So, I fell in love with this character after randomly coming across this drawing. I am not a huge “vampire story” fan (never read nor saw Twilight.) I don’t think I have ever read ANY vampire story, actually! This ^^ inspired me to pick up both a manga and novel of Trinity Blood. I ended up liking a LOT of the characters and their amazing wardrobes :) Having never done any sort of vampire or armor of anything besides leather, my long term project was chosen!
First, came my favorite part…sketching!
Then, since I knew the fabric part would be easier for me, I started some simple and cheap armor. No worbla for me yet…investing that much money in an experiment was too scary! I just used a tee shirt and duck tape on my mannequin for the breast plate. I also had mod-podge handy, so did many coats of that over the tape to even out the ridges and ugly lines. It was not fun and only did a coat or so a week. This is why this costume ended up being so drawn out!!! UGH.
Then, months later, I had more time and a renewed interest in the costume. I left the “armor” alone and started patterning the eyelet underdress and velvet jacket. This was much easier for me and much more fun.
Jacket and over corset pattern
Simple “eyeballed” underdress from a basic corset pattern, strapless with a zip back
Once I got rolling on the jacket and gathered up ALL of my spare gold braided trim, I didn’t stop to take many photos!
Above is the back of the jacket and under bust corset.
This shows the underdress and starting work on the design at the bottom of the jacket. I was going to hand embroider the whole panel, but switched to trim and paint since I wanted to actually complete this thing!
I WAS able to do some embroidery on the sleeves:)
This is gold metallic leather, and is the upper portion of the puff sleeve.
While I was working on the arm bands, I got inspired to finish up the armor. Here are the two shoulder pieces and the front pieces with the leather arm bands. I tried some foam for the shoulders and torso parts of the armor and they worked out to be sturdy enough once doubled up and duck taped! I used puffy paint to make the designs mostly! The torso pieces are only attached at the top edges, so the armor bends with motion. I used a lightweight chain and studs to attach the front armor to the shoulder pieces and then to the back to meet at the center point of the corset where they attach with a clip! I finished it all up with a little silver paint over the bronze and her gems.
Lastly, I painted the decorations down the sides of a pair of red tights, gathered some of the eyelet for a neck ruffle, added some lace and buttons to some thigh high flat white boots, made a red sash/little wallet and made the hat. I don’t have a picture of the hat in progress because I was trying to finish it quickly in time for DragonCon…I used a vintage cap, and pieces of plastic mesh covered in my blue velvet to construct a simpler/smaller version of her huge one. My daughter dyed a strip of the white wig red for the signature stripe and we are done!! The last minute things really added up, haha!!
Hat, wig, and ruffle.
Armor on without the final armor touches
At the convention, very happy after 10 hours in FLAT boots and no armor! ….Next time :)
This was a fun project to embark on, and took some major research before even starting to pattern!
The stillsuit is a full body suit worn in the open desert that was designed to preserve the body’s moisture. It consisted of various layers that would absorb the body’s moisture through sweating and urination, and then filter the impurities so that drinkable water would be circulated to catchpockets. The individual could then drink the reclaimed water from a tube attached to the neck. A stillsuit, kept in working order and maintained properly, permitted the wearer to survive for weeks in the open desert.
Since this was for a woman customer, we used the screen used one found on propstore for reference:
It was worn by the Character Chani
After thinking and looking into several different materials and patterns, and a couple of good prop store pics, along with great input from my customer, I came up with a plan. A merged jumpsuit pattern, celery Moire fabric, grommets, and parachute cord!
I used a basic 80’s vintage jumpsuit pattern and altered it to include the high neckline with collar. We found the perfect fabric on ebay called a Moire which has the patterned grains in it, but it would not bleach, so I used acrylic fabric paint to give the pieces the look of the sun bleached sweat marks. (they show up pretty yellow in these pics, sorry)
I luckily remembered that all of the grommet holes for the “veins/tubes” had to be set BEFORE I sewed the pieces together! I also added the ruched knee and shoulder pads a front zip and the flap before sewing.
