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Padme Amidala Padme's Meadow Picnic Dress v4.0

Discussion in 'Costuming and Props' started by MiraxTHorn, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. MiraxTHorn

    MiraxTHorn Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2000
    WARNING – This thread is known to be addictive. “Once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny. Consume you it will.” [​IMG]


    Welcome to Padme’s Meadow Picnic Dress v4.0, home of the most intensely researched costume on these boards!

    After 3 huge threads, totaling more than 120 pages and almost 3000 posts, it’s time for a new thread and an updated construction summary. This is a continuation of Padme's Picnic Dress v3.0, v2.0, and the original Padme's Gold Flower Outfit thread.

    As most of you know, this has been an exciting year for those of us interested in the Picnic Dress. Because of the FIDM exhibit, the generous insights of Biba-Fett, an FIDM employee, and the thorough observations of those able to visit the exhibit, especially kay_dee, we have all kinds of new and extremely accurate, first-hand knowledge of our favorite costume. I’m continuing where kay_dee and Obi-Dawn left off with v3.0. I’ve tried to put the new information in the summary at the top of each section, while keeping previous ideas and techniques that might remain useful. Any mistakes or oversights are mine, so please go easy on me. [​IMG]

    Enjoy and keep the conversation going! (And get cracking on those new versions of your own costumes!) [​IMG]



    Promotional Shots
    FIDM Exhibit Photos


    Padme's Gold Picnic costume, officially titled "P-19" during production, was originally made from 50* yards of embroidered silk. This is Trisha Biggar's description of the costume from People Magazine:
    "It's a dress you can fall in love in,” says costume designer Trisha Biggar. In 50 yards of hand embroidered silk Natalie Portman does just that on a picnic with Jedi apprentice Anakin Skywalker (played by Hayden Christensen). "We wanted a sense of movement and romance, the skirt flowing in the breeze," explained Biggar. What's with the ear gear though? Biggar insists Portman is not wearing training buns for the iconic hairstyle worn by Anakin and Amidala's future daughter Princess Leia. "No one mentioned it," she says. "I just liked the style." -Courtesy of the Padawan's Guide

    (*Most picnic costumers believe the 50 yards of fabric should not be taken literally. This was either a misquote or meant only as a generalized statement.)

    The recently released book, Dressing A Galaxy by Trisha Biggar, describes the “Meadow Picnic Dress” this way (DAG pg. 176):
    “Silk cloqué bodice with seven-color computerized filigree embroidery with bled stitching. The roses were taken from the tulle and appliquéd on top to unite the two fabrics. The bodice is worn over an old-gold silk organza* blouse [and skirt] with multicolored ribbon detail around the lower sleeves.”​

    (*Again, we believe a mistake was made in this description. The blouse and skirt are made from silk chiffon, NOT organza.)

    The costume is comprised of several pieces, with detailed information on fabrics, patterns, and construction tips below.
    • Corset
    • Blouse
    • Skirt
    • Shawl (or Cape)
    • Bun Covers
    • Headband
    • Brooch
    • Shoes

    - CORSET -

    The outermost layer of the embroidered corset is made from crinkled silk and consists of 11 panels. The crinkled silk has small square shapes woven directly into the fabric, rather than square cut outs, as previously thought. It is believed the corset is boned for added support and shaping. According to Trisha Biggar, the back is fastened with hook and eye tape. The rose embroidered shoulder straps are made from uncrinkled chiffon that matches the blouse and skirt in color.

    The newest information about this part of the costume is that the squares are woven into the fabric rather than back-lined cut-outs. The clue to this puzzle comes from the DAG description of the fabric as “silk cloqué”. This definition was found by Obi-Dawn:
    Cloqué - French word for ‘blistered’. A soft fabric that drapes well into elaborate styles; a fabric with a figured blister effect on the surface, brought about by the use of yarns of different character. These will respond in different ways to finishing treatments, e.g. two yarns of uneven shrinkage potentials are woven together. The fabric is then relaxed, when one yarn shrinks more than the other and the excess material is left to form a design. The raised figures may be regular or in irregular lines. Once a popular silk fabric for gowns and hats, it was superseded by artificial silk imitations. Now it is produced mainly from acetate and polyester yarns, and the advantage of this development is that the blistering is permanent. Used for evening and cocktail wear, some millinery, and negligées. Does not crease.​

    This article describes a technique used today to create cloqué fabrics. None of us have tried this technique or found an exact match for this fabric that has the woven squares. (Yet!)


    (Note – All of the patterns suggested below will require modifications to reach a screen accurate look. The Laughing Moon and Simplicity 9769 are probably the closest out of the envelope, but will still require several changes.)

    Laughing Moon Patterns
    • Victorian Corsets suggested by Mirax. The Dore view needs some modifications and redrafting of seam lines, but works well. The top edge of this pattern extends only just underneath the bust line as the real corset does on Natalie. Don’t forget to factor that into decisions about underpinnings and sheerness of the chemise for modesty’s sake. [​IMG]
    Simplicity Patterns
    • 9769 suggested by kay_dee
    • 7009 suggested by Obi-Dawn View B It requires some modification and the overlap deleted. (discontinued pattern)
    • 5843 View A This pattern was released for Halloween 2002. It consists of an underdress with a corset over it. This is a simplified version of the actual costume and would require modifying to be accurate. It is a great pattern for anyone wanting to make a costume that *looks* like the dress but it is not exact. (discontinued pattern)
    McCall's Patterns
    • 3315 suggested by kay_dee & liannb
    • 3109 view B suggested by kay_dee (discontinued pattern)
    Vogue Patterns
    • 7427 suggested by Obi-Dawn. She reports that the pieces required several modifications and redrafting of seam lines until she was happy with the results. (discontinued pattern)
    Draft Your Own Pattern
    • PadawansGuide drafted her own corset pattern using these instructions written by Koshka-the-cat.

    Outer Layer
    • Crinkle Decorator Sheer from suggested by Obi-Dawn. It would probably require underlining because it is described as “sheer”. The photo of this fabric looks very similar to the home-dec fabric used by Mirax.
    • Crinkled Habotai Silk from Thai Silks - According to kay_dee, the crinkled pattern in this silk is nearly an exact match to that of the real costume photos. It would have to be dyed, and it is fairly thin so it would need to be underlined/flatlined with golden toned fabric (silk or cotton). Both Mirax and PadawansGuide experimented with this fabric, but decided it was “too poofy” for their liking. kay_dee feels that even though it gets puffy, it is easy to block press it out flat again. And once it's flatlined she thinks it will retain its shape well. She will very likely use this in her next version.
    • Crinkled Silk in gold from Britex Fabrics - This fabric is $34.99 per yard, but for those who are unable to dye their own fabric this is a nice option. See Britex's mail order service.
    • Metallic Crunch Gold home deco fabric from JoAnn's (sku#5894373) or Hobby Lobby - This semi-sheer polyester would need to be underlined/flatlined with golden toned fabric. It is an affordable option at under $10.00 a yard.
    • Silk Chiffon Gauze - kay_dee pointed out the woven squares in this fabric. If this silk could be crinkled, it might be a good option.
    • Crushed Habotai – kay_dee experimented with this fabric and felt it might work well. Here is a photo where she ironed the left side to see how the crinkle would be changed.
    • Satin/crinkle satin (silk or poly)
    Underlining, Flatlining, or Mounting (The layer directly under the outer layer of silk)
    • Gold colored silk (most likely used on the movie costume)
    • Silk Crepe De Chine 16mm
    • Silk Fuji Broadcloth
    • Cotton Sateen
    • Coutil (For those who have an opaque outer layer) - "Coutil is a fabric that has been designed specifically for building corsets. It is high in cotton content, tightly woven to inhibit penetration of bones/stays and is not inclined to stretch. It has a smooth finish and is comfortable when worn close to the skin though the wearing of a chemise is always recommended. Coutil comes in plain, satin or brocade and we stock primarily black, white and flesh; the white is dyeable." -
    • Interfacing (for those who have an opaque outer layer)
    • Stabilizer - used for embroidery
    Interlining (Middle layer of lining giving support to the garment)
    • Coutil - "If you want it to truly ‘suck you in' like a corset, you will need coutil." - Ferdalump
    • Cotton Duck Cloth
    • Canvas
    Lining (the layer next to the body)
    • Golden silk matching the outer layer of fabric appears to have been used on the movie costume
    • China silk
    • Cotton
    • Polyester lining

    Layers of the Corset

    Depending on the pattern you choose and the look you want, there are several different ways you can construct the layers of your corset - no one way is correct. Here are some of the layering methods that were used by the costumers on this message board:
    • Outer crinkle or silk layer (not sheer), Interfacing for embroidery, Cotton Duck or Coutil for strength and support, thin layer of lining near the body.
    • Metallic gold crunch fabric, yellow cotton, interfacing, coutil, metallic crunch gold lining - Obi-Dawn
    • "Two layers of coutil and a decorative layer of embroidered dupioni lined with cotton sateen." - Koshka-the-Cat
    • “For the corset I used Metallic Gold Crunch, layered with gold china silk, white duck cloth, and more china silk.” – PadawansGuide
    • "I used a sheer crinkle for the outermost layer, the duck, and then a lining. The duck works well for giving the bodice a great stiff body." - Ferdalump
    • Silk Dupioni flatlined with Coutil, a second interlayer of Coutil, and matching Silk Dupioni lining. "You may consider doing the inner lining that faces your skin out of the same fabric you are using on the outside of your corset (it can have a tendency to show - this is even seen in photos of the *real* costume)" - kay_dee
    • " The top layer is gold crinkle fabric, beneath that is gold satin, then a layer of crinela, and then the inside is lined with satin." - liannb
    The outer decorative layer of fabric can be Mounted or Flatlined with any of the fabrics suggested above. It is the process of putting two or more layers of fabric together to be treated as one in order to support and give body to the fine decorative fabric when making a bodice. "Flatlining is easy. All you do is cut your fabric and your lining, edge stitch them together and treat them as one piece." - Ferdalump


    Boning is the stiffening material used to give definition and shape to a corset. The type of boning you choose will depend on how much cinching you want your corset to do. During her visit to the FIDM exhibit, PadawansGuide observed that the real corset has 4 strips of boning in the center front and the boning is not on every seam.

    "If you want it to truly 'suck you in' like a corset you will need coutil and a steel boning or something a little heavier than featherweight--you will also need to work from a true corset pattern (laughing moon has one, the civil war simplicity costume pattern, etc.) [If] you are limited on time-and not going for a screen worn version--I would suggest using featherweight boning (nylabone or such) on every seam and heavily underline it with a nice study fabric (coutil--or duck would work)" -Ferdalump

    Some of the commercial patterns call for the boning to stop at the waistline instead of the bottom of the corset. It's recommended to deviate from the pattern instructions and run the boning the full length of the corset to prevent 'rolling' and give a smooth, flat look. . "If you make a tight fitting garment that is not heavily reinforced and sturdy-when worn it will get that bent kind of wrinkle along the waistline." - Ferdalump

    For examples of different types of boning go to Farthingales website.

