Star Wars Episode III
Midnight Madness

Siri Tachi     Okay, so, all you nerds who clicked on the link because of the word "cleavage," I'm afraid you're out of luck on pictures.  That particular horror is reserved for the people who were in the room and that's where it's stopping with my apologies to anyone scarred from the sight.
    Well, Star Wars Episode III has come and the round of Midnight Madness has passed 'round the globe.  Me?  I went to see it at Fitchburg, Wisconsin's Star Cinema and of course I had to dress up on principle.  I went as Siri Tachi from Jude Watson's Jedi Apprentice novella series.  Not that anyone recognized me as such since she's a pretty normal looking Jedi Knight, but at least I was aspiring to someone in particular.
    This was my first foray into Jedi costuming and I was amazed at how easy it was to put together.  If you're pondering going to your local party story and buying one off the rack, I tell you, do not!  Go to your local fabric store and pick up Simplicity pattern number 7183 instead.  The costume essentially consists of two layers of that kimono top, both assembled in about an hour a piece.  The outer layer is as is but for the rectangular panels sewed into the shoulders to hang down in the front.  You don't have to sew them into the shoulders per se, but I decided to to keep them from falling off the sides all the time.  The only modification to the inner layer is to change the wide sleeve to a rucked sleeve, tight to the wrist and longer so that it bunches up just above your hand (unfortunately, it's not really visible in the above picture).  The one problem I had with the tunics was the way the neckline kept dipping down as the night wore on.  I have to find some strategic places to put safety pins to avoid excessive cleavage.  The belt was included in the pattern as well and was very easy to make (if you put it together the sensible... nay possible way instead of following the directions, that is), although if I had it to do over again, I think I would include a second layer of interfacing.  The pants were store-bought and the boots were a lucky bargain bin find.
    The day before the movie, I decided that I didn't want to ruin the look by carrying my purse and a quick look at a couple action figures gave me the idea of the belt pouches.  The large-ish recangular one (the edge of which is visible on my left side next to the Lightsaber) was an easy throw-together.  But I also attempted to imitate one of the cylindrical-shaped ones I found on one of my action figures.  Biggest pain in the butt belt pouch ever.  Something went wrong with it every step of the way.  I pretty much gave up on it when the snap I put on it wouldn't stay on and I realized I had no way of closing it.  I wore it on my belt anyway, because it looked halfway decent, but I couldn't put anything into it and expect it to still be there after a few hours.
    The Lightsaber was another saga unto itself.  Siri is supposed to have a purple one, so I took a quick jaunt to Toys R Us and picked up one of the $7 toys that looked like Obi-Wan's Lightsaber but with a purple blade.  I was fishing around for batteries when I realized it had no space for one and that it didn't light up.  It was a disappointment, but I decided that it wasn't a big deal.  Then I opened it out to discover that the hilt encompassed fully a third of the entire length.  More disappointment happend when I actually held it the way one would a weapon only to discover that the hilt was way too big around and looked dumpy.  The final straw, though, was the belt clip; it sucked big-time and didn't do its job.  So, I set it aside and set out to make my own prop.  It was just going to spend the night hanging off my belt anyway, so I didn't particularly need it to light up, unfold, or make noise.  I spent about fifty cents at the woodworking isle at JoAnn's and made a good prop.  A 7/8 inch dowel for the cylindar, capped at either end by wooden candle-holders and embellished by eight wooden furniture buttons (that's what they were called... I don't know their actual use...) glued on to the sides.  Then, I painted the whole thing with silver, black, and gold acrylics and tied it to my belt with a stip of leather cording.  Voila.  Lightsaber.
    I went with a bunch of friends from the Ring Game community and even though it rained while we were in the line party outside, we still managed to have fun.  There was an unusually small number of cosplayers there, though, so I was kinda disappointed but I did see a pretty good pregnant Padmé.  And I got to laugh at the people trying to have a Lightsaber duel (they were both showing arm like crazy...).  Why do people always do that at Star Wars movies?  They always either look silly or like they're going to hurt themselves.
    The movie itself blew me away.  It absolutely blew episodes one and two out of the water.  I can see why they made it a PG-13 film, though.  I can pinpoint four or five scenes that I wouldn't want anyone under the age of ten to see.  It was pretty scary.  There was one part in particular (not giving anything away, it's the scene that begins with Anakin going into the darkened Jedi Council chambers while there's something lurking behind the seats) where my friend Stacey and I actually had to reach for each other when we realized what was about to happen.  But these were all things that needed to happen for the story to be complete, so in the end I'm glad they opted for that road rather than making it more kid-friendly.  All-in-all, it was a good movie, maybe even the best of all six.

Special thanks to Shan for letting me borrow her wonderful, gorgeous, fully-wool, brown robe for these two pictures!

Force WardEn Garde for Saber

Hawk's Beak WardQueen's Ward
Photo editing software is a wonderful thing!  Don't I look badass!  ^_^

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This page created on 5/19/05 by Berzerker_prime