Originally Posted by Satine
Skip the authenticity. Or rather, look for the construction methods at the time of the movie production. I seem to recall she also has an amazing shimmery clingy dress that is straight up 1990s!
Make the gown move and behave like the movie- that takes some serious patterning and draping skills that any judge worth their salt will recognise, especially if you also manage the same seam placement. Some of it does not behave like it is supposed to (the inverted V that should be the edges of the gown but is treated like a decoration). Also there is a delicate sparkle to the gown, that is not shine like satin. That is something to plan and work towards as well.
I have judged a few cosplays that were staggering, but they did not look like the original artwork. That aesthetic is part of what makes an artwork look the way it does.
I'm recreating the silver gown from Marie Antoinette (1938) I'm making it like they originally made it. They tried really hard, incredibly hard, but you can tell it was from the era it was made. Not for the dropped waists (I can show many examples of the era that have waists that low) it's the bodice construction. (Also white wigs vs powder, and lack of chemises and lots more.)
I would enter that as a modern historic rather than an early modern historic
I'd be filling my documentation with examples of dressmaking of the period and with examples of underlayers from the movie and from the time of the production.
PS, I am a hardcore historic enthusiast (let me show you may books of wills and inventories in languages than make my head hurt!) But I do appreciate every era, including modern eras.
Thanks for the added perspective! In the end I did opt for recreating the movie gown without the super-accurate bells and whistles that only Russian history buffs would recognize, but I'm still using Victorian undergarments and the slightly-modernized Victorian pattern (namely, using a zipper instead of hooks or buttons) to get the right sillhouette and dress fit/cut- the corset and proper petticoats and the interlined bodice REALLY makes huge difference! Even in my mockup made of cheap thrift-shop satins I can easily swan around looking like a royal when I've got the underthings all on because it takes me from lumpy and slouching to a smoothed-out and Queenly posture, and I spent a solid minute yesterday twirling around with my skirt train (also, practicing how to sit in all this. Definitely can't sit in deep chairs! :P). For the sparkly embellishing, my plan was to stitch small clear crystal beads over the dress for the sparkly points. But there's an added question, are sequins historically accurate? I feel like they'd work well for some of the beading on this, especially the middles of those circular patterns since they seem to flash a few colours, but I have NEVER seen sequins for sale that didn't look like plastic garbage, and I've never seen them in historical photos before the 20's. And then seed beads and a little embroidery for the spirally decor down the front panels.
The fabric is planned to be duchesse satin and rayon taffeta lining, I definitely can't afford silk, especially not over a dozen yards total, and nothing else in my budget quite looks regal enough and is able to be found in area shops. Real-life dresses from near to the end of the era also looked like a satin of some kind under all the crazy amounts of ornamentation.