Princess Leia Princess Leia Hoth & Bespin city costumes

Discussion in 'Costuming and Props' started by Zam-the-Assasin, Jul 17, 2002.

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  1. Obischick Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2001
    star 4
    Awesome, lavagrrrl! Thanks for the tip on the fabric. I wasn't lucky enough to see the costumes at CIII, I think I was trying to wrangle my boyfriend and younger sisters :p but we still had fun.

    Did you put any padding into your costume to make it more snowsuit-ish? If so, do you have any tips? I've never had to do anything like that before so I'm at a bit of a loss if I should do it or not. Probably should, I'm thinking.

    Thanks for all your help so far!

    ~Obischick~[face_peace]
  2. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    Just a question on the embroidery colors for the Bespin cape/cloak. I know that some people (esp Padawans Guide) used copper thread--but on what part? From pictures, I'm having trouble distinguishing the reddish brown from copper.

    Also, did people interface/shadow stitch the X's in the fishscale pattern? Some of the reference shots look like those might have had some sort of backing to them.
  3. PadawansGuide Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 3
    Hi Jade Walker!

    I used copper thread for a piece of the upper middle and at the top.

    Here's a photo with an arrow pointing out where the copper is:
    http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d164/padawansguide/copper.jpg

    The reason I used it is that if you look at the photo of the real thing:
    http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d164/padawansguide/copper2.jpg

    you can see there are sections which are outlined with a reddish brown color, but are shaded white. Other sections of it that are outlined in reddish brown are shaded with reddish brown, so a shadow stitch will give it the right cast. So I guess I used the copper thread so I could get the right color outline without shading it reddish brown. It was a pain in the butt to work with, so I don't know if I'd recommend it - except that the sections I used it on here small, so it wasn't that bad.

    I just used the shadow stitch on all the fishscales - I didn't want to deal with figuring out how to back it with something. I wasn't sure how to do that!

  4. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    That was quick! Thanks, PG. I appreciate the help. And I see it now.
    Now that COSI and some other events are done, I am starting to try to figure out how to approximate this by the less accurate machine embroidery process. I like playing with computer programs. ;) Plus, I just can see myself sticking with hand embroidery for a min of 8 months straight! You ladies who did it are amazing!

    Thanks for that other reference shot. I don't think I've seen that one. It will help!
  5. PadawansGuide Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 3
    All the exhibit photos I've been lent or have taken myself are here:

    http://www.padawansguide.com/leia_bespin_exhibit.shtml

    and if it'll help, my making of stuff is here:
    http://www.costumersguide.com/maggie_costumes/leia_bespin.html


    Good luck!
  6. PlayzOboe Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 8, 2005
    star 2
    Does anyone have a flat out picture or drawing of the embroidery?? I'd like to enlarge and print it out so I can copy it onto the fabric. (with that lovely pink quilting pencil that was mentioned in Maggie's site)This is my first attempt at embroidery!! I'm also trying to get it done in time for Dragon*Con luckily I have plenty of time this summer!!! I'm waiting on some swatches for the tunic and pants fabric...I'd also like to know how to do the quilting for the collar and more specifically what was done (Maggie I know you covered a lot in your construction page, but it wasn't quite enough for me...thanks so much for it though it really helps!)
  7. PadawansGuide Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 3
    There wasn't that much to say about the quilting, honestly. All you are doing is sewing a running stitch over all the layers. You just to decide how many lines you want and where to locate them, and I used the picture references to figure that out.

    If you're hand embroidering it, I'm not sure if there's enough time before DragonCon - it took me about 9 months, embroidering at least an hour a day. That's not to say you shouldn't try, obviously!
  8. PlayzOboe Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 8, 2005
    star 2
    Well I'm going to attempt the hand embroidery, luckily I'm not working this summer and definitely have more than an hour a day to spend embroidering...worst comes to worst I'll puffy paint it...I still do need an outline of the pattern though, because if I try to draw it, the dimensions will end up completely off...
  9. lavagrrrl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2002
    star 4
    My fabric samples arrived and they are not the ones I thought they would be. I will continue to search for them.

    I did use padding in my Hoth suit, but I did it as a removable inner layer. That way I don't have to have it in the suit all the time.

