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Learning to sew has honestly been a decision for me that was fuelled by the desire to cosplay. I've only just started learning how to sew and I did my first "proper" cosplays with wigs and handmade elements at a convention in 2015. However, I've always loved 'dressing up' and have been doing embarrassing things like turning up to see "The Hobbit" for my friend's birthday in poorly cobbled together Frodo Baggins costumes since 2012.

Since I cosplay on a tight budget and a low skill level, most of my cosplays are created through very simple sewing and altering things I buy in charity shops. (Although I am hoping to work on doing more things from scratch.) I know it's a stepping stone, and someday I will hopefully look back on it in disgust, but that doesn't make me any less proud of my end results!

So far, all I have really done are crossplays, I am not entirely sure why. I'd definitely like to do more cosplays (just in general) but unfortunately, I don't really have any friends who have the same hobbies.

Last online 2 years ago


Joined: 23rd Apr 2016

Completed costumes: 10

Photos uploaded: 51

Progress journals: 24

Events attended: 5



I’ve been trying to improve this costume since 2014 — BTTF is my favourite film and I love Marty so I’ve been trying to do him and the film justice for forever.

I bought a job lot of gross old wigs in 2017 and cleaned and fixed them up with detergent. Today I’ve thinned the wig out and steamed and and tried to style it.

By this I mean I've sewed the base dress and the apron. All that's left is to add the buttons and possibly sew a separate petticoat. Today's tasks were pretty much just to add the skirt to the bodice and add the zip up the back. I also decided to create the apron using a piece of patterned white material that's been in my stash for ages and it looks wonderful-- and also helps with the keeping the costs down.

I created a mock up of the design from a self drafted pattern which was a combination of measurements and also draping. The mock up was made with old curtains and I had to make two bodices because I did a bad job sewing the first together. The pattern itself is very solid and doesn't really need any major tweaks to work so I could follow it pretty exactly for my final.

Whilst clearing out my bedroom for redecorating I both happened across a wig I bought for a Halloween costume last year and put on a film. The penny dropped immediately and I knew I had to do Sophie Hatter. The wig was quite worse for wear as it is pretty cheap and also I hadn't touched it since Halloween. I spent a long time combing it and cutting out the worst tangles and did a slightly fancier braid than normal. This will likely need done again as there are already flyaways.

Using a pair of curtains and some cheap substitute horsehair braid I finally started working on a new cosplay! Right now I've mostly just draped the skirt to give me an idea of materials. I think I'll need about 5 or 6 metres of fabric and I may keep the curtains to use as a base...

Attempted to re-create a background for a photoshoot that did not actually happen.

This is actually my wig for my Marty McFly cosplay, but before I cut too heavily into the top I decided to see what else I could do with it. Given the time of year that it was...this happened.

Both sleeves are attached and the areas of the vents which had ripped away have been reattached! I'm finished the dress, ready to go, bring on the con! (Still need to finish the bow and sort out my cape but shh)

Well...sleeve. But the implication of two sleeves sounds more like progress.

I've been working away at this costume in fits and starts so although it's relatively simple, it needs a lot of work still done before it is complete. I have finished the wig -- I boil curled the base wig and then after deciding it needed more volume, I've spliced in a second wig. It's been strategically curled too, and I think we can call it done.
The bow is all but finished - I covered the paper mache with wallpaper filler and sanded it down, covered it in a base coat of paint, varnished over that, didn't like the colour so painted over it and varnished it a second time and it looks passable. I've glued on the faux leather wraps using bag straps I've pilfered from bags I never use any more. The bow, all in all, has cost me nothing. Thumbs up.
The dress is the big issue - I have practised the sleeves and I have drawn up a successful pattern for them, but inserting the 'puffs' into the sleeves looks to be the issue I am going to have. I have added a neckline ruffle and it looks okay but it also still needs work; the neckline looks incredibly messy.
TO DO:- Add sleeves, cut the hem to length, finish neckline
I have purchased a petticoat to wear under the dress and emphasise the a-line shape, as the material is extremely heavy and 'drapey' and can be rather figure hugging -- not really what I wanted!

It's taken a long time, lots of paper mache...some paint, some more paint...varnish. And I'm still not done.

