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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
Did You Ever Notice... Sam's Return to the Shire Costume?

Arwen's daughter

Apr 5 2009, 11:53pm

Post #1 of 12 (2815 views)
Did You Ever Notice... Sam's Return to the Shire Costume? Can't Post

Pardon me for repeating what Ngila said about Frodo's return costume: "Frodo's costume for this scene represented clothing gifted to the Hobbits from the Elves, to honor their heroism and send them home in grand manner. Much experimentation went into these fabrics. These pieces were filmed very early in film one, and we had been working in quite complex over dye techniques, looking for lush color with an antique quality. We carried this idea even further by using a bleach paste to create the design in the velvet. It is a very difficult medium, with many attempts needed to get close to an even result. However, in this case, its very unevenness worked for us, helping to create the sense of jewel-like coloring and faded grandness."

Sam's is similar to Frodo's. We start with what seem to be velvet pants and an undershirt that's only partially made of a nice fabric. The sides and sleeves of this one are a rust colored silk velvet, with a collar and undersleeves of the same silver material as Frodo's sleeves, which could be very fine maille or could be a fabric meant to mimic maille or could be something else entirely.

Over this, we have a velvet tabbard that has had a pattern created by stripping the color with bleach paste. I wish that I had a good look at the sides of this garment, as I'm not entirely sure how it's constructed, but I believe that the sides aren't sewn together and are held with velvet straps, somehow.

Note the pattern around the edges as it seems to match the design on his cape.

And he has a brown velvet cloak that seems to be the same pattern as Frodo's. It has the same gore in the back (the large triangular piece you see) and a cowl instead of a hood.

Any thoughts?

Did You Ever Notice? is a running look at the details in LOTR one costume at a time. It appears on no particular day and doesn't follow any order. You can always find previous discussions at my Costume Discussion Archive.

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Tol Eressea

Apr 6 2009, 12:05am

Post #2 of 12 (1706 views)
Oooo, thanks for this! [In reply to] Can't Post

You can't get a good look at Sam's return outfit very well in the movie. It is so beautiful. I love the colors.

Movie Technical Discussion -- Index


Apr 6 2009, 1:12am

Post #3 of 12 (1739 views)
What a fitting design for Sam [In reply to] Can't Post

I have never stopped to see Sam's outfit. This is so Sam, imho. Earthy brown with flowery plant-like patterns dominating the style. Perfect! I wonder how he felt about wearing such finery. I get the feeling that Frodo and Sam's outfits were made to tell their story of who they are. The colours, the design... very fitting for both.

Thank you for this. I was shocked when I first looked at his costume... realizing I'd never really noticed it before.

Wonderful! :D


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Apr 6 2009, 3:18am

Post #4 of 12 (1700 views)
I know it's Elvish, but it looks very Eastern to me... [In reply to] Can't Post

As in, it reminds me of a kimono somehow -- something about the combination an cut and the pattern of the tabbard (you taught me a new word, thanks!)

After how ratty Sam and Frodo's clothes got in Mordor, they certainly deserved something this nice to wear...though to Sam, this would probably be the equivalent of wearing a suit and tie when he'd rather be in blue jeans! Though Sam, like a lot of guys, looks great dressed up...

Thanks for sharing this one -- very nice!


Tol Eressea

Apr 6 2009, 3:37am

Post #5 of 12 (1682 views)
bleach paste... [In reply to] Can't Post

I wonder if that the same as the Clorox bleach "pens" that have been on the market for some time. If so I see some possibilities!

Now after having seem both Frodo and Sam's undershirts, I'm guessing these were left incomplete (unhemmed neckline).
I'm not too wild about the tunic--too large a pattern for my taste but I do love the cloak with it's contrasting lining (is it attached or left loose around the sides and bottom?). Years ago my son needed a "medievel day" costume and I found some medium brown fabric (not velvet! some kind of cotton blend) with a chocolate brown lining (silky). Should be obvious with my lack of knowledge of fabrics that I was not the creator--that was grandma's doings. It's still around--hanging over the bookcases.


Apr 6 2009, 3:57am

Post #6 of 12 (1704 views)
discharge dying with bleach [In reply to] Can't Post

I saw an article a long time ago in a magazine (probably threads) about using gel bleach and bleach pens on velvet. I love gel bleach in general for cleaning and I've had a hard time finding it lately without abrasive added. Another thing to keep in mind is that bleach damages a fabric so you'd have to be careful on that end. (anyone spilled bleach on jeans only to have that area get eaten away down the road?)


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Tol Eressea

Apr 6 2009, 4:05am

Post #7 of 12 (1672 views)
I'm thinking [In reply to] Can't Post

with the control a pen would allow --sure could do some neat designs (similar to tie-dying, but not!) Oh yes, I've lost more than a pair of jeans to bleach splatters!

Eowyn of Penns Woods

Apr 6 2009, 5:25am

Post #8 of 12 (1722 views)
Okay... [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm definitely going with knitted "chainmail". That looks like the purly ridges of reverse stockinette running along the length of the arm in the sleeve closeups...and a seam line in the usual place instead of grafting.

My first own first attempts at it were...unsatisfactory. I had a clue, but...no. Not gonna share with the world at this point in time! =)



Apr 6 2009, 9:26am

Post #9 of 12 (1663 views)
A beautiful costume! [In reply to] Can't Post

The colour is so Sam! It matches his hair Wink and complexion so well.

I guess he might feel a bit overdressed in this - but I think it looks so comfortable - especially as he has to ride a pony as well.

The design on the tabbard is very bold - but I think it marks Sams new status well - and his new confidence - this outfit expresses just how much Sam has grown up.

and looking at the sleeve on the inside shirt - it doesnt look how I thought it did - though it also doesn't look like the last pic (last episode) either ... I wonder if they changes it? or maybe I have a eye check Wink

Thanks Arwen's Daughter!

Elven x


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Apr 7 2009, 8:58pm

Post #10 of 12 (1661 views)
I couldn't help noticing.... [In reply to] Can't Post

Sam's still got his brooch on upside-down!


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Foam is white and waves are grey;
beyond the sunset leads my way.
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Apr 8 2009, 7:59pm

Post #11 of 12 (1638 views)
Make up [In reply to] Can't Post

I was seriously disturbed by the eye liner that was worn it just makes me feel uncomfortable seeing men with eyeliner.

Goldberry of the river

Apr 8 2009, 9:02pm

Post #12 of 12 (1708 views)
Wow, no I didn't! [In reply to] Can't Post

Every time I watch the films I notice something I havn't before. This is something else I'll look out for. It's a beautiful costume.

Brian Blessed for Thorin!

Formerly known as Rosie!


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