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Hey all,

Just a quick question: I've always looked at Obi-Wan's inner tunic & pants in TPM as being the same, if not a very similar, shade of cream as his outer tunic, tabards & obi while his AOTC inner tunic & pants were a very obvious off-white that contrasted with the cream tunic/tabards/obi. But after spending some time browsing Psab keel's awesome Thread Lair shop it seems that the difference in colour between both articles of clothing is so negligible that Psab sells the same gauze & brushed cotton for TPM & AOTC. Are they really that similar and my eyes have been playing tricks on me for 20+ years??
Just to give some context here are some reference images. Note that the color difference between the production stills and following it is the very same costume from Phantom Menace during the Power of Costume Exhibit: which is exactly how it appeared when I saw it in person back in 2016.


Then we have the AOTC version: Production stills and then a close up of the materials on a swatch card while on the same exhibit (albeit in a different city.)


Studio lights wash out a LOT of color from these costumes. In terms of the color difference in person I used to carry a white crinkled cotton for the Episode 2 Inner tunic, but the reality is that it's more of a cream color based on these fabric swatches shown above, and when compared to the Episode 1 Inner Tunic it also appears to be an Ivory or Cream color. There isn't a whole lot of demand for Episode 2 Obi-Wan and if you go with a darker brown robe with the shoulder tucks you could easily use the same fabrics from Episode 1 to Episode 2. The Outer Tunic color for Episode 2 may have been a few points darker color as well, which makes the Inner Tunic appear almost white in certain photographs/ in the movie.

For color comparison I try my best to source materials that match what I see in exhibition photos. The difference between what a costume looks like on film vs. the reality can be stark. The Phantom Menace Obi-Wan stills compared to the exhibit photos and you could almost mistake them for two different costumes if you aren't looking carefully.

This is a more extreme example: Check out Padme's picnic dress from AOTC:

Production Still:

Padme 1.jpg



Okay so it wasn't my eyes playing was the lighting. CURSE YOU LIGHT! YOU LET ME SEE BUT THEN DECIEVE ME!

And realistically the colour of the crinkle cotton for the outer tunic/tabards/obi is fairly consistent through out all 3 Prequel movies? Maybe a light uniform "weathering" on the AOTC set perhaps?
The Outer Tunic color was pretty uniform throughout the trilogy though it was custom dyed for the production. This image shows a swatch before the dye process. This was from a Prop Store Auction a few years ago. Note the swatch is white in the bottom right corner.

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I see. But for the "weathering" I meant for a cosplay/costume replica, would that throw off the colouring? Would a very light uniform grey "weathering" make the fabric you sell on Thread Lair look more like the Outer Tunic/Tabards/Obi do on screen and the production stills?
I've seen costumes on display at FIDM and still really don't know the "real" colours, which to me means the colour things look in natural outdoor light.

Indoor light is notoriously deceiving.

My personal experience (as you can see in my avatar) is the Dr Jones tweed suit. The suits (or suit) which have been on display look a pale tan, while in indoor shots in the film the suit colour varies from a deep brown to pale steel grey to taupe, but never the colour of the suits which have been on display.

Given this, the closest I feel I can get to the actual colour is how it looks in the film's shots done in outdoor natural light, for example the beach shots and the on-top-of-the-tank shots. In those, the tweed looks more tan than in any of the indoor shots, but darker than the on-display suits.
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I see. But for the "weathering" I meant for a cosplay/costume replica, would that throw off the colouring? Would a very light uniform grey "weathering" make the fabric you sell on Thread Lair look more like the Outer Tunic/Tabards/Obi do on screen and the production stills?

For the fabric I sell that's used for the Outer Tunic, it can easily be dyed given that it's a cotton/ linen blend if you want a different shade. You could also enhance the edges with a very mild wash of watered down acrylic paint for weathering. One thing to keep in mind is that the sheer/ loose weave of the real fabric (and my own) is that when you layer it on top of itself the color becomes more prominent. To illustrate this, here is a close up of the Episode 3 Tunic set where the upper torso is actually unlined and you can see the color of the tunic below it.

