Viking Tunic and Dress Tutorial

Hiya folks!
I keep finding myself coming back to this blog for an occasional update or just to reorganize.
As much as I’d love to post regularly as I make each costume, It makes it really difficult to navigate for you guys. It also gets a bit hairy when I decide to re-make certain aspects or my already published tutorials arent as successful by the end of the journey (also frustrating for anyone who followed them!).
So I hope these rare but complete posts are making it easier despite the time!

Since Sydney Supanova back in June i’ve been working away on a few different projects (if you’ve been following my Instagram or Facebook page you’ll know which ones!), however I did spontaneously decide to attend St Ives Medieval Fair in September.
Having not had the time to make any decent looking historical / fantasy attire in a long while, I decided to make a whole new set.

After cutting out my own outfit pieces, i discovered i’d bought WAY too much linen and offered my beloved friend Wolveprince Cosplay a tunic to wear in matching colours.
Now after Id made his tunic, a friend from work gifted me five whole meters of beautiful blue linen to do with what I wished, I then offered an outfit to my equally dear Gee of Dee

So now Ill go into the making of!

The Inspiration

I was inspired by these lovely ladies pictured above
(The Viking Queen, Tathariel, Maenads craft and Valkyrja)

The Design

During this period in history, so much work was put into creating cloth and weaving trims that it makes sense that the general viking clothing designs would have minimal wastage.
Its quite difficult to describe exactly how different the patterning process is to regular pattern making, this is a good idea of how the layout would be and you can see how little fabric would be left over !

Female viking outfits would consist of a long sleeved underdress (or long tunic) made from linen, an apron made from wool or linen and occasionally a forecloth could be worn over the top.
It is worth reading more into the different styles of viking aprons, as we have such little archaeological evidence of them so much of what we see in reenactment is just speculation.

For my apron i made a regular three quarter length apron dress, and just did not put any side gores in. (see image for one with and one without)

The Construction

For my outfits, I followed Ingrid’s video tutorial. I recommend (As she does!) to watch it through once, take down all your measurements and then watch it again.
I also would recommend drawing out your pattern onto newspaper rather than directly onto the fabric, especially if you’re not too familiar with sewing or even just this method in particular.

The neckline is a little tricky and it was my first time doing a slit one like this!
I put in a neck facing (like this!) when my shoulder seams were sewn and the side seams were not. it makes it far easier than trying to get that slit cut straight when the side seams are sewn!

(This is probably a good point to note that the tunic i made for Nikolai is EXACTLY THE SAME as how I made the underdress! The only difference is I added a yoke style hem in the contrast colour. )

After making my under dress, apron and nikolai’s tunic I decided our outfits were still extremely plain. nothing like what I had hoped!
Even though there was only a week left I decided to throw some embroidery into the mix, I had never done embroidery before in my life so I do warn you, it is quite messy!

I decided on an urnes dragon design,

A common interpretation of this scene is that it portrays the eternal fight between good and evil. The animal is widely believed to be a stylised lion. In Christian iconography the lion is a symbol of Christ, fighting the evil symbolized by the snake, a common representation of Satan.
On the other hand, it is possible that the decoration of the earlier church featured some scenes from Norse mythology, a likely reason for its premature reconstruction in the 12th century. In this context, the animal may be interpreted as Níðhöggr eating the roots of Yggdrasil. “The intertwined snakes and dragons represent the end of the world according to the Norse legend of Ragnarök.

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I ended up doing the embroidery for Gemmas outfit in the car on the trip up to Sydney which was a little stressful but being my third attempt, I’d finally gotten the hang of it and it was well worth the hard work!!

Final product

We were lucky enough to have a shoot with Cosplay Printz before we entered the fair and got some amazing shots I’m so proud to share!
(I am having issues with wordpress making them blurry >_> will fix asap!)

Shieldmaiden by Spiralight

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We did manage to have a little bit of silly fun at the end of the shoot with this gem

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Ghilan’nain Cosplay Write Up

So i keep coming back and straying from this blog. Terrible at committing to it really. However Sydnova has now come and gone and I’m left with brand new projects to start so I am vowing to myself that I’ll write about these past three costumes before I begin! (side glance at the half finished Marian Hawke cosplay write up i’ve promised for so long)

 

Ghilan’nain is one of the elven pantheon from one of my favourite game series, Dragon age.
We originally had a group planned but life gets in the way and theres not always a whole lot we can do about that other than be understanding and remember this is a hobby for FUN. (Pushing others to exert themselves mentally or even physically to essentially play dress ups is not okay!)
I still decided to wear my cosplay on the Friday as I had still put in a rather large amount of effort, and living so far away from most conventions I wasnt sure I’d get another opportunity to wear it before other cosplans came into the picture.

