Soul (Soul Eater Evans) Cosplay Write-Up


Couple of things before I get into the nitty-gritty of this costume... First, Soul has been on my dream-cosplay list since I first saw the anime (2011?), but I really wanted to do it justice. This costume caused me an unreasonable amount of stress and I actually kind of hate how the craftsmanship came out. I really wanted to make this like, a leather moto jacket, but my sewing machine could not deal with it. I was having sewing machines problems before Katsu as well (the blog never got published cause the costume is still unfinished...) but this jacket really drove me to buy a new, commercial grade, sewing machine.

Part 1 - The Jacket


Let's start with the design. I was going to add piping on all the seams, and make the collar standing with buckles on it. I also intended to add the buttons on the front but completely ran out of time (and later realized it would look kind of stupid).

For the pattern I found a Lekala pattern and printed it out, you can read about my experience with them here. I ended up with 3 mock-ups before I was happy with the fit, then started working with the leather. I ended up using 2 yellow sheep skin hides, and 2.5 black. The lining was cotton sateen. 
Final mock up

Testing pattern layout

Lining :D

Yellow hide 1 of 2

Now step 5- infinity is to cry. I really don't know what to say about this. I'm not a professional and I had a really tough time making this coat. Leather is tough, you can't pin it and even with a good roller foot it tends to move around. I actually really f-ed up a few seams which made me sad, but I also did a lot of good seams! You win some and lose some...
Sewed all the pieces together, after I did this I double top-stitched most of the seams.
(look at that sexy seam :D )

Make leather jacket, cut holes in leather jacket.

This is the one I really fucked up, don't make me look at it anymore :(

Aaaand that's how you make a leather jacket (don't judge me)

Part 2- Wig, Teeth & Sun

The wig started as an Indigo in Silver from Arda. I had a whole pack of wefts as well, but I ended up having to give most to a friend, so there is only a little bit of extra volume added to the wig.

I used a combination of 2 tutorials to do the spiking, How to Get Volume by Hee-Hee and the Making-Of Cloud Strife by Malinda-Chan.

The first thing I did was section the hair with clips and then put it into ponytails. I worked section by section, teasing and spraying, then holding them till they dried. It was a long, sticky process with no photos. At the end I cut the spikes to be the right shape and glued them with fabric glue.



The teeth were made out of white false nails. I made a retainer out of friendly plastic (this took a lot of tries to get it to fit really well) then shaped the nails and glued them on. I let it dry for 24 hours before I put it on my mouth (superglue and mouth, not good)


The sun was really interesting, we started him on Tuesday before the con (and Ejen from Cosplay in America joined us). He started as a large ball from Target, and covered it in paper-mache. The spikes were made out of card-stock and taped on (we should have used white tape, lol). We added hot-glue to stabilize the spikes and give it the evil-sun texture from the show, and coated everything in a few layers of wood glue.

 


Kuranosuke Koibuchi (Princess Jellyfish) Progress Post


Gonna make this one kind of quick! I made this costume in about 4 days for Wizard World Minneapolis, but it's probably going to come to Anime Central as well. Unfortunately my phone was having issues so the only way I could take photos was with SnapChat, so the quality is sub-par.

The skirt was a basic bubble skirt from a tutorial I spotted on Pinterest. Unfortunately it's a bit shorter than I would have liked, but it worked out. Basically the top/ bottom are gathered, and sewn to a lining that's 4" shorter than the gathered outside section.


The blouse was made from a free Burda Pattern, modified to have the correct ruffles, a standing collar, and long sleeves. This was SUPER fun to make and I love how it turned out! I'm currently working on a similar one for my Lolita Eren :)


The tights started as yellow stretch knit (a bit too yellow) and the dots were painted on. I used the Kwik Sew catsuit pattern, but I need to make them a bit tighter before the next wear.



The waist bow was simply 2 pieces of fabric, the "belt" section and the "bow" section, and they close together with pins. It's stitched to the front of the skirt to keep it in place.


Definitely the easiest costume I've ever made XD

~

Hana (Gate 7) Progress Write-Up


I've wanted to do Hana for quite a while, but I didn't really start until the 2nd week of March (March 10th) for a con that was the first weekend in April. Basically I made the whole thing in 3 weeks. I left a few parts out for time's sake (the ankle and thigh jewelry, painting the inner kimono) and the red waist cincher (obi-jime) broke and I didn't have the time to re-make it.

PHOTOS ARE UP!!

Part 1- Kimonos

I started with 18 yards of Kona cotton from fabric.com, 6 yards per kimono. This is more than you'd normally need for a "costume" kimono but I needed them to drag. I made 2 white kimono and 1 red in an evening. I use Simplicity 4080 for the pattern pieces, but I don't follow the instructions (leave open sleeves and a hole on the body near the sleeves, you can find instructions for traditional kimono making online).