    The Nylon, Polyester and Plastic boning is coiled when it is purchased. Here are some suggestions for working with this type of boning.
    • "It irons flat quite nicely. Just remember to use a low temperature on your iron!" -Koshka-the-Cat
    • "You need to lay the boning between two pieces of cotton, or even better in the boning channels of the corset and you simply iron over them. If you lay them so the ends touch the board but the middle curves up from it it is better. What does help is if you are able to lift one end off the board to reverse the curve and iron too." -Neimhaille
    • "Once the ends are cut to length on nylon boning, they can be passed through a candle flame to keep them from fraying." -kay_dee
    Here is a list of some of the boning used by the seamstresses on this message board:
      • Rigiline (A trade name for Nylon Boning) -"Rigiline on the other hand is a pain to work with *if* you are making a long corset like this. I've heard good reports of it for conical corsets like in the 16th-18thCs but that is because they are not pulled in twists and curves like in a long corset. I had to iron a corset practically every night for a fellow actor who had to put up with a long corset made from the stuff... Mind you if you zig zag two layers of rigiline it will work too. That is if you are in a rush and cannot get the other stuff, it is possible to use it well that way. " -Neimhaille
      • Nylabone (A brand name of Nylon Boning) - "It all made for a pretty sturdy corset [but] I was using a dress type pattern. It is also much more light weight and comfortable than steel boning - it can easily be cut to length with scissors." -kay_dee
      • Plastic Boning (German Plastic and Plastic Whale Bone) - "Plastic boning is fine. In fact with the sheer number of costumes needed to be made you'd be surprised how much it is used in the film industry:) Just make sure you use a good brand, and use as much as you need to. I use a good 6m in my corsets... I use a mix of excellent white German imitation whale bone, I think farthingales or Grannd garb stock it, and a cheaper quality polyboning that is clear and ridged (*not* Rigiline). Used properly plastic boning is the best substitute for whale bone there is as it behaves very much like it. There is a certain degree of molding to the body with it, but it is very easy to simply iron it flat again if needed." -Neimhaille
        "I also really like the artificial whalebone from Farthingales. I think Grannd Garb has it too. It's thin and flexible, and really does feel similar to the real whalebone in some antique bodices I have. The artificial whalebone is plastic. It's very thin and it's not ridged like featherweight boning... It's nice, since you can cut it to length." -Koshka-the-Cat
      • Poly Boning - "Poly boning will work for the look and to give it the fitted look and structure. Poly boning is used on most formal wear and bridal gowns that imitate the corset look. They will work well--but will not be strong enough to give the real "cinch" of a waist cinching corset. For sewing in poly boning--some of it comes in a casing in which you remove the "bone" stitch down the casing-then reinsert the bone. If there is not a casing-you can use twill tape or bias tape as a casing. Sew the channels to the underlining layers." -Ferdalump
        "In my opinion the poly boning is so easy to work with and it's strong enough for this type of decorative corset." -kay_dee
      • Spring Steel Boning - "If you want it to truly "suck you in" like a corset you will need coutil and a steel boning or something a little heavier than featherweight" -Ferdalump
        "I'm not a huge fan of spring steel boning unless you have to make a true cinching style of corset (I recently made a renaissance style Elizabethan corset and the steel was a must for this kind of corset. It was a totally different animal.). First of all, you have to worry about ordering predetermined lengths of steel. Some steel can be cut, (not as easily as the poly boning) and then you have to fuss with putting on protective ends - etc. That's not to say spring steel won't work - I just think it's a bit more of a hassle and not really needed. If you want to use the steels, I would stick with the 6mm width. [For this type of corset] you have to have boning that is flexible enough to curve at your waist... but I'm not sure how flexible the 6mm X .014 " spring steel is." -kay_dee
        "I did use steel boning for my corset. However, I'm not happy with the steel boning I used. It's from Farthingales and twice as thick as most. That's great if you need a lot of support, but I don't. I'm quite the shrimp. So the corset doesn't pull in my waist the way I wanted it to." -Koshka-the-Cat
      • Spiral Boning (Made of Steel) - "You have to have boning that is flexible enough to curve at your waist. The 6mm spiral boning will work...Spiral boning can be cut with heavy duty cable cutters and you can get replacement tips from Lacis" -kay_dee
    • Nylon Cable Ties – “I came across an unusual but effective boning method on a Ren Fair site – nylon cable ties. Although Home Depot sells short, thin ties, they aren’t sturdy enough or long enough for corsets. Instead, I ordered 36” heavy duty ties (175lb) from an online retailer (Next time I would get 120lb ties, though. These were almost overkill.) They can be cut with scissors and the ends rounded with a dremel. And, I can hand wash my corset without fear of rust from steel boning.” – Mirax
    Back Closure Options
    • Hook and Eye Tape (Used on the real costume) - "It is a tape with hooks on one side and eyes on the other. You can get it w/various distances." -Ferdalump
    • Hooks and Eyes
    • Grommet Eyelets and Laces
    • Lacing rings and Laces
    Modesty Panel or Inlay

    A Modesty Panel or Inlay can be added as a separate strip of fabric behind the corset closure. It acts as a backing to prevent the skin or chemise from showing through gaps in the closure of the bodice. It is often made from the same decorative outer fabric as the corset or bodice.

    Pattern Alterations
    • Some patterns need to have the center front seam removed. To do this, place center front pattern piece on the fold, 5/8" in from the original edge of the pattern piece.
    • Most corset patterns are only comprised of 9 panels (once the front seam is removed). The actual garment has 11 panels, so it will be necessary to redraft seam lines if a totally screen accurate look is desired.
    • It is highly advisable to make a muslin, or cheap fabric version (or several) of your corset first. This way you can play with altering the height of the top edge, rounding out or extending the bottom edge, removing or adding seams - etc. Boning placement can be tested on the muslin. You can also alter the seams to get a perfect snug fit before cutting your good fabric.
    • Some seamstresses use a duct tape body double or adjustable dress form to aid in fitting. But be sure to do a final fitting on your own body.
    Supply Sources
    • Lacis - Carries hook and eye tape, eyelets, lacing rings, spiral and spring steel boning (stays), coutil, duck cloth and more. (Look under Millinery > Costume)
    • Farthingales - Wide variety of Boning, Coutil, fabric, eyelets, grommets and more.
    • Grannd Garb - Boning, fabrics (duck and coutil), findings (hook and eye tape, grommets, eyelets, O-rings) and more.
    • Amazon Dry Goods - corset and costume supplies

    As was mentioned earlier, it is now believed that the squares visible on the corset are woven into the fabric, not cutouts as previously theorized. Since fabric with this detail is very difficult to find, some experiments have been done to replicate the look:

    "I tend to think the fabric was cut into an X , then the flaps folded under to make a square. It looks like the crinkled shiny silk is on top of a layer of the same silk used to make the blouse and skirt (the color and texture looks the same as her sleeve)... I think you can stop the fraying by turning the raw edge under and fusing the fabric together with no-sew hem tape. Or, the corners can be reinforced by machine or hand stitching them before turning the edges under." -kay_Dee

    X CUT OUTS - sketch by afaeryschild 'with a little fray check and some tiny hand done stitches they look identical...'(link currently broken)


    The corset is embellished heavily with embroidery. The front panel is done in an intricate design of yellow and gold 'flames', 45 light and dark pink roses, green leaf motifs, and light yellow daisies. Fine gold chain-stitching outlines the flame motifs and swirls throughout the pattern.

    We now know the embroidery for the movie corset was done by machine. Most of the replica costumes seen on this thread are done by hand. Obi-Dawn has spent more hours studying the screencaps and sketching the embroidery than anyone else on this board. Here are her observations after viewing the real corset:

    ”The one thing I was most interested in upon seeing it in person was the embroidery on the corset. I had long pondered just how thick or 'chunky' the individual stitches were in the yellow scroll designs. But prior to the exhibit photos and the hi-res shot in the Dressing a Galaxy book, I could never tell for certain. It was the screencaps from the P-19 documentary that first got me wondering long ago, "How many threads were used in each stitch? And how long are the stitches?" It was in those screencaps that I started to think maybe the embroidery was much chunkier, for lack of a better word, than I had been doing. And it appeared to be.​

    I know I'd been using my embroidery floss one strand at a time and made many many short stitches to fill in my yellow 'flames'. Looking at the real thing, I could tell there were not as many stitches per flame as I made on mine because the real stitches were thicker and longer. I can't really discern which I prefer, but I know I went in to the exhibit expecting to be let down if the stitching was less delicate than I wanted it to be. It was still gorgeous, so I'm not sure if it disappointed me or not. Maybe a little.​
    But the way the stems and leaves and daisies were embroidered was just as I'd always imagined.​

    I feel like a nitpick for even mentioning it, but the embroidery has always been my favorite aspect/detail, so it was important to me to look at the individual stitches.”​

    Note - Be sure to allot plenty of time if you choose to use this method of embellishment.
    • Kay_Dee - "It took me 3 weeks, and I'd say in the neighborhood of 100 hours. (I spent 35 - 40 hours a week on it) Each rose cluster took me almost 2 hours to do"
    • Liannb - "It took me about a month to embroider my corset"
    • Obi-Dawn - "I worked on it daily for about a month. Usually anywhere from six to twelve hours a day."
    [COLOR=000066]Embroidery Pattern Interpretations[/COLOR]
    Embroidery Stitches

    The Roses - According to DAG, the roses on the movie corset and headband are taken from the shawl fabric and appliquéd onto the bodice and ribbon. They are a 3 dimensional embroidery created by overlapping simple satin stitches to make a 5-sided shape. The stitches build up layer upon layer and seem to be done with at least 3 varying shades of pink (or rose) colored floss.

    If you will be using a rose curtain for the cape (see the Shawl section below), save the leftover fabric and carefully cut out around the remaining rose clusters and single roses.. Mirax painted them lightly with Fray Block to prevent unraveling before trimming away the netting. She then used clear thread to attach them to the bodice and headband. “I like the dimensional look achieved this way.”

    Another option is to embroider the roses directly onto the fabric or embroider over the shawl roses for more depth. Kay_Dee dissected the roses that came embroidered on her shawl fabric to create a tutorial. She attached roses from her shawl and then used matching color floss to build up the roses a little more and cover the raw edges.
    • Kay_Dee's Rose Tutorial "I also find that I like to use floss three to four strands thick when I do mine" -Obi-Dawn
    • Spider Web or Cabbage stitch - Suggested by Jenny-LaFleur & Ferdalump. Ferd's instructions appear on page 14 of the Padmé's Gold flower outfit thread.
    • Wool Rose (although not done with wool in this case) "She suggested the book A-Z of WOOL embroidery which describes this rose in detail on page 57" -Ferdalump
    • Eyelet Rose (but not a bullion rose) 3-d looking
    The Flames - The yellow and gold flames are described in DAG as “bled stitching” which likely refers to the visible color gradations. In hand-embroidery, this can be imitated by using a Long and Short Satin Stitch. (Here is a photo of one of the flamesfrom the original corset).
    • "This stitch allows you to give the different colors of floss the illusion of subtly changing colors." - kay_dee
    • ”I had a hard time making the stitch lengths even, so I drew 1/8 inch gridlines across each flame. For the flames that are curved nearly into a circle, the gridlines were drawn like a fan, rather than parallel.” – Mirax
    Green Leaves and Daisies - A Satin Stitch was used for these elements. "I just used a satin stitch for my daisies. I begin each petal in its center with a long stitch and then radiate out to both sides with successively shorter stitches. Looking at them it looks like I used between five and seven stitches for each petal and my floss was three strands thick. With the stitches on the outside edge of each petal I did sort of tuck them under the middle stitches at their bases. In other words, the base of each petal is narrower than the top. The center of each daisy is just the same, a satin stitch with the longest in the middle and then they get progressively shorter out to the sides, but these are all side by side, no tucking under. I did these first and then added the petals one at a time." -Obi-Dawn

    Green Stems - A Stem Stitch could be used.