Now onto the costume!:

The Inspiration

“One day, Ghilan’nain came across a hunter she did not know. At his feet lay a hawk, shot through the heart by an arrow. Ghilan’nain was filled with rage, for the hawk is an animal much beloved of Andruil. Ghilan’nain called upon the goddess to curse him, so that he could never again hunt and kill a living creature. Ghilan’nain’s curse took hold, and the hunter found that he was unable to hunt. Ashamed, the hunter swore he would find Ghilan’nain and repay her for what she had done to him. He blinded her first, and then bound her as one would bind a kill fresh from the hunt. But because he was cursed, the hunter could not kill her. Instead he left her for dead in the forest. And Ghilan’nain prayed to the gods for help. Andruil sent her hares to Ghilan’nain and they chewed through the ropes that bound her, but Ghilan’nain was still wounded and blind, and could not find her way home. So Andruil turned her into a beautiful white deer—the first halla.”
—From Codex entry: Ghilan’nain: Mother of the Halla

Bittersweet, isnt it? I love Biowares knack for sneaking such folky details into the wide world of Thedas. It makes it such an easy task to immerse yourself into their world by having this history lying about.

As with most cosplays I start, I looked at fan art for reference. This was particularly important with Ghilan’nain as she doesn’t actually have an in game design other than derelict / rotting statues.

these three images were my biggest inspirations for the overall look: snow white and delicate.

 

The Design

I originally planned for a wrap style dress, however it changed quite drastically when my mum brought home a wedding dress she’d seen in the thrift store window – it was extremely small (half my size) with an enormous over skirt. I ended up being able to use the fabric from the main dress to turn into a top/front skirt and sewing the overskirt back onto it.

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Original design

The Construction

This actually went together quite quickly funnily enough.
First I made the bodice pattern using my pattern blocks. I had to factor in the minimal amount of fabric I had to use (the base dress was teeny weeny), so an empire waist was the way to go. I would have liked to have avoided a giant seam in the middle, however I did end up covering it with the waist cincher later on.

The base dress also had a few beaded / sequinned motifs I managed to unpick and use on the costume too, (they’re also all over the skirting too, which I thought tied it in nicely!)

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the base before lace was added

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Beading details

The over Skirt was incredibly easy, I quite literally just sewed it onto the waist line of the base, as it had been on the original gown. The cincher seemed to cover any possible problematic parts so it wasnt a huge fuss at all !

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The waist cincher I patterned myself, I put some boning in it as well for extra structure. The beading was the only truly strenuous part of this piece, I used Ghilan’nains vallaslin (face markings) that are used in the actual game for the design!

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And all together:

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I had lace left over from the bow from the original dress, which i put on the neckline and I think it really tied it all in!! I also added some strings of beads along the bottom of the cincher. I wasnt too sure about this since it did cover the motif (also beaded) but at the end of the day I think it as a nice little touch. you really only notice them in the sunlight.

After making the outfit itself, I still had plans to do tights / armor however as mentioned earlier, I did run out of time!
I took some photos in my back garden to celebrate the completion of the larger part of the cosplay and I had a lot of feedback encouraging not having anything underneath at all!

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The skirt is HUUUGEE

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A make up test: which i completely forgot to refer to seeing as I forgot to put freckles on for the convention *face palm*

The End Result

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Photo by Thomas @ Magic Missile Studios

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Photo by Thomas @ Magic Missile Studios

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Photo by Thomas @ Magic Missile Studios

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Triss Merigold Make Up Test

I actually have been promising a Triss Merigold cosplay to a number of friends for over a year now, I did a make up test back in December that I thought I might share with you all..

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I am relatively happy with it, I want to buy an actual wig rather than the messily styled Merida one I used here.
Also some more intensely green contact lenses than my own eyes, and actually use some lip liner to overdraw where it needs it!
Any thoughts?

 

 

 

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Grey Warden Bethany Hawke Cosplay Tutorial

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Hello hello, its been an awful long while and I’ve suffered many questions regarding the making of this particular costume in the past couple of months so I believe it is finally time to divulge into how I went about it.

This costume I made for PAX AUS 2015 back in October last year (has it been that long already?). I was included in a group along with 50 or so other Dragon Age enthusiasts for a meet up (I encourage, no, insist everyone who cosplays to organize a meet up in the months beforehand. Its a super safe and wonderful way to make friends in the cosplay community you’ll have forever.) 

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Now, onto the making of!

