Droolworthy Costuming – The Chemise of 13,000 Pearls

20 Sep

Let’s talk about the Chemise of 13,000 Pearls.

Lynn McMasters makes pretty costumes, and I like to look at pretty costumes. I found her website while browsing the interhighway looking for just such things, and if I may continue in the theme of understatement, I was super happy. I’ve never used any of her patterns (although after the Great Margo Slops Fiasco of 2010 and 2011, which I may post about if I can ever stop crying about it, I’m in the market), but her gallery of finished costumes is just stunning. Let’s take a look…

My favorites are the 1570s Cream Elizabethan Court Costume:

I kind of want to marry this gown. Er, get married (again?) in it. Yeah, that's it.

And the 1590s Elizabethan Noble’s Costume:

I would have an affair with this outfit after marrying the other one.

I really liked all of these, obvs, I was SUPER taken by the Chemise of 13,000 pearls. It’s…well, it’s a chemise. With 13,000 Pearls.

I have a special fondness for beading. A couple of years ago, the first and only year I played a court lady at a renaissance faire, I spent hours and hours and months watching period dramas and hand-beading my court gown, and I’ve never looked back. I haven’t done much of it since then, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still like to look at/dream about it. I have this pipe dream that someday I will finish a costume in time to bead it. Beading and trim is my favorite part of Elizabethan/Tudor costuming (possibly because it is just damned impossible to overdo it.).

Anyway, this chemise. It is just. You guys.


 Her website has great closeup pictures of the details, but even from this view you can see how decadent it is, in the absolute best sense of the word. I want to brush my hands over it and just revel in the texture of all those pearls, painstakingly hand-stitched. I’m sure there’s something I wouldn’t do to be able to wear this for even an hour, but damned if I can think of it. Possibly kill someone.

Depending on the person.

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