    Fine Gold Outlines and Swirls - Kay_dee was able to examine the stitching with binoculars and noticed that the gold outlines are done with a chain stitch. A back stitch was used on several of our corsets."[It's] easier to add it on after the other embroidery (BY HAND)" -Mrs_M

    Transferring Your Pattern
    • Wax Free Transfer Paper - You can trace the pattern directly onto your decorative fabric. However, you may experience the patter rubbing away as you work on your piece. Also, after handling it for a month the fabric may begin to get dirty. "I had that problem with my purple Senate Dress. The solution for me was to cover my fabric (after the pattern was traced on) with a sheet of the clear Solvy stabilizer. That way it protected the fabric and markings - I just cut away a little Solvy at a time as I was ready to work on a new section. A less expensive solution would be covering your fabric with plastic wrap (saran wrap) or tissue paper that you can cut away as you work." -kay_dee
    • Solvy Original Lightweight Water Soluble Stabilizer - "[For] my picnic corset I never traced on the fabric itself. Instead, I traced the pattern onto the solvy with an ink pen, then placed my solvy with the pattern on top of my corset. I had to pin it on very carefully to make sure it stayed centered as I worked on it. You actually embroider through the layer of solvy and your fabric, and you can tear it away when you are done if you don't want to wet your fabric to dissolve it. The sulky web site has the information on the solvy stabilizer I used as well - " -kay_dee Here are example photos of kay_dee's embroidery in progress.
    • Golden Threads quilting paper - Mirax used a water soluble pencil to trace the design onto this paper and stitched right through it. It was very easy to tear off and pull out from under each shape once it was completed.
    • PadawansGuide tried the white fibrous type of RinsAway dissolvable stabilizer and found that it did not dissolve at all. Instead, it left lots of white fuzz that had to be picked out with tweezers. She would recommend you steer away from this product.
    Floss Suggestions

    Obi-Dawn- DMC flosses used
    • Yellow and Gold Flames: 742,743,727. Or rayon flosses from DMC "I like them better because they're shinier. I did compare them to some silk floss and ended up liking the rayon better. There are three colors I'm using, from dark to light: 30742, 30676, 30744."
    • Greens: 731, 734 "I had major trauma deciding which greens to use. I don't think these are 100% accurate, but I like the way they look so I'm using them."
    • Roses: 3685, 3687, 778, 3713
    • Gold swirlies and scroll outlines: 5282 (I LOVE this color!)
    • Daisies and highlights on stems/leaves: 746, 745
    Kay_Dee - Anchor flosses 100 % Cotton
    • Yellow and Gold Flames: 295 LIGHT TOPAZ (yellow), 303 LIGHT TANGERINE "I should have used a second lighter shade of orange between the 295 and 303"
    • Yellow arches (top and bottom center of design): 295 LIGHT TOPAZ (yellow), 292 VARY LT GOLDEN YELLOW
    • Green leaves by the roses: 280 MEDIUM OLIVE GREEN, 845 DARK KHAKI GREEN
    • Larger Green leaves and stems: 1216 VARIEGATED LIGHT TO DARK OLIVE GREEN
    • Gold swirls and outlines: Kreinik Metallic Very Fine Braid #4 002J (Gold)
    Mirax - Sulky 40 weight sewing thread, 100% Rayon, two strands “I had used DMC cotton floss for my first version and was never happy with it. I wanted the shine of rayon, but couldn’t find DMC rayon floss. I went to JoAnns, grabbed the DMC cotton colors Dawn suggested and spent over an hour agonizing on the closest matches that also worked together from the more limited Sulky thread colors.”
    • Yellow and Gold Flames: 1238, 1024, 1124 (from dark to light). “If I were doing it again, I think I would use 1024 as the darkest, then 1124, and pick a new lightest shade. 1238 may be too orange compared to the real corset.”
    • Green leaves and stems: 1175, 630 “These were chosen to blend with the greens on the shawl fabric roses.”
    • Yellow arches and daisies: 1066, 1061
    • Gold swirls and outlines: Sulky Metallic 7004 “I highly recommend metallic sewing thread over embroidery floss. It seems to have more strength and doesn’t get fuzzy or separate from the filler thread as easily.”
    • Roses: - no thread, cut out from shawl fabric
    Embroidery Tips
    • Stripping Floss - "When you get your floss-you will cut a strand the length you are going to work with. Then you will run your fingers down the floss both ways. One way will feel a little smoother (slightly) if you embroider with the smoothness going through the fabric it will glide better through. When you strip the floss--you pull the strands out one-at-a-time (VERY important or they will knot up) You pull out the threads and then put them back when you thread your needle with however many threads you are going to use for whichever stitch you are doing. Stripping your floss rids it of static cling and allows the individual threads to cover a little better." -Ferdalump
    • Beeswax - "It works to help the thread glide through the fabric, and keeps it from knotting up and tangling. I highly recommend getting some... Running the threads through it before embroidering has helped me tremendously in keeping my embroidery flat and in keeping unraveling to a minimum. You can get it at JoAnn's in the sewing notions section. It's made by Dritz and get the one in the clear plastic container. They sell the wax separately as a 'refill', but the container is awesome and has openings in it where you run the floss through to coat it with wax." -Ferdalump
    • Embroidery Hoops - "I recommend using an embroidery hoop (Dawn has done hers with and without) Using a hoop will ensure your fabric remains flat and unpuckered looking. Don't worry about it smashing finished parts, just cover it with some cloth at the edge." -kay_dee
    • Stabilizer - It is recommended that something is used to stabilize your decorative fabric before you start to embroider it. Some costumers (such as kay_dee) flatlined the silk with coutil and embroidered through both layers (the coutil also acting as a stabilizer). Others, like Obi-Dawn, placed a layer of interfacing underneath the cotton mounted metallic crinkle fabric and embroidered through the 3 layers.

    Online Resources:
    • A-Z of Embroidery Stitches by Sue Garner
    • Reader's Digest Complete Book of Embroidery by Melinda Coss
    • A Beginner's Guide to Crewel Embroidery by Jane Rainbow


    Padme wears an off the shoulder silk peasant blouse with billowing gathered sleeves underneath the corset. The sleeves are finished off with 2 sets of long silk pastel ribbons that pick up the colors of the corset embroidery. It is now known that the blouse is constructed of two layers of crinkled silk chiffon. The outer layer is “old-gold” and the inner layer is off-white or ecru. A hint of the inner layer had previously been noticed at her wrist in the Vanity Fair cover photo. The finished binding around the top edge and wrists is also made of chiffon, similar to the corset straps, but does not seem to be crinkled. Kay_dee speculated that “the chiffon is doubled over to give it more opacity, and perhaps it's a heavier 10mm type chiffon.” She recommends that if you dye your own fabric, you include a small amount of uncrinkled chiffon to use for this part of the blouse and corset straps.

    Padme also wears a full-length silk “circle skirt” (explained below). It can be seen in the P-19 screen captures that there is a yoke at the waist and little to no gathering where the skirt panels attach to the yoke. The skirt is constructed in the same manner as the blouse with two layers of crinkled silk chiffon. Again, the outer layer is “old-gold” while underneath is an off-white or ecru colored layer. This layer can be glimpsed when Natalie falls off the shaak in the AOTC DVD outtake reel.

    One of the greatest surprises from the FIDM exhibit relates to the skirt. This information came from Biba-Fett:
    ”OK Everyone...the question that everyone wants to know. I looked at the under skirt of the Meadow Dress today!!! I was very surprised at what I found. It is out of chiffon (and is sheer!) and it's very similar to the fabric used in the rainbow lake dress (same colors!) that unfortunately we don't have in the exhibition (I was fortunate to see it at the fashion show!). It's all different colors...(red included!) It's lightly dyed so it doesn't show through.​

    And - I don't think it's ombre dyed like the rainbow's more like random colors all-over the skirt...but lightly dyed.”​

    Obi-Dawn had noticed a hint of a salmon color on the Vanity Fair cover near Natalie’s left hand a long time ago, but could only speculate that it might have been a ribbon or a trick of the lighting. Now, we know that spot is in fact color from the inner layer showing through. Kay_dee further described the splotches this way: “It has random oval shaped splotches or streaks (roughly 8-9" in height?) of pink and golden yellow randomly scattered on the fabric. The pink and gold streaks overlap at times. I wonder if it was done with an airbrush?” Although there are several plausible theories, no one really knows why it was dyed this way.

    The “old-gold” outer layer of crinkled silk chiffon used for the blouse and skirt is embellished with at least 2,000 small off-white 4-petal sequins. Freeform yellow-green vines, likely sewn with a chain stitch, join the sequins together. Larger yellow-green flowers are embroidered throughout the design. More specific details on the vines, larger flowers and sequins are explained below.


    (Note – As mentioned earlier, patterns will require modifications to achieve screen accuracy. It is very common to combine 2 patterns for the blouse. The closest sleeve pattern is probably McCall’s 3797. For the upper edge of the blouse, Simplicity 9966, Butterick 6200 or Butterick 6196/8 seem closest. It is unknown how the blouse looks underneath the corset.)

    • 9966 suggested by Obi-Dawn View A (for bodice).
    • 9125 suggested by Mrs_Mayimnaar (discontinued pattern)
    • 5843 View A (the Halloween costume version)
    McCall's Patterns
    • 3535 suggested by liannb (discontinued pattern)
    • 3797 suggested by Obi-Dawn, PadawansGuide & Mirax for the sleeves. “Although, I started with 3793 for the sleeve, my actual pattern looks quite different. I will likely modify this slightly for my third version because of details revealed in FIDM photos.” – Mirax (discontinued pattern)
    Butterick Patterns
    • 6198 suggested by kay_dee (discontinued pattern)
    • 6196 suggested by kay_dee (discontinued pattern)
    • 6200 suggested by Mirax for the bodice. Here are Mirax’s modified Front and Back pattern pieces. (discontinued pattern)

    (Note – The actual skirt is indeed a circle skirt, made of 3 panels attached to a yoke. There are seams on either side and a seam going down the center back of the skirt. Kay_dee theorized that the zipper is in the back, hence the need for a center back seam. It is possible to create your own pattern for a circle skirt. That would be the most screen accurate option. All the other patterns listed deviate from a true circle skirt in some way that has been noted.)

