Time Flies... (Days 359 - 361)

...when you're swamped with things to do. No cosplay progress, but I did go to a costume/Halloween party! I went as a bloody, messy vampire. Somehow, people said that that was predictable LOL Ah well.

The most fun was people's reaction to my boyfriend's costume. He was "Party Bunny", a combination of Jackass's Party Boy and Bunny the Lifeguard. Yes. It was epic.

Good news though! A friend might be staying with us for Fanime, as well as my cousin and a friend of hers. Only for one night though. But it'll lessen the cost for me and my boyfriend a ton anyway! Yayyyy!

Nerd Rage! (Day 358)

Wheee! So I went to JoAnn's to get the ribbon I needed for Franziska's long vest, the FIMO (Sculpey) that I needed for Franziska's neck jewel, and some new fabric for Franziska's neck ruffly.

By some miracle, they actually had the exact ribbon that I've been looking months for. *headdesk* I wonder how long that was there...

I'm pretty happy with the FIMO that I got. The blue I chose is the exact same blue that I used for the buttons. I actually think it's supposed to be a lighter blue, but they didn't have anything like that and I'm not up to painting it. For the trim or whatever that is around it, I got a metallic brown/orange. It's not exactly what I envisioned, but I like it a lot anyway. It seems more realistic.

For the new neck ruffly, I got a thicker fabric than I got before. I don't like the texture as much (seeing as there isn't much in the way of texture at all), and it is a little heavier, but it stands up on its own more so I should be able to get the volume I want without all the extra weight or the tons of layers and ruffles the first one needed.

After JoAnn's, I went home and started again on Franziska's long vest. First I had to take off the failed yellow ribbon that I had started months ago. When I did it, I somehow managed to cut it too short and pieced together parts of it, so it wasn't one long piece all the way around. And that just wouldn't do, so I took it all off. Then about halfway into it, I ran out of Heat 'n' Bond no-sew Hem! Oh noes!

So back to JoAnn's it was! I also got those little concealing flower petal thingies as Franziska's design doesn't allow me to wear a bra, and that was quite evident when it got, umm.. Chilly. I just wish that there was some way that I could still get support. =/

In addition, I learned about the many types of Heat 'n' Bond. Not that I understand all of them, I just now know that there's more than one type in addition to different widths. I stuck with the "hem" kinda because it's the kind that I know how to use. There was a "decorative" kind, which is probably what I needed, but it's too late in the game to learn how to use a new kind. The directions were a little different.

Anyway! Back home again, I finished applying the yellow parts and began sewing. Ah, everything went beautifully until the lining went in. I always seem to mess this part up and then can never remember how I did it the last time. I've made two vests and a jacket with lining and I still can't get it right.. Hmmm... At this point, I gave up. It's too late to think about how to fix it. I've had a long day, and I'll deal with it tomorrow.

But no matter! I made more progress today! *clapity clap*

What's This!? (Days 352 - 357)

PROGRESS! Oh my God, I made PROGRESS!

I made Franziska's ruffle thing. No more ruffles. No more pleats. Never again. Biggest disaster of poof ever. I pleated the fabric and folded it in half, as per Sheik's suggestion. It wouldn't really stay, so I ironed the "inside" pleats, if that makes sense. Basically I ironed the part of the pleat that wouldn't be seen so that it'd stay where it should be. That still didn't work, so I sewed parts of the inner pleats to stay. That didn't work either. So I kinda gave up, haha. Then I sewed the sides of the poof together so that it would be folded over and make the bottom loop. Well that kinda screwed over my pleats a little. They still look alright, but the fourth one is hecka tiny. I messed with it and then decided to leave it. I'll be going to JoAnn's soon, and I'll look for more of the fabric that I used. If it's there, I'll buy more and re-make the whole poof.

To make the poof, umm.. poofy, I followed foxberry's advice and added some layers inside. Well. One layer. One layer of POOF! I gathered a piece of scrap fabric that was a little shorter than my poof and stuck that inside. Then I gathered the top of the whole thing so close it up. I tried starching it too, but that did absolutely nothing, heh.

To make the part that actually goes around my neck, I measured the actual height of my neck (as opposed to guestimating the height the neck piece should be) and then gathered the ends of that. On the gathered ends, I added a hook and eye to attach it in the front.

Then I sewed on the poofy ruffle to the neck piece. This took two tries. The first try, at 10:00 at night, just didn't go well. At all. It just.. No. We won't talk about that. The second try went a little better and gave it some of the volume it needed too. It's sewn upside-down on the inside of the neck piece and falls over the top when put on correctly.

