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Monthly Archives: April 2011

Cosplay Update – Maria Ross, Akari Mizunashi, and Other Cosplays for Con in May

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My Maria Ross State Alchemist pants are almost done.  I just have to add a bit of fabric to the bottom because I forgot to calculate in ease X_X, attach the cuffs, and sew in the hook and eye closures.  Then it’s on to the waist coat and killer jacket.  I’m seriously saving the jacket for last.  It scares me.  I’m not good at jackets and this is no ordinary jacket, it’s secretly a monster in disguise.  Shhh.

My Akari cosplay is getting closer to completion.  The dress is done so I just have to make the fuku, glove, bracelet, and boots.  I might make the hat too.  If have time and resources I’d like to make a President Aria plushie as well. 

I have a ton of wig styling to do once the wigs arrive.  So far they have been ordered and are being processed for international shipping.  I’m really hoping they come in time.  If not I’ll be up the creek without a paddle to coin a phrase.  In other words, I won’t have any cosplays to wear to the con. 

I still have to finish gathering items for all my cosplays.  I have a lot to get for my Temari, Anna, Fio, and Luka cosplays and I still don’t have every thing for my Akari or Maria cosplays yet.  @_@  I feel like I never stop having to get stuff.  I also have to help my friend with his cosplay and style his wig.  @_@  I seriously hope I can everything done in time for the con in a month.  Then it’ll be on to the next set of cosplays for my August con.  So much to do and not much time. 

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Second Guessing

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I really need to stop second guessing myself.  My intuition is often right when it comes to modifying patterns/clothing.  I often have everything planned out and working out well until my analytical mind comes in and second guesses the modifications.  Usually I’ll change the pattern to match the analytical observations instead of going with my original modifications.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my analytical mind, I just wish that I would incorporate the analytics with the intuitive hunches better.

You’re probably wondering why I brought that up.  Well, it’s because I did it again.  I second guessed my intuition and now I have to fix my mistake.  Unfortunately, I didn’t account enough ease into the length of my pant legs for my Maria Ross cosplay so I have to add at least a four inch strip to the bottoms of the legs in order to be able to sit or walk or bend my knees without splitting a seam.  Gah!  I wanted these pants to be perfect, but they won’t be without the legs being too short and the cuffs not fitting right.  Ah well, I learned.  Now I just have to make sure I don’t do that again.  Pants are turning out to be a lot harder and more time consuming than I excepted. 

Maria Ross Update – It Has Begun

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All the hype and excitement from meeting the lady I mentioned in my previous post spurred me to begin working on the pants for my state alchemist uniform on Tuesday.  Since I already had the fabric and thread, I was able to immediately start tracing out the pattern.  I used two commercial patterns for my pants, Butterick 4861 (for the actual pants, I used a lengthened version of view A) and McCalls 6083 (for the pockets since the previous pattern didn’t have the right pockets).  The patterns were easy enough to trace on the fabric and the pants were easy to modify for length and new pockets.  It took me almost 6-7 hours to trace all six pattern pieces and add necessary modifications to three of the pieces (front, back, and cuff).  Time wise it wasn’t bad, but my back hurt afterward. 

On Wednesday, I was able to cut out all the pieces and sew most of the pant pieces together.  It was my first time inserting a frontal zipper with a flap like normal pants have.  I was surprised that it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, especially when it came to sewing it in.  I was able to use a sewing machine this time which was really nice.  I usually have a very hard time machine sewing zippers into clothing, but I found out that if I use a regular foot instead of a zipper foot, the zipper will attach better and without much frustration.  It’s a wonderful revelation for me since I’m tired of hand sewing in all my zippers because the zipper foot wouldn’t work. 

I don’t have much left to do before the pants are finished.  I just have to cut out the interfacing for the waistband and cuffs, and attach and sew the interfaced cuffs and waistband to the pants.  The pattern I used for the pants calls for the waistband and cuffs to close with buttons, but I’m not sure if that’s the best choice for me since I’ll be tucking the ends of the pants into my boots and wearing the waistband under the butt-cape/waistcoat thingy’s waistband.  I don’t know how comfortable buttons would be in this case so I’m thinking of using waistband hooks and eyes instead.  I think I’ll go with the hook and eye method for the sake of comfort. 

There is not much else to say about this cosplay at the moment.  I’m still looking for acceptable boots to use.  I was thinking of trying combat or real army boots, but I’m not sure yet.  I’ll have to see if I can find some at a good price.  If not then I’ll settle for boot covers over a pair of black boots I already own.  There are a few more things for the main outfit that I have yet to get as well.  I still don’t have the right bias tape to use (I have dark gray instead of silver gray), buttons for the butt-cape/waistcoat thing, a gold braid and small ring as well as the lapels (I’m getting them embroidered for me since it will cost less than if I embroider it myself) and pins since I can’t cast them out of pewter myself.  Other than that I’m ready to go.  ^_^

Psyched

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I am so totally psyched!  I went to a cosplay workshop/hang out time today and met the lady who made an awesome set of Fullmetal Alchemist State Military uniforms that looked wonderful at last year’s August con.  It was so cool!  We talked a bit and swapped info.  I told here how cool I thought her costumes were and that I was planning to make a Maria Ross cosplay, but was having a really hard time with the jacket.  Guess what?!  She said she’d help me with the jacket!!!  Woot!  Now I can finally figure out how to make it and hopefully have the entire cosplay done for the May con this year.  I am very, very happy and excited.  I’m gonna go sew the rest of the cosplay now.

