You can do this with 4-way stretch if you do a few things to it first. Given the nature of the outfit, I am assuming this is a stretch fabric that has very good recovery, like a mid-weight spandex knit. If the fabric doesn’t have good recovery (the ability to snap back into shape easily after it has been stretched), then sagging will be more of an issue.
The first thing I would do is add fusible interfacing to the back of each fabric piece. This will help hold the fabric in place without stretching so that when you sew it, you won’t have to worry as much about sagging. Don’t get an interfacing that is too stiff, but just enough to give a bit of body to the fabric and to prevent stretch. Test a few out to see how the adhesion is to a stretch fabric (you may end up using a stretch interfacing with the less stretchy direction going vertically to help with adhesion and to prevent it from stretching under its own weight).
The next thing I would do is flat line all of the pieces in a non-stretch fabric. This is a process where you sew an exact duplicate of your pieces to the back, keeping your stitching inside the seam allowance and being sure to sew all the way around. It is commonly used to add a bit of body or structure to lightweight fabrics, and here, it will prevent your fabric from stretching.
Once you sew the jacket, I would recommend lining it in a non-stretch fabric as well. This will make it so that when you put the jacket on and take it off, the stress of that will largely be going towards that non-stretch fabric, and the outer fabric will stay intact.
Be careful when washing as to not stretch the garment too much, and lay it flat to dry. If you feel the need to reinforce any seams, you can add twill tape or ribbon to them while sewing, which will prevent the seams from stretching out.
One would be to get a black wig and add the blue wefts to the underside, making sure to trim the black hair in a way that allows the blue hair to show in a gradient like the reference. This would be the easiest way to do it if you don’t want to deal with dyes and would create a very clean-looking effect, but wouldn’t be 100% accurate because of the layering required.
The other would be to dye the wig by hand. You would start with a blue wig and then either dip dye it to get the black on the top or you would hand color it with alcohol ink or alcohol-based markers. Dip dye would be a more stable way of dyeing the wig and could potentially produce a darker/truer black, but would potentially be difficult to control, and you may run into issues with the amount of heat and time that dyeing wigs with polyester-safe fabric dye requires. Hand coloring the wig has the possibility of the dye rubbing off or staining, especially if you use any sort of styling products on the wig after, but would allow you to have more control over where the color goes.
If you do the dye method, be sure to get a wig that can handle whatever dye method you choose, as some fibers don’t accept some types of dye, and you don’t want to accidentally frizz your wig by sticking it in dye that is hotter than the fibers can take.
There are two major ways to go about making cosplay boots: one is to paint an existing pair of boots, and the other is to make bootcovers. For this project, I would recommend bootcovers, since you can get the correct seaming.
There are a large number of bootcover tutorials on the website, but I’ll briefly go over the method that I would recommend for this.
For something with complicated seaming like this, I would recommend doing the leg wrap method of patterning. You will cover your leg and your base shoe in a layer of saran wrap and then a layer of duct tape (or just a few layers of Glad Press N Seal wrap, if you don’t need it to be super sturdy). Once your leg is wrapped, draw your seamlines on the duct tape with a permanent marker. I would recommend doing the purple seamlines and ignoring the blue swirl for now, unless you feel confident enough to do the more complicated seaming required. You will end up with a toe piece, the top band, a front piece, and a back piece, likely with a seam up the back so it can fit around your ankle. Label these and cut them apart.
You will then add seam allowance to the pieces and cut them out of your fabric – light blue for the toe (which may require a seam or a dart up it to get the curve), light purple for the band and for the back, and dark purple for the front. I would recommend a stretch fabric that doesn’t fray, like a matte miliskin.
If you are attaching the shoes inside permanently, you can simply keep some of the length at the bottom around the sole. If you want to be able to slip out your shoes, be sure that your pattern includes the sole, as well.
Sew these pieces together, and attach your sole as needed. If you are glueing the covers to your shoes, slash the bottom like you are clipping curves while sewing and glue, and then glue a separate sole piece on top. If not, you can add non-slip fabric (often sold in the baby section of the fabric store – this is the stuff for making sure footie pajamas don’t slip) to the bottom, add a dense foam or leather sole piece (glued on), or you can add puffy paint or hot glue dots and swirls for grip.
For the blue swirl up the leg, if you are confident in piecing the bootcovers together, you already included them in the pattern and they are done. If not, you will create a separate pattern for them and attach them on top. Personally, I would glue them, but you can also applique them (sew them on top) once the bootcovers are mostly assembled but the sole is not finished yet. Do the same for the crescent moons.
