Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween 2012 - Princess Leia

Yes, Princess Leia! What do you think? I think it's pretty adorable! 

I sewed the white tunic and made the hair piece. I referenced internet images of the ceremonial gown which Princess Leia wore in the very first Star Wars movie that was released in 1977. Here's what I'm talking about.

I did make some changes to accommodate a baby's figure. The collar is much wider on my version, although there is still a keyhole at the back like the movie-version. Also, my version is tunic-length instead of floor-length to accommodate those bendy baby legs.

The belt is sewn onto the front of the tunic but the two ends are left dangling free at the back so that the tunic can be cinched in slightly at the waist if necessary by "velcro-ing" or tying the ends together. The medallions on the belt are made from felt. The shapes of the medallions are true to the movie-version.

The sleeves are folded in the photo above - they're actually much fuller, like trumpet sleeves. You can see them in later photos in this post.

The hair - the signature element of the costume - is a lady's pantyhose/stocking. I stuffed the stocking legs with batting, wound them up and sewed each one to the side. Although the hair is the most important element of the costume, I think I only spent about 15 minutes on it!

The white leggings are Rachel's pajamas (sshhh!!).

The tunic has an attached hood as well, just like the movie-version. In fact, it is constructed exactly like the movie-version, as in, it's not a conventional hood. Rather, it is a (somewhat) rectangular piece of cloth with the short ends sewn onto the tunic so there is an opening at the back.

I am quite pleased with the tunic because I made it a point to make a proper garment and not just cobble something together. It reminded me of why I enjoy making costumes so much - I really enjoy figuring out the construction and design, modifying it according to my vision and testing my skills in the execution. There is just one thing I would change if I were to make this all over again - I would make a hood that snaps on and off and in a lighter material.

I realised, however, that there aren't that many people who are familiar with Princess Leia. More often, they know Queen Amidala from the second Star Wars trilogy. There's a real generation gap here and I'm showing my age with this choice - I'm truly a child of the 80s! Someone also said that she looks a bit like a Chinese princess from the time of the Chinese dynasties! Oh well, I'm not discouraged - in fact, I'm even more motivated to preserve the icons of my generation in future costumes - how about some Elvis Presley or some Beatles? Or even some Michael Jackson?

I don't have as many photos of Rachel here compared to photos of Ryan in yesterday's post - it's not easy to pose a wriggly 4-month old baby, hahaha! Having said that, I have a lot more photos of Rachel at the Halloween than I have of Ryan! That's for tomorrow's post but here's an advance peek!

Rachel at Halloween party at Art Bug (photo pinched from Shann)


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