    Version 2 will have padding in all the patches and quilted areas and in the collar. I will use the removable liner with extra padding again. Otherwise there is no way I could wear the costume indoors without roasting. The vest will be padded (I didn't make the vest the first time). :)
  10. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    The removeable inner padding is an excellent idea, Lava!
    We were watching ESB on DVD on our new 50" HDTV screen last night and WOW! The details you can gleam from a totally digital picture are INCREDIBLE! Where was all that when I was trying to do the Bespin Han jacket? [face_plain]

    I haven't given up on the digital machine embroidery project for the Bespin Leia costume. Just sidetracked with having to get our new house situated--making drapes and chair covers, etc.
    As soon as I can, I want to be working on the embroidery programming.
  11. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    I have been working on trying to do the embroidery in the embroidery machine.
    BOY! Its a lot of work. But coming along--slowly but surely.
    I have taken the drawings that I got from surlie and have redrawn a number of the figures, then traced them into my computer embroidery program:

    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/Jade-Walker/digitizing1.jpg]
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/Jade-Walker/Bespin%20Leia%20project/Photo_120606_001.jpg]
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/Jade-Walker/Bespin%20Leia%20project/Photo_120706_001.jpg]

    I also did a VERY rough sketch into the computer just to see what it would look like when it is then run by the embroidery machine. This is the bottom part of the pattern. Just a portion of one flower.
    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/Jade-Walker/Bespin%20Leia%20project/P1000347.jpg]

    I still have from the upper set of flowers to the top of the pattern to do. But I wanted to work on the actual programming of stitches before I get too far just in case I have to go back and change something. I don't want to lose all my work.

    The thing I'm trying to decide upon is the best thing to do about the shadowed sections of the pattern. An embroidery machine definitely won't do that. While less accurate, I could do a "fill stitch" in those sections. Or I could leave them without the shadow effect.
    Any opinions?
  12. LeiaYT1300 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 7, 2002
    star 3
    If you are speaking strictly of the sections belonging to the flowers (petals, etc.), you can do it the way I did it: line the section with a square of cloth similar in the color to the thread used for the outline of the petals, stitch through both layers and trim away the excess of the inner layer. The effect comes out relatively the same as a shadow stitch. For anywhere else, where the motif is very busy, I would simply omit it. :)
  13. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    Perhaps I'll have to do a trial run like that. My concern is that its not like when you do it by hand. The fabric will be in the hoop and the embroidery machine will be going. Not easy to put a small piece of material in just the right spot. I'd probably have to put a larger piece over the whole area and then cut it away after the embroidery is done. *sigh* A lot of extra work.
    But it is only for a few sections.
    Perhaps I'll do two versions of the flowers--one with fill and one without that I'll plan on putting the backing on. And see how each turns out. The backed one would certainly be more accurate.

    Did you do shadow stitch on your X's, LeiaYT? I know that PadawansGuide said that she did not.
  14. LeiaYT1300 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 7, 2002
    star 3
    I think it's worth a trial run, and you could always sandwich it between the cloak fabric and a stabilizer on the other side to keep the shifting to a minimum.

    As for shadow stitching the crosses, I didn't do that either. I used a backstitch, for ease of navigating the pattern. And really you don't need the shadow stitch; the pattern is so dense and it gives such a full effect that it's somewhat unnecessary. It still looks great in the end. :)

    Edit: Oh, and use a large piece of fabric to back it and cut away the excess with a little sharp scissors. That worked out just fine for hand embroidery and it should be just as easy to trim with machine embroidery. :)
  15. cressie Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 12, 2006
    star 1
    Good work so far Jade-Walker! You are actually accomplishing my dream of digitizing these designs, especially Bespin Leia and Picnic Padme. May I ask what embroidery machine and software you are using? I honestly don?t mind doing embroidery by hand, I did it all last summer on my picnic gown, but a machine would be great for those large satin stitch areas and a lot less time consuming. Computers + embroidery for SW gowns = I am geeking out! :)

    =Cressie
  16. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    LeiaYT1100: Oh! You did one big piece of facing also? Well, that makes me feel better. :) I should probably do it that way then. Hmmm...I think I'll need to get new little scissors at JoAnn's big sale this weekend. ;)

    I definitely would plan to put the backing between the chiffon and the stabilizer. And there's the fabric adhesive that would keep it in place so as not to allow it to shift too much.

    Did you face the "white" petals with more of the white chiffon?

    And I checked Thai Silks recently but they didn't have chiffon in "Brick" anymore. That was the color that you recommended, right?


    Cressie: I am using Palette v. 6 with an update (can't remember which one). The program is for the Babylock. It makes a PES type of pattern, which is also used by Brother, White, and some others (can't remember what machines all use it). Problems with this program is that in the drawing phase there's no cut and paste function. Pain in the neck! So right now I'm drawing out on half of the pattern and will cut, flip and paste the right side at a later stage where I know there is that function.