    Circle Skirt Construction
    • Basic Circle Skirt – Kay_dee found these instructions which detail the complete process of measuring and making a circle skirt. The “Scant Skirt” with one more ¼ circle added is probably very close to Padme’s skirt. A muslin mock-up is highly recommended before cutting into your good fabric! Also, please carefully read the section on “Shift Management”. Fabric cut on the bias (diagonal) will shift over time, resulting un uneven hems if not taken into account.
    • Jayne described her skirt construction this way: “- I didn't use a pattern for the skirt. Just a marking chalk pen, pin, and string. I just measured how long I wanted the skirt and added a hem and 3" to the measurement. Then I folded the fabric into a large square, selvedges together with the fabric folded on itself over and over. I pinned it to the floor at the corners, then tied the pin to the string. I measured the string to the length of the measurement from before, then marked that point and pinned it to a corner. Then just mark the circle with the chalk pen, you've made a compass. Do it again at 3" for the waistband, then cut on both lines through all thicknesses. Sew each piece to the next at the sides, then gathered the top to a ribbon waistband and hemmed the bottom. If you're using fewer circles you'll have to do some math to figure out if 3" to the waistband is big enough for you, but it's not too difficult.”
    • A Google search for “circle skirt” will return numerous sites with similar instructions.
    Yoke Patterns
    Other Skirt Patterns
    • 8715 suggested by liannb. This skirt is not like the original due to a gathered waist. (discontinued pattern)
    • 8943 suggested by Obi-Dawn. View C "It is not yoked or as full as the original skirt." Dawn later
      added another panel
      to create more fullness in her skirt with very nice results. (discontinued pattern)
    McCall's Patterns
    • 4109 suggested by Mirax. View D This skirt is not as full as the original, but is yoked and has no gathers.
    • 3109 suggested by kay_dee . There are no gathers at the waist, but it may have a short train. (discontinued pattern)
    • 3315 suggested by kay_dee & liannb. This skirt is not like original due to pleated waist. (discontinued pattern)
    Butterick Patterns
    • 4025 suggested by kay_dee & PadawansGuide view B This circle skirt has a wide circumference with no gathers, but is not quite as full as the original skirt. (discontinued pattern)
    • 6198 suggested by kay_dee . This skirt is not like the original due to gathered waist. (discontinued pattern)
    • 6196 suggested by kay_dee . This skirt is not like the original due to gathered waist. (discontinued pattern)

    [COLOR=000066]Outer Embroidered Layer - [/COLOR]One layer of “old-gold” crinkled silk chiffon was used in the original costume. After observing the costume at FIDM, kay_dee noted: “The color of the skirt and blouse are much darker brownish gold than the Vanity Fair cover. That photo is a poor color reference for this costume.” Although she did not find a Pantone Guide color to match, she thinks the color in this photo is close to how it appeared in real life. She also noted that the weight of the crinkled chiffon seems to be somewhere between 8mm and 11mm at the heaviest.

    Replica costumes have incorporated a variety of lightweight fabrics with one or two golden outer layers, with vine embroidering on only the outermost layer. Golden fabric can sometimes be difficult to find, so several costumers dyed their own silk (See Dye Tips Below).
    Inner Layer - One layer of off-white or ecru crinkled silk chiffon (of the same weight and weave as the gold layer) was used as the inner layer on the actual costume. As mentioned earlier, there are multicolored splotches scattered over this layer of the skirt. The actual costume is incredibly sheer. The outline of Natalie’s legs can be clearly seen as she runs down the hill in AOTC. Biba-Fett mentioned that the model who wore this costume in the New York fashion show wore only a nude g-string underneath it.

    Most costumers have chosen a heavier inner layer to add opacity to the skirt and blouse. Some people used only one lightweight outer layer and one opaque gold inner layer. Others used two lightweight outer layers and an opaque cream colored inner layer as a slip. To date, no one has tried the colored splotches on their own costume.
    • Silk Charmeuse - just heavy enough to prevent light from shining through
    • Silk Crepe De Chine - perhaps 16mm weight
    • Silk Double Crepe Georgette - perhaps 18mm weight
    • Satin silk or polyester - Kay_Dee used a light weight polyester satin with the matte side facing outward. "Although this had a nice drape to it, it was just a bit too heavy for this costume. The elastic on my arms kept falling down due to the weight of the fabric."
    • White poly charmeuse - Obi-Dawn used this as a slip under her two layers of Gold Silk Charmeuse.
    • White cotton voile from Dharma Trading- used by Koshka-the-Cat for her skirtunder two layers of gold chiffon.
    A close examination of available FIDM exhibit photos shows the direction of the crinkles on the skirt and blouse.

    The bodice of the blouse and sleeves seem to be cut on the bias because the crinkles run diagonally across those pieces. You can see this here and here.

    The crinkles on the skirt help confirm the circle skirt cut. In the very center of the skirt, the crinkles run side to side, but at the side, they run up and down. This can be seen here. On a bolt of crinkled chiffon, the crinkles run the length of the fabric. So, laying out a semicircular pattern piece along the selvedge would result in exactly this pattern. Once the piece is sewn to the yoke and allowed to drape down, a shape very much like a rainbow can be seen here in the crinkles on the skirt front. Presumably, the back was cut out in a similar fashion, but folded in half and cut to create the center back seam.


    Silk (or Polyester) fabric in that perfect shade of gold can be difficult to find. Many of the seamstresses here resorted to dying their own fabric. Even first timers achieved beautiful results! Just be sure to dye your fabric before you start to embellish it. Also take the time to test dye swatches of your actual fabric (another fabric made of the same or different fiber can take dye differently) and adjust color concentrations, color mixes, dye time, etc. to come up with a formula that works for your fabric. Page 5 of this thread has some extremely detailed and helpful dye tips by kay_dee that are geared toward this costume.

    Dyes Used
    • RIT 2 parts Rit Gold/Yellow and 1 part Tan
    • RIT Gold/Yellow - Used by Ferdalump
    • Fiber Reactive Procion Dyes from Dharma Trading in Marigold and Camel used by Obi-Dawn on silk Charmeuse. See her dye results here. "I think the procion dyes are easy to use if you have to do a large batch because they don't require heat." -Kay_Dee
    How To's
    • Polyester - "RIT dye Will dye polyester. Yes--everyone says (including the box of Rit) says poly will not dye--But it will. I have done it 100s of times. My entire Pastel lake dress replica is done out of Poly and was dyed 4 colors using only RIT. I have also dyed the poly Meijer tablecloth using RIT dye and also tea. Make sure you use the stove top method and HOT water. Let it dye for a long time (45 mins)." -Ferdalump
    • Glues and Fraycheck - Add any glue and embellishments AFTER dying. Glued areas take dye differently, sometimes turning a darker color.
    • Shrinking - Be sure to dye more fabric than you plan on using because it usually shrinks in the dye bath. It's usually best to purchase extra yardage and dye the fabric whole - cutting your pattern pieces afterward.
    • Dye it all at once - In order to have all of your fabric match it should be dyed at the same time in the same dye bath. (Dye, salt and water measurements are never precise enough to replicate exactly. There is also the time factor and temperatures that can change)
    • Procion Dyes - Refer to Dharma's Web Site for specifics on dye use. kay_dee has some additional step by step advise for tub dying in the Fabric Dying thread. "Procion dye can have really funny, unpredictable color reactions with silk. They will work, but you have to test your colors first... The trick with dyeing in the bathtub was putting another container in there - an 18 gallon Rubbermaid tub. If you have tile with grout be careful of that - it will stain the grout. (I had to scrub it out the second a drop got on - next time I will tape up a plastic sheet to protect the tile grout). The dye rinses out of the tub perfectly fine. It won't stain it. I also have one of those detachable shower heads with a hose and that really helped with clean up." - kay_dee
    • Drying - "As far as drying--as long as you rinse it OK, and the fabric can tolerate it I usually just use my dryer. When I was dyeing the Pastel dress I used a clothes line drying system because I didn't want to colors to touch until they were dry. If you use the dryer just make sure you clean it out afterwards or you might have yellow/gold underwear and socks. Basically you want it to dry evenly so go with your gut." -Ferd


    The sleeves on this blouse are actually very long and some of the patterns suggested above must be lengthened and/or adjusted for width to account for the extra sleeve puffs. They appear to have two or three(?) bands of elastic running through them to help create the puffs. The casing or binding at the wrist is not elasticized. The fabric at the wrist is softly pleated, not gathered as previously thought. The wrists are finished with a binding made from the same fabric as the blouse.

    There are two sets of pastel ribbons attached to the sleeves. The upper set wraps from mid-arm to above the elbow. The ‘tails’ of this set hang from just above the elbow to mid-thigh (when the arm is straight at your side). The second set of ribbons wrap around the arm just below the elbow and criss-cross down the lower arm, tying at the wrists. The ‘tails’ of the second set hang down from the wrist to below the knee. The relative lengths of the ribbons can be seen in this photo. The ribbons from the fashion show photo and exhibit photos seem a bit longer than those worn by Natalie. (Perhaps they were not wrapped around the model’s or mannequin’s wrists as many times as they were on Natalie??) Biba-Fett shared that the ribbons have a clear snap sewn at the center point where they are stitched together. They are attached at the center back of the arm with a clear snap.

    Kay_dee has studied the ribbons very closely. Here are her findings:
    “The ribbons are silk, but not the typical double-faced satin silk ribbon that is often sold in fabric stores. The ribbon is a very thin hand dyed type of ribbon. I compared it to a sample card of hand dyed ribbon I ordered from Treenway Silks. However, most of the hand dyed silk ribbon I'm finding thus far is only 13mm in width and I'd say the picnic ribbon appears to be closer to 18mm or 5/8" in width (like the satin or silk ribbons most of us have been using). The hunt is on for a source of hand dyed silk ribbon at a 5/8" width that is not made by sewing bias strips together. (Some places make it this way and you end up having ugly seams along the ribbon).​

    I did my best from a distance to come up with rough Pantone matches to the ribbons on the arms.​
    • Golden Yellow ribbon - 129C (The real ribbon is a little more muted in tone.)
    • Darker Avacado Green - Between 384C and 391C
    • Ligther Blue-Green – 558
    • Lighter Pink - 698C (The real ribbon a little lighter though.)
    • Darker Pink - Between 182c & 183c
    Below I'm providing color matches for YLI 13mm silk ribbon and 5/8" Satin Silk ribbon. The YLI is the right type of silk, but it's quite a bit narrower than what's used on the costume (I believe that the costume uses the discontinued 18mm ribbon). 5/8" ribbon is close to the correct width, but the satin is heavier and shinier. It's a toss up, at the moment if I can't find more 18mm ribbon some place I will probably get the satin because at least it's visually the right width.​

    YLI 13mm Silk Ribbon - Matches based on stock on hand at Lacis. (The]printed[/url] sample card is useless for color matching.)​
    • Light Green = 031
    • Dark Green = 20 seemed close, but I have a feeling all of the colors weren't in stock and there may be something closer.
    • Yellow = 35
    • Light Pink = 005
    • Dark Pink = 112
    Satin Silk Ribbon - Color Chart
    • Green = #31
    • Dark Green = #136 is close and more on the green side, #134 is also close but a little more of a blue-green
    • Yellow = Nothing was a good match. #76 was too yellow, #128 was too dark of a gold.
    • Light Pink = #11 looked closest leaning on the peachy pink side, but #03 is close too (a tad pinker)
    • Dark Pink = #69 is closest, but quite a bit lighter. The other pinks were either too dark or too bright.”
    - Kay_dee

    Other helpful ribbon advice
    “The silk satin ribbons were bought at M&J Trimming in NYC. I bought 6 yards of each color (though when measured, it was almost 6 1/2 yds - they measured generously), which was barely enough. I would get minimum 8 yards - preferably 9. The ribbons were expensive though, which is why I bought what I did! I bought 15mm ribbon in 128 pale gold, 4 rose, 126 dusty rose, and 134 celedon. I noticed the 4 rose color is not on the website, but they have it at the store, so you can call and ask if interested. I also bought 9mm of the pale gold for the corset straps.” – PadawansGuide

    "My advice for the ribbons is to only tack them on at the top. When I made my first one, I tacked them on at the top and at all the crisscross points. It made the sleeves look horrible" -Obi-Dawn


    The neckline is finished with a binding in the same manner as the sleeves. It does not appear to be elasticized. The blouse fabric appears to be pleated at the shoulder and gathered or pleated along the back before the binding is attached.