And congrats! You will have some nice bootcovers for your costume! It may take a bit of practice, so if this is your first time making something like this, I would recommend getting extra fabric so you can make a mockup.
For the horn, you are going to want something lightweight that can be glued directly to your skin. Since you will be using adhesives, the lighter the weight on the horn, the better.
I’ll start with the adhesives before brainstorming horn materials. Spirit gum is popular for small items that need to be attached to skin. This is a resinous adhesive with a bit of a smell to it that remains tacky. I would think that it would not be strong enough to hold an object like this, but the advantage is that it is easy to find in local costume shops if you don’t want to purchase online.
ProsAide is an adhesive specifically for prosthetics that is a bit stronger and what I would recommend for this. It is latex-free, if that is a concern.
If you don’t mind having a small strap that you have to hide, you may also be able to use a bit of mesh fabric that matches your skintone to attach to the front of the wig so that it helps hold the horn up, and you would just need to worry about gluing it down so it doesn’t move around. This is the method that I would recommend for the most security, since you wouldn’t have to worry about it as much and the horn is close enough to the hairline that it would hide quite well.
For the horn itself, however you end up making it, be sure to take the center of gravity into consideration. I would recommend making the center of gravity as close to your forehead as possible, so that the added weight towards the tip doesn’t cause it to fall or droop.
Some materials options: - Sculpt out of lightweight air-dry clay. Be sure to specifically get the lightweight type, not the regular type. This would be easy to smooth and sculpt, though isn’t sandable if that is a concern. I would recommend a foil and wire armature inside for added stability. Be sure that if you do this route, you press it against your forehead before it dries so you can make sure it has a good base and fits your face. Paint the clay once it is fully dry, and add a clear coat for shine.
- 3D printing. You would either need to model it yourself or have someone do so for you. This advantage of this is that you can make it hollow, reducing the weight some. This will still be a bit weighty, however.
- Foam clay. This is a newer product that is basically an air-dry clay that dries into EVA foam. You can sand, shape, and paint the foam once dry. Lightweight and sculptable. Follow the same general procedure as the air-dry clay. Will be a bit more expensive than the lightweight clay.
- Paper mache. Very lightweight and cheap and able to be made hollow. Harder to make smooth than some of the other methods.
- Insulation foam. This could be either the expanding type in a can (would need to be filled in with another material for smoothness) or XPS foam/”pink” insulation foam. This can be carved into shape and is lightweight. Would need sealing of some type – I like lightweight spackle that is then sanded down.
For the shirt, you have a couple of options as well.
One would be to remove the collar of a shirt/make just a collar and shoulders and attach that to the inside of the blazer
The other would be to pattern the shirt (or modify a shirt) so that it is open around the chest. This would be done by making the visible part of the neck shaped with straight lines like a regular shirt, but then creating a diamond-shaped boob window that would allow the rest of the shirt to remain hidden. If you are using a storebought shirt, try experimenting with simply unbuttoning it and pinning it so it opens at the sides of your breasts rather than the center and seeing if that gets you the look you want.
Honestly, I would be very worried about you wearing dangling glass ornaments in a con setting, even if you modified them. I would also look at you local con’s policies on cosplay, as many cons ban glass on cosplays (for good reason).
That said, if you were very careful and not going to wear these to a con, you have a few options I can think of:
- Coat the ornaments in a protective layer of resin - Fill the ornaments with something that can absorb shock
Really, neither of these are better solutions than finding plastic ornaments, though.
As for string, thin jewelry chain, embroidery floss, or regular twine would all work, depending on the look you are going for. The manga version appears to have beaded strings, but I know you’re going for the anime version. I would recommend, if using a string rather than a chain, using a double length and looping it around the ornament and back up rather than trying to attach a cut end at both sides. This will be a bit more stable.
I can’t find references of the particular swords, so I’ll give advice based on what a feather looks like.
What I would recommend is using a wooden dowel for the center shaft. Lightweight, cheap, easily obtainable, and able to be carved. If you take a coarse grit (low number) sandpaper to the dowels, while wearing an appropriate respirator and eye protection, you can sand the dowels down into a fine enough point for your needs. Be sure to round the tip as to not have a dangerous prop!
Once you get the general shape of the shaft, you can work your way towards finer grits (higher numbers) of sandpaper to smooth the wood. If you want a very smooth piece with no wood grain, I would recommend smoothing the wood with sandpaper and then using filling primer over it, sanding it down, priming again, etc., until you have a perfectly smooth piece. You can paint over this (if you want EXTRA smoothness, repeat the process with your paint) and use a gloss coat to add shine.
