April 19, 2012

Meet Jewel the Elf
("Hello" in Quenya. In Sindarin, it is "Suilad." Non-geeks: this is Tolkien's Elvish.)

I love photography. :) It's an art that I'm just barely touching the surface of, and it is so much fun! Recently I was asked by a friend, "Jewel," to do her senior photoshoot. (!!!)

I was going to use my dad's work camera, a Nikon, for the real photoshoot. He was out late on a case, though, and while we waited for him, Jewel agreed to be my guniea pig (willingly and happily, too!). I've always wanted to do a Elven photoshoot, and Jewel just happened to fit in my dress! We dressed her up and hiked out to my favorite haunts with my point-and-shoot.

We were gung-ho about it, too. We ran with bare feet and sandals through the marsh by the pond, skirted the baby poison ivy in the field, and the marched through brambles in the woods. It was glorious.

Jewel has kindly given me permission to share her photos! We took a lot-- look for my favorites in about two days. Although, how could I pick favorites when Jewel is naturally so photogenic?

Longtime blog readers will remember this dress and the oh-so-very-very-big blog post about said "Masquerade Dress". (My irl friends will also recognize the dress, because it is all that I ever wear to costume dances, random dress up parties, and on Halloween). The dress has gone through some changes... It was my second real sewing project, done in 2009 (here's proof-- oh my goodness, it has been three years! I haven't done serious sewing since...)

Here are some pictures of moi, and my dress, and then little moi and little my dress.

top: me, on my way to an English Country Dance
bottom: the "Eowyn" vest that I made last year (it does not fit well), and randomly a picture of me in third (fourth?) grade wearing my very first Elf dress. I was Arwen. :) It's the same pattern as my second, current Elven dress, just lots smaller-- and Mom sewed it, not me.

Now the dress has been updated with more fitted upper sleeves, losing the itchy though beautiful embroidered white material, and lower sleeves of a beautiful, sturdy two-sided material. I also created drawstrings for the sleeves. Now, on to Jewel's photoshoot...

Here you can see the updated sleeves. We also used scrap fabric from the sleeves to make a sort of sash for Jewel to wear, since the dress was loose around her waist.

The sky was stunning that day, and the wind was blowing calmly. 
Perfect weather for an Elf to wander out in...

The leaves were long, the grass was green,
The hemlock-umbels tall and fair,
And in the glade a light was seen
Of stars in shadow shimmering...
(Song of Beren and Lúthien, by J.R.R. Tolkien)

In every picture from the back, I kept thinking, wow, she looks so much like me! Must be the dress. :) She borrowed some of my scarves and hats for the regular photoshoot, and I kept thinking the same thing about those pictures.

The light and colors in the picture turned out weird, but I rather like it in black and white. (Good trick to remember for poor pictures in the future).

It was bright out, but this picture turned out gloriously moody.

This is my brother's Aragorn cape. :)

 Hantalë (hannad/thanks), Jewels, for being such a lovely model and going along with my crazy ideas. Hantalë for being crazy yourself. :)

Tenn' enquetielva!

(Until we meet again! Don't forget, I'll share more pictures in the next post!)

Update: The best pics are in Part 2, HERE!

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  1. I really, really like that last photo. It's so elf-like!

  2. The last one is awesome! And the sky in the rest of them is amazing! Wish I had that dress...

    ~Nessima of Arda Nessimava

  3. Oh, I wish we lived closer to each other so you could do one with me! We have amazing mountains here that, at the right angle, can look just like the Misty Mountains. Lovely, lovely photos, dear. (And how did you learn so much elvish? And on that note, why did you choose to have your elf here speak Quenya rather than Sindarin-- seeing as Quenya was a dead language, only used for formal occasions, by the time of LotR, it was surprising. Or is Jewel a High Elf? Exciting!)

  4. They're lovely, Shaylynn!

    I hope this isn't creeperish or anything, but I took that last photo of yours and did some editing of my own. I hope you don't mind. Here's a link, if you'd like to see it -

  5. Thank you, guys!

    Kat: YOU LIVE NEAR MOUNTAINS???!!! *dies* You are so lucky!

    How did I learn so much Elvish? Um... Google. Yeah. An Elf's best friend, right? I did Quenya first because I thought that "Aiya" sounded cooler than "Suilad".

    Victoria: Nope, not creepy, really, you did some great editing. :)

  6. These are so pretty! I love the photos with the cape!


  7. Could you put the dress pattern up please?! I love being elven!

  8. Can you post the dress patten please. I love things like thatt

  9. Sure, I used Simplicity 4940! It's not sold in stores anymore, but you can find it on ebay. There are newer patterns that are quite similar.

  10. Could you put the dress pattern up please?! I love being elven!


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