I left the neck bands off and went on to dyeing. The first time I dyed them was too light, so everything was done twice. I found my color combos off of the Rit Dye website, and just kind of winged it with mixing dye.



After everything was rinsed, dried and properly ironed, I painted on the sleeve detailing and sewed on the neck bands. The last thing I did was push wire through the neckband seam of the outermost kimono, and add ribbons to the sleeves.

Part 2- Accessories

The only real accessory here is the obi-belt. I made it like a giant belt, lined with denim. The flower is Kona cotton fused to Heat n' Bond, then painted with acrylics. After that I simply cut it out and ironed it to the obi. I inserted grommets and laced it with red ribbon.



Part 3- Armor

The armor was pretty straightforward, she has a shoulder piece and a wrist piece, the leg jewelry (which I left out for this part, I'll add it later!) and the headdress.

The wrist piece was layered craft foam covered in Worbla, I completely neglected to take pictures of this! The shoulder was 4 separate pieces, the bottom 3 were connected and the top one was connected by braided cording. I really wanted to make holes for the cording to go through, but when I tried to punch the holes it cracked my wood glue, so I just glued them on.


I opened each bell and re-shaped them (and removed the jingly bit) but they were still loud because they hit each other X3

Next, the headdress. I need to find a better solution to keeping it on my head! Everything went so smoothly  (and late at night) that I forgot to take pictures of most of it... It seriously looked like an artichoke until I painted it... I started by cutting out a bunch of petals (it was 2 pieces of Worbla fused together) and heating them together. Next was the large back section, this was also 2 pieces of Worbla. The petal pieces that stick out were pretty interesting, I wanted to save weight so I only did 1 piece of Worbla, but you have to work really fast and delicately when you only do 1. I heated them up and draped them over a skewer and they  hung until they were stiff but still malleable, and I formed the dents in. I carefully attached them to the main piece and started re-shaping the petals.
 

The center front moon/starburst was cut out of Worbla and spray-painted & plasti-dipped (new method, didn't work out so well).

I added a circle around the bottom, and started adding the cording details. The danging crystals I picked up at Michael's and painted the correct color, the cording was purchased on Amazon. I also added the gradient-dyed bow with a large snap. I glued the whole thing to a headband (awful idea) and well, it kinda worked! Just kinda.



I re-did the chin strap but didn't take any pictures~

Final Photos

Photos by Siffy


Photos by Sun Suki

Supplies & Purchases
HanaWig/Wefts $45, Contacts $21, Fabric $100, Notions/Misc $65
Total Cost: $231

Kamael Majestic Light Armor (Lineage 2)-- Progress 1/2


Even though this costume isn't complete, I've had a blog post written up about it since I started it in early January. I like to keep track of my progress and write down how I made certain pieces, etc, but the stress started to pile up and honestly, I had to step back from this costume. I plan to finish it sometime this year.


I started this costume the second week in January with hopes of getting it done in time for Katsucon. I had just over a month to go from nothing (not even having the fabric yet) to having a finished product I was proud of. It started out pretty well, but when I was under 2 weeks in, my sewing machine stopped working. After having a mini (okay, huge) freak-out and about an hour of trying to fix it myself, I decided to bring it in to Hancock for repair, and grab a cheap machine for the time being. It's technically still under warranty, but it seemed to be just a tension issue, and I'd rather have it back within a week than gone for however long for a warranty replacement.


The new non-computerized machine was quite the headache, it didn't have any of the features that I was used to and a tenancy to chew up my fabric... Sewing with this machine feels like it takes 3 times as long as normal and I thought it was going to die the first time it went through the suede :'(


To top it off, my heat gun died on the 2nd of February, just 2 weeks before Katsucon and 3 days outside of the return policy. I got the heat gun for Christmas, and it didn't even make it a whole month before it bit the dust. Luckily my dad had one in his shop, so I had to run and get that. It works brilliantly, but it sucks to have my tools failing when I feel like I need them the most.


I literally poured every free minute I have into this costume. I didn't hang out with my friends, go on dates or really leave the apartment - except for work - since I started this cosplay. Once my machine died I honestly felt like giving up, but I kept telling myself "you're almost there", "just a few things left" and I kept powering through to finish. Although it's a bit rushed, I don't feel like I sacrificed too much on the quality of my construction, and I'm pretty satisfied with what I have so far. I learned a lot from making this cosplay, despite the string of bad luck. >> The reason I paused work on this costume is because I couldn't finish the wing for Katsucon. Everything else is mostly done, it just needs some touch-up work.