I also made the buttons for the vest. I'm kinda kicking myself because I realized too late that there should be 5 triangles and 5 buttons, one is hidden by the ruffle. It's too late to fix this now though, so I ended up with 4 triangles and 4 buttons with one covered by the ruffle =/ Anyway, I used FIMO Soft modeling clay to make the buttons. It's an oven-hardening clay, similar to the very-popular Sculpey, but a lot cheaper. The clay came out of the package a little hard, but that may have been my fault for waiting so long to use it. Once I kneaded it in my hands some, it softened up and was fairly easy to work with.

First, I measured how large I wanted the diameter of the buttons to be and drew it on a piece of paper. Then I started taking chunks of the clay (it comes sort of pre-cut into pieces) and rolled them together into a ball. Once I got the ball almost as big as I wanted the button to be, I used a plastic knife to cut it in half. This messed up the shape a little, but it was easy enough to get it back to where I wanted it. Then I smooshed them down into slightly flatter half-spheres. I used a toothpick to draw a rectangle on the flat side and then cut slices of the clay off around it so that I had the rectangle sticking up in the middle of the flat side of the button. I then used the toothpick to poke a hole through the rectangle. At this point, I wish I had squished the rectangles down flatter a little to make the backs of the buttons more even. This happened to one of them on accident, and it's not my favorite button. (It's it's also the button that's covered by the ruffle. >_<)

I then baked it in the oven, following the directions, for half an hour at 230 degrees. After they were done, I sanded them with wet 400 grit sandpaper and sprayed them with (wait for it) furniture polish. The polish was supposed to make them shiny. It didn't, but it did get rid of the scratch-like marks from sanding, so I'm pleased.

i then tried on all the stuff that I have completed. I don't have leather gloves like I thought I did, but I found some well-fitting cotton gloves, so they'll have to do. If I can make it to the Halloween store, I'll search from some well-fitting leather gloves, but I have the feeling that they'll be hard to find anywhere but a specialty store, and they'll be really expensive. I have a pair of white jeans that I can use, since white dress pants are hard to come by and I don't have the money for fabric to make them. Plus, after the bloomers incident, I don't think I'm ready to make pants just yet... The boots I also already had.

Yaoi-Con Photoshoot? =D (Day 351)

So, being awesome like I can be sometimes, I set up a mini photoshoot for Yaoi-Con with a Phoenix Wright cosplayer who's a friend of a photographer that I'm friends with. Yeah. That made sense. I'm extremely excited, but the whole thing makes me feel terrible about my boyfriend's Miles Edgeworth cosplay not being completed. Even though it's not my fault, I feel like I got his hopes up for something that's not happening. And I was really excited for him to cosplay it too!

In other news, still no progress on my Franziska cosplay, though I may have some black women's gloves that I can use, so that's at least some forward progress. Assuming that I actually have them.

Miles Scrapped (Days 340 - 350)

I think I'm getting worse about posting. And I'm certainly running out of titles that say "I did nothing, sorry."

The Miles Edgeworth cosplay that my boyfriend was going to wear to Yaoi Con has been put on hold, if not scrapped altogether. We failed to find a red men's suit or a blue men's vest. Hoping that all was not for naught, we bought a pant pattern (I've never made pants before) at the thrift store for 69 cents (I just discovered their fabulous pattern section), and headed off to the fabric store to do some budgeting.

If I were to make the entire Mile's Edgeworth (18-year-old) costume, it'd mean making a jacket, pants, and a vest. I already have the fabric for the neck rufflies and the undershirt is just a white t-shirt. While this doesn't sound like a lot, taking into consideration the lining of at least the jacket and the pants, we were looking at about 10 yards of fabric. Plus there's a plethora (16!) giant buttons. Our end result (including tax on all but the buttons) was $83. If we had started right after Fanime (like I wanted to!) that would have been easy. But. With Yaoi-Con two weeks away, there's no way we could scrape together the money. And I had already promised to pay for his wig (which I estimated at about $50) so I'm pretty tapped for cash too.

On a side note, at the fabric store, we found out that the fabric that we used to make my boyfriend's Hideki jacket now has a label on it that says "may cause cancer." Fantastic. Next time I go to there, I'll write down the name of the fabric and the brand and post a proper warning here. In any case, I'm considering remaking his jacket for Fanime. This saddens me because I'm still so proud of that Hideki jacket. It wasn't terribly hard to make, but it had some snags and still turned out flawlessly in my eyes. *sniffle* And I'll probably end up throwing it away now.

All of that being said, I still plan to cosplay Franziska von Karma (13-year-old) to Yaoi-Con. I still need to finish the ruffles, gem, buttons, and coat (/long vest). It doesn't sound like much but somehow.. It's daunting. I think it's the buttons that are intimidating me. They must be exactly the same or I'll freak out every time I look at them. And I'm still overwhelmed with school.
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