each 'sleeve' to keep it wrapped around my arm and make it look 'sleeve-like' without sewing it (because that would make it un-pretty. he he).

Part Four: Accessories

Headpiece: I have no clue what I'm going to do for the headpiece. If you have any ideas, just let me know, please. Thanks!

Shoes: I'm thinking white slippers to go with the overall comfiness of the outfit. :)

Pattern: I have yet to put the pattern on the back, but a fellow TFNer suggested to cut out a stencil to use for the pattern, that way they're all the same and it's harder to mess up. I think I'm going with that method, when I get around to it.

Part Five: Reference Pictures

          

Note: I'll have pictures of my costume up as soon as I take them!