I don't even really want to write these progress posts, looking back I can just feel the stress of trying to get everything done on time... If it wasn't for the support of my friends, I don't even think anything would have been finished. I constantly had people telling me that they knew I could finish, and even had friends that would come over and hang out while I worked. The support is really what drove me to get this bitch done...


I do have to say though, Worbla is not my strong suit... There are a number of things I'd like to change/ improve, but we'll see.


[DEEP BREATH]
Let's start at the beginning. I actually had this costume planned for Katsucon for a while, but it didn't really occur to me to start until a friend said to me "Katsucon is just a month and a half away, are you ready?!" And my world came to a screeching halt. I'd already been pouring my soul into making The March Hare, and suddenly I had to split my time between 2 costumes.

The fist thing I did was gather as many references as possible. I was able to find 2 figurines of the cosplay I wanted to do, and the photos helped a ton.




So pretty :D Anyways, I ordered my fabric off of Fabric.com, plus 2 sheets of XL Worbla, and started on the gun while I waited for those to arrive.

Part 1 - Armor & Accessories

The gun was the very first thing I made. To start with, I traced my Nerf gun onto foam board, and started modifying the shape to match my reference images. Once I had it down, I cut out 3 foam board "guns" and glued them together. I used my X-Acto knife to clean up some parts that didn't match, then glued craft foam around the outside, to cover the really ugly edges. I also added the gun's "grip" with a layer of craft foam, and the barrel area with foam board.


Once all the edges were smoothed, I covered the whole thing in worbla, and cleaned up all the edges. I used Friendly Plastic to fill in some problem areas, then drew the designs on with sharpie. The details are done in Friendly Plastic (it's a liar, FP is really a douche to work with, lots of burns were had) and the larger pieces are done in worbla. I also added the trigger and the other pieces that stick out.

Friendly Plastic takes a bit of practice to get good at. I used a large metal serving spoon to melt the pellets in simmering water, but had to constantly reheat them with my heat gun. If the FP is too hot, it gets stringy and messy, but if it's too cold it won't form right. It probably took me like 15 tries to really figure out the perfect temp and what not. I also used a cheap set of clay sculpting tools to clean up the designs. 



I'm not 100% happy with the way the details turned out, but I think I'm happy enough with my first ever prop weapon that I'll probably never remake it.

Next I started on the arm pieces. The left arm has a wrist gauntlet, which is made out of craft foam and worbla, and closed with Velcro & d-rings (not a lot to say about this one~!)




The right arm has a shoulder piece, then a wrist guard. The shoulder piece is made out of several layers of worbla. The inner most piece is quite round, and is moulded over my boob globe. The details are all worbla, and it is hooked to the shirt the same way (Velcro and d-rings, baby!)



The wrist guard was pretty fun, the outside facing piece is a large piece of worbla that goes over the hand, with a second piece at the top that points inwards (who needs to actually straighten their arms, pft). The underside is a large piece of worbla that holds everything together with Velcro.


For the shoes, I decided to use wedges since they are more comfortable (plus I like being tall). The wedges I used are plain back ones I picked up cheap at Go Jane. I've never made armor over shoes, so it doesn't look the best - but no one should be that close to my feet! The armor is made out of several pieces of worbla, all held together in the back with Velcro.



The chest armor was pretty interesting. I ended up buying glass replacement globes from Menards in a 4" and 6" diameter (I used the 4" ones) and forming the Worbla over that. I cut out the shape of each and attached them together. From there I drew on the design and started making the details out of Worbla. They are reinforced in several places on the inside to keep them strong and hold the shape. It's kept on with elastic that buckles on each side.



The side/hip armor is made out of Worbla, and attached to the bodice with Velcro.

Unfortunately she has hip spike things that come out from the white armor pictured above, but I ran out of time to make them.

The thigh armor is the stupidest thing ever, and I didn't completely think it through. Because it wraps around mu entire leg, I have extremely limited movement. When I remake this part it will be fabric half pants and Worbla on the outside.

The thighs close with Velcro and are suspended by magic (aka a belt around my waist). The gold stripes are friendly plastic and look like shit cause I forgot them (added them after the wood glue step Q-Q)




The wig began it's life as a Jasmine in Pure White from Arda. I immediately stubbed the wig and used it as wefts for the hair piece. 



I made the base of the bun out of foam, and used school glue to attach hair to it. It's glued onto the wig stub so I don't have to worry about it coming lose. The bangs are styled into swirls on the side of the head, like in the reference images.

(Apparently I didn't take a picture of the finished wig before I packed it up...)


The ears are "Large Elf Anime Ears" from Aradani Costumes. I tested both spirit gum and prosthetic adhesive, though I preferred the spirit gum. 

The necklace is simply Worbla with friendly plastic designs on the front.

Part 2 coming after I finish the costume ^^