29th May 2013: May Expo 2013 Finished in time for the Expo and had a great day with Kuma as Booker! There were lots of fantastic Bioshock cosplayers there; even Lutece twins and Vox Populi! Of course we had to get a looting photo - so disgusting, Booker! XD
Found a few things I need to tweak if I wear it again; the cuffs need to be a bit looser, I'd like to add the stitch lines on the corset and the bolero doesn't sit right (I think the shoulders are still too wide). These are all easy changes thankfully.
The only noticeable problem was it was a windy day and the second I stepped outside my wig styling was irrelevant, I'll be using hairspray next time!
Now that's over I have time to finish the game. Must...find...lockpicks :D
23rd May 2013: Wig Styling I bought an Ash wig in 'rich dark brown' from CosCraft.
Using a hairdryer I flattened out the flicks then trimmed the back up to make it chin length all round and put a few shorter bangs into the front.
21st May 2013: Choker Tweaks I bought a blue ribbon and white paint marker planning to draw the circle pattern on the ribbon, but was worried I didn't have much time left.
In a crazy stroke of luck I looked in Kat's lace basket on a whim one morning and there was a lace the same width as my ribbon with the double circle motif I probably couldn't have found in a shop if I'd tried! Hours saved!
They cameo mounts are a bit too small after all, but these will have to do for now. I removed the necklace loop with the dremmel, printed out my cameo picture and then glued the mount, picture and cabochon together with all purpose glue.
Plan was to make the bird and the cage and swap them over when I felt like it, but I like the antique brass more than the shiny silver, so the cage won out this time.
18th May 2013: Corset Details I added the black stripes on by hand using black bias binding, following the lines of the boning channels so it would all look smooth. Because I was adding it onto a complete corset I couldn't have the black stripe under the eyelets at the back, a little artistic licence there. Also getting a needle to go through the fabric over flat steel is ridiculously fiddly, so I had to get some curved needles. As this was hand sewing that would take a long time I took it on holiday with me and sewed it on the beach instead of taking a book XD
I'd ordered black lacing for my corset project when I thought I'd use it for Elizabeth, so I just swapped that with the white lacing the corset came with.
Found a nice lace to double layer for the top edge trim that featured similar circles to her choker design; as I couldn't find anything that matched the reference I liked the idea of it tying in to the design in some other way instead.
8th May 2013: Corset Test Did the first black stripe on the corset as a tester as this was my last chance to order a different corset if I had to.
Awls are so handy, it made getting this over the busk posts super easy. I think this looks ok, but it took an hour to do this one stripe because it's incredibly hard to get the needle back out when it's flat against the steel busk. Going to invest in some curved needles so I don't go mental.
7th May 2013: Corset Dilemma Originally I'd been planning to hijack my corset project for this costume, but as time flew past working on the velvet parts I realised I wouldn't be able to finish in time, what with work and travelling abroad before Expo. Instead I hit the internet and was lucky enough to find a basic plain white corset on sale for half price. It's a shorter style than Elizabeth's and made from a shinier fabric than the photo suggested, but it's steel boned and when the details are added the fabric won't be as noticeable.
A friend who'd finished the game already kindly offered to reference hunt on Google for me so I wouldn't hit accidental spoilers XD They got some great ones of the corset which were so handy as I was worried there wouldn't be any of the back!
6th May 2013: Choker Planning The bird or the cage?
I want to make both and swap them over occasionally :)
I've found the exact cameo mounting on eBay in antique brass and silver along with some clear cabochons. They're a tiny bit too small, but the next size up seems far too big, so I'll see what these are like.
6th May 2013: Cuffs I decided to make the cuffs separate to the bolero to keep things simple. They were drafted in paper and made in duchess satin I had left over from an old project. They do up with poppers and sit over the bolero sleeves.
2nd May 2013: Skirt Finished Trimmed the skirt up until the petticoat trim showed.
Included a shot of the underside because I love how much space the frills take up, so much petticoat!
27th April 2013: Bolero Sleeves I altered the pattern to taper the sleeves down the arm and add a gather at the shoulder.
Despite cutting a size smaller, the shoulders were still inches too wide! Not sure what's up with this pattern, but I had to mark a new arm hole closer in to the body.
15th April 2013: Bolero Started the little bolero jacket.
I've made this once already for my circus costume and it came out too big so I've cut a size smaller this time. I need to tweak new sleeves and a collar as the pattern's not enough like Elizabeth's.
Lined the body in duchess satin as I had some large scraps lying around and wanted something structural under the flimsy velvet that won't look out of place if it happens to show. The sleeves I'm just lining with cheap cotton as there's no way you can see inside them and it needs to gather at the shoulders without being too bulky.
11th April 2013: Skirt Super simple four panel skirt with a zip in the back. Needs hemming up to show the petticoat frills.
Learnt at this point to store velvet items inside out so they don't catch all the dust.
1st April 2013: Petticoats Hunted out my Una petticoat to re-use with this costume.
It needs some little adjustments; for some reason I needlessly made it longer at the back to match the overdress and I overdid the extra fabric in the drawstring waist making it quite bulky.
Took the waist in and shortened up the hemline at the back of the petticoat. Now it's all level and ready for Elizabeth :D
26th March 2013: Preparation Did some test stitching with scraps of the velvet to check my machine set-up, but ran out of time to actually sew the skirt. Looks like this particular velvet doesn't shift as long as you press the pile together before feeding it under the machine foot and pin perpendicular to the seam, that'll make things much easier!
25th March 2013: Blue Velvet Originally I planned to use a non-stretch cotton velvet for this, but I had to pop to the fabric shops after work and only a few were still open. I saw this lovely one-way stretch velvet was only £5p/m so I jumped on that instead of the pricey rolls! At least being one-way it won't stretch length-wise under it's own weight and mess with the skirt hem length, so the stretch shouldn't matter, it's just not quite as plush.
I took this photo to decide which way I wanted the pile to lay on the costume. I'm going with the traditional stroking upward direction (on the right) as this gives the richer and darker colour. Thank goodness I did because having just cut out the skirt pieces I've found one of them has some fold marks that won't steam out, but they're barely visible this way up. Phew!
Cosplay Island is a news, portfolio and resource site for UK cosplayers. Join for free today, create your cosplay profile and share your photos with other cosplayers, or browse thousands of costumes by our members. Stay updated with all the latest news from the costuming world and cosplay events.