Almost finished. I added pale blue (distressed) paracord through the grommet holes, the logo pocket, and webbing straps at one shoulder and the upper waist. It also had a ruched waistband. Not shown in these photos is the webbing belt that is the third belt of sorts on this suit!
Close up of the front flap
I couldn’t get the thing on my mannequin that has a head, so had to fit the wrap around facemask/cap on myself!
And FINALLY, my customer (with the hood hanging back). It was a treat to run into her at DragonCon and see the suit on her :)
Happy customers love to share photos of themselves with me in their costumes and I love to see them! Here are a few that I have received in the last year or two. If I have missed any credits, please let me know!
Cosplayer Kuno Yuro
Kuno Yuro as Wonder Woman, with Batman 2014
Nicole Stoufflet with her Steve Trevor 2013
MiaLa bustier made with custom molded chest plate and belt. 2013
I have lots of new costumes to add and update, but wanted to go ahead and post some shots from DragonCon. This was my first time, and I brought along the little ones, too, so it was a big adventure! Most of the shots were just quick ones on my phone, so did not come out well, but I managed to save a few.
I think I had 4 or 5 customers at this convention in costumes I made, but unfortunately, I didn’t get any shots of them in action :(
Day 3 for the Wonder Woman Shoot
Day 3, after watching people posing all weekend!
Breanna as Snow White
Restaurant Selfie – Day 1
Group at Hardy Ivy Park
Astharoshe Asran, Day 1, ditched the armor!
We found another Espeon!
The girls were thrilled to see so many Anna and Elsa cosplayers!
One of our favorites was this “Child of Light”
This play was one of my favorites ever to design! This was an amazing cast that put on a hilarious show. June in Georgia is hot, hot, hot, so I did my best to make the costumes lightweight but still in Renaissance “style”.
Photos below by Christina Cannon of the Red and Black:
Costume photos below taken by me:
The main part of this costume was a vintage lace layered corset with the tails sewn on the back. She helped stuff and paint the tails and ears as well as tell me exactly what she wanted for the rest, which was all hand made, as well, except for the tank top she wore under the cape. We had to do laces in the back as well as the front to let the extra center tail be centered! ( worn on an elastic waistband) The front being adjustable as well makes it possible for someone other than this tiny 9 year old to wear it in the future as well!! ;) She was worn out at the end of the day. I would say it added between 5-10 lbs!
I really respect both pokemon girls’ decisions to re-create these characters in an age appropriate way, because they have seen a lot of the other interpretations online and most of them were not necessarily kid friendly! They guided me in making their own visions of how a human version of these great characters would look.
Here is one more shot that shows the tails and pretty corset on the adult mannequin:
We are pretty new to the Pokemon world, so I am excited to keep this one around for a long time while we learn more.
I put this into tutorials because I do have patterns for the tails and ears if anyone wants them. (just send me a message) I just used the free images I saw online and drew my version. I bought simple fabric store fur and we painted it using a base color of a rusty red/orange and adding pale yellow till we blended in with the cream fur.
This costume was designed and directed by a four year old pokemon fan. She is also a big fan of purple and cats.
If you are not familiar with Pokemon, I will put a little description in the “misc” category. Basically, the costumes and the word gijinka mean translating the actual animal character into a human with a costume featuring their colors and power or specialty. In Espeon’s case, she is a psychic purple cat, picked immediately by the little one, even though she is not yet playing the game. A purple spinny dress, ears, and the tail were the most desired factors, but the Asian style sleeves were an agreed upon detail. We did some red accents instead of the third eye on her forehead and instead painted the psychic eye detail on the hanging sleeves.
She was in character and enjoyed this first cosplay to it’s fullest!
(oh, and enjoyed winning the costume contest for their category with her fellow pokemon as well!)