    The satin stitches come out nicely with a zig zag pattern done closely together. And obviously a straight stitch does well for the backstitch. If I don't have to worry about fill stitches, I think this will go much more smoothly.

    I'd say that I'm probably going to put in just as much time as someone doing the work by hand. No time saved there. But the bonus will be that at the end of it, I'll be able to offer to "print" it up for someone else as well (and scale it to fit, too). Lavagrrrl and I have already talked about that and I'm excited at the prospect of being able to give one of our best Leias in the region the ability to have this costume. :D Still, there's going to be a lot of work in the "printing" process since stray strings have to be cut in between thread changes and since making sure all of the little 5x7 sections are put into the hoop precisely enough so that you don't see any breaks in the pattern. Then there will be the cutting away of the shadow material as well.

    So no matter how you slice this costume, it is a lot of work. But I've dreamt about having this costume since I was a little kid. So I'm really hoping to have it for C4!
  17. lavagrrrl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2002
    star 4
    Aww, thanks! I can't believe how much work you have already put into this, I know it will look great when it is done. You don't make costumes less than great! :D
  18. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    Read through the thread (yet again) to gather details. If only I would keep my notes in one place that I could find them! :rolleyes:
    But that answered my question to LeiaYT1300 about the ivory backing fabric.

    I played A LOT today with the bottom flower pattern and finally got it worked out--at least a draft of it. So I'll have to do a trial run of it to see how it comes out.
  19. PadawansGuide Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 3
    Just skimmed through the posts! I actually did to a shadow stitch on mine.

    Can't wait to see how yours turns out! :)
  20. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    I played with it a bit last night and I think it will look pretty good. :)
    It takes a while even for the machine to do just the bottom flowers!
    Alignment is a bit of a pain. But I'm sure I'll get the hang of it. And I'll have a better idea of what to change on the program after this. I already see that the stright stitch is going to be much better than even a small zig zag for most of the pattern.
    I still have to do the bottom half of the bottom flowers. When I have that done, I'll post pics of the "rough idea" practice run of the bottom flowers (minus backing).

    DId you all do backstitch for the brown circles in the flowers? Seems like it should perhaps be a little thicker of a line than that.
  21. PadawansGuide Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 26, 2002
    star 3
    I did a shadow stitch for everything but the yellow. For the yellow I did a stem stitch.

    You can kinda see on this pic (which you'll have to cut and paste instead of clicking on)

    http://costumersguide.com/leia_bespin/embroidery2.jpg

    (And this was the start of the embroidery project, so yeah, my stitches are not terribly small or even!)
  22. LeiaYT1300 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 7, 2002
    star 3
    Yeah, I faced the white flowers with the cloak fabric and the pinkish flowers with leftovers from the brick red fabric used for my tunic and pants. Used a large piece each time, stitched everything, then cut away the excess. Very easy and no problems.

    Meanwhile, glad to hear things continue to progress smoothly! :)
  23. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    Thank you both for answering my questions. You have both been so helpful. I really appreciate it. It would be sooo nice to be able to wear a matching Bespin Leia with my husband's Bespin Han at C4! *bounces up and down at the thought*

    I played with it a bit. And, like I said, the alignment is going to be difficult. So my first draft didn't line up all that well. But the figures themselves look well in "print" I think. (I also didn't do the facing this time around).

    I think I might have to do all the stabilizer for one section at one time and then put the reference lines on it. I'm also going to ask my local Sew & Vac shop (where I bought my machine) what other tricks and tips she might have to make the aligning easier. I know there's a hoop that might help a little bit since its longer (so, fewer hoopings would be necessary).

    I'm going to change the non-yellow parts from a narrow zig-zag to a straight stitch since you all used back stitch for those parts and the straight stitches that I did do looked nice. I think that also will help not to pull the fabric so much. I probably also should not make the yellow zig-zag quite so tight.

    But its a start!

    [image=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v189/Jade-Walker/Bespin%20Leia%20project/P1000465.jpg]
  24. lavagrrrl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2002
    star 4
    Kim, that might not be completely aligned, but it looks good! Progress. :D
  25. Jade-Walker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2002
    star 4
    Thanks :)
    I went to the sewing store today and got some ideas of how to get it to work better. Including buying a larger hoop so that I don't have to have as many alignments.

    I likely won't have time to work on it again until after Christmas, however. ;)
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