New Addition to the Cosplay Family

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I’m having another change of plans.  My Kotomi cosplay fell through since I couldn’t get the wig or make the dress due to shortage of funds.  I still want to cosplay her, but I can’t at the moment so I’m replacing her with Luka from Vocaloid.  Luka is one of my favorite vocaloids because I love her voice and graceful style.  I also think her pink hair is adorable. 

I’m planning to do a Just Be Friends version with a curly wig. 

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I found a long curly pink wig that I can afford and should arrive before the con.  I already have a white dress and black boots that I could use.  I have to add a lining or two to the dress, but otherwise it’s done.  I’m going for the version she wears in the balloon scene so I don’t have to get or make a wreath.  I’m hoping that one of my friends can come so he can cosplay Luka’s Ex since he looks a lot like him, but I don’t know if my friend can come or not yet.  If not that’s fine, but I really hope he can. 

I also want to wear a silver/gray and black formal to the high society formal the con is hosting.  As far as I can tell the dress would look great with the wig which would be perfect for the formal since it’s curly.  I might style it a bit, but I don’t really know yet.  I’ll know better if I’ll actually be cosplaying Luka for the formal once I get the wig.  I got the dress from a prom dress swap.  It’s really beautiful, and I like it a lot.  I have a couple pairs of black heels that I could wear with it since high heels are required for the event. 

There’s going to a good sized Vocaloid group at the con.  So far it looks like there will be a Len, Miku, Mikou, and maybe a few others.  I can’t remember the exact list unfortunately, but it’s a descent group for a small con.  I’m looking forward to meeting some if not all of the group.  Maybe there will even be a photoshoot which would be lots of fun. 

I’m both excited and nervous about cosplaying Luka.  I’m excited because I like the character for the most part, but I’m nervous since Luka is the sexy type and I am not.  Nevertheless, I like her Just Be Friends version which is sweet, simple, and not over sexualized like some of her other designs. I like the character, but I don’t like all her variations. 

Dresses I’m planning to use: Top and middle, Just Be Friends version dress and boots; bottom, formal version.  The formal has a very beautiful silver to grey gradient, but unfortunately the lighting washes it out in the picture.

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Wigs, Scissors, and More Wigs

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I just ordered wigs for my upcoming cosplays today.  I’m really excited to see how they turn out.  I’m trying out new wig sellers this time to find which ones I want to buy from the most.  So far, I’ve bought wigs from Zepher, Wig Fashion on eBay, and Legend Wigs on eBay. 

This time I’m buying a prestyled Akari/ARIA wig and a short brown wig from C.C.-Kids as well as a long curly pink wig and a long sandy blond wig from a Taobao store of which I don’t know the name (link here both wigs are in the 80-95 cm category).  I’m also getting styling scissors and wax from Fantasy Sheep.  My order should be in around May.  I’ll post a review of the wigs and styling products then. 

I’m very excited to get the wigs and totally stoked that I can get everything for a whopping $76 including shipping!  ^_^  It’s a dream come true for a poor college student like myself who has to eat as well as cosplay.  It’s a total blessing that I was able to find a group to order with so I could get the shipping at a discount price. 

I still have a few more items to get before the con and my homemade cosplays still aren’t done (yay, for procrastination and over excessive homework).  I should be able to get nearly everything now, especially if I save a bit more of my money for cosplaying items, like a con badge (which I still don’t have).  It looks like I’ll be able to get most if not all of my planned cosplays for this con done and acquired on time.  I am a very content and excited cosplayer. 

The Fan has Arrived

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I got my fan today.  It looks so cool!  I’m very happy with it and can’t wait to transform it into Temari’s weapon.  It’s about 3 feet high and really wide.  I’m about 5’3”-5’4” and when open the fan spans from the floor to the mid to top of my head when I hold it sideways.  I love the design on it and almost wish I wasn’t using it as a prop since it’s so pretty. 

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So far my idea is to cover the fan with white fabric, I would glue the fabric to the painting, then add the purple moons via purple fabric and Heat ‘N Bond.  I don’t know how well it would work, but it sure beats trying to paint over the elaborate design on the fan.  My only concern is whether or not I’ll be able to close the fan with the added fabric.  I would use a white broadcloth type fabric and layer it at least twice to cover the design, hopefully completely.  here would end up being around three additional layers of fabric, including the three moons, if I used the fabric method. 

I really don’t want to paint the fan, and I don’t have the money to spend on paint right now.  So far it looks like my best bet will be to use fabric.  I have a bit of extra white fabric laying around and I might have some purple.  If not it shouldn’t be too hard to find and I should be able to afford it.  I still have over a month until the con, so I’ll think about my options more and talk to a few prop makers as well.  I’m hoping to get the fan done as soon as possible so I can get a preliminary shoot before the con, but I might have to go without the fan which is ok for a preliminary shoot.