Lord of the Rings.

From the first time I read Lord of the Rings in the late 70's, I have always wanted to make middle earth costumes. At the time, it was not fashionable. I was told to grow up. Ha! Now I have another reason to make them. And I have a gorgeous husband who will look wonderful as Aragorn...
The theme of my birthday this year is, of course, Lord of the Rings. Are you surprised?

 Firstly Aragorn's Costume.
Materials: red linen (on sale for $5/ m!) for this shirt from Return of the King. I did not make it as an exact replica from the movie, as it was also intended for use in the SCA afterwards. For this reason, I did not make a yoke at the shoulders. The seams were folded over and hand sewn down with approx. 3mm running stitch. This is consistent with archeological findings (Textiles and Clothing) and Archeological Sewing website. The neckline was edged in linen bias, trimmed with handsewn linen thread.

This is a more detailed pic of the neck treatment:

Right: This is a picture of the final outfit, on the night, with leather pants, boots it is more complete


Well, only a weeks to go, so onto my outfit: who else but Arwen.

Arwen's Outfit is a little more complicated. Most of her outfits are of a similar style, appearing to be an underdress with the lovely flowing sleeves, with a sleeveless overdress. Both have lovely trim detailing with the trim being quite wide on the underdress and thinner on the overdress.
This was definately more of a fantasy dress, so I did not even try to make this rewearable as SCA garb.

Materials: What joy! the overdress looks mysteriously like panne velvet. I had some dark purple panne velvet in my stash. I bought this seven years ago, intending to make a costume for a SF convention but never got around to it. I had just enough to make the under and overdress (with 30cm to spare!).

Sleeves: I managed to get some silver chiffon on sale. I wondered on how to make them and thought of a square with the corner cut out. This would still give the length but not near the hand, so the sleeves were useable. This also made best use of the small amount of material I had. It was after I made them, that I remembered a sketch off The Two Towers which, as a happy circumstance, has a similar appearance to the cut of the sleeves. Oh joy, again.

Trim: Time was running out... I wanted a texture to the braid, as seen in the top picture from Return of the King. This was not an easy task. I needed trim at least an inch wide for the under dress, and a thinner trim of similar colour for the overdress. Time was running out. I did a quick shop, my daughter in tow. There was no wide trim in silver, but a nice 1.5cm wide trim (below R). However, as luck would have it, found some plain trim (below L) I could double up to get the width, with a nice grey-silver trim (below Centre) to go on top.


This gave a nice texture and width required for the underdress trim. So what followed was a lot of handsewing...

Right: The finished trim...


Images from Return of the King.

My version of sleeves...

Left: are the almost finished dresses, hanging to let the hem drop. I have two weeks till my party. This should be long enough.


Right: The finished outfit. With the Evenstar jewel David gave me for our 5th anniversary.


Party Pics can be seen HERE