Friday, February 17, 2012

Elizabeth Swann Costume Studies Part 2 - Nightgown and Robe

The first time we meet the grown up Elizabeth Swann (played by Keira Knightley) she wakes up from dreaming about her childhood. She is wearing this lovely nightgown which she also wears when she gets kidnapped by Barbossa's crew.
You can see some of the back seams in this picture:
 Gorgeous sleeve detail:
The front looks as though it is full and then gathered together into an empire waist perhaps with some smocking? The fabric appears to be a lightweight linen (or cotton, but I doubt it) with a floral embroidered or woven in pattern.
Here in the back view we can see there are several seams, there are princess seams and also a seam at the waist on the side panels. The Nightgown buttons down the back.
Over her nightgown, Elizabeth wears an embroidered robe, known as a bedgown:

I couldn't find a good view of the back but here you can see how it is full in the back, possibly pleated.

You can see the bedgown is trimmed with green and cream trim around the neckline and runs all the way down the front of the robe on either side. Also notice the sleeves are gathered up almost to the elbow.
A little closer view:
Here is a picture of the shoes worn with this costume:
I'm not sure where to find a pattern that would work for the nightgown, it might be easiest to draft your own. The trickiest part would be the back with all those seams. You could try using a regency gown pattern for the back and just reshaping the back seams to look more like hers, or use parts of a medieval gown pattern as it does almost have princess seams in the back.
There are notes here on how to make a bedgown.


  1. Although I do think that nightgown is sumptuous, all I can think of is how tangled that amount of fabric would wind around me if I tried to sleep in it! And more than even the construction of the nightgown, I want to know how they did her hair!

  2. I love this outfit. In fact.. I think it's my favorite of all her outfits in the first movie. I love the seams in the back of the night gown! Exquisite!



Although I continually talk about movie costumes on this blog, I am not a movie reviewer. Not all the films I discuss are recommended and I do not choose to review weather they are appropriate or not for the simple fact that every person's standards are different. Something that is fine for me may be offensive to some one else and visa versa. If you would like to look into the appropriateness of a title, I recommend I have not seen all the movies I discuss, and am simply interested in the art of clothes in film. I will leave you to decide for yourself if you will watch the movie or not.


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