So, I've finally cut and sewn the material I was afraid of and so far I'm happy with it! It's heavy and very drapey and I'm very pleased with the fit. (Though, as my grandmother would say, you can see exactly what I had for breakfast!) It goes on over my head due to the stretch velvet, so thankfully I didn't have to work out an invisible zipper. I still have to cut the hem and turn it up, and work is still required on the neckline. But other than that, the hard part is done. Now I have to do the REALLY hard part which is making the sleeves.

I've drawn up my dress pattern but the actual thought of cutting out my material is giein me the fear.

Using half of a hula hoop and a coat hanger, I've begun my bow. Basically, I used wire cutters to cut an old hoop in half, peeled off its foil coating and found the join in the centre. I removed the pieces from the join and used the stopper from the middle as a marker for the bow's center piece. I then used a saw to cut both halves evenly, snapped the ends off of a coat hanger and inserted the snapped off pieces into the hollowed hoop ends. I then carefully balanced the other ends around the centre point and taped then with masking tape. From that point, I covered the entire thing with a layer of paper mache and cotton wool in the areas I wanted to emphasise the recurve shape.

Got a synthetic wig for a fairly high price but it turned out to be pretty thin and patchy. Reluctantly I decided that I'd probably have to repurchase a more expensive coscraft wig because those things are thick af! However, since I had this cheap wig sitting around, figured I'd practice curling it. Had to do it without curling irons, as the synthetic fibre didn't melt or anything but also wouldn't take on any shape. So I boiled the wig with curlers in, dipped it in ice water and then let it dry for a day. It turned out awesomely and I'm now decided to just add some extra wefts (or perhaps graft another wig to it) to get a fuller Mérida worthy volume. It's curled up so well, but it's still kind of patchy in spots unfortunately.

I said that I wasn't going to use velvet fabric for this -- I wanted to hedge on the historically accurate side of costume and not the Disney Princess side of costume. However... Sometimes life hands you a bargain of three metres of fabric in an almost perfect colour in a charity shop and you have to take it. So yes. I have bought velvet fabric. This is truly a Disney Princess cosplay.

So I finally attached the cuffs bottom parts of the sleeves and they don't look great but whatever we'll go with it.

I spent last night hand embroidering the design and sewing on the buttons and I honestly just can't wait to get the whole ensemble together.

Wig and makeup practise run at midnight. I'm feeling good about light eyes and contouring. I'm not really needing anything particularly dramatic I don't think.

I've finished the lapels of the jacket, and added a couple of extra buttons on the back just because I could. I'm really happy with this.

The trousers are also done, added little elasticated caps over the top of the knee.

It's a hot glue DISASTER but her top hat is done. I really did try to keep it neat but it looks a bit shit to be honest. It was tough with the type of material I was using to get the cover nice and smooth. But it's done!

Swapped the plain button at the top of the jacket for a rose shaped one. Began to add more small details to the jacket. Swapped the fixture at the top from a button to a hook and eye closure.

Tried to fix the lapels but ended up screaming a little instead.

I cut the jacket from a full length one to a short tailcoat shape. I'm screeching. It was so stressful. Ive also begun to fit the lining. It needs a good iron but I'm happy with the way it's looking.

I'm planning on finishing off the attachment of the lining (maybe with wundaweb, because I dont want to have obvious stitches on the back of the jacket). I'm also reconsidering the way that it buttons up the front. I think the shape might be improved if I use hook and eye closures instead of buttons - which tend to pull a little across my chest and look unattractive.

So I've finished the sewing part of the trousers. They're made out of a second hand undersheet I bought (brand new!) from a charity shop. I messed up my first attempt pretty badly but thankfully my second pair worked out fine.

I was intending to make the jacket from scratch, but I happened upon an absolutely perfect base jacket in a vintage shop for £10 so I decided to cut myself some slack and use it. I've thus far cut off the original buttons and replaced them with gold ones I had lying around. Next I need to cut it into the tailcoat shape. I've bought the lining material and the material for the lapels and the cuffs but I'm nervous about making major changes.

I've also more or less finished the shirt -- seam ripping the sleeves off an old shirt of mine and adding an extra lace ruffle using odds and ends I bought for <5p.

concerning_kj added 2 images of Sophie Hatter (2 years ago)

concerning_kj deleted 2 images from Sophie Hatter (2 years ago)

concerning_kj changed the icon for Sophie Hatter (2 years ago)

concerning_kj added a progress journal to Marty McFly (3 years ago)

concerning_kj is no longer going to Comic Con Scotland 2018 (3 years ago)