Mina Harker
Mina Harker (or Mina Murray as she is otherwise known) is one of the most famous female vampires in fictional history most notoriously known as Dracula's bride or lover. She appears not only in Bram Stoker's Dracula, but has been made into a Marvel superhero in the comic based movie "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" and appears in the upcoming film "Van Helsing".
The Making Of...
My friend Charlotte and her boyfriend Lee decided that they would like to go as vampires to our costume party. Charlotte said that she would like a large dress  preferably in a gothic style.  I thought of none other than Mina when she mentioned this to me and immediately started looking for costume ideas.  Charlotte did not want the tacky Halloween style vampire costume, but something much more elegant yet dark.  In the end I found the perfect dress to base a design on.  The dress I found is in the movie Bram Stoker's Dracula.  It is the gorgeous red gown that Winona wears when she is being allured by Dracula quite late on in the film. 

Charlotte decided she liked the style of the dress but would prefer it in black. To make it exactly would cost hundreds which was not of our costuming budget, so we decided to make a Mina Harker inspired dress, still keeping the gothic style and overall look of the dress, just saving on money without the many layers of fabrics making up the bustle and skirts and without a very large crinoline! 
Photo Courtesy of
Movie Costumes
I put together a few design ideas for the dress and eventually came up with one that Charlotte really liked.  She said that she would like another colour to be integrated into the design of the dress other than just the black we had originally decided on as this would appear too much.  I decided to use a silver silk essence with a flower design in black on it to use as a front panel on the bodice and on the skirt to break up the black. She also wanted tight sleeves with ruffles at the end so I decided a simple black lace would look good. On the design I also put it around the neckline and added a ruffle to the front of the bodice.  We then had our design to work off.
When it came to choosing a pattern we decided on the McCall's pattern 3676 which is actually an evening dress pattern rather than a costume pattern.  It has the large skirt and bodice which are the main features of the dress I designed for Charlotte and they were what she liked the most. The pattern chosen was very close to my design and so all I needed to do was modify the pattern to add sleeves and make two skirts instead of one.
Already the dress was becoming reality from a design...
Photo Courtesy Of Winona Ryder Gallery
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