gilflingsdesigns.typepad.com > Beowulf Costume Designs

Final Year Degree Project. Costume designs for a 'film' version of the mythical story of Beowulf, a heroic character in anglo-saxon times. My idea for the concept was that the costumes and set would have a fantasy element and therefor not of any particular set time or place. I used many areas of research to influence my designs, including articulated sea creatures, contemporary belgian fashion, varying forms of leatherwork, natural forms and utilised dying and aging techniques to add depth and interest to the fabrics. The armour was carved with dragons, wetmoulded and hand stitched. From this project I designed a total of 30 characters and made 2 of the costumes - the character of Beowulf and Queen Wealtheow.

Beowulf and Queen Wealtheow

Beowulf and Queen Wealtheow

Photograph taken at old run down church opposite Edinburgh College of Art


Beowulf design drawing

Beowulf design drawing


Costume in progress

Costume in progress

Showing development of pattern and design and placement of carving.


Costume in progress

Costume in progress

Showing development of pattern and making of costume. Cardboard was used to plan the shape of the armour and exaggeration of pauldrons to illustrate the characters heroic strength.


Degree Show Exhibition

Degree Show Exhibition


Detail of Leather Armour

Detail of Leather Armour

Showing detail of carved images and wet moulding. I designed the sea creatures based on anglo saxon art. The leather was handstitched and wet moulded over a mould which I made to exaggerate the forms of a male chest and torso.


Detail of Leather Armour

Detail of Leather Armour

Detail showing carving, hand stitching and articulation of torso of armour.


Detail of skirt back

Detail of skirt back

This shows random stitching and pleating in skirt which has been handpainted and overdyed numerous times to give great depth and an aged look. I really wanted the fabrics to almost look as if they had been buried in the ground for years and years, as if they had been excavated.


Queen Wealtheow

Queen Wealtheow

Costume consisted of undergarment, underskirt, dress and coat, leather belt and headress. Costume based on victorian costume, contemporary fashion and elements of anglo saxon dress. All fabrics are hand dyed.


Queen Wealtheow detail

Queen Wealtheow detail

Showing detail of layered underskirt, dress and coat. Underskirt made of hand dyed victorian bed sheet layered with ice wool. Dress and coat also hand dyed.