Spring Break Cosplay Madness

Some people go to Florida for spring break (and believe me the Michigan weather sucked enough for it this week…boo, hiss!). We Grants make cosplay dresses. Many of you cheered me on through Ren Faire dresses and the Captain America dress, and I welcome your moral support on the journey to a Winter Soldier dress and another Captain America dress.

cap concept dress

The Captain America Concept Dress

While some people make cosplay costumes that completely mirror the character’s, my girls like to design their own, incorporating their own personal style with the character’s. I fully support this…why look like everybody else?  So…here are the concept dresses as drawn by the girls.

 

Here’s Captain America…if Cap preferred a little swing and a silver petticoat.

winter soldier concept dress

The Winter Soldier Concept Dress

Next up, the Winter Soldier, aka Bucky Barnes. He’s dark and forbidding.

Now, those of you who have visited with me before know that I prefer to build on someone else’s labor. I buy base dresses at consignment stores and from clearance racks and spice them up. In this case, we decided to go with homemade base dresses and spice as needed.

Enter the fabric store and the pattern book…

photo(66)This is the Cap base dress. It will be in navy with only a rim of silver lace on the arms.

photo(67)When push came to shove, the Winter Soldier went even more strappy. It will be in a black stretchy knit (yes, a fabric type NOT recommended by the pattern folks) with a straight skirt. So really…not much like this pattern at all.

Of course, cosplay dresses are never complete without a corset, at least not when my girls are designing them. The one shown below on the upper right will be for Bucky.

photo(68)

Cap will be going with a fuller corset…more like the ones shown in this Dr. Who pattern.photo(69)

We actually broke ground (cut fabric today). I’ll try to keep you updated.  Cap will still need a shield and Bucky a metal arm, but I reserve that for a later post. The Doctor of Phabric, Joselyn Vaughn and her amazing sister, Lillian, Chris Allen-Riley, and Cousin L. can expect panicked phone calls.

There’s our spring break…what did you do for fun?

 

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A Ren Faire We Will Go…

So the girls hit me up this summer with a request to go to a Renaissance Faire. We’d been once quite a few years ago, so they kind of knew the deal and informed me they would have to go in costume. Egads! Now I’m a kind-of sewer. I can make flannel PJ pants. I can make Halloween costumes out of felt (no hems and lots of forgiveness). Bridget's base dress

But I can’t make a major costume without a little help. I knew I’d have to start with a base of some sort. For B., we found it at a local bridal shop on the $10 clearance rack of bridesmaid dresses.

Ren Faire base dressM.’s $25 wedding dress came from Mel Trotter.

B.’s dress required no alterations, which made me very happy. M.’s was a different story. I needed to let out the waist, take in the chest, lose the rosette and bustle and hem it. A lot. She’s not very tall after all. Not wanting to cut the train off, the hem job was a real undertaking.

After that I proceeded to do the additions. For B., I did an off-the-shoulder Bridget in costumechemise-type shirt and an overskirt. I bought one pattern for both of those. Unfortunately, the shirt was a complete bust. I ended up winging it completely. I cut 2 squares and 2 rectangles, threw in some elastic, and called it good. The overskirt was a success. Here’s what she looked like when all of it came together. I know I should have altered the vest to put the lacing up the front, but I just wasn’t up to that.

M. wanted more of a noblewoman appearance, so we went with a fancy gold fabric for an Meg's dressoverskirt. Bad choice. It frayed and puckered. Then it would fray a little more. Did I mention it frayed? By the end I just hoped it would last the day. Throw in a tiara (because she wanted one, people!) and we called her good. Admire that hem job on the wedding dress as you go by, folks. I actually ended up shoving a needle under my fingernail while doing it!

In the past, this particular Ren Faire was always held in October, and it was darn chilly. So in preparation, I made each of the girls a cloak. Again, it was hem hell. But they turned out quite nicely.

 

Bridget's cloakphoto-5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The only issue? The Faire got moved up to September and it was 78 degrees out. The cloaks got taken back to the van shortly after we arrived. photo-6

So how was the Faire? We had a tremendous time! Here are the girls with a friend from school and The Doctor. Which Doctor? Doctor Who! Because he was there and he looked fabulous. He even had a sonic screwdriver.

By the end, we were all sunburned and exhausted!

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Hand’s on at the Ren Faire.

 

 

 

 

photo-10It was clearly a success. I will admit there were times during the process that we all felt a bit like this. But it was worth it!

At this time, I need to send major thanks out to the Doctor of Phabric who walked me through the choice of the base dresses, Joselyn Vaughn who interpreted patterns for me by text, and Christine Allen-Riley who traded encouragement texts at midnight the night before between seams. Thanks to all of you, I did it!

So…maybe next year I’ll actually try making photo-11 myself a costume. Bridget has already chosen this pattern for next year. Egads! Here we go again.

 

How about your fall projects? Going well?