Friday, August 1, 2014

Queen Regina's Purple Dress - Part 4

Wow. Blogging about this dress has gone so much more quickly than the actual creation. That's always, true, of course, but after working on this particular costume for three months, it began to feel like I was never going to get to share the whole thing with y'all. So exciting to finally be posting the last piece today!

(Don't forget to read part 3 if you haven't yet!)

Remember how I said the trim came in spools of 15 feet? WELL that was about 2.5 feet less than what I needed to trim the back how I wanted. Even another 6 inches would have allowed me to reach the bottom of the peplum. Alas. It was not to be. So I played around and came up with something that was a decent fix.

If you're making this costume and you have a really narrow waist, you could probably get away with the 15 feet. However, if you want the trim to reach up the back slit, and if you've got a normal waist, you'll want at least 17 feet. Which means tracking down a trim option other than this one - or buying two rolls. (I used a coupon on the Hobby Lobby website and one roll came to $20 with shipping. Which comes out to $4 a yard, just for comparison.)

I folded, pinned and stitched down the outer edge of the trim first. Little pleats were necessary around the curves. I made sure to pin it while on the dress form to ensure the right curvature over the bust. Pinning it off the form would have created weird buckling and gaping issues.

I stitched down the inside of the trim and added the frog closures in front. You can pick these up at JoAnn's on the Notions Wall, although I recommend waiting until you have a total purchase coupon or a notions wall coupon, as they get pricey fast. I think I spent around $17 for the four of these.

Can you spot something interesting about this panel? This was the very last skirt panel and we ran out of purple thread on the last half of it! 2000 meters was not enough, apparently! Unfortunately we couldn't match it perfectly in the time we had, so we went with the best we could find. Thankfully it isn't too noticeable with the way the fabric catches the light anyhow.

Originally I was going to make a completely separate skirt, but I was afraid that this would create a lot of slipping around and since the fabric was so thin I was able to insert it into the bodice without adding a lot of bulk. I made a very thin waistband out of bias tape to cover the raw edges, and stitched in the ditch on the outside to secure it. This method worked VERY well.

Ahhhh look at it!

I still can't believe I really embroidered all of those flowers.

The back trim turned out okay!

BTW, I used 6 yards of the blue fabric and that was just barely enough. For a taller woman I'd want at least 7.

I actually snapped these photos before hemming the skirt, as I knew I wouldn't have time to put it back on the form before shipping it out.

The overskirt was running just a tad shorter than I wanted, so I pulled some black lace out of my stash and used it as hem tape. It worked really well and added a really special touch for the interior of the dress.

Because my client wanted to wear this in a crowded environment with lots of walking, bustle hooks were a must! I put just one on the underskirt and one on the overskirt. Three would have been idea, but I didn't want to make it too fussy to put up.

I also needed to make sure that the underskirt waistband didn't slip down from under the bodice and expose tummy. So I put two hooks in the underskirt waistband...

...and the corresponding eyes in the bodice.

Overskirt all bustled up!

At that point I shipped off everything except the bra, which I still needed to finish. This went very quickly. I stitched down some of the lining fabric over the sheer lace cups, then appliqued on the beaded pieces.

If you read the introductory post, you'll know that my client needed to have alterations done to expand the waistband. Above she is wearing the altered dress (although honestly I can't even tell it was altered from here). And yes, she is wearing that at the San Diego Comic Con!

And that, folks, is how I recreated Queen Regina's Purple Apple Dress from "Once Upon a Time." It was a crazy adventure, but a very cool one - and I even made a new friend out of it!


  1. Congratulations to you and the happy (evil) client. She looks awesome.

  2. What a good blog you have here. Please update it more often. This topics is my interest. Thank you. . .



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