Materials for Kaylee’s Pink “Layer Cake” Dress from ‘Firefly': Episode – “Shindig” costume :
-Silk Organza for the ruffles, White, Peach/Pink, Pink
-White Cotton Poplin for the skirt base and Petticoat as well as bodice lining
-White Silk Charmeuse for the Bodice and Peplum Underlayer
-Embroidered Poly Organza for the Bodice
– 02115 – Pink 15mm Organdy – for under the buttons
– 02125 – Pink 25mm Organdy – For the edge of the peplum and sleeves
– 02138 – Pink 38mm Organdy – for the ‘belt’ on the bodice
– 41524 – Pink Ruffle Organdy – for the ruffles on the bodice
– 13037 – 13mm White Bridal Buttons
– 33175 – Pink Orange Dotted Tassel Fringe
– Closeout – Green Tassel Fringe
– Discontinued – LONG white chainette fringe that was hand knotted and then dyed to match the color needed
– I had to dye the sleeve fabric with a special polyester dye called Jacquard iDye Poly. I used a mix of Red with a touch of the Violet. I found the fabric takes the violet really well while the red washed out. It took a little trial and error, but after a few tests, I got a result I was happy with.
– The silk that goes under the sleeve was too stark as it was in white, so I dyed this in a very diluted solution of fuchsia RIT dye. With it a slightly pink color, it makes the sleeves look a lot better.
– The bodice and upper sleeves are lined in cotton poplin so the costume breathes. The inside of the lining was hand sewn to the outer fabric.
– The front panel of the bodice that is ruched, measures twice the length of the flatlined piece underneath, this gives a great ruched effect that was then ironed down to form the ‘pleats’.
– The ribbon was not strong enough in color on it’s own, so I had to double it over and sew it to make one ribbon. This was then used to trim the peplum and middle of the bodice. The same was done for the belt.
– The belt is a doubled over piece of ribbon that closes with a hook and eye. The original dress looked like it had a belt to me, in some shots it seems to move around. If it were sewn to the dress, this wouldn’t happen.
– The entire petticoat consists of about 50 yards of ruffles that were pulled by hand. I didn’t have a ruffle foot at the time, so I had to create two gather stitches and pull each to the proper size needed. Each ruffle on the PC has a rolled hem on either side of the ruffle to prevent fraying.
– The overskirt has about 50-60 yards of ruffles as well. I received a ruffle foot for Christmas just as I was starting the white layer (my last layer), so those were made with the ruffler foot – what a life saver! All the edges of the OS ruffles are done with a rolled overcasting stitch to prevent fraying. This also helped give the ruffles body. There are only 8 layers of ruffles on the skirt, the final ruffle is the peplum on the bodice.
Here are some more construction photos…