Hello, and welcome to my little space of the net where I can waffle on about all manner of things. I'm so excited you're here!I figured what better way to kick off my little blog, than to share my process diary for creating my most recent (and my current favourite) burlesque act.
"Boudoir Fantasy" was born out of the desire to create a really classic, vintage-inspired act that truly expresses what I want to portray as a performer. I've been obsessed with the dreamy 1930s for the last six months, so I settled on the idea of a thirties-inspired bias-cut gown, and then a sumptuous boudoir robe. As I have a background in theatrical costuming, the costume tends to be a starting point for my acts! Take a peek at some of my inspiration below.
I was very fortunate to be able to plan and choreograph this act under the guidance of the delicious Miss Alyssa Kitt, a burlesque goddess and one of Australia's most influential performers. With Alyssa's guidance, the act began to take shape; a sultry and sensual striptease, with a whimsical transition into a swirling silk robe. Music was chosen, the costume sketched out and the act began to form, so it was time to hunt for fabric. Here's a little peek at my design drawings and fabric ideas for the act.
As you can probably already tell, the designs changed a bit throughout the process! As I started to create the patterns, I found I needed to tweak some things. The long, sheer cape for the gown just didn't look right proportionately, and I couldn't think of a way to be able to take it off easily and dramatically. Once I found some gorgeous diamante clips with an art deco vibe, I knew I wanted to create a smaller capelet that draped from the shoulders and could be easily removed for dramatic effect on stage!
The robe is made up from approximately 14 metres of silk chiffon. Silk, while being quite troublesome to sew with, moves beautifully on stage so I knew it was the perfect choice. The gorgeous swirling movement it makes almost means the endless steaming is worth it! The skirt of the robe is constructed with a gathered circular upper skirt, and then about 12 metres of gathered chiffon makes the lower skirt. This means it fans out dramatically on stage when twirling! It's also delightfully sheer, which shows the black accents of the underwear through the fabric. A perfect "Black and Tan Fantasy."
The gown was made in about 12 hours from start to finish, including draping the patterns, cutting, and finishing. I *might* have been quite naughty and left it until the day before the show to start! Oops. It is made from a gorgeous satin-backed crepe in a peachy hue, and decorated with AB rhinestones and vintage style buckles. I wanted the gown to have a lot of movement, but a dramatically different shape to the robe, so the fishtail shape worked well to give a swishy, slinky silhouette.
I'm in the process now of refining this costume, adding more crystals and details, and revisiting parts that I have rushed. I am simply in love with the results though, and the act turned out to be everything I wanted and more!
If you enjoyed this process diary, let me know in the comments below! Additionally, if there is anything in particular you would like me to write about, I'd love to hear about it.
Love and rhinestones,