|Cost :||£100+ (this better be worth it!)|
|Time Taken :||45+ hours|
|Final Fantasy XII is not my most favourite FF series and I never really wanted to cosplay as someone with short & blonde hair since I can never see myself with that kind of hairstyle. I also keep on saying to myself, never cosplay as a character with a costume that reveal their stomach because my stomach is a little fat, so why on earth did I choose to cosplay as Ashe? Okay so heres the answer....|
I totally feel in love with all her costumes. I seriously want to make all of her costumes, but I won't have the time or money. I decided to make her wedding dress since I haven't seen a UK cosplayer wearing Ashe's wedding dress At least cosplaying as Ashe will make me more confident to show my stomach and cosplay as someone with a very different hairstyle to my normal hair. Besides whrn the UK held a cosplay competition for the FFXII launch, I was going to enter by making an Ashe cosplay, but only heard about the comp 9 days before the deadline and I usually take a month to complete my costumes. Another thing is that all my past cosplays have been really simple and horrible, so it was about time I move onto more complex costumes and even though the costume doesn't turn out right, then I have an excuse because of the difficulty of the costume.
So here is how the costume was constructed. (You must be so bored if you read everything, also excuse the poor uses of English because I found it difficult to put some of my words into sentences)
11th December 2007
I brought all the materials needed for costume and started to make the base of the costume before working on the details. Measuring, cutting and sewing up the materials took me 20 hours so far and I still haven't finish making the base I think I am being too careful not to waste any materials since I have already spent over £80 & I couldn't afford to buy any materials again if part of the costume fails, so basically I had to check the measurements several times!
21st March 2008
I definitely needed a wig for this costume XD! I brought the wig from Ebay for £16 including shipping, which is a bargin since the quality is very good. The materials of the wig came from Japan, but it was made in Korea, so I'm very happy to have a high quality wig for a cheap price. I possibly need to style the wig abit of the sides to make it look a little layered, but I'm worried that I will mess it up. My friend told me that the wig looks fine the way it is and the veil will kinda hide the fact the wig is not layered, so I might as well leave it. After all the worrying about looking really awful in short and blonde hair, I have tried the wig and it doesn't look too bad on me. Some people say blonde hair suits me, so thank god I don't look too bad, all my worries about having blonde hair are over lol
I find the skirt the most trickest and probably the most hardest part of the costume and there are a few things which I have taken to a consideration.
1) Ashe's proportions are very different to mines. I don't know Ashe's height, but Ashe has got very long legs and my legs are very short compared to Ashe's, so making the skirt looks as though it can only look accurate if you have long legs. To overcome this problem I did some sketches of how can I make the skirt according to my proportions and still have all the details on the skirt.
2) There is not a lot of reference pictures, infact there is only 1 reference picture that exists of the back and the bottom of the skirt, but the image is not very clear of some of the small details, so it involves some of my imagination. I don't think this will be a major problem since I'm really creative and I can think of new designs and patterns for the unclear details.
3) Looking at the train of the skirt, it may cause a lot of problems because it takes up a lot of floor space, can get out of shape whlist walking and probably end up not being able to do much like sitting down, turn or even alk! in this costume! I'm still unsure how to overcome this problem, but hopefully it will be before May.
4) Since the skirt contains loads of bits and piecies that needs to be added to make it accurate, the skirt is going to be so heavy, plus I need to find a way to fit it in my luggage without getting part of it damaged! Anyway I found a solution to this problem by adding an elastic to the skirt so it will be secure around my waist and I managed to find a special way of folding the skirt so it can fit in my luggage! yey ^^
The skirt can be split into 3 parts; The underlayer, tops layer and the accessories and bits on the skirt.
The underlayer ~ Looking at the only reference picture of the bottom of ash'e wedding dress, it seemed fairly tricky to get the train right. I usually like to make a giant circle for the skirt part of a wedding dress and besides it will make it easier to get the train prefect, however making a giant circle will make the skirt a little puffed out and looking at the reference picture it doesn't look puffy. The only way to solve this was cut the fabric into 4 parts, so I get a part of fabric for each train. I attached an elastic to the waist line from the sides and back so it will make it easier for me to put on and take off the skirt.
Top layer ~ The top layer was not too difficult, though it did took a few attempts to make it not look puffy. Basically I cut the fabric into 2 parts to add on the front and back. Afterwards it was cut into shape, then stiffened with hemp and then finally painted with arcylics.
Acessories ~ There are loads of accessories on this skirt which makes the skirt so damn heavy <.< The bits of accessories were made from different materials. Can't be bothered and too lazy to write how I made every little bit of the accessories on the dress, but here are the materials which I used; hemp, duchees satin, craft foam, gold chain, feathers, spray paint, DAS clay and hot glue gun.
I thought making the bodice will be a diaster, but it turned out not too bad as I thought. Also I never ever worn anything that reveals my stomach, so this will be my first time, though I worry that my stomach maybe fat, so I might have to lose weight!Anyway it was made by trial and error! I never used a paper pattern and everything was guess work! My first attempt failed and I wasted some expensive duchees satin *cries*, but I learnt my mistakes and my 2nd attempt was a success! yey ^^ The bodice was then decorated with hemp, craft foam, some cheap satin (don't know what the satin is called), hot glue gun, crystal jewel, beaded chain, acrylic paints. the back of the bodice is attached by using hook and eyes.
I managed to get the fabric for the veil at a cheap price (£1 per metre) and I cut the fabric in to semi circle shapes for the layers of the veil. The accessories on the veil were made out of craft foam, duchees satin, hemp, beaded chain and aryclic paints.
CHOKER AND ARMOR
Everything was made by using craft foam glued onto hemp with a hot glue gun, painted with gold arcylics and finally secured with velcro.
Since I'm a cheap skate and running out of money (as usual) I brought a pair of white shoes from Primark which costs £4. The shoes were orignally for my Sakura cosplay, but I suppose they could be used for this cosplay aswell until I have the money to buy proper wedding shoes. I'm hoping the skirt will cover the shoes for all the pics, but even though it doesn't, at least they are white and look kinda suitable for weddings XD!
3rd April 2008
Things to do...
~ Finish making the 3rd and 4th layer of the veil, then sew the layers of veil together
~ Finish making the armour/jewelry are the wrist
~ Sew on the accessories that dangles at the back of costume
~ Add more glue on the gold details on the bodice to make it more secure
~ Add more featers on the veil
Then it will be finished ^_^
I finally finished this costume (well sort of), but I need to make the veil more secure because it keeps my pushing my wig back, plus I need to fix some of the details.