Dresses by Francine
As seen in
The dresses and gowns crafted by Francine are unique, and no two dresses are the same. Each gown is custom-made for the individual. Francine weaves magic into each of her gowns for enhancement and style.
Enchantments and EnhancementsFrancine spends many hours working on the magical enhancements of each dress to suit the customer. This is from increasing the apparent size of breasts to the narrowness of the waist. Though she uses the design to assist in this aspect she still uses the magic to enhance. These enchantments are all interwoven into the lace as she crafts it. The lace on the gowns is her signature. Though every gown is individual and unique, the pattern of the lace is similar, depending on what enchantments are used.
LaceThe lace varies from clear to any colour that enhances the gown. When Francine uses clear lace it grants a shimmering presence to the gown. The signature lace crafted by Francine is finer than any other lace. The threads she uses are less than a millimeter thick. Though her lace is so fine it is amazingly strong and resilient. The lace is so strong once it is completed it is nearly impossible to cut, because of this fact Francine's lace never tears when caught on obstacles. She likes using a flower motif for most of her lace since it works well with the enchantments for enhancing the beauty of the wearer.
StyleFrancine does not stick to any particular style and at times will design a dress that some would consider immodest or outrageous. This attitude shifts quickly as soon as they realize it was crafted by Francine. The fact is that Francine creates every gown with a specific customer in mind. Every gown is designed to flatter the wearer. Corsetted gowns are very specific as Francine takes the time to craft the corset herself.
DesignWhen designing a dress, Francine makes sure to have accurate and exacting measurements. When she chooses fabric for a gown she has carefully determined whether or not the colour and weave are appropriate for her client. Whenever a customer already has a colour and weave chosen Francine is livid as it means they do not trust her skill. In these cases, she does the best she can while maintaining her own individual style. While designing gowns, layers are always a factor. She starts with the shift , for the next layer depending on the style, we have hoops or petticoats. Next is the kirtle, followed by the outer dress. While not commonly used by Francine, there have been occasions where she has added aprons as a finishing touch. Francine rarely stops at just the gown but feels the need to complete the outfit. This includes gloves, shawls, capes, and slippers. These accessories are needed to complete and complement the gown. There is no way she wants to see her masterpieces marred by inferior workmanship. It doesn't matter whether or not she ever sees the gown again, if the ensemble is not complete, she will know it has been sullied by another's work.
SignificanceEach dress is one of a kind. Francine has built her reputation over centuries of hard work. She doesn't travel to clients, they must come to her. For those who wish to verify they have a true Francine original the best way to do so is to snag the lace on something and see if it tears. The lace of a Francine dress will not tear, while the lace of other inferior dresses will tear.
excerpt from Hope
As Eldrick entered Francine's workshop he was astonished by the bolts of cloth lining two of the walls. One wall was full of windows, from the floor to the ceiling, letting sun fill the room. Eldrick could see the shimmer of satin in colours from carnelian to sapphire to dark indigo. Fine silks nestled in felted cubbies with a similar range of colours. On dress forms were a number of gowns in various stages of completion. Eldrick's eyes opened wider in awe at the splendour. His fear Francine would see him drooling over the gowns causing his mouth to go dry. He could feel his throat tightening in disappointment. Guiding him to the raised section she began measuring him, shifting him into certain positions as she did so. Eldrick stood woodenly as she went about her business, disappointment causing his heart to slow, his hearing to diminish. Eldrick didn't hear anything she was saying as she moved him about like a puppet whose strings seemed a little to stiff, almost as if they were crafted of a fine iron wire. As Francine brought out bolt upon bolt of cloth placing up to him he could feel the tears starting to form in his eyes. 'I can't let her see me cry, hold them back. No weakness.' With every bolt she discarded and returned to the walls he could feel hope fading. Of course, the dresses were not for him but someone else, he had no reason to hope he would ever wear them.
"Oh, Ellie, that gown is gorgeous. Where did you get it?" Amy gushed as she began lacing it up and pulling the laces tight. "I mean it must have cost a fortune. If I miss my guess this is a Francine Du Plaint. Everyone wants to get one of her gowns. She has a waiting list two miles long." She cinched the ties as tight as she could and tied them off. "She has a signature to all her gowns. It's the lace and no one knows how she makes it." "Uh, yeah it is a Francine gown but I was just told to show up for fittings as I was the same size as the person who the dresses were for. I had no idea I was the intended recipient." All the ladies were surrounding Eldrick at this point examining the gown. Checking the hems, stitching and graceful fall of the skirt. They were all in awe of the fact that a member of the house of healing actually had a Francine Du Plaint gown. The extravagance of owning such a gown was all they could chatter on about. When Eldrick mentioned he had three of her gowns they fell silent. "Th..th..three? Did you say three?" Amy collapsed in a heap on the floor.
Clothing / Accessory
The beginning price for one of Francine's gowns is 80 gold. The price goes up with more intricacy.