If you wanted to 3D print, you could, but keep in mind that for a project of this size, you would likely have to print the piece in sections and glue them together. 3D printed objects are also not perfectly smooth out of the printer, so you would still need to finish the plastic for smoothness.
I was SO INCREDIBLY nervous to wear Sailor Gundam out of the hotel room for the first time–I was shaking in my boots! The exit from the hotel put me entering the convention center right smack in the food court, which is always swarming with people. With the help of 2 handlers, I entered the con floor with an insanely big response. I sincerely wanted to cry! I’ll never forget that moment. The highlight of the convention was Sandy Fox (voice of Chibiusa and Black Lady) straight up CHASING me down for a photo and sharing my costume on her Twitter. She expressed that she had been looking for me after hearing all of the VA guests talking together about my suit on the elevator. I thought I was going to die on the spot!
I go to Matsuricon in Columbus OH every year and when I found out the theme for 2017 was Mecha Vs. Magical Girls, I knew I had to get creative! How could I choose between a mecha or a magical girl cosplay? I’ve always loved Gundam and giant robots, and building a Gundam was definitely on my list of dream cosplays that I wanted to make. I originally wanted to merge the RX-78 into a magical girl because it is such a classic mobile suit, but once I started researching gunpla models, I came across a custom kit of the Nobell Gundam made with Sailor Moon embellishments. The second I saw it, I shifted my plans from the RX-78 to the Nobell!
This was an incredibly fun build! She is made entirely out of EVA foam, with some Worbla and cardboard used for the compact and crest. This suit was actually my first real dive into working with foam, and I had A LOT of trial and error with it. I patterned every piece by hand after purchasing a Nobell gunpla kit (specifically her Berserker Mode) and using that as a reference for drafting up the patterns. It was tedious! Overall, I was able to accomplish the build in two months time, primarily working on the weekends. I’ve learned so much about foam crafting since this build, and I can’t wait to remake her in the future!
You don’t have to paint yourself which is messy / time consuming and can rub off over the course of the day
Consistent color and can be painted to add dimension
You can glue or sew pieces directly to the morph suit
Some have a prominent logo on the butt
May not fit properly because it is not tailored to your form
It is made to be skin tight, so it may not have enough room to support altering your shape. For example, you may want to construct Val’s chest out of foam, to be worn under your bodysuit, so you appear to have the same proportions as the character. A custom bodysuit could be tailored to allow for this shape underneath.
Note: People with penises will want to wear a dance belt underneath to prevent the shape from being visible.
This year March 1st will be my 10 year cosplay anniversary. I look back almost 10 years ago, I was sitting up at 3 in the morning crying over my sewing machine while trying to pull together my very first cosplay for Megacon 2009. And here I am still crying over cosplays at 3 in the morning. I’ve been out of state for cons, made a ton of friends, won awards for my cosplays including multiple ‘Best in Shows’. In the end, I’m glad that I took that sewing class my senior year of high school, I learned so much from it. Cosplay has been a huge part of my life and I have to say that I’m grateful for everything about this crazy hobby that I love so much!
I’ve been a fan of the Classic Yu-gi-oh series ever since it was aired on television. I’ve always had Dark Magician Girl on my cosplay plans, and whenever the idea of finally wanting to make it came up, I always held off on it. I wanted to be confident in my sewing and other skills before I wanted to tackle the project. And here we are, almost 10 years later, I felt comfortable with my skills to finally complete the cosplay and wear it for Holiday Matsuri 2018!
First off, I want to shout out Kinpatsu Cosplay. She made an AMAZING step by step tutorial on how to create the cosplay, along with 3D print files of the staff. If you ever plan on making this cosplay I highly recommend buying it! The turquoise fabric is a Neoprene Scuba and the gold and pink fabrics are both pleather from Yaya Han’s fabric line at JoAnns. A good chunk of this cosplay I had to use a lot of techniques and skills I’ve never done before, so basically a lot of trial and error haha. The staff was 3D printed by a local Utah cosplayer Ren Fisher Creations, primed and then painted with different paints. The hat, arm braces, shoulder piece, and shoes are made from 5mm EVA foam cut out the design I wanted and then covered in the turquoise fabric. The pink stripes were done using 1 inch of 1mm craft foam and then the pink fabric covered the foam. I then used contact cement to make them stay onto everything. I used the same tech for the front and back arrows, as well as the waist part, but with the gold fabric. The gems were resin casted and then added with a circle of worbla that was painted. I have a few things missing from this cosplay due to limited time, but I plan to remake the majority of this cosplay before my next con.