 

Bolero:

  • First thing I did was use a regular blouse pattern – you can use one similar to this one – and sewed it up in a cheap calico (or just cut it out in paper and tape it together); then just marked out how long i wanted it to be. I wanted it just at the decolletage line and basically where my bra closure was on the back.
  • I then cut out the fabric and marked where I wanted my quilting to be. I chose about 4cm x 4cm squares.
  • Sandwiching my wadding between my base fabric, I machine sewed the edges so they wouldnt move when I did my quilting.
  • After it was sewed on the edges I then sewed the quilting.
  • Then it was time to sew the pieces together as usual.
  • Once it was all together, I hemmed the bottom and the sleeves.
  • Now its time for the studs! I believe I might’ve watched Guardians of the Galaxy when I went about this part – it is quite time consuming!
  • the final pieces are the leather buckle closures, I just cut out two leather strips, folded over the edges and top stitched then fed the end through the buckle and stitched it on. just put the other strap on the other side, use a stiletto (of the sewing variety) to make a hole and you have a buckle closure!
  • tadaaaa! the bolero is done!

 

Tabard (and Scales):

  • I used the same method as my Merrill tabard, I taped some paper together, drew up the shape i wanted, cut out a neckline and threw it over my head. (same as with the merrill, I suggest making it thinner in the waist and wider in the hips rather than just a rectangle so it flatters your shape – yes even guys too!)
  • after being happy with the design, I cut it out in the paper and then again in the fabric. I didnt use any wadding for the tabard as not to look to bulky with the wadded jacket. it is lined however.
  • simply sewing the edges right side together i then flipped it right side out through the neckline, folded the neckline inwards and handsewed the edge closed.
  • now onto the scales!
  • I used 2mm craft foam for the scales. I probably cut out about 1000 minimum to cover the front and back pieces. I stapled them together and then spray primed and painted them.
  • I recommend using some watered down black paint to age them and give them definition
  • then I hand sewed the edges of the scale lengths to a strip of blue tulle. then I sewed the edge of the tulle to the tabard.
  • and you have scales!

 

Thats all the mentionable making of I really have of this costume! If I didn’t describe an aspect of this costume you were particularly interested in, just flick me an ask on my tumblr and I’ll likely answer it within the day!

 

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Hawke is Soylent Cosplay

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Merrill Cosplay Write Up

Hey Hey! So I made this costume roughly in about two months, for PAX AUS 2015. It was super comfortable to wear in contrast to my other cosplay with heels, and lots of fun just in character. I do recommend a flower crown for extra dalish cuteness, mine was provided by the lovely Scarlet Moth Cosplay.

EDIT: I’ve since also worn this costume to GoldCoast Supanova in April 2016, I made some slight changes – you can ask me about those HERE. mainly to do with the vambraces and scarf.

 

Tabard:
– I drew up a rough design just on paper, held it to myself (you can use a mannequin too!)  and then drew where I wanted it to be smaller or wider then added that on when I made up the final pattern.  (I recommend making it slightly thinner in the waist, and wider in the hips. I don’t think the majority of people possess the tiny frames of our Dragon Age elves, so do take into account that our bodies are different in person than in a game! that requires changing an aspect or two of the design to make it flattering)
– I made the rings from plastic curtain rings I spray primed and then spray painted, the straps were just fed through and sewn on!
– The fabrics I used were cotton drill and poplin (poplin for the stripes, no need for anything expensive for such a small feature!) ,

 

Pauldrons: 

  • I used (quite expensive) faux fur and cut out two rectangles by eyeballing it, leaving two little ‘straps’ on the bottom section to sew the rings and front tabard to.
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  • then cut out two triangles (after holding it up to your arm and figuring out where its bubbling / gapping) and sew the remaining edges back together. you can skip this step altogether if you arent having any gapping issues.
  • I then hand sewed (you can use a machine) the edges under and the rings to the straps.
  • After that I sewed a small piece of elastic connecting to the two lower rings.
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  • then measure out against yourself a piece of elastic from the front of the tabard to the back over your shoulder (its easier to use a piece of yarn or string for this by tying different length pieces to the front and back and trying it on)
  • sew the elastic to the two rings on the front and back of the tabard
  • then just sew the top edge of the fur to the shoulder elastic strap.
  • tadaaaa!!! completed. (This was insanely hard to describe, please send me an ask on my tumblr if i didn’t describe this well enough)
  • (you can weather and age the fur as much as you wish, i just got some water paint and hair spray and went crazy, hence why i bought inexpensive fur)

Under suit / chainmail suit 
note: if you’re going to make this suit I recommend working out / drawing up where you’re placing the holes onto the pattern rather than making it up and then cutting out wherever when its done. I wish Id been a little smarter about it.