This was likely done to keep Ewan cooler with one less layer of material, especially given that the cloth tabards are double layered. Notice the "dickie" is brown, but the body of the tunic is cream colored, similar to the Outer Tunic. If the layer below was all brown, you would see that color "bleed" through the loose weave of the Outer layer. The first image shows the swatches from Episode 2, but notice how the brown of the cloak/ robe fabric "bleeds" through the sheer crinkled fabric of the Outer Tunic. The remaining photos show the Episode 3 Tunic layers.

InnerTunic Collar.jpg
ObiWan Inner Tunic Collar.jpg

One other interesting thing to note is that for Episode 3, I'm guessing they likely used black bias tape to reinforce the loose weave of the tabards and sash on the interior. Note that the edges of the tabards look just a tad darker, which means they are either airbrushed with subtle weathering to make the seams "pop" with a touch of color, but the more likely explanation is that when constructing them, they used bias tape. Note in the last photo that even under direct light, the edge of the tabard appears a touch darker, which leads me to believe that there is a darker layer sandwiched between the layers of guaze type fabric.

Bias tape is used to cover raw/ unfinished edges to either keep material from fraying (which this loose weave stuff will do without any finishing like serging or zig zag stitching) or to give a nice professional looking finish/ decorative finish to the edge of material. The other advantage of the bias tape is that it would help this loose weave to retain it's shape, yet retain some of it's stretch. Open weave fabrics, especially ones like the stuff they used for Obi-Wan's tunics, has a tendency to stretch. It drape beautifully given the looseness, but it can stretch out of shape which is a problem with all of the layers and their very structured cut. Bias tape on the interior would help prevent this, but also keep the fabric from unraveling, so it would serve a dual purpose.

I know those were long explanantions, but I hope that might help answer your questions.

Dr. Jones SR:

Color is notorious for shifting in different lighting conditions. I find that selecting fabrics that ride the line between two shades, say grayish brown for example, are the sweet spot you should aim for in many cases. Hans ESB jacket is the perfect example of this. It appears bluish, but in reality it's a charcoal gray with hints of steel blue. Though as you pointed out, ultimately you have to go with the color scheme that suits your eyes/ preferences and people often go with the way the materials appear on film. I've done the same on many occassions when I had little other reference, or like in your case, the references vary so drastically, you just have to select which looks best to your eye, balanced with whatever material you can source that looks close enough.

Something else I try to consider is how the material photographs under flash photography. As much as I like certain shades in person, if I'm taking pictures of my costumes with a flash, I could drastically alter the color by adding that burst of light. Sometimes I'll reject certain fabrics because they always read a shade I don't want. While I make the costumes to look how I want, I have to consider the photography because so much of the work needs to be shot for either illustration purposes, or for display, so that will often determine why I'll choose one material over another.
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Hmmm. So the construction of the TPM/AOTC outer tunic/tabards/obi is different from the ROTS set? In that the tunic isn’t lined and the tabards are folded over and biased taped to the back? Unless I’m completely misunderstanding
When I've got more time I'll make another post showing the differences in the Ep. 2 costume and then a third post on the Ep. 3 Costume, but for starters here are the difference between Obi-Wan's costumes throughout the Prequels.

The Phantom Menace:

Notable characteristics

One of the stunt versions had a center seam up the back of the Outer Tunic- or it may be a wire or safety harness/ padded armor or something as seen in this behind the scenes of Andreas (Ewan's Stunt Double) filming the Fall from the DVD behind the scenes. This seam or line was not present or visible in scenes from the film with Ewan in the costume, nor was it seen or visible on other promotional photos.