    "I modified my pattern (Butterick 6196) to make a casing (binding) that fit comfortably around my shoulders (I should have made it tighter though!). I first hand pleated several tucks at the top of the raw edges of the sleeve shoulders and a few along the back of the blouse. These pleats were then covered by attaching the casing (binding) at the raw edges of the blouse neckline.

    I measured the circumference needed for my neckline/shoulder casing by taking a tape measure and putting it around my shoulders. I then basted my casing into a circle and put it around my shoulders to make sure it fit.

    You can roughly calculate how much extra fabric you need at the raw edge neckline of your blouse to make all of your pleats. (But if you are using a peasant blouse pattern, I'll bet the pattern already allows for gathering/pleating) It really helps to play around with a muslin mockup before you make your final version though. For example, if you put in about 4 tucks at each shoulder, and 8 tucks along the back... 16 x 0.5" = an extra 8 inches of fabric around the shoulder to pleat.

    In the end, I think the key to getting that perfect fit at the shoulders (not too tight, not too droopy) is basting in your pleats, basting on your casing - then putting the blouse on adjusting the fit (size or number of pleats, let out or take in the casing) as needed." -kay_dee
    “I started with Butterick 6200 because I thought that some of the peasant blouse patterns had too much fullness across the front and back. I felt that the armscye seams of this pattern were very close to the original, so I modified my sleeve and bodice pieces without moving those seams. I only added a small amount of fullness to the front and back pattern pieces so the top would blouse gently over the corset similar to this picture of Natalie. I also widened the sleeve to accommodate the pleats at the shoulders, but I ran gathering stitches along the upper seam line in the front and back to ease those areas instead of pleating (shown here). After basting the sleeve pleats and adjusting the easing until I was happy with the fit, I attached my binding (made from bias strips of silk ironed onto very lightweight interfacing) along the basting line, trimmed the seam allowance to an 1/8” and folded the casing to the inside. I then “stitched in the ditch” to secure it.” – Mirax

    • A yoke was used on the waistline of the original skirt. If you'd like to make a yoke Jenny-LaFleur suggests Simplicity 9825. Kay_Dee has a page with notes about yokes as well.
    • As discussed above, a circle skirt made from 3 panels is the most accurate option.
    • ”After embellishing the outer layer, I assembled each skirt layer, using French seams and leaving the back center partially open for zipper installation. I then basted both layers together along the top and the zipper opening. I attached the skirt layers as one unit to the inside of the yoke, put in the zipper and then sewed the outside of the yoke down to enclose the seam. For the many yards of hem, I sewed YLI Fusible Thread a ¼â€ below the hemline, folded on the stitches and ironed it to fuse a very smooth line. After trimming, I turned the hem up another ¼â€ and stitched it in place with regular thread. It gives you a tidy narrow hem without the hassle of a hem foot.” – Mirax

    As mentioned earlier, the outer layer of the blouse and skirt are heavily embellished with yellow-green vines, yellow-green 5 petal flowers and off-white 4 petal sequins. Each of these details is explained below. Most costumers have completed the embellishment of the fabric after cutting out the pieces, but before assembling the garments. Vining can cause distortion so cutting pieces with extra wide seam allowances might be helpful. It is also recommended that some type of stabilizer be used behind the fabric. For example, Sulky Totally Stable irons onto the fabric and can then be carefully torn away. Both kay_dee and Mirax have used this type of stabilizer successfully. Others have had good luck with tissue paper or newsprint.

    Chain stitched Yellow-Green Vines
    Yellow-green chain stitched vines wind their way throughout the fabric connecting the white sequins. The stitches actually run through the center of each sequin. The vines also connect with the larger yellow-green flowers. A machine similar to this Cornelly industrial embroidery machine was likely used to do the vines and yellow-green flowers.

    The exact color of the vines has been difficult to determine. Here’s kay_dee’s analysis from her visits to the FIDM exhibit:
    “I brought several spools of rayon & Viscose embroidery thread with me, and Gutermann 8910 was the closest match to the green vines. It may have been a little darker than the real vines. Or, it may have been a dead on match and the vines on the skirt just optically appeared slightly lighter because of the way I was seeing the thread on the chiffon, rather than on a solid spool. Gutermann 8595 in not a match, and Sulky 1209 Light Avacado has too much blue in it, but it is about the right tint as far as lightness of color goes.”​

    No one has sketched out an exact pattern for the vines. Instead, most costumers have studied exhibit photos and practiced on paper before beginning on the fabric. As Obi-Dawn put it, “I've studied all the pics of Padme's dress that I've been able to get a hold of and can't really pin down a distinct 'pattern' to the vines. I just free-form the lines of flowers to my own taste. It's fun and swirly." Kay_dee was able to measure the distance between vines in her photos. She said, “It really varies because the vines are so random. I estimate by my scale measurements that some vines are 3 cm apart, some are 4 cm apart. It really fluctuates above and below those numbers.”

    Because most machines for home use don’t have a chain stitch, the seamstresses here have created vines in other ways, both by machine and by hand.

    Machine Stitching
    • Kirana T - "I did the vines by machine, and it turned out very nicely. I did most of it before I sewed the pieces together, so I didn't have to deal with so much fabric in the machine at once. Definitely do a test piece first, and go slow, so your fabric doesn't pucker."
    • Obi-Dawn does her vining with a tight zig-zag stitch. "I would warn you about the vining because it tends to change the original shape of your fabric piece/panel. It tugs and pulls it up and down, lengthening and/or shortening it in places. So I always make my skirt panels longer and a little wider than they need to be to compensate for the distortion the vining can cause. For instance, my skirt that I'm currently working on has yet to be hemmed and the bottom line is REALLY distorted. If you saw it in its current state you'd be slightly horrified. All will be sorted when its done though. As for my chemise, I took a few precautions against the distortion the vining can cause. I cut each pattern piece a little bigger than needed and on the bodice pieces I do not vine down their entire lengths. So much of the chemise bodice is covered up with the corset, most of it actually, so I don't vine the whole thing. The sleeves are fully vined, but cutting them a little larger than they need to be helps a lot. If you are doing two layers of fabric then the under layer can remain the right shape and act as your guide for the embellished layer. In fact, for the sleeves I basted the two layers together once I was done with embellishing and then assembled them. (I did not do that for the skirt though! Those layers are only attached together at the waist.)"
    • Liannb - "I machine embroidered the green vining using the button hole stitch on the sewing machine. I did it in a crisscross cross pattern."
    • Mirax used the Triple Stitch on her machine to create the vines.
    Hand Embroidery
    • kay_dee experimented with hand embroidering her vines using a chain stitch, an embroidery hoop, and Solvy stabilizer. The results were turning out nicely with no distortion to the fabric. Unfortunately it was taking far too long and she had to go without vines. "A decorative topstitch with the sewing machine is the fastest way to go."
    Large Yellow-Green 5 Petal Flowers

    The skirt and blouse embellishments are punctuated with larger yellow-green embroidered 5 petal flowers. Kay_Dee was able to take a close-up shot of one of these flowers. It is now known that the outline of the larger flowers is chain stitched in the same color as the vines. The flowers are filled with a golden yellow color. According to kay_dee, “It was VERY hard to tell if [the fill color] was the lighter Gutermann 1440 or the darker 1415. In the end I think I'm going with the darker 1415 because the shade seemed very close to that of the vines and the color of the blouse. It's a real toss up though.” The very center of the flower is finished with one tiny clear blue-green seed bead.

    To date, no one has machine embroidered these flowers directly onto the fabric. However, kay_dee hand embroidered hers using a satin stitch with Anchor Floss 264 Light Yellow Green and 158 Very Light Baby Blue. See her embroidery here -

    Another alternative is to purchase flowered trim and appliqué each flower directly onto the fabric. Obi-Dawn used white flowers cut from a trim purchased from Hancock Fabrics. "I dyed them with Dylon Cold Water dye in Spring Green." See her photos here.

    Off-White 4 Petal Sequins

    The off-white flowers on the skirt and blouse are flat 4 petal sequins that measure approximately 7mm from petal to petal. If held as an X, the bottom edge is approximately 5mm wide. Ferdalump had purchased fabric with sequins of this size in a pale gold color quite a while ago. PadawansGuide used them on her costume. A comparison of Ferd’s sequins to the actual costume at FIDM showed it to be an exact match in shape and size. The color of Ferd’s sequins was quite a bit darker than those on the picnic dress. According to kay_dee, “the actual sequins are not a stark white, but sort of a flat pearly off-white. As far as I can tell, depending how the lights hit, it can have hints of gold or even silvery gray at times.”

    After four years of looking, a sequin manufacturer who makes 4 petal sequins in the correct size has been located. The Bowman Group only deals in wholesale orders, so a large group of C&P costumers pooled together to place a 30 kilo order. After their new versions of the picnic dress have been completed, some of the people who purchased sequins may be willing to sell leftover sequins. Anyone interested can post a request to this thread. If someone wishes to organize another bulk order in the future, they can contact Bowman Group and request “8mm 4 petal sequins in Dull Bright Flake #1514”. The minimum order is 25 kilos. As of Aug. 2006, a kilo of these sequins cost $13. Be aware that shipping from China was over $500.

    Kay_dee’s wonderful photos have also made it possible to measure the distances between sequins on the actual costume. She reports that “some sequins are closer to one another than others along the vine, but it looks like along the vine each sequin is generally placed about 2 cm apart when measuring center to center on the sequin. Some may only be 15mm apart, some may be a little over 22mm apart.”

    Alternatives to 4 Petal Sequins
    • Obi-Dawn made her own sequins by using a butterfly hole punch purchased at JoAnn's. The butterfly punch is made by Provo Craft (#34-0069). She punched the butterflies from a product called Shimmer Sheetz. Obi-Dawn added, "I can get 200 butterflies out of each sheet of mylar. I've gone through eight sheets so far (1600 sequins).
    • Liannb also made her sequins. "I used round Pearlescent sequins, I cut out the four corners on each sequin to get the four petal shape."
    • Artemisia_Rossetti found a 4 petal flower hole puncher from M.C. Mieth Manufacturing's web site: . "They are on the small side (3/16" across) but do have four petals. I asked for the No. 45 all-purpose punch with design number 291. They have lots of design choices. #7 is the correct shape. It was a bit spendy at $36." Mirax used this punch with Shimmer Sheetz for her second version.
    • Obi-Anne found small 0.5 cm applique flowers in the fabric catalog by Stoff&Stil "Unfortunately I don't think they ship anything overseas, they didn't even ask for country where you have to write your address in order to get the catalogue. I also just love these flowers, but they are quite expensive, you get 6 of them for around $3.00. They are described as mother-of-pearl, but I don't know if that's just the outer coat of paint on them."
    • Obi-Dawn used cut up 5 petal flower trim from JoAnn's for her first picnic dress.
    • Kay_Dee hand embroidered white flowers on her fabric using white Rayon Patina and a small detached chain stitch or daisy chain stitch. See a scan of her skirt embroidery at (cut and paste link)
    • Others suggested a "1\4" flat bead that looks like four petaled baby's breath." But these may also get heavy and weigh the skirt and blouse down.
    Embellishment Techniques
    Most costumers have found it easiest to attach the sequins prior to adding the green vines. If your sequins can be sewn through, you can first tack them in place with Fabri-Tac or Liquid Stitch fabric glues.
    • Obi-Dawn glued on her sequins in free formed lines and then played 'connect the sequins' on her sewing machine to add the vining. According to Obi-Dawn, "The Fabri-tack glue works great to secure the sequins in place. I'm finding that by applying the flowers first, I really have to plot out where the vines go because they have to intersect the flowers right through their middles, so in essence, I'm plotting them out with the sequins. I also suggest that when you apply the sequins, do so in distinct individual lines. I start by sewing on my green flowers first, by hand, and then my first lines of sequins begin from each green flower. I then add lines of flowers all over until there are enough."
    • Mirax drew her vines right on the silk with a water-soluble blue marking pen (from JoAnns) which she had pretested!! She then glued down the sequins along the blue lines and sewed the vines through each sequin. The ink disappeared once the silk was wet. “Getting each section of the skirt wet after I sequined and vined them also made it easier to tear off the stabilizer I had ironed behind each section.”
    • PadawansGuide could not sew through her sequins, so she vined first and glued the sequins on afterwards with “Aleene’s Ok to Wash It” glue.
    • Kay_dee pre-sketched her vines onto the stabilizer back.

