The costumes that were on exhibit at the Paley Center in Beverly Hills were an incredible testament to the level of artistry present in the Outlander Television Series. The individual designs of the costumes were stunning. I truly admired how the unique embroidery and intricate details brought the pieces to life, while even hinting to subtle references of the creators and actors themselves.
My admiration for the Outlander books and television series is always present. My wee addiction to all things Outlander has even been incorporated into the activities I do with my own children. My daughter not only supports my involvement in Outlander activities, she also participates in many of them. Throughout our blog you will see that she loves cooking and crafting, which led to the inspiration of this specific piece.
Seeing the newly released Entertainment Weekly pictures of Claire, Frank, and baby Brianna brought up many emotions that I believe we, as parents, all have in common. The unconditional love for a child. I always felt that the love for your children embodies limitless support, guidance, and protection. It is a form of love that is often beyond words. However, it is portrayed in priceless forms throughout the elegance of Diana Gabaldon’s writing. Here is one of my favorite examples.
“I have noticed,” she said slowly, “that time does not really exist for mothers, with regard to their children. It does not matter greatly how old the child is- in the blink of an eye, the mother can see the child again as it was when it was born, when it learned to walk, as it was at any age – at any time, even when the child is fully grown and a parent itself.”
Diana Gabaldon, Voyager, Chapter 40: Reflection of the wise words of Mother Hildegarde.
Through all these points of inspiration, my daughter and I have formed a stronger connection through the love of doing shared activities. In this case, she asked me to help design an embroidered, elastic waist skirt that could be used during one of her many ballet performances. Inspired by the embroidery found in the Outlander costumes, we decided to make a skirt that can be worn over the traditional ballet tutu.
I was provided with the standard pattern and the instruction to expand the design with more details to showcase during the performance. Thankfully, we had our points of inspiration to lead us in the right direction.
We took individual measurements of the width and length of the skirt given by the ballet studio. We then found some beautiful tulle material with embroidery as our primary medium. I utilized the base seam to keep as much of the embroidery intact. I then measured the front and back panel to get a total length. For the width, I just used a quick measurement by placing the material up to my daughter to get the desired length. I then cut a single panel that included the total measurement from the bulk of the material.
I utilized a standard seam on my sewing machine. I wanted to allow at least 2 inches in width to feed the elastic waistband into. I then doubled the endings of the inner seam to make a smooth/clean edge. Once everything was sewn, I was able to pull the elastic ends to the desired length for the perfect fit. We decided to secure the endings with a safety pin for easy adjustment and removal between costume changes. The total length of the project was approximately 30 minutes. In the end, we had created a simple and functional design that suited our costume needs perfectly.
I will always hold the memories of the creation process in this simple, yet beloved design. Outlander is a series that embodies the shared emotional connection we all share to each other, including our children. My wee addition is not singular, it is shared by all in my family during projects such as these. I will always cherish sharing priceless moments between my daughter and I as we reviewed photos of the Outlander costumes for inspiration and reflected upon our shared enjoyment of taking on creative projects. My daughter was equally overjoyed and proud of the end results.
I am thankful for all that the Outlander series has offered to it’s readers and fans. The portrayal of emotional connection in all forms, across all space and time, is one that we all can easily relate too. Ultimately, making our internal connection to each other and the series that much stronger.
All the names I’ve called you through the years- my chick, my pumpkin, precious dove, darling, sweetheart, dinky, smudge… I know why the Jews and Muslims have nine hundred names for God; one small word is not enough for love.”
Diana Gabaldon, Claire in Voyager, Chapter 42.
In celebration of all forms of love, as the Entertainment Weekly article prompted with the images of Claire, Frank, and Brianna, please share your experiences that bring you closer as a family. We would love to hear about it!
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