Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Another Cardassian, this time a Civilian

So yesterday, the epoxy was curing, and I was not feeling inspired to work on my Romulan uniform, so I started on (yet another) new project for Vegas - a Cardassian scientist. Even though the Science Ministry is run by the military, their members wear civilian clothing, so I had a bit of fun designing a wardrobe for my new character.
The design I finally settled on was inspired by one of the suits that Garak wears, and the dress that Ulani Belor wears in the DS9 episode "Destiny". I had a sketch of the first design, but it's been modified since then, so I'm not going to bother sharing it.
Anyway, I started with Simplicity 2374, since it had the seam lines I was looking for and could be easily modified to get me to the look I wanted. Working off my sketch, I started to modify the front of the bodice so I could have the inserts that I wanted. (I've highlighted them in blue to the right.)
I had a very particular idea of the fabrics I wanted when I originally went shopping for this outfit. I knew I wanted a nice, rich red colour, and I wanted some sort of geometric looking striped fabric, which is hard to describe, and which I never really found. Instead, I settled on a large print paisley in colours that complimented the red suiting I had chosen. It's a lovely fabric, but I wasn't quite pleased with it for a Cardassian outfit, since they seem to trend away from organic designs like leaves and flowers in favour of more geometric looks. But, once things started going together, I ended up really liking the look of the fabric I chose, so I'm all okay with it now. :D
Anyway, I was going to take a picture of the front bodice lying flat so you could get a look at it, but this happened. Thankfully, my fabric is resilient, because it stood up well to Pinky's...err...strength test.
I wasn't originally going to modify the back of the pattern, and just keep it all red, until I realized that the suit I was drawing inspiration from had the print fabric all the way down the top of the arms, and I would need to have the print on the bodice back to tie everything together and keep everything flowing.
Once the back of the bodice was cut out, I assembled everything and checked out how it would look.

So far, so good! Time to work on the sleeves.
I ditched the sleeves that came with the pattern, since they were only 3/4 length, and used a random sleeve pattern that I had lying around, which went to the wrists. Instead of adding an insert, I just cut a strip of the paisley fabric that was 26" long by 5 1/2" wide, and top stitched in down to the sleeves.
After that, I spent a good while futzing with the sleeves to get the shoulder paisley fabric and the sleeve paisley fabric to line up correctly. I ended up stitching, trying on, tearing out stitching, pinning, trying on, stitching, restitching, ad nauseum, until I finally had everything lined up and fitting right.
So, this is where I am now. I have to say, I'm pretty excited about it! It's turning out better than I had hoped, and it's going together super quickly. I've taken a break from it now to work on a couple of commissions, but I'll be back to it shortly, as I'm very anxious to get it finished so I can parade around in in. :p I also need to style a wig into a suitable Cardassian woman's style, since they all had some pretty impressive hair. All that in a future post!

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