FOUNDATIONS REVEALED COMPETITION ENTRY
Outline the story …
In the middle of October 2020 I was gifted a device that I was craving to have throughout the entire year of watching costube - a sewing machine. It was an old one, but I got her for free from a fellow member of a zero-waste themed facebook group I quickly got her up and running and checked if there was a theme for competition published already. It was, and it was appealing to my greenhorn self.
A month prior I had styled myself as a Slavic demonette for an event and I liked the look, so I've decided to take it to the next level. I've chosen a suitable character and it is a nymph from a ballad by a fantastic Polish poet, Adam Mickiewicz. The ballad is called 'Świtezianka' or ' The Nymph of Lake Switez', as I have found for the English version, and I have some lovely memories related to this piece, so double the fun.
The ballad tells a love story between a young lad and a fair maiden, who have been meeting by the lake throughout the entire summer. At the beginning of autumn, the man sort of proposed to her, but she was unsure of his intentions, so he swore to never betray her. Later that evening, he has encountered a stunning nymph of the lake, who tried to lure him into following her into the water. The nymph is a character that I've attempted to convey in my costume. (full ballad: https://thaiguy20fromla.tumblr.com/post/5294124343)
Outline the construction…
Since my experience with machine sewing was non-existent, I've decided to start learning by making a corset and chemise a la reine inspired dress. I felt like I've watched enough costube to attempt that task and, you know, if there is a big chance of failure, better make it an epic one :D I intended for flowy, fog-like, water-related results while working with thrifted materials only.
For the corset, I somehow found the archival version of FR article on how to draft a basic pattern. It felt illegal to use it, not gonna lie, but I went with it since it was my best shot for a nice fit. Construction-wise I pad-stitched fashion and lining fabrics together, stitched them with raw edges to the inside, and then used seam allowances as boning channels on both sides of each seam. For both the corset and the dress I used strips of fabric cut on bias as a binding. Front closure is just a zipper, but the back is laced with a string that I made myself. For the flossing, I wanted something extra to contradict white on white, so I did my best to backstitch a wave pattern.
I needed to drape the dress, so I took bodice and skirt patterns from my clothes and created a fitted underdress. It needed some MacGyvering in order to fit properly, draping over it was a pain, and the sleeves are definitely held in place by magic, but we're here, so yay :D