Screenshot 2022-06-11 003838.jpg

Inner Tunic: Looser neck opening which lets the collar drape lower- exposing Ewan's chest ever so slightly. This was evident on Liam's Tunic as well. This is especially noticeable during the duel at the end of the film. Photos: A, B, G

Outer Tunic: Silk Lined Sleeves. Photo H: Unlined Skirt. Photo: C Horizontal cut waist sash. Notice the crinkle grain is running across, not diagonal (bias cut) like it does in the later films. Photos: D, E

Pants: These were cream/ natural color and they had suspenders sewn to them to keep them in place with all the additional layers and for action sequences. Photo: I, and J

(From The Beginning making of Documentary from The Phantom Menace DVD. You can see Andreas (Ewan's stunt double) and Liam's Stunt double both have suspenders sewn to their pants. Note that Liam's double has black suspenders that are hanging loose at his waist, and this is due to the darker color palette of his costume. For Photo: K I adjusted the brightness so that you can see the black suspender strap.

Robe: No shoulder tucks. Under arm seam (which is not visible in most photos but I saw with my own eyes when I saw the costume in person.) I was standing about 3 feet from it. I really wish that we were allowed to photograph that exhibit but they were very strict with a no photography rule. Photo: E Collar of the robe has visible stitching on the top vs. changes made in later films. Photos: A, C, E

Trisha Biggar from the book Dressing a Galaxy: Star Wars Costumes:

“While sourcing Episode I fabrics for the younger Obi-Wan Kenobi that would retain the fundamental appearance and texture, used for the original character, I came across several rolls of vintage brown wool fabric in a warehouse in the East End of London that still had utility marks on the selvedges, which meant that they’d been manufactured around the time of the Second World War, when textiles were rationed.

The rolls were an almost perfect match to Alec Guinness’s costume, and we managed to squeeze out ten or eleven cloaks. Each Jedi costume requires somewhere in the region of sixteen versions of their costume, to take account of stunt requirements, continuity distressing, and doubles.

For each Jedi we use over 150 meters of cloak fabric per Episode. With all the action that takes place during filming, there’s a lot of wear and tear, and sometimes unexpected problems occur. During a wet scene on The Phantom Menace set, the vintage wool cloak fabric started to shrink in front of our eyes, shortening to almost knee level in a matter of minutes, which meant using- and ruining- a new cloak for every take.”

-Trisha Biggar

Belt: Weathered. Photos: E,F

Photo A:


Photo B:


Photo C:


Photo D:


Photo E:


Photo F:


Photo G:

OpenTPM Collar.jpg




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Just a reminder that the 2 pouches in the EP1 visual dictionary are two small pouches. Obi/Qui had two large pouches with covertec belt clips.

Yes, indeed! I should crop that photo as I was using it to show the details of the belt itself. I'll amend that now.
Psab keel janglesworthy holy this is a treasure trove of info for PT Obi-Wan costuming. Is the weathering on the TPM belt noticeably different from the AOTC belt? In Jangles' progression image I can't really make out any major differences, though the ROTS belt does seem a richer reddish-brown. Of course with the revelations that Psab brought up earlier I'm not sure I trust publicity stills for accurate colouring anymore
There are differences in the belts between films, both in weathering and color. When I've got some time this coming week I'll post more reference/ info. I've got interviews with Trisha Biggar archived in my folders which sheds more light on these designs and I can add those too.
There are differences in the belts between films, both in weathering and color. When I've got some time this coming week I'll post more reference/ info. I've got interviews with Trisha Biggar archived in my folders which sheds more light on these designs and I can add those too.
Please do :love:
I just noticed that the entire, and highly detailed, convo above happened, in its entirety, in under 48 hours. But it contains enough info to make an Obi build that is screenmatch. Applause to you all. Thank you.
Episode 2: Attack of the Clones

Inner Tunic:
The collar is closer cut so that it sits snug around the neck. The color appears to be a light cream, similar to his Ep. 1 Inner Tunic. This also features the extra long sleeves which bunch at the wrist. The third photo shows the fabric swatches of his costume from Episode 2 during the Power of Costume Exhibit. In the last photo you can see his Inner Tunic fits more snug around the neck, unlike his Ep. 1 Inner Tunic and note the ruching (bunching) at the wrists, like his Ep 1 Inner Tunic.