    Padme wears a shawl (or cape) with this costume that is made from embroidered netting, probably silk. The medium to dark pink rose clusters alternate groups of 1s and 3s connected by green vines. The front of the shawl is closed with a jeweled dragonfly brooch. According to Biba-Fett, “The shawl attaches to the blouse/corset at the shoulder straps with clear plastic snaps. 2 in front and two in back.” Those who visited the FIDM exhibit reported that the netting of the shawl is much darker than it appears in photos. The shawl has scalloped edging finished with green stitching that was partially painted yellow to give the appearance of variegated thread.


    There does not appear to be a commercial pattern that matches this shawl. Most costumers drafted their own after experimenting with muslin or cheap fabric.
    • Butterick 3345 view E - Suggested by Kay-Dee "This is the closest pattern I've seen that can be adapted for the picnic shawl. Just enlarge the neckline and add a scalloped cut to the edges."
    • McCall's 3033 view A - Suggested by Kay_Dee "This pattern required a lot of altering - changing it at least 4 times until I had drafted an entirely new pattern. At least it gave me a starting point."
    • Koshka-the-cat drafted her own shawl pattern
    • Kay_Dee drafted her own cape pattern as well.

    Most of the fabrics that have been found for the cape must be dyed. See Dye Tips below. Also, because most of these suggestions are retail products, they may be discontinued. eBay might be helpful in locating a discontinued curtain panel.
      • The most accurate option to date is the Home Trends One Sheer Panel (curtain) called “Rose Traditions” in the 55x84in. size, sold at Wal*Mart. This curtain has the correct embroidery with roses in clusters of three and comes on a base netting that is off-white in color. It looks like Wal*Mart is no longer stocking this item so it is becoming increasingly difficult to find.

    Scalloped Edging

    As noted earlier, the edge of the cape is not finished with variegated thread as previously thought. Kay_dee & PadawansGuide discovered that “it's actually faked to look like variegating. The shawl edge is finished with a solid darker green satin stitched edge, and yellow paint is dabbed on in spots. It's done on both the upper edge and under edge.”

    The green satin stitching is a close match to to cactus (Pantone 18-0130 TPX) or Garden Green (19-0230 TPX) from the Pantone for fashion and home color guide. The yellow painted variegated color is close to Mimosa (Pantone 14-0848 TPX) or Yolk Yellow (Pantone 14-0846 TPX). The color was actually very close to the color of the blouse and skirt.

    • Use a tight zig-zag or satin stitch on your machine to finish off the edges.
    • When doing the edging on a sewing machine, use tear-away stabilizer.
    • PadawansGuide described her edging process this way: “I took my cue from Obi-Dawn and traced my scallops onto the stabilizer and then just followed those lines with a straight satin stitch along the edge of my cape. It worked very well.”
    • Kay_dee recommended sewing a second layer of satin stitches to make the edge less fragile.
    • Mirax suggested applying Fray Block to the stitching before cutting away the stabilizer and excess fabric.
    • Sulky variegated thread #'s 2114, 2115, or 932 were used prior to discovering that the edging was painted.
    Adding Your Own Flowers
    • The vining can be done by hand or machine.
    • Some people have used the Offray ribbon roses made to decorate the cape.
    • Some have used rose cluster appliques purchased from (Suggested by Christine)

    Dyes Used
    • Tea - Used by Ferdalump
    • Orange pekoe tea - Liannb
    • RIT dye in "Golden Yellow" - Used by Ferdalump
    • Tan liquid RIT - Used by Petite_Padme, Liannb & Obi-Dawn
    • 2 parts Rit Gold/Yellow and 1 part Tan
    • Acid Jacquard dye in Aztec Gold and Olive from Dharma - Used by kay_dee
    • DecoArt, So Soft Fabric Paint in Shimmering Pearls/Golden Yellow) - Used by Obi-Dawn
    • Jones Tones Fabric Paint
    How To's
    • Will the dye effect the embroidery? - The thread used to embroider many of the fabrics suggested above are more resistant to dying than the fabric. The roses either will not change color at all, or they will warm up slightly depending on the time in the bath. A product called a “resist” might be able to be used to protect the roses from the effects of dyes. Dharma Trading has numerous types of resists.
    • RIT tan liquid dye - "I ended up using liquid RIT tan dye with HUGE success... my cape is exactly the color of the real cape. I used the stovetop method with a half-recipe of dye, a half cup of salt, and enough water to fill a 6-quart pot 2 inches. Allow the dye bath to simmer while dying the cloth. When using a dye concentration this high, it only takes about 40 SECONDS (not minutes!) for the netting to dye the right color. The tan RIT dye did dye the roses as well--mostly just the two lightest shades of pink. The darker pinks warmed up a little, but the light pink turned kinda brownish-peachy pink. I decided that I didn't mind that a whole lot". - Petite Padme "The colour is perfect. I used the tan liquid rit dye. I used half a cup of dye and half a cup of salt and only put the fabric in for about 20 seconds. I'm very pleased with the results." -Liannb
    • RIT golden yellow - "If memory serves I think I did not use the dye at full strength. " -Ferdalump
    • Combination of RIT dyes – “I eyeballed a combo of golden yellow and tan RIT and I was very happy with my color. I didn't leave it in very long - just swished for maybe 20 seconds or so. The netting took the dye pretty fast. I think maybe the roses are a tad darker, but it wasn't enough to bother me. After seeing the real costume, I redyed my cape darker with a mix of tan, cocoa brown, and golden yellow RIT. The real cape is very dark!” – PadawansGuide
    • DecoArt, So Soft Fabric Paint - "It didn't stiffen the fabric and I didn't dilute it because I really liked the color. I can tell you the Tulip Pearl fabric paint did not work at all for me when I tested it on the same fabric. Ugh." - Obi-Dawn
    • Polyester - "RIT dye Will dye polyester. Yes--everyone says (including the box of Rit) says poly will not dye--But it will. I have done it 100s of times. My entire Pastel lake dress replica is done out of Poly and was dyed 4 colors using only RIT. I have also dyed the poly Meijer tablecloth using RIT dye and also tea. make sure you use the stove top method and HOT water let it dye for a long time (45 mins)." -ferdalump
    • Glues and Fraycheck - Add any glue and embellishments AFTER dying. Glued areas take dye differently, sometimes turning a darker color.
    • Shrinking - Be sure to dye more fabric than you plan on using because it usually shrinks in the dye bath. It's usually best to purchase extra yardage and dye the fabric whole - cutting your pattern pieces afterward.
    • Procion Dyes - Refer to Dharma's Web Site for specifics on dye use. kay_dee has some additional step by step advise for tub dying in the Fabric Dying thread. "Procion dye can have really funny, unpredictable color reactions with silk. They will work, but you have to test your colors first... The trick with dyeing in the bathtub was putting another container in there - an 18 gallon Rubbermaid tub. If you have tile with grout be careful of that - it will stain the grout. (I had to scrub it out the second a drop got on - next time I will tape up a plastic sheet to protect the tile grout). The dye rinses out of the tub perfectly fine. It won't stain it. I also have one of those detachable shower heads with a hose and that really helped with clean up." - kay_dee
    • Drying - "As far as drying--as long as you rinse it OK, and the fabric can tolerate it I usually just use my dryer. When I was dyeing the Pastel dress I used a clothes line drying system because I didn't want to colors to touch until they were dry. If you use the dryer just make sure you clean it out after wards or you might have yellow/gold underwear and socks. Basically you want it to dry evenly so go with your gut." -Ferd

    - BROOCH -

    After watching the P-19 video, Obi-Dawn confirmed that a brooch is used to fasten Padme's shawl, "You know the part where Trisha unpins a piece of paper and what looks like a plastic bag from the skirt? Well, I could read what it said on the piece of paper and it says 'P-19 Broach'."

    The FIDM exhibit provided our first glimpse of the actual brooch. This photo was taken by Darth Manos, the husband of Biba-Fett prior to the fashion show. This picture was taken by PadawansGuide following the fashion show. Notice that a jewel fell out of the brooch during the show! Afaeryschild made an interpretive sketch of the brooch from the limited photos available prior to the exhibit. Her drawing was amazingly close to the real thing.

    • PadawansGuide made her pin from silver Sculpey and gemstones.
    • kay_dee plans to try Precious Metal Clay for her next version. This type of clay needs to be fired in a kiln.
    • Obi-Dawn made her brooch using a small glass dragonfly and sculpey. Many beading, jewelry, and embroidery shops sell small charms that can be used to make a brooch.
    • Mirax used a silver dragonfly button from JoAnns.
    • Kay_Dee purchased a silver antique bar pin for her first version. eBay and antique malls are a good source for these types of pins.


    This information about Padme's hair and makeup was taken from InStyle Magazine. It was in reference to the Nightgown Costume, but many of the same hair and makeup techniques are used for the Picnic Costume as well:
    IN STYLE JUNE 2002 pg 264​

    Hair - Love wanted to achieve a "romantic, gypsy" look. So after Portman's just shampooed hair had dried naturally, Love added waist-length extensions to the actress's shoulder-length strands and set half-inch sections in heated rubber rollers for 15 minutes. She skipped brushing the hair in order to keep the ringlets intact. To open up Portman's face she swept back side sections above the ears and secured them with tortoiseshell hairpins.​

    Skin - Vanderwalt started with Lancome Maqui-Libre foundation in Beige Naturel III. "I wanted a light base that would even out the skin tone but was sheer," she explains. To add a "peachy tone" to Portman's cheeks Vanderwalt applied Stila Convertible Color in Camellia on the apples of the cheeks. She finished with a dusting of Shu Uemera Loose Colorless powder.​

    Eyes - Vanderwalt brushed MAC Bark eye shadow on the lids and MAC shadow in Quarry on the brow bones before applying one coat of Max Factor 2000 Calorie mascara in black-brown to top lashes.​

    Lips - Wanting a shade similar to Portman's own lip color, Vanderwalt went with the obvious choice: a sheer Stila shade inspired by the star and called, appropriately, Natalie​

    The headband is made from two pieces of 1/2" yellow-green ribbon edged in metallic gold. It is embroidered with the same roses seen on the corset and the cape fabric.


    Kay_Dee found the same ribbon used in the movie at Britex Fabrics in San Francisco. (She was told by several sales people that the costume designers had shopped a bit in Britex.) Here is a scan of the original ribbon. Unfortunately Britex is now sold out of this ribbon and it cannot be reordered.

