Blue and Silver Elf Gown

Patterns Used (for Gown):
– McCall’s M4490

Materials Used:
– Blue fake linen(?) from Joann Fabrics.

Other Supplies Used:
– Matching blue embroidery floss (for eyelets).
– Blue cording for lacing.
– Silver metallic trim.
– Regular blue and light gray threads.

Patterns and Materials used (for Corset):
– See the separate page here.

Hand and machine sewn.

This was actually a gown I had made many years ago. I didn’t even own a serger at the time (and I sure wish I had been able to serge all the seam allowance edges, what a mess).

I decided, since I rarely wear it and do actually love the way the gown’s skirt drapes and flows, I might fix it up a little. I also was not going for any specific, screen accurate Lord of the Rings/Hobbit costume. My first few elven outfits are generic “inspired by” costumes. 🙂

I can’t go into too much detail about the original gown’s construction since it’s been far too long, but I didn’t know as much as I do now. There were some mistakes.

I removed the sleeves, because I had done a terrible job putting the gussets in. The new fix isn’t quite as good as I’d hoped (why is it I sometimes feel like I have more control when sewing by hand than fighting mounds of fabric on the machine?), but it’s a little better and hopefully a little stronger. I did go back by hand and stitched beside those seamlines to help hide a few spots where the fabric was degrading or where I had trouble. That seems to have helped a lot.

The back-lacing style of these patterns drives me batty. If I could, I think I might remove the lacing strips and do a better job. I much prefer spiral lacing (it doesn’t shift as much), and it’s probably good that I wore a corset as weird movements caused the back to just gap open. I used a similar pattern for my green gown  and I made the back laced opening different for that one.

I had also done a very sloppy job around the neckline, and the gown needed a little something extra, so adding some metallic silver trim along the sloppy stitchwork there helped fix that problem. I shortened the sleeves a little (can’t remember if the pattern itself was long or if I lengthened them to try something) so I would be more comfortable.

The fabric is a little warmer than I might have liked, but it had a nice drape to it. You can see the photos from before I started fixing the gown, just after, and from the event I wore it to below.


The plain old gown from when I was still learning to sew, before I fixed a few things and added trim.

The fixed (still not perfect, but I tried not to dwell on it too much) gown with added trim and corset accessory.

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