Also note the arrows pointing to where the tunic closes, as well as suspenders hanging at his sides like the behind the scenes screencaps from The Beginning for Phantom Menace. You can also see a pack of cigarettes (in Red) tucked in his waistband as he's being escorted to set. lol

The Pants: Nothing too noteworthy here. The color is approximately the same as his Episode 1 Pants, only now they're a bit more form fit, where his TPM pants were a bit looser fit. These, like all the pants Obi-Wan wears, are tucked neatly in the boots and have stirrups like the Imperial Officer costumes, Jedi Luke, Han Solo, and all the Prequel Jedi with tall boots, which kept the knee area smooth and helped prevent the pants from blossoming out of the boot tops.

The Outer Tunic: The Outer Tunic now has a slightly more refined cut, and the skirt may now be lined with silk as well. I'm still researching that though. The cloth tabards also overlap in some scenes as well as seen in some photos. The cloth tabards are also tacked down via a hook and eye in the promotional photo with Anakin. I'm not sure if the resolution will remain, but if you zoom in on it, you can see the hook and eye right above Obi-Wan't forearm and on the side of the cloth tabard.

Note too that now the waist sash is cut on the bias (with the crinkle of the fabric running diagonally).




Tabards: For the fight sequence between Obi-Wan and Jango, the underside of the cloth tabards were made of the silk lining fabric, with only the top being made from the crinkle fabric. This was done in an effort to minimize the crinkled fabric from stretching out of shape. This material is very loosely woven and it can very easily sag. I know because I have a swatch of the screen used material from the Dressing a Galaxy Limited Edition Book. Shown below:

There was also some extra ties to help keep the robe on during the fight scene. Normally the cloth tabards are self lined, meaning it's two layers of crinkled fabric. You can see them in the photos below. Note that the screengrab from the film, you can see the lighter color of the silk fabric along the edges of the tabards because the weight from all the water is saturating the crinkle fabric causing it to sag and roll down, making it heavy under the weight of the wool robe. Interestingly enough if you watch the closeups of that scene, you can tell they were likely pickups because Ewan's hair and beard are fake. The wide shots he has his real hair (with mullet) and real beard, but when they cut to closeup shots, both look fake. He likely cut both off by the time they went to shoot those close ups.



Belt: The belt is less weathered than before, but the buckle now has a black wash of paint in the recesses of the face of the buckle which make them stand out much more. There is now a small pouch, a different variation on the wide pouch, and for some scenes a functional tall pouch to house the comlink. The Episode 1 belts had two Tall pouches and one wide pouch. The food capsules also are arranged in a new configuration as well as the addition of copper colored food capsules which weren't in Ep. 1 as far as I'm aware. Only Silver, Gold, and Gunmetal were on the Ep. 1 Belts, and there were more of them, but these numbers were reduced by Ep. 2 and 3.


The Robe: The fabric used to make the robes was custom woven for the movie.

In the Homing Beacon for January 25, 2002:

"It takes more than the robes to make a Jedi, but the dark hooded cloaks are an important visual cue to audiences as to a character's connection to the Force. Originally, when sketching out concepts for Episode I, the Art Department tried different directions for the Jedi, but George Lucas insisted on a design that would be instantly recognizable.

Now, Episode II promises a showdown involving a huge number of Jedi -- more noble Knights than have ever before been assembled on the big screen. That means an awful lot of cloaks, most of them made from scratch as opposed to Phantom Menace hand-me-downs.

"The wool fabric from Episode I, we bought bales of it," says Biggar. "We discovered after we bought the fabric that it had been Second World War utility fabric, so it was made very heavy." Too heavy, it would seem, for Obi-Wan Kenobi's water-logged fisticuffs with Jango Fett. "On this Episode, we had that fabric recreated at a quarter of the weight. I know [Stunt Coordinator] Nick Gillard had his doubts about how it's going to be when it's wet, but I don't think it was as bad as he thought."

-Trisha Biggar

These new robes featured the same collar sewn with the stitching visible on the top like its Episode 1 counterpart, but this time the overall length was a bit shorter, there were now shoulder tucks to help prevent the wide sleeves from interfering too much with action, and also helped mimic the shoulder tucks on the Outer Tunic. This new fabric had a much more defined twill and had more reddish tones to it compared to the Ep. 1 robe which had undertones of gray in them.

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