World Costume for Theatrical Productions
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The Sylvans bring a distinctly elven touch to the natural
look. Both the colors and fabrics used are light, consisting
primarily of pale, luminescent tones and sheer, featherweight
textiles such as gauze, organza, and chainsil (a particularly
fine linen). The most unusual aspect is the densely crimped
and pleated fabric used in bliauts for both males and females.
The secret to producing this effect is a closely-guarded one,
and when a sample gets in the hands of traders, the value
is high indeed. Jewelry is minimal, and is more likely to
incorporate natural elements than precious materials.
For women, the bliaut is full-length, with funnel sleeves
gathered close around the upper arm. A quilted leather or
fabric corsage is worn on the torso and laced up the back,
and a jeweled girdle wraps around the waist and ties in front
at the hips. An overrobe of transparent silk gauze known as
a "sylvan surcote" is also worn, often edged with
gold trim. Their hair is worn very long and divided into two
pairs of two tresses each, wrapped elaborately together with
For men, the bliaut consists of a fitted tunic with wide
sleeves, laced up the back and ending in a curve at the waist.
The skirt is in two parts, each one shaped like a pointed
arch. With the arch pointing down, the central section is
gathered together and attached to the waist, front and back,
and allowed to fall in graceful folds. The shoes are soft,
with long, tapered points at the toes.