  • I used ‘Kwik Sew 3052’ , as far as I know this is now out of print though I’m sure you can find one second hand online.
  • The fabric I used I actually ordered from Spoonflower and it was design 923515 ‘chainmail for larpers, medieval fairs or plays’
  • I used “Modern Jersey” but I warn you, it very nearly didnt fit me though that may have been a measuring mistake on my part. Just know its not a very forgiving pattern.
  • I sewed it up following the instructions
  • i then put it on, and pinned where I wanted the holes to be
  • It helps to get a friend to do this, I had my partner cut the holes for me when I was wearing it, that way i could see how large or small they were when it was stretched across my body.

Leg Bracers / Arm Bracers:
– I drew up the design I wanted on a piece of paper, I wanted my criss cross pattern to have some space between each piece, and then be sewn on to make it look a little more rustic.
– I then cut out those pieces in 2mm craft foam, primed and painted them.
– the base of both the leg and arm bracers i drew up in paper and did the same as with the tabard , just adding and removing width until i was happy, and then marked in where I wanted the straps to join
–  from there I basically just hand sewed each piece on!

The wig is Arda Wig’s  ‘Lulu’ in ‘Natural Black’
The ears are Aradani Studio’s ‘Nomad’ in ‘Light painted’
The contacts are Pinky Paradise’s ‘Dolly eye green

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If I didnt answer something to do with this costume that you’d like to know, feel free to send me an ask on my Tumblr! Ill get to it as soon as I can

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Progress to completion photos of Morrigan Gown

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So the past two months have been extremely busy, I haven’t posted much as a result but I basically spent the entirety of the time working on cosplay non stop.

I don’t think its really necessary to do tutorials for the things I made in that time, they’re pretty straightforward but if anyone is curious as to how i made something just flick an ask my way on my tumblr blog. Ill be happy to explain!

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The Breastplate
I made two versions of this.
The first i made before the corset, which then ended up being waaay too short and i was just generally unhappy with it. *cries from worbla wastage*
The second I made excessively long which i ended up trimming down a little, and even then I cant actually sit when i wear it. Cosplay dedication at its finest.

Its made from yoga mat (eva foam) thinner is better! and then its mounted with a flat layer of worbla, then i cut out each of the little ‘scales’ and added them on top. I also added four ‘loops’ one either side of the bust and another either side of the waist. That way I can just tie it onto my body.

Now if you are going to make this following that technique, I reaalllyy recommend adding a lining because when i wore it at the convention it became very hot and gross against my skin. *disgusted noise*
You can probably also get away without having to put that first layer of worbla down, but i felt it made it more durable and sturdy.

The breastplate has also earned itself a nickname; the corn penis.  the picture below explains why.

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The Blouse
This was pretty simple, i kind of wish I made it wider in the neckline looking back, but that is up to you.
I made a regular top, figured out how much i wished to take out of the center to make the part by holding the breastplate against it and seeing where it ended (leaving at least 4cm either side of the breastplate edge)
I then made bishop sleeves, adding a cuff. you can find tutorials pretty easily on how to alter patterns to do that online.

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I then added dots of velcro which i hand sewed and matched to the breastplate, this way the fabric wouldnt move and reveal underneath where it shouldnt, it would also hold the breastplate still.
I also added gold trim next to the lace.
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The Corset
The corset was pretty straightforward. I just used a simplicity or butterwick historical corset pattern, then made a mock up of it with old fabrics, drew where i wanted to lower and extend it and then made another mock up to test it.
Once i was happy i made it out of really thin corduroy (my machine doesnt take leather) and then put all of the eyelets and rivets in. one.. by.. one..

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Morrigan Gown Progress: Dragon Age Inquisition

So It’s been about a month since I really posted much about anything Morrigan!
(I was too preoccupied with life to actually blog of what ive been doing)

But basically I’ve since finished the skirt of the ballgown, and am preparing to begin on the corset and blouse top.

Here are some photos

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This was taken when the skirt was merely pinned together, I hated the shape of the silhouette it gave, hence the red drawings.
I decided the only way to give my skirt the shape I wanted was to sew my crinoline thinner. I did this by hand sewing the front to the back at the width I wanted. This leaves string horizontally on the inner sides of my hoop skirt, but it does the trick!
I also, still not happy with the shape, decided to make a bum roll. These were used very often in history, mostly in the Baroque, Georgian and Victorian periods, when women were desiring a larger ‘rump’.

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The skirt from the side, with the hoop skirt sewn inward, and the bumroll also attached.

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And a front view of the completed skirt.

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The necklace only took me about 3 hours (not including paint drying)
I used Chrisx’s wonderful tutorial which you can check out here

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Posted in cosplay, dai, dao, dragon age, dragon age inquisition, dragon age inquisition cosplay, morg2, morrigan, morrigan ballgown, morrigan ballgown cosplay, morrigan cosplay dragon age inquisition, morrigan gown, morrigan gown cosplay | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment