Retopo and UV unwrapping
I did most of my retopo in Maya, exporting both a low-poly and high-poly copy of my mesh automatically generated by Marvelous Designer (changing the poly density). Because I wasn’t too fussed about having really clean topology for this gown, but did want a low-poly version for rendering, my final mesh was neither as clean nor as low-poly as I would have liked. However, this process worked just fine for the final (still image) result I was going for.
Initial Texture Experimentation
I pulled my quickly decimated gown into Substance Painter prior to doing a full bake just to test out some of the textiles available with the program. I knew I wanted to recreate a color-shift silk taffeta look, but SP doesn’t have a built-in fresnel node or other method of creating this effect in accordance to lighting. However, I was able to fake it with a combination of curvature masking and baked colored lighting, and I think it actually looks quite realistic!
I’m still playing around with color schemes, but I’m currently really liking the pink-and-green look; we have a historical misconception that people wore very dull colors because many of the extant garments in museums are faded, but in fact people were quite obsessed with their bright colors in the mid-to-late 18th century.