    Kay_Dee also found this color of the same ribbon at International Silks and Woolens. Although it's a very good substitution, it's not the same color as the original paler golden olive color used in the movie. This olive is a little darker and greener. They will do mail orders if you call them. Ask for Nabila at (323) 653-6453. They sell it for $11.50 per yard. It is the Gold Edged Flat Ribbon from France, Olive Green #5.

    Another similar shade was located at The Ribbonerie in San Francisco a couple years ago. They are now sold out as well, and she was told that the supplier in France is no longer making this ribbon. It is worth checking shops specializing in ribbons and trims to see if you can find remaining spools of this ribbon. Here is the information from the spool purchased at the Ribbonerie:

    PON: 40714
    COL: 05 (this color is a bit darker than the original)
    Made in France

    Update (06/20100:

    The Ribbonerie is still around, they have a new web site:

    Check the "Collections" section, Specialty Ribbon, page 4 at the bottom. "4-hd-10_col_3" is the closest color available for the headband. The original golden-green color worn in the movie is no longer made and can not be ordered from the manufacturer.

    • Obi-Dawn has instructions on how she put her headband together.
    • Kay_Dee says, "I just overlapped the gold part of the ribbon in the middle so I'd have one visible strip of gold rather than two when I joined my two strips together. I also used Sulky metallic gold thread to sew the strips together by hand in the center so the stitching wouldn't show."
    • On the original costume, roses from the shawl fabric were used on the headband. Mirax used Fray Block on the roses prior to clipping away the netting. She attached them to the ribbon with clear thread.
    • Rose appliques or offray ribbon roses could also be used to embellish the headband.

    Where To Get Them
    Suggestions For Filling The Buns With Hair
    • Two small pony tail extensions purchased from a beauty supply - the clips removed. Example photo here. - Kay_Dee
    • Curly Hair scrunchies purchased at Sally's. - Mirax
    • Synthetic weaving hair, $4.99 per pack purchased at a wig store. It was braided, wrapped into a bun shape and inserted into the bun covers. Photos can be seen here. - Kay_Dee
    • Doll hair from craft stores. – PadawansGuide
    Attaching Buns To Your Hair
    • Obi-Dawn suggests, "With my second costume I kept the snoods and the headband separate and had much better results. I put the headband on first and then the snoods. To attach the snoods I used A LOT of bobby pins and clips. Of course, I was wearing a wig which really gave the pins something substantial to attach to. I think this was a huge plus for me because I have relatively thin hair. They stayed on, close fitted to my head, all day with no problems."
    • Kay_Dee suggests, "The wig I wore helped give me a little extra hair to put the bobby pins into. Also, curling my own hair before hand gave it extra body so the pins didn't slip right out. I put one or two bobby pins at the top through the head band."
    • Katherine suggested making small pin curls on the side of your head in order to give the bobby pins something to grab onto.
    • Liannb suggests using flexible clips that snap shut tight and completely flat.
    • PadawansGuide sewed small hair combs into her bun covers.
    • Obi-Dawn purchased a full wig without bangs from (style: Visage) Here are some photos of her hairstyle.
    • Kay Dee has used a 3/4 synthetic fall (by Envy Hollywood) matching her own hair color to get the desired length in back with a natural look in front. The Saphire wig from is very similar to the one she used. A photo of her hairstyle can be seen here at Padawan's Guide.
    • Kay Dee has also used a full synthetic wig purchased from The Wig Factory in San Francisco (style: Cassie by Mona Lisa) Here are some photos of the hairstyle.
    • Mirax used a long curly ponytail clip by Revlon purchased from Sally's. (Many beauty supplies carry these.) Examples of this kind of clip can be seen at Something like the Mirage Finger Clip or the Billie Finger Clip would work well.
    • “For the hair, at a mall kiosk, I bought a comb that had two wires
      covered in fake curly hair attached to it - you can bend the wires -
      so I make a small bun, put the comb in above it, and than curve the
      wires around the bun, to make fuller hair - it works pretty well.
      Others may want to check their local mall.” – PadawansGuide
    • Tenyon's Hair Tutorial - Tenyon has an excellent detailed write up on creating this picnic hairstyle. See her step by step instructions with photos on page 50 of the Padme's Picnic Dress v2.0 thread.
    • Mirax styled her hair by using, "two curly hair scrunchies and a clip of long curly hair from Sally's that matches my own. (All three items are by Revlon.) I put one scrunchie in each snood and tied them closed. After washing and blowdrying, I part my hair down the middle and divide each side into three sections which I hold with small bear clips to keep it divided. Next, I put on the headband and the Revlon clip near the base of my neck, and start curling the two sections closest to the back. I pin those curls in small sections on either side of the clip as camouflage. The ribbons are pinned just above the clip and then I continue with the middle sections on both sides, curling and pinning on top of the clip and ribbons. By then, there is a curly “bump” on the back, similar to Padme. The front sections are curled and then loosely French braided on either side. The last step is to attach the bun covers (with the scrunchies already inside) using bobby pins." Here is a photo and another photo that appeared in Star Wars Insider.
    • Liannb suggests, "Those buns are very hard to attach. I used about 4 barrettes on each. Those ones that flex to open and snap shut, kind of triangular shaped. They worked really well. It helps if you have someone to do it for you. My friend did mine when I went to the renaissance festival and they held all day. I pin curled my hair overnight the night before and it turned out nice and curly, and my hair doesn't curl well."
    • Kay Dee's styling suggestions, "I purchased a 3/4 wig that's long and wavy. The wig attaches at the top center of the head, and I had to put my own hair into rollers to get it curled like the wig. This way your own bangs and hair framing your face still shows. After I put on the wig, I attached the headband and I pinned some of my own front/side hair back behind my head so it drapes above the buns and the headband. I filled my snoods with hair from those fake ponytail clips you can get at most beauty supplies. I used bobby pins to secure the buns to my hair and I also found it helpful to put one of the bobby pins through the headband." She also suggests, "If you are using a synthetic wig with some wave to it, you can uses small plastic hot rollers to curl the front pieces that frame the face. Don't use Velcro rollers though, these tend to get tangled in the synthetic hair. Metal curling irons should be avoided because they melt the synthetic hair."
    • Benae_Quee gave these instructions for doing her hair:
      1.) Shampooed and Conditioned my hair this morning.
      2.) Towel dried it followed by spraying in Garnier Fructise Curl booster gel (love this stuff - no crunchy curls).
      3.) Made about 40-50 small finger curls all over my head... for each curl I sprayed a little more of the gel into my hands and rubbed it through the piece of hair, then I twisted it, and wrapped it around two fingers, it was simply pinned on top of my head by the roots.
      4.) When this was done I sat for about 2 hours and let it air dry (I really don't like heat dryers and avoid them when I can), since its kind of cold in my apartment, it was taking a little longer than I liked, so I blasted the curls with low heat from the dryer for a few minutes until they felt dry.
      5.) Took all the little curls out and separated them into 2 or 3 strands (carefully so as not to tangle everything) - this took about 20 minutes.
      6.) I looked up on Maggie's site at the high res shots of her hair. It looks like there are two very loose french braids starting at the side and ending at the bun in the back. So I did this (leaving a few loose strands) and pinned it in place where the bun would start.
      7.) I made a small messy bun at the end of the braid. Below this bun I made another smaller one, I then placed a hair piece over that. To hide the piece better, I took some strands from the side and pinned them in the middle over it.
      8.) Gather the hair in the back and make a loose pony tail. Photos of her results:
      Pic #1, Pic #2

    It appears that 3 silk ribbons (approx. 5/8" wide) matching the color and style used on the blouse sleeves are tied into a bow at the base of the neck. From this photo they appear to be pink, yellow-green, and yellow.

    - SHOES -

    Padme wears a flat Mary Jane or ballet style slipper with a very short heel. In some photos it appears that there is some kind of ribbon or lace added that wraps around the ankle. In many of the photos the shoes appear to be a cream or off-white color, but one person who worked on the set and saw the shoes in person thought they were a pale pistachio green. These notes are from Padawan's Guide: "Padme's shoes for that costume are actually a very pale pistachio green! They also said that their colour matched very well with the gown (they were approximately the shade of the ribbons = see sleeves and headdress). They estimated a 1cm heel." In some photos the heel looks like it might be a gold color.


      • Benae_Quee: Her costume site Benae_Quee’s dress was crafted by Obi-Dawn.
      • electrakitty: Little girl version made as a sewing lesson project with the girl in the photos. Pic#1, Pic #2

    I would like to say a special thank you to kay_dee for her meticulous research and insights and to Obi-Dawn for her never-ending encouragement and enthusiasm for this special costume. I’m sure you could tell from reading this summary, that they both have an uncanny eye for detail and accuracy. I would also like to thank everyone who is part of this thread for all the tips and tricks they have contributed since the obsession began. It’s just amazing to see how far our costumes have come and how our skills have broadened. For those who are new, welcome. We hope you will also share what you discover as you create even more accurate versions of our favorite dress. Let the conversation continue!

    Best Regards,

    PS - Here’s something fun that I put together from info in v3.0

    v3.0 of the Picnic Dress thread was used from February 2004 until August 2006.
    During that two and a half year time span, the following events occurred:
      • Planning for CIII was undertaken and a plan to get the real dress there was hatched. [​IMG]
      • Picnic dresses were completed by liannb, petite_padme, Obi-Anne, Obi_Dawn, Mirax (v2.0), PadawansGuide, FormerQueen, and Adalia-Durron.
      • Kay_dee made some prophetic comments about not finishing her v1.5 before CIII – “I'm sad I won't have a better version of this gown to take to CIII - but the force is not with me on this one. (I'm trying to tell myself it's for a reason... like maybe we will see it in person?)” She was only off by 4 months.
      • At CIII, Obi-Dawn won first place in the Padme category of the Costume Pageant.
      • Nostradamus’ version of the Picnic Dress won an award from Simplicity.
      • Obi-Anne was able to visit “Naboo” – See her pictures here and here.
      • Four weddings were planned by Mirax, Benae_Quee, JainaMSolo, and PadawansGuide. Mirax, Jaina and Benae also made their own wedding gowns.
      • One baby was born - Braden-Wan Kenobi, March 11th, 2006 Pics here.
      • Picnic dress influences were noted in shower and window curtains, prom dresses, nighties, baby clothing, one of Oprah’s dresses, lamp shades, scarves, and a Marie Antoinette costume in the upcoming movie.
      • Vows to not remake their dresses were made by Mirax, kay_dee, Obi-Dawn, and Obi-Anne.
      • Several prophetic comments were made by Obi- Dawn long before we knew of the FIDM exhibit –
      • #1. “I mean...could you imagine seeing it in real life? I'd be glued to the floor in front of it for hours.
        [*]“ #2. “I just realized something. If I did see this dress IRL, I'd be able to see everything I did wrong and would probably have to make it again in order to fix them. MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!”
        [*]#3. “Maybe if we all get super lucky we'll get to see it in an exhibit someday and then all our questions will be answered.”
      • Dawn’s comments prompted Mirax to write this contract:
        I, [insert name here], do solemnly swear that:

        **I will view P-19 for the sole intention of
        drooling over it for an undetermined amount of

        **I will not under any circumstances stand near
        said dress while wearing my own version of it
        and point out to all passers-by the mistakes or
        so-called flaws in my own dress.

