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Fandom Flair: Sul'dam Dress

Mashiara Sedai

Welcome back to another edition of “Fandom Flair.”  For this week, I want to share a project I had planned for JordanCon9.  Meridian and I had talked about doing a sul’dam/damane duo for the costume contest.  Unfortunately, neither of us could make it to the convention this year.  So my half-finished dress stayed in limbo, until I realized I could wear it to the Phoenix Comicon, which was the last week of May.
First, a note on canon sources.  This is the cover of New Weaves in the Pattern, part two of The Great Hunt when it was broken into pieces for a YA audience.
And this is official artwork from Ariel Burgess.
I love both these pieces and used a bit from each to compose my dress.
For materials, I started with two yards each of a red poplin and a blue poplin.  Poplin is a wonderful, durable fabric.  It's great for heavy dresses or cloaks (we did a Harry Potter cloak here.)  On the downside, it's very hot.  Not a material you want to wear in warm temperatures.
I also bought a yard of thin, silver silk.  This was for the added lightning bolts.  I needed a whole yard since I had to double up the fabric to make it thick enough to stick to the fabric adhesive.
For the pattern, I used the same one as my Aes Sedai dress.  The pieces were already cut to the correct size, and it was a design I was comfortable with.
I did have to get creative when dealing with the color split.  I decided to make the back and sleeves blue, and cut the front panels in half with alternating colors.  The front panel was red on top and blue on the bottom, and the two side panels were blue in top and red on the bottom.
Next I bought double sided iron-on fabric adhesive to bind to the silver silk.  Then I drew a lightning bolt on the back, cut it out (wasting a lot of fabric and glue), and then ironed the other side to my dress.
With the help of my mom, I measured the length and hemmed the bottom.
Then I made larger, longer lightning bolts for the two red side panel (even more wasted fabric and adhesive).
My waist lines were wonky, so I made an obi belt to hide them (I followed this tutorial).  I actually really like the added belt because it mimics one of the design aspects in Ariel’s artwork and gives more definition to the dress.
(And here's my beautiful damane. I made a miniature dress for the sole purpose of dressing up my dog….)
For the a’dam, I had trouble.  As I said, this was for a large, crowded convention.  Safety had to be my number one priority.  Any item connected to a person’s neck had to be able to come off with the slightest pressure.  The eventual answer to this was magnets (I tried other methods first, but I'm too embarrassed to discuss them).
I bought a 72” linking chain from Wal-Mart, for less than $4.  It was constructed of tiny, four sided, rounded cubes that connected to each other with prongs.  It was easy to remove the link by pulling the prongs loose with pliers.  I measure my wrist and removed a section that length.  Same with my neck measurement.
I used 7mm jump rings to connect metal clasps to both ends.
Finally, I connected the rest of the chain (still probably 50” long) to both the necklace and the bracelet.
It turned out beautiful!  And the magnetic clasps came off very easily.
I had so much fun at the convention!  I even caught myself a damane!
And I ran into this adorable Mistborn cosplayer.
That's all for now.  Next time, I show the other outfit I wore to the Phoenix Comicon.  (Here's a hint… it has to do with Yuri on Ice.)   Thanks for reading!

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This is awesome!

But be careful that a'dam doesn't end up on your neck! ;)

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