Today I get to share a guest post written by a special friend of mine! Shelley has been a huge inspiration to me and a very talented cosplayer. She wrote this breakdown for her Rapunzel cosplay and is letting me share it with you guys while I work on my own costumes! It's a great read and it's nice to see the approach other people take to their projects. Enjoy the read!
Part 1: THE BEAST OF A WIG!
I ordered the Delilah silky wig and a long silky clip in bleach blonde from Arda. Their long clips are attached to the clip in an easily removable way, so I took it off the clip and sewed it to the inside back of the wig, to add some more bulk. After that I braided it up and it was ready to add the flowers! This was the most expensive part of the costume, but it was absolutely worth it! For some characters, the quality of your wig can really affect the overall look of the cosplay. Aside from the wig, though, everything else was done on a strict budget!!!
Part 2: Flowers, flowers everywhere!
I didn't want to stick to movie-accurate flowers for the wig. I wanted to make it unique. I scoured eBay, thrift stores and dollar stores for beautiful flowers that tickled my fancy but didn't break the bank. I even did a little flower trade with my friend Stephanie who had some extras from her Frozen Fever Elsa! (We each added some of each other's flowers to our costumes, our special little connection ??) I hot glued the flowers to bobby pins, using strips of scrap fabric wrapped around over the glue to secure them better! I then stuck them into the braid, and had my friend Shea help make sure they were dispersed evenly and in a way that it looked good while I was wearing it.
Part 3: Skirt!
When it came time to start sewing, I was way too intimidated to start with the top! I decided to split her dress into a skirt and top, and the skirt seemed way easier to begin with! The fabric is two curtains I thrifted for super cheap and repurposed! They were around $3 or $4 each and make up the majority of this cosplay! I didn't use a pattern because I've made a lot of skirts and felt comfortable winging it. I used elastic on the waist for comfort. The flowers and trim are from eBay, and the lace is from a fabric store. Once the sewing was complete, I drafted a rough outline of the design I wanted on it in pencil, and my friend Shea painted it on for me. I gave her free reign over colours and she nailed it!
Part 4: Puff Puff Sleeeeeeves!
Once I finished the skirt it came time to face the challenge of creating the top. The sleeves are the first part I tackled. I had collected small thrifted pieces of fabric over the course of a couple years and I picked out a few of my favourites that went well together, and began cutting them into strips. I lined them up , and played with the order until i was satisfied. Then I pinned them and sewed the strips together to create pieces of striped fabric which I used to make the puffed sleeves! I had never sewn puffed sleeves before so I made a practice sleeve with scrap fabric first. Then i took some pink stretch lace, which was the only fabric I bought new for this project, and made simple tubes to complete the sleeves. I sewed them into the edge of the puffs, and voila! Punzie sleeves! I wasn't happy with the colours of pink stretch lace available in the fabric store I went to, but while looking I remembered I had some pink spray paint left at home, so I bought the closest shade to what I was looking for, and sprayed on a thin coat of paint to get the shade I wanted! I made sure to leave it a couple days to dry before sewing with it to avoid mess and complications!
Part 5: The dreaded TOP!
With only a few days until the convention, I couldn't put it off any longer...I had to do the top. I loosely used a pattern for a corset style top, and altered it to fit the costume. I used more thrifted fabric, and part of the curtains I had used in the skirt. I wanted a zipper in the back, for ease of getting in and out of this costume, but I felt that I needed a corset lacing somewhere so I opted to make a decorative lacing in the front! I added two flaps to the front of the top, put in eyelets, and laced it with ribbon. My favourite part about the lace-up is that when I choose to wear a corset underneath this costume to shape my waist, I can adjust the fit of the top by lacing the front looser or tighter! I'm so proud of how it turned out!
Part 6: Final touches!
I really wanted to be super pretty and feminine from head to toe for this convention (Calgary Expo 2016) since I had two Disney Princess cosplays, so I decided to get my first set of gel nails! I'm a nail-biter and can't stand long nails, so this was wayyy out of my comfort zone! I would only ever get them again for special occasions, because it made working with my hands difficult, but they made me feel like such a pretty princess that weekend! I got a simple nude pink, with little jewel Mickeys on the thumbs!
I was a bit afraid of the wig getting too heavy and uncomfortable, so as a backup plan I ordered a short brown wig off eBay, so I could make a quick switch and still be able to wear the costume if the wig got too much! I somehow made it through the day at the con (thanks to my friends holding me up and carrying to to a wall when I nearly passed out in artist alley!) but I used the short brown wig for some photos over the summer!
I didn't get many pictures at the con, but during the summer Breezeeweezee and I had a photoshoot day at Mameo Beach, Battle Lake and at my dad's acreage. It was SO MUCH fun, and we got some incredible photos! I can't wait til the next time I get to shoot with Bree, she's so talented!
This cosplay will always hold a special place in my heart. It took a couple years to collect the fabric and supplies, and a few weeks to make, and it was all so worth it! I learned new skills and created something I am truly proud of. That, to me, is one of the best parts of cosplay. Looking at something I made and thinking "Damn, I did so good!" is one of the best feelings in the world!!!
I love that I got to shoot this with Shelley and that she has shared this write up with all of us!! I'm always accepting guest posts for the blog. I love hearing how other people make their costumes and it's a great way to learn from each other. If you're interested in sharing your experience, send me an email!