        **I will not leave the display and head forthwith
        to any fabric store to purchase more fabric to
        try it again.

        **I solemnly promise not to inflict upon my
        family the entire process of re-creating this
        dress yet again because it is not "an exact

        **I reluctantly accept the fact that I am not
        Trisha Biggar nor do I have the financial
        resources of Lucasfilm.

        It is my intention from this moment on to be
        justifiably proud of the work I have accomplished in
        lovingly recreating this dress. While my admiration
        for all things Picnic Dress will never fade, I will allow
        myself to be satisfied that I have done my best and
        enjoy the wearing of my own masterpiece.

        Witnessed by all pertinent Family Members:
      • The Dressing the Galaxy book was announced to our great joy.
      • The FIDM exhibit was announced to even greater joy!
      • Dawn, Maggie, and kay_dee (and I’m sure others) were able to attend the FIDM exhibit and take amazing photos. Kay_dee set up camp in front of the Picnic Dress (and others gowns), bringing with her a camera, note pads, a Pantone guide, sequin and ribbon samples, numerous spools of thread, and even, binoculars!
      • Biba-Fett generously gave a private “Padme Club” tour which resulted in wonderful insights into so many costumes.
      • Dawn’s actual reaction to seeing the real thing –
        “It was overwhelming, to say the least. Partly because of all the time I've spent obsessing over it in pictures and also because it was surrounded by all the other costumes that were begging to be stared at as well. Where to look first?

        The skirt and blouse seemed so delicate and light, just as I'd expected. And the almost sheer ribbons were absolutely appropriate looking with the rest of the costume, dainty and wispy.
        The shawl fabric was more golden than I'd expected, darker I suppose. And the pin that fastens it together was very small. It was fantastic to see it, finally!

        It was difficult to walk away from the dress. In fact surly had to literally take me by the arm and pull me away. (If she hadn't we may have never left.) And, somehow, seeing it in real life was like coming full circle. I don't think that I'll ever feel the driving need to remake it again, so it was like the end of the road or something. My eyes may have been a bit teary.”
      • Vows not to re-make their dresses were recanted by Mirax, kay_dee, Obi-Anne, (and maybe Dawn & Maggie in the future).
    • And finally, probably the best line in the entire v3.0 thread came from TheCloneEmperor – “I was going to post the images of my super-secret D*C 20 Padmé Picnic Dress--I tell ya I cut quite a figure in it.”
  2. JainaMSolo

    JainaMSolo Jedi Youngling star 3

    Jan 19, 2001
    Yay, thank you Mirax (and Sister_Sola)! I'm very much looking forward to it. Now that I have the sequins, this dress has moved up quite a bit on my "to-do" list!
  3. MiraxTHorn

    MiraxTHorn Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2000
    Unfinished business from that previous thread: Benae_Quee's idea for T-Shirts:
    You know you're a picnic costumer if...
    1.) You obsess over the color and size of a sequin
    2.) You bought curtains for your house to match your dress
    3.) Your friends call you Trisha
    4.) blah blah blah, insert text here
  4. across0the0stars

    across0the0stars Jedi Youngling star 2

    Jul 29, 2003
    that's impressive to compile all of that information.

    haha that tshirt is funny and pretty =P
  5. Sister_Sola

    Sister_Sola Manager Emeritus star 4 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Nov 19, 2002
    Okay, if there are still markup errors showing, it's because I couldn't get them to work no matter what I tried. The coding is right, it just won't do what it's supposed to. Grrr boards!

    Great work MiraxTHorn in putting that all together, and all you ladies who contributed to this database of knowledge over the past few years!
  6. Obi-Dawn Kenobi

    Obi-Dawn Kenobi Manager Emeritus star 4 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jan 27, 2000
    Oh Mirax, what a fantastic job you did on such a huge undertaking! Thank you very much! :)

    I especially loved the end section that chronicled all we've been through in the past couple of years. Time sure has flown by quickly!

    I know I said I wouldn't make another version of the dress, but I might do a new skirt and chemise in the future with the sequins to display at home on a mannequin. They really are begging to be used. ;)

  7. ewok78

    ewok78 Jedi Youngling star 1

    Jun 20, 2005
    Thank you for all this job Mirax !
  8. Obi Anne

    Obi Anne Celebration Mistress of Ceremonies star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 4, 1998
    That's a great job Mirax, thank you so much.

    Ohh, and I see that I have vowed two times not to make this dress again, but I can't help thinking about it. Well that might be in a year or so, I'm still going through with the party-version for C4.
  9. Benae_Quee

    Benae_Quee Jedi Padawan star 4

    Nov 15, 2002
    Awesome job on the new thread :) I'd say it's pretty complete with everything a picnic costumer could ever want :D.

    I think I may have found an alternate use for the sequins :D. You know those BOHO style skirts everyone is wearing (I LOVE them)? Well a lot of them are accented with sequins, I thought it would be fun to make my own 'BOHO' skirt based off the picnic skirt :). If I ever get around to making it, I'll be sure to post a picture :D.
  10. liannb

    liannb Jedi Knight star 5

    Jun 30, 2002
    fantastic compilation Mirax :)
  11. MiraxTHorn

    MiraxTHorn Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2000
    Did you see the warning at the beginning of the thread? You suggested that, Anne. :)

    Sorry about the remaining coding errors. They will be fixed at some point. This summary totaled 43 pages in a Word document, more coding than text! (I didn't write 43 pages, though. It started as kay_dee's summary of 38 pages that I just added onto.) It's not an easy amount of text for the forums to handle.

  12. PadawansGuide

    PadawansGuide Jedi Youngling star 3

    Sep 26, 2002
    Wonderful job on the new thread, Mirax! :)
  13. cressie

    cressie Jedi Youngling star 1

    Jul 12, 2006
    Great update! Thanks so much Mirax!

    I just wanted to update everyone on my quest to dye the shawl without coloring the roses. I wasn't happy with the color of my roses when i used RIT tan/golden yellow. I thought that the roses didn't match my corset.

    Today at my local walmart supercenter i discovered Tulip Fashion Art Resist around the Tie-Dye stuff in the fabric department. It is a wax resist in a squirt bottle that does not require heat. It was not messy (like my paraffin wax attempt) and looks good on my sample pieces so far. It only took 30 minutes to apply it on the shawl. I will post pics of v3.0 of my shawl once it dries.

    Thanks for your ideas ladies! This dress is like crack!
  14. Kasey8473

    Kasey8473 Jedi Youngling star 1

    Dec 13, 2005
    Great job on the summary, Mirax! Very useful to have in front of you.
  15. Kasey8473

    Kasey8473 Jedi Youngling star 1

    Dec 13, 2005
    While I'm on a roll sharing progress....


    It's getting there and I'm very happy with how it's going. It really wasn't as scary starting it as I'd imagined. Thanks for the advice everyone!

  16. liannb

    liannb Jedi Knight star 5

    Jun 30, 2002
    looks great so far :)
  17. luminousbeing78

    luminousbeing78 Jedi Youngling star 1

    Oct 9, 2005
    Wow! Excellent job on this thread, Mirax!!!
    I can't wait to get started on picnic dress #2!! I'll have to put a printed copy of this on my bulletin board by the sewing machine! To begin I cut my shawl from the first one and finished out the scalloped edges using Obi Dawn's tutorial. It took a lot of time and patience, but it looks ten times better! I love it! Plus, I was never really satisfied with the first one (the skirt wasn't embroidered, the shawl wasn't edged out, my ribbons were'nt long enough, yadda yadda yadda). But hey, Life's a Picnic!!!!
  18. MiraxTHorn

    MiraxTHorn Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2000
    Oh, man! You two are going to get finished before me. ;) The corset embroidery looks great so far, Kasey!!

    I've been working on my circle skirt pattern mock-up, but I've been without a sewing machine for 3 days. My mom loaned me her embroidery machine so I can do the larger flowers on it, but she forgot to include the shank that regular sewing feet fit onto so I can't baste the mockup together. And, I have the digitizing software so I was going to work on that side of things, but she forgot to give me the little security doodad so I can get into the program. Arrrrggghhh! So, I'm waiting for a package since she lives out of state and had to get home to mail it. (Oh, and I traded her my machine, too.) The worst part is I've only got next week left until I have to go back to school, so that was three days I really didn't want to waste.

    I did cut out the skirt muslin. The front panel is one unwieldy piece to work on! Hopefully that's going to be next week's project, sequin gluing and vining. This weekend, no sewing, camping. :)

    Ok, rant over.
  19. kay_dee

    kay_dee Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jun 15, 2002
    I just got back from a vacation - thanks for doing the new write up Mirax. If I find or think of things to alter/add when I go over the review I'll forward it to sister_sola. (I'm so busy with d*con right now I don't know when I'll have free time!)

    - kay dee
  20. Obi-Dawn Kenobi

    Obi-Dawn Kenobi Manager Emeritus star 4 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jan 27, 2000
    Kasey, you're doing a wonderful job on the embroidery! Keep it up! :D

    luminousbeing, I'm super glad you're happier with the new edging on your shawl. I just love that detail! :)

    Mirax, what a long list of little things holding your progress back. ugh! It'll all be worth the waiting in the end...but waiting sucks. :p
    Have fun on your upcoming camping trip!
  21. MiraxTHorn

    MiraxTHorn Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2000
    Thanks, kay-dee. Sola has the latest version that hopefully fixes the remaining markup problems, typos and a broken link. It also adds some additional info from Maggie.

  22. spacelady

    spacelady Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Mar 16, 2003
    Amazing job on the new version, Mirax! I'm amazed by how long it gets every time. :p

    As soon as I get back on August 22nd, I'll get straight to planning my picnic gown! :D

    Tomorrow we're all flying to the east coast and with the new threat going on... geez. We have to leave like at three thirty in the morning just to get there in time with the additional checkings and what not. [face_beatup] We'll see how that goes. [face_plain]

  23. Obi Anne

    Obi Anne Celebration Mistress of Ceremonies star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 4, 1998
    I just heard that my sequins have arrived back at my apartment, it's a good thing to be an RSA when you can send the CR to get your mail while your away. ;) I can't wait to see them in person. :D
  24. Kasey8473

    Kasey8473 Jedi Youngling star 1

    Dec 13, 2005
    Thank you for the compliments on my embroidery! [face_blush] I'm enjoying being able to sit and sew more than two stitches at a time.
  25. cressie

    cressie Jedi Youngling star 1

    Jul 12, 2006
    Hey ladies!

    The end is near! I just lack the straps (i'm going to make the straps snap on in case I want the movie poster look) and painting the yellow on the shawl. You can see pictures here:

    Everything except the outer corset material (from Hancocks) and shawl material (from e-bay) is from Walmart! I live in backwoods TN and we don't have fabric stores. So you just have to make do with what you have. :) In fact, i found crinkled gold silk today at Walmart- it has great texture too- i think i'll get it for version 2.0!

    But I have two final questions for everyone. I can't find shoes! Payless has these: but i think the pink would be difficult to cover up and I won't be able to get rid of the tiny holes. I've also checked e-bay, Shoe Show, Shoe Carnival and various department stores. I figure i need to find shoes fast before they get rid of all white shoes for labor day. Any suggestions?

    Thanks for everyone's help! We really should get a picture of all of us picnic'ers at Dragoncon. My b/f is a professional photographer and is willing to take it (he's going to d-con anyway). Anyone interested?

    Thanks guys! I'm offically a picnic addict!